Aims: Therapeutic outcomes from interventions for children with unilateral cerebral palsy (UCP) are influenced by children’s engagement which may be linked to mastery motivation. This study explores expectations of children with UCP, perceptions of confidence and competence and progress in movement skills following participation in an intensive 60 hour day-camp using a magic-themed hand-arm bimanual intensive therapy (Magic-HABIT).
Methods: A mixed-methods study using semi-structured interviews, questionnaires and standardised assessments. Thematic analysis using NVivo10 identified themes regarding experiences of having a hemiplegia and expectations for therapy. Expectations for therapy will be contrasted with reported positivity (Children’s HOPE scale) and competence and worry (Children’s Hand Experience Questionnaire) and motor skill outcomes (Jebsen Taylor Test of Hand Function) following participation in Magic-HABIT.
Results: Data were available from 18 children with UCP and parents (12 males; mean age=8y9m,range=7yto12y). Thematic extraction to date has identified three main themes relating to skill change, social relationships, and personal sense of achievement. HOPE scores at pre-treatment correlated with positivity following treatment (r=0.53,p=0.01) but not associated with perceptions of competence nor skill nor linked to progress in motor ability. Children reported to be worried about their skills continued to be worried after treatment, despite making significant progress (r=0.716,p0.001).
Conclusion: A complex relationship between positivity and movement skill acquisition and perceptions of competence and worry is evident. Further analysis of themes emerging across the complete data set will be reported and discussed in relation to expectations and perceived and measured outcomes considered important to children and their families.