National contest of School counselling through Art-therapy Express freely!


National contest of School counselling through Art-therapy Express freely!

Affiliation(s)/ Institution

County Center for Educational Resources and Assistance Teleorman

Email addresses

Project funded by

County Center for Educational Resources and Assistance Sălaj / County Center for Psycho-pedagogical Assistance Sălaj

Promoter name and country

County Center for Educational Resources and Assistance Sălaj, Romania

Partner(s) name and country (if applicable)

County Council (Consiliul Județean) Sălaj School Inspectorate Sălaj Episcopacy Sălaj County Hystory and Arts Museum Zalău Botanical garden „Vasile Fati” Jibou România

Type of provider


Area of implementation

  • urban
  • rural
  • nazional

Context and motivation of the project - legislative background/obligations, institutional policy, institutional structures

In this project, the counselling activities are done in the context of a public contest, in which the counselling role is played by the participants, through positive, educative, original messages on a uptodate topic, through art-therapeutic expressing techniques. As the social status and the age of those conveying the message is consistent with the caracteristics of the public, facilitates the process of identification with the situation and increases the level of atention and credibility, as well as there is a is higher impact of the educational messages thus conceived, conveyed by the pupils to the school audience. The art is used as a mean of expression for communicating thoughts, attitudes, conflicts and feelings. The hybrid art-therapeutical techniques are inspired from both arts and psychology, the main focus being on the use of creativity in order to improve the life quality. The visual arts encourages and develops the interpersonal relations, helps the person to comunicate better, to be more aware of her or his own oppinions, attitudes and to understand better those entering in contact with.

Aims of the project

Improving bio-psycho-social life quality of pupils from lower and upper secondary education, through conveying positive educational messages through different expression techniques of art-therapy.

Target group

  • students
  • Teachers

Description of the target group

Students from lower and upper secondary education obtaining the First and the Second Awards on the county level contest are entitled to participate in the national contest attended by school counsellors from CJRAE – CJAP and the teachers who tutored them.

Staff (selection, evaluation, training, promotion)

After the presentation of the contest in schools by the school counsellor, the interested pupils prepare a short performance according to the topic of the contest under the guidance of the school counsellor. The performance is played in the contest at school level where a selection is made out of the most interesting and of impact educational messages. The pupils with the First and the Second Award on school level are going to the county level contest. The pupils with the First and the Second Awards at the county level will qualify for the national phase of the contest. The evaluation of the performances is made by a jury, according to the criteria in the evaluation form, the results being presented at the end of the contest.

Methodological approach, activities implemented

The contest is focused on a topic communicateed by the organisers. The topic is related to the life quality and personal development. The pupils are expressing freely, in groups or individually, using art-therapeutical techniques (drama, film, pantomime, muzic, drawing, painting, dance, photography, collage, etc.). The evaluation criteria include: originality, psychological impact on the public, educational character. The jury consists of representatives of organisers and partners from all the country. Three Awards are issued for lowwer secondary level and three for epper secondary. There is one special Award „Express freely!” for the most educative message conveyed in an original and of touching manner. The prizes include diplomas, money, promotional materials with the logo of the contest. The contest at national level has the followinf format: welcome, presentation of the regulation, contest, awarding festivity and visits to turistic objectives in the respective county.

Results and impact - data of program internal/ external evaluation, beneficiary satisfaction, the impact of the didactical practices at individual and institutional level

127 pupils and 71 school counsellors and teachers of different subjects from 17 counties attended the contest. The pupils had the opportunity to develop from a psycho-socio-emotional perspective, the exercise the assertive communication skills and healthy behaviours. The role change contributed to a significant educational impact and provided healthy choices of life. The involvement of teachers in tutoring a high number of pupils promoted a rational, positive and adaptative thinking style, as well as the development of the emotional inteligence; contributed to self-awareness and personal development, internalisation of healthy behaviours and learning ways of facing negative situations through the acquisition of thechniques of behavioural self-control and assertive communication; as well as to an positive attitude towards the school and the environment through the socialisation and turistic visits.

Conclusions, lessons learned

The pupils have exercised and developed the skills of free, original and creative expression. This in turn will facilitate an optimal adaptation to the hypercomplex environment in constant change. The different means of expression chosen by the pupils illustrated desirable behavioural models.

Directions of further development/ Transferability, replicability

Being the only one contest of school counselling through art-therapy at national level „Express freely!” it is needed to atrack more partners from all the counties and on the long run to promote it as an international contest.

Type of ESL (early school leaving) practice

  • Prevention

Web references (url, social media presence)

Parameters on which the practice is applicable (check those appropriate)

  • Measures and profiles
  • Objectives and needs