The Effect of Relaxation on Handicapped Preschool Children

Publication Date



Master of Arts (MA)

Committee or Advisor Chair

Glenn E. Whitlock

Committee Members

Frank R. Blume

Bette Hadler


education, preschool, children, relaxation, psychology, hyperactivity


Child Psychology | Developmental Psychology | Early Childhood Education | Educational Psychology | Experimental Analysis of Behavior | Psychology


"The inability to relax is one of the most widely spread diseases of our time, and one of the most infrequently recognized. " (Jones, 1953)

"We live in a "jitterbug" age. Tension, insecurity, uncertainty, wars and rumors of wars are the order of the day. With adults under constant strain it is small wonder that children react in kind. Pressures on both children and teachers are increasing; nervous disorders among adults are at an all time high in hospitals for mental disease. What can a teacher do to bring about calmness and self-possession in this restless machine age? She can do three things: she can maintain a calm and peaceful working atmosphere; she can organize periods of relaxation as and when needed; she can offer antidotes for tired nerves and bodies." (Cubberley, 1940)

This statement, written over forty years ago, contains some very wise suggestions regarding the integration of relaxation into school programs. Unfortunately, these suggestions have gone largely unheeded and the problems have continued to escalate. Today the degree to which our society suffers from hypertension, anxiety, and other stress-related disorders is astounding. The clinical value of relaxation in treating nervous disorders has become more and more apparent; and yet its applicability to school programs has been practically ignored. It is in our schools that relaxation might perform the greatest preventative and therapeutic service with all children, but especially so in the field of special education. It would serve the teachers of today very well to heed the above advice of Ms Cubberly, more applicable than ever to the situation today.


Department: Humanistic and Transpersonal Psychology

This document is currently not available here.