When you think of ‘therapy’, you might think in terms of a dialogue - one person talking and one person listening. While this can work well for adults and some adolescents, it is generally not how children operate.
Toys, puppets, art, games, music, and imaginative play provide children a safe way to express thoughts and feelings, process issues, and master new skills.
Benefits of play in therapy:
Creates a non-threatening environment
Allows the child power and control
Slows the nervous system
Meets the child where they are at
Creates trust and safety
Children often use metaphor to demonstrate their perception events and to process their experience
Allows a space to practice new skills and ideas
Problem-solving happens continuously throughout play
Creates opportunities for children to gain a sense of mastery
Taking on different roles in pretend play can increase child's empathy