The Motional Solution

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Why choose Motional?

Motional can be used by all staff without the need for specific training.

Our tool can record ACE (Adverse Childhood Experiences) and Protective Factor scores where required and gives staff a whole-brain picture of students' mental health and wellbeing.

Motional is based on research on emotional systems in the brain and extensive research, studies and expertise in executive functional skills - mental skills that include working memory, flexible thinking, and self-control (Panksepp, Hughes, Siegel, Porges, Wells).

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The activities and advice within Motional are developed by a team of psychologists and experienced senior educators that respond specifically to the emotional health profile of the participant.

For further information on the theory behind Motional, please scroll down!

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  • Simple to use
  • Friendly, in-app support
  • Traning is embedded within the tool
  • Provides change and progression data for whole school, keystage, year group, class, group, cohort such as FSM, pupil premium or pupil deprivation grant, individuals
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  • Supports the distribution of emotional health responsibility across the whole team not just SENCO/ALNCO
  • Develops whole school action plans for leadership
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  • Low cost of entry and no hidden costs
  • Fast online support based in UK
  • Highly responsive to user feedback
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We measure different emotional systems in the brain linked to social engagement (Care, Seeking and Play) and social defence (Rage, Fear and Panic/Grief) and add this to this Executive and Social Functioning (Stress, Thinking and Concentration, Sense of Self, Relationship with Others, and Emotional Literacy) - to give a whole brain picture of a child's emotional and mental wellbeing.

How it works

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Motional operates on two levels:

  • The core functions in Motional provide tools to measure and analyse, then to intervene through advice and activities to effect positive change. You can then track and monitor progress of the mental health and wellbeing of your children and young people.

    The tools are designed to work in a cyclical fashion providing the opportunity to check and recheck progress.
  • The reporting function can provide data at any point in the core process. Change and progression data can be accessed for:
    • Individuals
    • Groups
    • Classes
    • Cohorts (such as FSM, Pupil Premium or Pupil Deprivation)
    • Year groups
    • Key Stages
    • Gender
    • Whole school
    or a combination of these to provide granular analysis.

Measure, Change, Progress, & Report


Motional's Snapshot tool uses a series of questions to help adults better understand how well a child or young person is functioning in terms of their mental health and wellbeing. All Snapshots over time are recorded in the child’s profile.

To improve efficiency, multiple Snapshots can be taken at the same time in a tool known as the Groupshot (saving the information both to the group (such as a class) and the individual’s profile.

Both the Individual Snapshot and the Groupshot can be undertaken at:

Universal level - an efficient, optimised version of the Snapshot undertaken either individually or as a group.

Comprehensive level - an extension of the Universal Snapshot for individual children or young people who have been identified as needing a little more support and / or 1:1 intervention.

Most settings choose to use Universal for every class in the school ensuring the collection of whole school data and then use this data to identify those who require some additional support and an individual Comprehensive Snapshot.



Both levels of Snapshot allow you to gain access to a program of strategies known to support emotional development and link with a wealth of practical activities to heal troubled children's minds, brains, and ability to learn. The research base shows that these interventions can support children and teenagers who have mental health difficulties to go on to lead fulfilling lives.

Our programs tie in with the well-developed models of practice such as PACE (Playfulness, Acceptance, Curiosity and Empathy), but are not limited to any specific approach. Each program includes guidance in protecting and relating to children. This guidance is tailored to the child you work with based on the scores in the Snapshot.

Each activity has a thorough description and step-by-step guide, together with key relationship-building approaches to help support and focus the impact this has on the child / young person or group.

Programs can be created for both individuals and groups.

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Motional's live reporting function offers various ways to measure progress. This can be used to track change across ‘Domain’ level -Social Engagement, Social Defence, Executive & Social Functioning and Sub-domain level - CARE, SEEKING, PLAY, RAGE, FEAR PANIC/GRIEF, Emotional Regulation, Thinking and Concentration, Sense of Self, Relationship with Others, and Emotional Literacy.

You can see progress in an individual or a group, and view results for particular cohorts of children in your setting. This might be those with Pupil Premium funding, Autistic Spectrum Condition, or indeed Most Able.

