Children have limited means to verbally express themselves. Garry Landreth, author of Play Therapy: The Art of the Relationship, describes play therapy as a vehicle for communication. Landreth (2012) says for children, play is the language and toys act as the words. For therapists in the playroom, the manner in which they facilitate conversation is crucial.
For children with low self esteem it is often difficult to articulate what strengths they have and what attributes would help them cope more effectively (http://pegasus.cc.ucf.edu/~drbryce/Play%20Therapy%20Techniques.pdf). Therefore this play therapy technique will contribute the child with independency where the child will be guided on how to find their own strengths. There are more play therapy techniques that used to help children with emotional problems, ADHD, autism, behavioural problems etc. There are many advantageous gained by this therapy for those children with various difficulties as mentioned above.
Play Therapy Play therapy is a natural language for children to express themselves and all play is important. Gary Landreth defines play therapy as “a dynamic interpersonal relationship between a child and a therapist trained in play therapy procedures who provides selected play materials and facilitates the development of a safe relationship for the child to fully express and explore self through the child’s natural medium of communication, play (Landreth, 2002 p. ).” Play therapy will reveal several things about the child’s experiences and self. For instance, it will reveal the child’s needs, child’s feelings and reactions, child’s self-concept, facilitates verbalization, enables children to cope with emotional distresses, and helps
Over a period of six months, the children in the intervention group were exposed to four different pretend play themes such as doll play, transport, construction and home corner whereas children in the comparison group were not given any form of intervention. Baseline and follow-up data for all participants were collected before and after the interventions took place respectively. During pretend play interventions, children were assessed for their social competencies and behaviours (e.g. interactions, disruption and disconnection) using the ‘Penn Interactive Peer Play Scale (PIPPS)’. O’Connor and Stagnitti found children in the comparison group were more socially competent as compared to the children in the intervention group based on baseline data. However, they appeared to be “slightly more socially disconnected and disruptive” after the six-month intervention period while children in intervention group showed improvements in their social behaviours and were more cooperative towards their peers (O’Connor & Stagnitti, 2011, p.
As a medium of communication, it allows the child to transmit their anxiety, fears, fantasies, and guilt with the objects rather people. Because of children are fantasizing the play, they won’t be overwhelmed by their actions and they will also be safe from their own feelings as it distant from reality. When the child is expressing themselves from the play, therapist must go up to their level of communication to bond with the child (Landreth, Garry L, 2012). For the child, play therapy is more likely counselling therapy to an adult. Just like adults trying to communicate their inner feelings through language children expresses their inner world through symbolic function of play (Garry Landreth & Sue Bratton, 1999).
Trice-Black et al. (2013) state many challenges in play therapy are due to misconceptions about the process of play therapy. For example, the author’s state it is a common concern that play therapy is costly due to supplies, which prevents therapists from using this intervention. As it was stated previously many toys are not necessary to conduct play therapy. A challenge therapists may face is watching children struggle during tasks which leads to feeling the need to comfort a child as they play out difficult situations.
Playing And Our Children Children are a blessing from God and every little thing that they do in life matters a lot to the parents. As children grow up, there are many different kinds of activities they like to do and one of them is play. Play can be in any form such as video games, outside and inside games. Play is an important part of the child’s world that is needed for the child’s social and emotional development. It is important to observe how play affects children in both positive and negative manner.
Role play helps improves children’s imagination creativity and broadens their social development, encourages friendship through cooperation, listening and turn taking. Through drama and role plays children learn morals, gender roles and social roles. Therefore, role play is of crucial importance for the children. Role play can be used as a treatment therapy, this is so because most child therapists use play therapy to help children deal and cope with difficult situations. During role play children learn a lot of skills and attitudes that are helpful to their development, they learn how to be express their emotions feeling and how to co-operate with others, they can learn to express all their thoughts (Hereford, & Schall
Counselling is not appropriate for all children and young people and due to this counselling may be a weakness for some children, for example babies. This is because babies are unable to communicate and when wanting to tell someone how they feel they are unable to. Therefore babies would benefit more from therapeutic play. When parents what to support their child 's well-being they could do a variety of things with them, for example carrying out family activities, sitting together when eating and siting together watching television. "
As look back to my kindergarten and toddler years I see “play” as the time where there was not wright or wrong way of doing something. I recall always pretending to be a Princess, a cashier register worker, and dolls (mainly Barbie’s) in school grounds I found myself playing with my family the imaginary “family” where one relatives chose weather they wanted to be the mommy, daddy or the child/ children I have the memory of pretending to the driver of a car or in few occasions also reenacting once again the family scenario where I would be the mommy taking my children (dolls) to school. I would also use my rag dolls/Barbie’s to also play family as one would guess be the mom while the doll would be my child, on other occasions when playing dependently
Play is an essential element for early childhood development as it plays an important role in developing children’s language, physical, cognitive, emotional and social skills. One of the important types of play that children usually experience is the socio-dramatic play, classified as a type of construction and symbolic play by Piaget (Wood, 2013). Most children are able to engage in socio-dramatic play spontaneously (Kemple, 2008). Children at the age of 3 to 7 are able to participate in the socio-dramatic play (Gronna, Serna, Kennedy, & Prater, 1999). It involves partnership between two or more children in which the play is developed through their interaction in playing their role (Wood, 2013).
However, when done right, play therapy offers children a way to explore problems and feelings in a language they understand and in a situation which provides the most comfort (Muro et al. 2017). Additionally, it also allows an adult a window into the child’s world where they can see exactly what is on the child’s mind (Deering & Cody 2002). Therefore, it is only through the proper understanding of play therapy, that this strategy can be effectively
As babies progress into infancy/childhood, they engage in different types of play. Smilanksy (1968) promoted the importance of sociodramatic play. This refers to pretend play, typically occurring from age 2 onwards, that involves scripts in order to act out social roles that children have knowledge of e.g. doctors and patients. Children begin to imitate adult roles and start to follow scripts. Howes and Matheson (1992) state that adults have a scaffolding role, whereby they demonstrate actions to children, supporting their play.
If the child is silent, the activity has been mastered and therefore is unneeded to sort anything out aloud. Pretend play is also considered to be in the zone of proximal development in the cognitive-mediation theory because it challenges children to play by the scene rules by speaking aloud to one another, problem solving, and committing fully to the behavior expectations of the make-believe scene. In the academic stage of a child, reciprocal teaching is used to help recall, categorize, reflect thoughts, and problem solve which aid in the further development of a