About Play Therapy
A child's natural mode of learning and expression is play. While adults may use counselling to help them through difficulties, children can struggle with such methods as their cognitive abilities and verbal skills are still developing. Play Therapy recognises the healing potential in play and so is especially helpful for children. Rather than focussing on talking, Play Therapy supports children's healing through creative and experiential means.
Play therapy is a well-established and evidenced based approach founded on a number of psychological theories. For decades it has been widely used in the UK and US and is fast gaining recognition in Australia as an effective intervention and therapy.
Child centred, gentle and effective, Play Therapy creates a space in which children have the freedom to express themselves within safe boundaries. Through this process children learn to understand and cope with their experiences and emotions. Play Therapy supports children through difficult times and helps them develop life-enhancing qualities such as confidence and resilience. Play Therapy can also be used to improve family relationships by helping carers gain a better understanding of children's experiences.
"For children to play out their experiences and feelings is the most natural, dynamic and self-healing process in which children can engage," Garry L Landreth Ed.D, LPC, RPI-S, Director Emeritus of the Association for Play Therapy.
During a session, the child and therapist work together in a room equipped with toys and equipment which encourage imagination. Through creative play the child can express and explore feelings, make sense of life experiences and develop healthy behaviours. At Be Centre sandplay, puppets, art, role play, clay and creative visualisation can all form part of the therapy experience.
Play Therapy offers children an experience of acceptance, non-judgement, encouragement and freedom. It supports a child's ability to work with their experiences through play, helping them grow towards healing, health and resilience.