As a Registered Play Therapist Supervisor (RPT-S) I have extensive training and supervision in utilizing play therapy techniques. Becoming an RPT-S is a long but rewarding process and I continue to attend trainings and supervision to nurture my love of play therapy and helping children discover their inner strength to handle difficult life events.
Play therapy responds to the unique developmental needs of young children, who often express themselves better through play activities than through verbal communication.
The therapist uses play and other creative activities to communicate with the child and observe how the child uses these activities to express thoughts and feelings that are not expressed in words.
There are two approaches to play therapy:
1. Nondirective play therapy is based on the principle that children can resolve their own issues given the right conditions and the freedom to play with limited instruction and supervision.
2. Directive play therapy uses more input from the therapist to help speed up results. Play therapists use both approaches, depending on the circumstances.
Play therapy is a way of being with the child that honors their unique developmental level and looks for ways of helping in the “language” of the child – play.
Licensed mental health professionals therapeutically use play to help their clients, most often children ages three to 12 years, to better express themselves and resolve their problems.
Information cited from Association for Play Therapy & Psychology Today