How does Play Therapy Work?
A play therapist is entrusted with unraveling a child's complex emotional state. They are trained specifically to understand what a child is trying to express through the free associations that children make while moving from toy to toy. Each toy is symbolistic and related to a child's inner world of feelings and thoughts.
The aim of each session is to help children and their families address and resolve the challenges a child is experiencing using theoretical orientations. These orientations utilize different strategies such as cognitive behavioral methodologies.
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What to expect in the Sessions?
Our play therapist will work with you to develop a list of goals that you wish to have your child achieve. Next, your child is familiarised with their play therapist by exploring the special materials of the playroom and getting comfortable with the setting. The Play Therapy toolkit is based on the Holistic Child Approach and was carefully selected after the therapeutic abilities were proven.
The toolkit includes:
Puppets and Masks
Drama and role play
Dance & Movement
One of the techniques used is called Sand Tray Therapy, it is an activity where the materials are used as "symbols" to discover things about your child, gradually children reveal their thoughts and concerns through play, to make them feel less overwhelming.
A typical session runs for 45 minutes and provides your child with the opportunity to make choices for themselves in a safe and supportive environment.
The ‘play’ in play therapy is a special kind of play that allows your child to lead the "work". This "work" is sometimes referred to as Child-Centered Play Therapy. Your child builds their confidence and control over their emotions and thoughts in the setting of the playroom. This process takes place over a period of time and allows your child to gain a better sense of self, which then replaces challenging behaviors like tantrums or overcoming shyness.
How effective is Play Therapy?
Play therapy is one of the most empirically validated forms of therapy available for children.
Many children who use play therapy make great strides over relatively few sessions and see improvements over the years. This is because children are given the tools to regulate themselves emotionally and a means to express themselves rather than through behaviours that are unproductive like throwing tantrums.
The skills they develop in a facilitated playroom are lifelong skills they will use as they grow into adults.
Many children need support in emotional literacy. Others have behaviour or mental health challenges at some stage that prevents them from fulfilling their full potential.