Play-Therapy for Children Written by: Maitreyee Sathe, Clinical Trainee specializing in play therapy
Just as adults tend to talk about their feelings and emotions, children act them out in play! Play is
a child’s natural way of communication. Children use toys to express themselves including their
needs, wishes and wants. They use toys as a medium to make sense of their life experiences. For
children, what seems unmanageable in reality, becomes manageable in play! Children externalize
their emotions and thoughts with the help of toys and hence experience a sense of relief through
Play therapy is an evidence based approach with solid research to support its effectiveness for
many populations and concerns. Children experiencing social, emotional or behavioral
difficulties use the playroom as a safe space to comprehend their struggles, express their
emotions and explore possible solutions. The children use the toys in the playroom as a form of
communication with the clinician. These toys include real life and nurturing toys such as doll
family, doll house, puppets, cars, money, medical kit, food; Aggressive toys such as toy soldiers,
plastic guns, animals and aggressive puppets; and finally expressive toys such as sandtray, paint,
clay, musical instruments and, dress up clothes.
Play therapy helps children to facilitate communication, enhance social relationships, foster
emotional wellness and increase personal strengths. The clinician in the playroom strives to
provide the child with a warm, safe and supporting environment. The clinician provides the child
with unconditional positive regard while building a friendly and warm relationship. The clinician
maintains a deep respect for the child’s ability to solve his/her problems and gives the child the
opportunity to do so. A collaborative approach is taken with an aim to empower both the child
and the caregiver and the clinician conducts regular sessions with parents and guardians to
monitor the child’s progress.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to know more/ schedule an appointment!