My Kawa River, completed during my final OT placement
Myself and another student OT brought the Five Ways to Wellbeing to pupils at a deaf school, via a variety of weekly classes.
For a fuller account of this intervention, check out my article 'School OT: Using the Kawa Model and Five Ways to Wellbeing' in OT Interventions [Plus+ Member access]
The Kawa Model
We decided to use the Kawa Model of occupational therapy practice, to engage students in a creative activity. We wanted each person to consider the personal challenges they currently face and the skills and supportive structures to help overcome them.
We designed a basic river template (left) and laminated a copy for each child - to write on with wipeable ink. We felt that the visual element could be supportive to learning. Objects to place in the river and write on were then cut out and laminated. This formed a blank canvas for each pupil to map out their life flow! This would be a changing picture...
KEYRocks = circumstances that block life flow and cause dysfunction or disability
Driftwood = skills and resources that support and enhance daily living
Fish = personal qualities that help to overcome challenges faced
River bed = the social, physical, cultural and institutional environment (a hinderance or help)
Each student could experiment by placing objects in different places within their river, to assess how one could support or hinder another aspect of their life. Check out my example river at the top of this post.
Why not utilise the Kawa Model in your work with clients/patients?It's a tool that works across ages and cultures.