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Addressing Well-Being in Early and Middle Childhood: Recreation Therapy Interventions Aimed to Develop Skills that Create a Healthy Life

Jamie RaNae Bennett, Sandra K. Negley, Mary S. Wells, Peg Connolly


Children who experience increased levels of stress in early and middle childhood are at higher risk for symptoms of depression and anxiety in adulthood, resulting in an impaired health-related quality of life (HRQoL). A psychoeducational, recreation therapy (RT) intervention aimed to assist in the development of skills that promote a healthy life was created. The Healthy Me! program is founded on the Leisure and Well-Being Model in conjunction with the Utah State Core Curriculum Health Education Standards. This study investigated the impact the program had on 110 students in the fourth grade. Evidence supports the notion that RT interventions aimed at addressing HRQoL can prevent a decline of HRQoL in early and middle childhood.


Health-related quality of life; youth development; Leisure and Well-Being Model; emotional health; emotional well-being; mental health; early childhood; middle childhood

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