Group play and the social benefits of the Happiness Programme
The Happiness Programme is designed to be accessible for people with all kinds of needs and requirements. Part of our mission is making sure that everyone can get involved in the fun and games that the Happiness Programme is bringing to your care service.
A great way to do this is by introducing group play into your Happiness Programme sessions. Below, we’ve put together another article and webinar to give you some tips and advice on how to begin your group play:
Advantages and benefits
There are many advantages and benefits to group play. From social connections to participation and wellbeing, group play can provide a great opportunity for players to really connect with their surroundings and others.
Participation and wellbeing
Group play can help to support people in many different ways. Some players may prefer to watch others interacting with the games before getting involved themselves. Group activities can help these players gain some more confidence and encourage them to participate.
Some players may find it difficult to get involved with regular activities, and as a result, find it hard to connect with others. The Happiness Programme is designed to ensure that people of all abilities can join in. Group sessions can help everyone get involved and provide some much needed social time which can help to improve general wellbeing.
Time for social connections
Social wellbeing is an incredibly important contributor to overall happiness. This can be even more important for those living with dementia, as the condition can often feel isolating which leads to loneliness among those living in care. Group sessions can help battle those feelings of isolation by exposing individuals to:
- Frequent discussions with staff and other residents
- Playing games and participating in activities
- Holding engagement
- Bringing different groups and individuals together
- Prompting other social behaviours (speaking at meal times, building friendships etc.)
Planned or spontaneous play
There are many ways that you can incorporate group play into your regular Happiness Programme sessions:
- Plan a session for a specific group of people. This can help give players a sense of purpose and a reason to engage and communicate with others
- Plan a session with visitors. You could even try encouraging intergenerational play with family
- Invite people passing by to join an existing session
- Open up a 1:1 activity to people in the room or nearby
- Encourage staff and residents to have group sessions to create positive experiences for both parties
Ideas for group sessions
- Musical therapy
- The wall playlist on the magic table 360 enables more people to see and interact with the games
- Projecting the games on the floor to give a wider projection area
- Competitive games
- Introducing props to give less mobile players more accessibility in group sessions
Not a member of the Happiness Programme?
The Happiness Programme is a first-of-its-kind initiative helping to change the lives of people living with cognitive challenges. We use interactive light technology to provide meaningful activities for residents and patients in care homes and care settings. For more detail on what the Happiness Programme is and how it’s helping care venues across the UK, visit our getting started page.
Alternatively, jump to our dementia, learning disability and NHS pages for more specific detail on how it’s helping care homes like Barchester and HC-One as well as hospitals and local authorities such as St George’s Hospital, London and Westminster and South Kensington Council.
For anything else, you can contact us here too.