What is Play Therapy?
Children have a natural ability to express, process and learn through play. Play therapists are specifically trained to provide an environment of acceptance, empathy and understanding in the play therapy room. They are trained in interventions, techniques, and theory around helping children process and heal using play in a contained setting. Play therapists use various forms of play during the course of therapy including, but not limited to: free play, dramatic play (pretend), board games, art, story-telling, puppets, and sand tray. Most play therapists are non-directive and allow the child to initiate the type of play during the session. Therapists can narrate the play, highlighting the child’s process, giving voice and vocabulary to feelings and actions. Therapists can teach more appropriate responses to stress and can help a child not only process difficult memories and feelings, but develop healthy coping skills to better manage current and future life stressors.