April Play Therapy Wrap-Up

-This list of frequently asked questions about gaining a certificate in play therapy is specific to UC San Diego, but would still be quite informative for people interested in pursuing the degree. This general overview would be helpful, as well.

-At the beginning of 2013 the Institute for Play Therapy at Missouri State University was designated as an approved center of play therapy education by the APT. Here’s a great video about the benefits of play therapy and how it’s being taught and utilized at MSU:

-Spring/summer is a great time for play therapists to take advantage of learning opportunities and even squeeze a little summer vacation in while you’re at it. Friend of CTT Liana Lowenstein has a number of speaking engagements lined up that we encourage you to check out. Those of you who have had the pleasure of hearing Ms. Lowenstein speak know just how valuable an experience it can be. For those of you who haven’t, a visit to her website (or a perusal of this blog) should provide plenty of enticement. Here is her upcoming schedule.

Child Play Works Child Centered Play Therapy is a New Zealand organization dedicated to play therapy. The website is an excellent resource for play therapists in New Zealand, providing learning opportunities (both offline and on), newsletters, and more.   

-Speaking of newsletters, I’ve found that even if the source isn’t from your state’s play therapy association, they still provide some great articles and information. Here’s the archive for the Michigan APT’s newsletter, which is really pretty top-notch!

-Another can’t miss event this summer is the Annual Play Therapy Institute presented by the Northwest Center for Play Therapy Studies. The conference will be held June 2-6 and offers talks by Garry Landreth, Sue Bratton, and several more seasoned practitioners and educators. You can view the full brochure here and register online here.

-There were really just too many conferences and workshops announced this month to list here, but they can all be found at our articles and resources site!

-This is certainly a contender for the article of the month for April. A very interesting piece on ‘affinity therapy’, which uses a child’s fondness for–or in many cases “obsession with”–a particular animated character to help them learn social skills. The practice has been particularly successful with autistic children.

-Here’s an article on a great early education program in Colorado utilizing play therapy.

-Big news from the American Mental Health Foundation: it will be hosting its first two interactive webinars in its long history and they both have play therapy elements. The first one, in September, is on play therapy with adults, and the November webinar looks at using play to help children and families deal with disasters.

Is this the future of sand tray therapy? Are iPads going to serve as sandtrays? Even scarier: are we therapists going to be replaced by robots? Well…probably not anytime soon, but if you want a little glimpse at Sci-Fi Sandplay, check out this wild article.

Congrats to some fellow Texans!

-Here’s a news report from New Orleans–where play therapy was used to help many children suffering trauma after Hurricane Katrina–on whether or not play therapy intervention is right for your child. Another recent article from a Mississippi news source explains the benefits of play therapy and why services should be made more widely available in the region.

-In the March Play Therapy Wrap-Up we started a Sand Tray Miniature of the Month feature. This month’s mini is the adorable and expressive Emotes dolls. Each Emotes character represents a different emotion, and therefore mirrors a child’s own emotions. In this way, children are able to externalize and literally interact with their emotions while having fun along the way.

Have a wonderful, memorable May, everyone!

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