Learn to Facilitate Play to Help People Heal
- Play therapy is designed to treat psychological problems by encouraging children to express thoughts and feelings in play.
- Learn how play therapy can be used to assist adults with specific emotional and psychological problems which can benefit from play.
- Understand how play therapy can be used to treat developmental disorders such as autism, intellectual disability and learning disorders.
Play therapy should not be confused with exercise therapy or sports therapy for rehabilitation which are focused on physical enhancements such as improving muscle strength, agility, stamina and aerobic capacity.
Course Structure and Lesson Content
There are 9 lessons in this course:
Lesson 1 The Foundation for Using Play Therapy
- What is Play?
- The Value of Play
- What is Play Therapy?
- Scope of Play Therapy
Lesson 2 Applications of Play and Play Therapy
- Therapeutic Play Continuum
- Application of Play Therapy
- Choice of Toys and Materials
- Creating the Right Environment for Play Therapy
- Issues in Play Therapy
Lesson 3 Play Therapy for Anxiety and Depressive Disorders
- Anxiety Disorders
- Depressive Disorders
Lesson 4 Play Therapy for Behavioural Disorders
- Conduct Disorder and Oppositional Defiant Disorder
- Use of Play Therapy
Lesson 5 Play Therapy for Developmental Disorders
- Intellectual Disability
- Learning Disorders
Lesson 6 Play Therapy for Social and Family Problems
- Types of Social and Family Problems - Abuse and Neglect, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Grief And Loss, Divorce, Death of a Parent
- Other Factors - Schooling, Location
- Uses of Play Therapy
Lesson 7 Play Therapy and Adult Populations
- Play Therapy For Adults
- Research Supporting Use of Play Therapy with Adults
Lesson 8 Related Specialised Creative Therapies
- Music Therapy
- Art Therapy
- Drama Therapy
- Dance/Movement Therapy (DMT)
Lesson 9 Play and Rehabilitation
- Injury and Illness
- Science and Technology
Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.
- Explain the purpose for using play therapy, potential of what it might achieve, and determine situations where it is appropriate to use it as a therapeutic technique.
- Explain the therapeutic play continuum, applications of play and play therapy, play therapy tools, advantages and issues arising in therapy.
- Explain how play therapy can be used to help children with emotional disturbances such as depression and anxiety disorders.
- Explain how play therapy can be used to help children with behavioural disorders such as conduct disorder, oppositional defiant disorder and problems with anger and impulse control.
- Explain how play therapy can be used to treat developmental disorders such as autism, intellectual disability and learning disorders.
- Determine appropriate uses of play therapy for children suffering from social and family related problems such as grief and loss, crises such as divorce, and trauma-related issues.
- Determine uses of play therapy to assist adult populations with specific emotional and psychological problems which can benefit from play.
- Explain a range of different but closely related therapies including music, art, and drama therapy, and techniques used in these therapies which are incorporated into play therapy.
- Explain how play can be used in occupational therapy and other contexts to help people manage or rehabilitate from physical and mental disabilities, and the role of science and technology.
Learn How To Apply Play Therapy
Play therapy can help all ages and recovery from all types of conditions: illnesses and injuries.
Play is an activity which may be physical or mental, undertaken for enjoyment or amusement, and has no other objective. They suggest play like this needs no supervision or management, may be spontaneous or planned, and is essential for healthy development.
Play work is associated with play workers and involves activities used to engage children when their parents are not present to look after them. Play workers provide care and support for children to play but are not providing therapy, although children may acquire some secondary therapeutic gains from the play itself. No clinical training is required by the play worker.
Therapeutic play work
Like play work, the main objective of therapeutic play work is to provide care and support and there may be secondary therapeutic gains, though there may be an objective of alleviating a slight or one-off emotional or psychological problem. Nevertheless, it still does not require clinical training.
Therapeutic play can be used to help people with mild to moderate problems. It may be undertaken by people with particular skills under supervision. It involves forming a therapeutic relationship. It may be used to detect more serious problems in which case the child should be referred to another health specialist.
Filial play is aimed at infants under the age of 3 years as well as children up to 14 years old with mental or emotional problems. It is concerned with improving parent/child relationships and involves providing parents with play strategies to use at home, or coaching parents in how to play in non-directive ways with their children.
Play therapy uses a range of play and creative techniques to help children deal with mild through to moderate problems which are impeding them from attaining their potential. Play therapists generally have a wider range of techniques to offer than people specialising in particular creative therapies like art therapy. PTUK requires 200 hours of supervised work during training and 450 hours to become an accredited play therapist.
Child psychotherapy or clinical psychology
Psychotherapists and clinical psychologists work with children with more severe mental health problems. During therapy children may eventually learn through play and object manipulation to express their thoughts and feelings using words. These therapists may add play therapy to their skills repertoire or work with a play therapist as part of a therapeutic team.
Where can play therapy offer benefits to adults?
Areas where play therapy has been used with adults include:
- Grief and loss
- Arrested emotional development
- Problems associated with developmental disorders
- Post-traumatic stress
- Obsessive compulsive disorder
- Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
This course is suitable for ...
This course offers training for those involved in the following areas:
- Health Professionals
- Nursery Staff
- Toy and Game Designers, Manufacturers or Retailers
You can enrol on Play Therapy at any time. You study by distance learning, with the support and guidance of our highly knowledgeable specialist tutors.
If you have any questions or want to know more, get in touch with our specialist Health Science tutors today. They will happy to answer your questions and explore your study options to meet your goals.