I’m very pleased to introduce Dr. Kristi Pikiewicz’s blog, Play Therapy. Here’s her wonderful and informative introduction to what she’ll be talking about on here:
Play therapy is more than babysitting amid colorful clutter. It is a rich therapy tradition with a long history of research and use, requiring a skilled dance between therapist and client. Play therapy lets young people speak through actions — it lets them communicate complex feelings, experiences and emotions through metaphor.
In addition to engaging children in communication, play therapy brings actions and emotions into the room. For example, instead of talking about a child’s difficulties to self-regulate, a skilled play therapist may allow his or her client to become slightly dysregulated during therapeutic play. This allows the therapist and client to work together in a situation that is much more “real” than talk alone to discover and practice skills for self-regulation. Play requires focus, resilience and social communication.
If managed well, it takes empathy and creativity and planning. As therapists, parents and teachers, these are the skills we want our kids to master. Intentional and educated play therapy is wonderful way to teach this mastery.
Please give her a warm Psych Central welcome!