Play in therapy offers space for young people to explore the self and the world in which they live. Non-directive or child centered play spaces is an invitation for the young person to show themselves, a space for them to be seen and known.
A child centered approach allows for the pace and integration to be determined by the individual which allows for safety and needs based integration.
While a session may look like ordinary play time, it is much more than that.
Play offers a portal into the world of the young person when they often may not have the words or cognitive capacity to explain their experiences. The therapist becomes a witness as the young person unfolds context within the play space.
The young person will often present a theme of play and will enact it until they have achieved mastery of their lived experience. The play will then change and evolve, the individual will mirror this process within and without.
Play in Therapy is a form of therapy most commonly used for children (around 3-12 years old). Some older children and/or adults with cognitive impairments may also benefit from play therapy.