Play therapy is a form of counseling used mostly with children and their families. It takes place in a child’s familiar habitat (a playroom), using words which are common to kids (toys) and a natural means of expression (play). This environment creates a feeling of safety for the child and can remove the barriers of communication that often happen between a child and an adult.
In a society where children are often powerless, play therapy allows children to manipulate their world, which can give them a feeling of control. In play, children are able to express emotions in an uncensored way, giving the therapist understanding about their issues and providing a vehicle for change. The play room is equipped with carefully selected toys chosen to help children express a variety of feelings and problems.
Written by Laurie Taylor, M.A.