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Motional provides a live data screen that highlights concerns – both those changing most dramatically with a simple RAG system, and across ‘Domain’ level -Social Engagement, Social Defence, Executive & Social Functioning and Sub-domain level -CARE, SEEKING, PLAY, RAGE, FEAR PANIC/GRIEF, Emotional Regulation, Thinking and Concentration, Sense of Self, Relationship with Others and Emotional Literacy shows the highest level of need.

This screen can be filtered to show Gender, Cohort, Year-group, Key stage or whole school and additional reporting tools enable comparison and analysis of change and progress across various dimensions of the setting.

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Motional for whole school approach

Motional is now being used by over a thousand organisations, by tens of thousands of practitioners and for a hundred thousand children and young people across the UK.


Motional can be used for intervention, however, the greatest impact on outcomes for young people exists when emotional health tools and approaches are embedded within the whole school or setting 1–5. The integration of Motional alongside whole-school/whole-setting training and into staff CPD as part of a routine is an important aspect of this.

Motional is an intuitive, collaborative system and has been built with the user in mind and with all the necessary guides and training embedded throughout however we do offer live, online sessions that we can tailor to your needs to support your whole school approach.

One of the key benefits of Motional is that it distributes responsibility for emotional wellbeing across the team rather than it being the responsibility of a single individual or an approach practiced in a single room. It enables a holistic approach. This is supported by whole-school data, organisational and classroom-practice development embedded within advice and activities that directly support young people but that also support Continuous Professional Development.

Motional is more than this though. Motional is a growing community of like-minded professionals that share a common language as well as a set of tools and an opportunity to collaborate – Whole School is the start; Whole community is where the real power exists to make lasting change to our children’s emotional health and wellbeing!

  1. Panksepp J. Affective Neuroscience: The Foundations of Human and Animal Emotions. Oxford University Press; 1998.
  2. Panksepp J, Biven L. The Archaeology of Mind: Neuroevolutionary Origins of Human Emotions. 1st ed. W. W Norton; 2012.
  3. Golding KS, Hughes DA. Creating Loving Attachments: Parenting with PACE to Nurture Confidence and Security in the Troubled Child. Jessica Kingsley Publishers; 2012.
  4. Hughes DA. Attachment-Focused Family Therapy Workbook. 1st ed. W.W. Norton; 2011.
  5. Siegel DJ. The mind in psychotherapy: An interpersonal neurobiology framework for understanding and cultivating mental health. Psychol Psychother Theory Res Pract. 2019;92(2):224-237. doi:10.1111/papt.12228
  6. Siegel DJ, Bryson TP. The Whole-Brain Child.; 2012.
  7. Wells J, Barlow J, Stewart‐Brown S. A systematic review of universal approaches to mental health promotion in schools. Health Educ. 2003;103(4):197-220. doi:10.1108/09654280310485546
  8. Porges SW. The polyvagal theory: phylogenetic substrates of a social nervous system. Int J Psychophysiol. 2001;42(2):123-146. doi:10.1016/S0167-8760(01)00162-3
  9. Porges SW. The Polyvagal Theory: Neurophysiological Foundations of Emotions, Attachment, Communication, and Self-Regulation. 1st ed. W. W. Norton; 2011.
  10. HM Government. Promoting children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing. Published online September 2021.
  11. NICE. Social and emotional wellbeing in primary education. Published online March 26, 2008.
  12. NICE. Social and emotional wellbeing in secondary education. Published online September 23, 2009.
  13. Wells J, Barlow J, Stewart‐Brown S. A systematic review of universal approaches to mental health promotion in schools. Health Educ. 2003;103(4):197-220. doi:10.1108/09654280310485546
  14. O’Conner R, Feyter JD, Carr A, Luo JL, Romm H. Teacher and classroom strategies that contribute to social and emotional learning (part 3 of 4).
Helen Wetton

"I have just completed 2 new snapshots for 2 students I have been working with! Wooohoooo both show amazing results!"

Helen Wetton
Torpoint Community College

Ready to learn more?

Contact our team today to find out more: