Need ideas for nursing education groups

Specialties Psychiatric


I just started a new position with an acute mental health facility. One of my responsibilities is to hold an educational group for one hour each day.

What are some ways you have held groups and taught your patients?


189 Posts

I'd be interested to hear some ideas from other Psych RN's.

BTW --- What type of people are you dealing with?


27 Posts

What type of population are you working with?


22 Posts

Adults - the majority of the clients are chronic, and their illnesses run from A to Z. Currently on the unit are people diagnosed with major depressive disorder with psychosis and suicide ideation, bipolar (admitted in the manic phase and is now stabilizing), schizophrenia, and dual diagnosis with heroin/ETOH/cocaine addiction.

All ideas will be greatly appreciated.


27 Posts

Although I work with the child/adolescent program, we do "nursing" educational groups - medication education is one we repeat regularly. Other topics that we include are; nutrition, sleep (or lack of..), diagnostic info (geared to specific groups), exercise. Also do a lot with anger maangement. Not sure if this helps, but some a few thoughts.

Good Luck!



239 Posts

I also work with the child/adolescent population and we do therapeutic activities every day. I'm not sure how appropriate they would be for adults, but we do activities relating to using and interpreting body language, interpreting facial expressions, relaxation (be careful of guided imagery with those who are hallucinating though), expressing feelings appropriately, expressing feelings through art/color. I know an adult unit that has educational sessions on stress management, depression, and medication compliance.



27 Posts

Does anyone have good ideas for other activities? We recently lost both our OT adn COTA positions and now are responsible for this group also. We've been doing some crafts adn games - pictures, frames, art projects. I'm really running out of ideas....

sanakruz, ADN

735 Posts

I hold a wellness group every other Weds for chroniclly ill adults at an outpt. clinic.

We discuss nutrition, medication compliance(or non-compliance and why!) sleep, exercise, stress reduction and relaxation,social relationships,how to talk to MDs, etc.

Some resources I've used: are downloadable workbooks great for inpts This group is absolutely a phenomenal bunch-They have 6 steps for recovery and follow a paradigm much like AA/NA.

National Mental Health Consumers' Self -Help Clearinghouse

More downloadable activities (not sure of the actual web addresss)

Relaxation tapes I picked up at Goodwill for 50 cents

Coloring pages downloaded off the 'net- Good for lower functioning people-We have found angels, Renaissance costumes

Native Americans and things more "adult" in nature

Something called GIT-Group Involvement Training by Catherine Hartl Chambliss, PH.D. This is copyrighted material given to me by ? from 1988- It is ful of ideas for lower functioning folks and my guess is Dr. Catherine is an OT

Anyhow my group is popular and well attended, (and at risk to be axed by the evil Admiral that runs our clinic.) I have also invented 2 activities called Medication True/False Comedy Edition and Medication True/False Master Edition- If I had any clue how to upload these I surely would because they are very well recieved. I am interested in what other folks do as well . Lets keep in touch:kiss


140 Posts

I work with chronically ill mental health patients. We have geared our patient education groups toward recovery. We talk about what is important in their lives and then develop their treatment plan to meet their needs. We are using the Boston Model for Emerging Best Practices in Mental Health. There is a good resource on the internet about teaching patients how to advocate for themselves. Our patients are responding to this better than any other education we have tried because it puts them in charge of their own lives rather than staff dictating to them how they should live.


176 Posts

Is a good start to see who is paying attention or cares.

I'm Louie


22 Posts

Specializes in Mental Health.

Psychoeducational groups around depression and anxiety could be a great start, Other specifics might include sleep hygiene and what about using a Solution Focused approach such as Steve de Shazer and Insoo Kim Berg.

Have you checked out Phil Barker's Tidal Model not specifically for groups but very client orientated.

cheers Albert


4 Posts

i think you should start with the concept of health rather than mental illness. gardening and baking are great activities that clients can enjoy and are meaningful and life long learning skills.empowerment is key and getting clients involved in doing activities rather than talking can give them a sense of belonging and purpose! :)

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