Focusing Through Interactive Pausing:
The teacher and school experience of the Process
With Derek McDonnell and Tadhg O’Lionaird.
1 DVD 28 minutes.
The background to Focusing Through Interactive Pausing, as a process of dealing with behaviour management issues, began in direct response to external factors relating to and impacting on students in a DEIS band 1 school in Ireland.
The intervention, which led to this research project, was intended as an initial step in the introduction of a school-wide response to behavioural management considerations. The process of using ‘Focusing’ as a modality in the building of resilience and problem solving practice among young people began, as a targeted response to behavioural management challenges and issues of emotional self-regulation, in the pursuit of better educational outcomes for students in a disadvantaged area primary school in Ireland.
Antecedent to this study was an established practice, where individual students were invited from their classes by a Focusing Facilitator and Child Protection Specialist, who developed with them an engagement, which would allow them develop self referencing skills, in dealing with problems as they emerged in their lives. This engagement, on a one- to-one basis, became a more expansive practice when at some point in the initiative, the profound and positive behaviour outcomes these troubled students were achieving, was noticed. A conversation then began which would lead to a broader exploration of applying Focusing as a class-based modality.The approach used in this study defers to Focusing first principals as ascribed by Gendlin (1978) in his seminal text (O’Lionaird 2015).
Focusing that presents here, as a class-based modality, is a further evolution of the Gendlin model and encompasses additional elements, most notably an interactive engagement where Practitioner interacts with the Focuser and holds the more that comes throughout this engagement. This is interactive pausing... (©FTIP Ireland 2016)
Derek McDonnell is a TFI Coordinator who has been a Focusing Trainer for 16 years. He has worked in the areas of Social Care, Mental Health and Child Protection with the department of health in Ireland. He runs FOCUSING THROUGH INTERACTIVE PAUSING training programmes for individual students and as a class based intervention. In conjunction with Mr. Tadhg O’Lionaird, a submission of the FTIP training programme for teachers to the Department of Education and Skills achieved accreditation in Ireland as a Summer Teacher in-service Training Course. (©FTIP Ireland 2016)