Play Therapy - a brief idea
Updated: Jan 13
Some people think Play Therapy is just a time playing with a trained adult where the child will tell this adult everything. It does not happen like this.
We need to understand children and form a relationship by approaching them from a developmental perspective (Landreth, 2012). We don't need to talk, we don't give guidance or directions and suggestions on what to play and how to play. We follow.
The child will take the lead and guide us through their thoughts, feelings, wishes; they are the ones in control. Child-Centered Play Therapy is non-directive, but it is structured and guided by unconditional acceptance of the child, who she is as a human being, her feelings, difficulties, doubts...
In "Play Therapy - The Art of Relationship", Landreth says that children may have significant difficulty in verbalizing their feelings and how their experiences have impacted them. However, empathy and sensibility from a caring adult (in this case the Play Therapist), will assist the child to bring out their feelings through the toys and stories they act out.
"The dynamics of expression and vehicle for communication are different for children, but the expressions (fear, satisfaction, anger, happiness, frustration, contentment) are similar to those of adults. When viewed from this perspective, toys are used like words by children, and play is their language. To restrict therapy to verbal expression is to deny the existence of the most graphic form of expression - activity". Landreth, Garry L. (2012) - Play Therapy - The Art of Relationship - Routledge, USA.
It is just a brief, brief. But we will bring more information about Play Therapy on a weekly basis. We want our parents to understand the process, so we can work as a team for their children.