What we do
A play therapy group focuses on teamwork and helps with overcoming challenges, builds confidence and empowerment and develops resilience.
Sessions include themes such as: fantasy: enchanted island, science; space etc., and can be linked in with curriculum topics (history, geography, art, etc.). Evidence has shown significant positive changes in children working with their peers, listening, communications and concentration.
Often schools will consider children who show signs of the following for group play therapy: poor social skills, those who have difficult relationships, those not coping with loss, separation or divorce, poor peer skills, shyness, or those finding it hard to adjust to changes.
New and emerging groups of children who have been identified as benefitting from group play therapy range from home schooled children who struggle socially to refugees who may be struggling with resettlement and fitting into the classroom.
Group sessions can go some way to helping nervous and unsure children interact with peers and can assist them to integrate better into school life and the classroom.
Play Therapy either as a 1:1 intervention or with a group of children is a proven therapeutic intervention for children facing a wide range of difficulties.
Contact Sarah at Creative-Me to find out about the next steps.
Each 1:1 session is up to 50 minutes long depending on the age and the development level of the child. One session per week is recommended on a regular day at the same time. This is important for developing a trusting relationship and missed or unplanned sessions may disrupt their progress.
Some children can respond to a short term intervention of around 12-18 sessions. If problems have existed for a long time, or are complicated, it may take considerably longer and in some cases we can work with children for over a year.
Group Play Therapy is usually 8-10 (once a week) sessions.
Official statistics have stated that one in four children have some form of emotional, behavioural or mental health issue, and we now know that this figure is likely higher. Evidence that Play Therapy works can be seen via measures and assessments made prior to and following Play Therapy. These outline the changes and developments that take place in the child’s behaviour and emotional state.
Approximately 74% to 83% of children show positive change according to observations by referrers (teachers and parents) when Play Therapy is delivered to PTUK standards.
Play Therapy can be mobile and is held in private, secure spaces in schools, village halls, and in children’s and community centres.
The toys and equipment used have been specifically picked to link into the child’s needs (aggressive, expressive toys, pretend, fantasy, nurturing and tactile toys). These link into Gardener’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences. A typical playroom will contain a sandbox or sand tray with miniature items (people, cars, animals, fantasy characters etc.) There may be board games and other traditional toys (see below). Children are enabled the freedom to explore their emotions and feelings in a safe, secure space while developing strategies to deal with the struggles they face.
The Play Therapy ‘tool kit’ and techniques
- Clay and sculpturing
- Sand tray and miniatures
- Therapeutic storytelling
- Creative visualisations, deep breathing and relaxation exercises
- Traditional toys ie. dolls house
- Constructions toys
- Dressing up, role play
- Music, dance and movement
- Art and crafts: drawing and painting
All the toys and materials can help give form to the child’s inner world and offer the child the opportunity to express feelings safely