Hayley Osborne, MA, LPC, MHSP Play Therapist would like to welcome you to Healing Play Child Therapy.

Play therapy is a technique whereby the child's natural means of expression, namely play, is used as a therapeutic method to assist him/her in coping with emotional stress or trauma. It has been used effectively with children who have an understanding level of a normal three to eight year old, who are; distraught due to family problems (e.g., parental divorce, sibling rivalry), nail biters, bed wetters, aggressive or cruel, social underdeveloped, or victims of child abuse. It has also been used with special education students whose disability is a source of anxiety or emotional turmoil.

Practitioners of play therapy believe that this method allows the child to manipulate the world on a smaller scale, something that cannot be done in the child's everyday environment. By playing with specially selected materials, and with the guidance of a person who reacts in a designated manner, the child plays out his/her feelings, bringing these hidden emotions to the surface where s/he can face them and cope with them. In it's most psychotherapeutic form, the teacher is unconditionally accepting of anything the child might say or do. The teacher never expresses shock, argues, teases, moralizes, or tells the child that his/her perceptions are incorrect. An atmosphere should be developed in which the child knows that s/he can express herself/himself in a non punitive environment. Yet, even though the atmosphere is permissive, certain limits may have to be imposed such as restrictions on destroying materials, attacking the teacher, or going beyond a set time limit. (from http://www.behavioradvisor.com/ )

See the Association for Play Therapy YouTube Channel

The toys and materials are the medium in which children in play therapy express themselves. These therapeutically selected items serve an important role in play therapy and should be chosen based on sound rationale.

Below are general guidelines to follow when selecting playroom items.
Toys should provide variety in choice of expression
Toys should be durable
Toys should not be complex
Toys should allow reality testing of limits
Toys should allow development of positive self-image as well as self-control

Toys and materials can have an effect on the type and amount of expression and interaction with the therapist. Selection of the toys should be done with attention to the impact they will have on growth of the child. Dr. Garry Landreth in his textbook, Play Therapy: The Art of the Relationship, touches on three broad toy categories.

Real-Life Toys: This category consists of toys that are directly representative of real-world items including doll families, dollhouse, puppets, cars, boats, airplanes, cash register, and play money among other things.

Aggressive-Release Toys: This toy grouping allows for the release of emotions that are typically not allowed to be expressed in other settings and includes Bobo or the bop bag, toy soldiers, rubber knives, and toy guns (that purposely do not look realistic). Less obvious, but still important are egg cartoons and popsicle sticks that can be physically broken down and destroyed.

Creative Expression Toys: This category contains toys that allow for creativity. Paints, butcher paper and an easel, crayons, sand, water, and instruments. Depending on the setting of the playroom, some of these items may need to be replaced with an alternative item. ( http://cpt.unt.edu/about-play-therapy/toys-materials/ )

Pictures from the play room at Healing Play Child Therapy


Healing Play offers help through Play Therapy with the following disorders.

 Anxiety disorders
Trauma/Sexual Abuse
Childhood schizophrenia
Autism spectrum
Self esteem issues
Social anxiety
Adoption issues
Cultural issues
Cutting/self harm
Child/parent problems
Issues related to learning disabilities
Preschool/daycare consulting


Cedars Counseling Services Llc
319 W. McKnight Dr. #6
Murfreesboro, TN 37129
TNAPT Member
"Experience the healing power of play."
ph# 615-896-9160
fax# 615-890-4555

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