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ERIC Number: EJ1268742
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2020
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-2333-4851
Building Blocks and Coloring Away Stress: Utilizing Lego® and Coloring as Stress Reduction Strategies among University Students
Shields, Margaret; Hunnell, William; Tucker, Melanie; Price, Annie
Journal of Health Education Teaching, v11 n1 p24-31 2020
Purpose: Anxiety disorders are a common mental health problem on college campuses. Underused creative programs offer intrinsic value to the successful integration of college students. The purpose of this study was to determine the efficacy of the use of building block therapy (LEGO® ) in stress management/reduction in comparison to traditional art therapy through the use of coloring books. Methods: Researchers conducted an intervention over for one-month with eight 1-hour sessions of coloring (n=5) or building (n=5) and compared to a control group (n=6). Students completed pre- and post-study surveys as well as pre- and post-session surveys. Descriptive statistics and the Wilcoxon Signed-ranks test were used for the pre- and post-study data of the control, coloring and building block groups to assess and compare changes in the individuals or between the groups. Results: Building block therapy was found to be non-inferior to the proven stress reduction method of coloring. The coloring group was found to be significant in the perceived reduction of stress (p [less than or equal to] 0.001) with an initial mean of 3.43 and final mean of 1.62, and the building block group was found to be significant (p [less than or equal to] 0.001) with an initial mean of 2.75 and final mean of 1.48. Conclusions: This pilot study sheds light on the importance of creativity in stress reduction. Looking beyond the conventional and enjoying the art of play, adults are able to use "toys" as a method of escape and relaxation. This research will help to elaborate on the anecdotes of pop-culture icons such as David Beckham, Trey Parker and Ed Sheeran to the efficacy of building block activities in stress reduction and help university students better understand alternative methods to mental health therapy and stress reduction. Recommendations: Through building blocks and art therapy students have an opportunity to socialize with other students. This adds significance to the beneficence of building blocks as a stress management tool and may increase possibilities for building social support networks. This study may help faculty and staff of similar universities to explore similar methods to help improve student success and retention.
Journal of Health Education Teaching. 9563 Wedge Way, Delmar, MD 21875. Tel: 443-880-0394; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A