Play Therapy Technique | The Feeling Cookie

Express Your Emotions Creatively

The famous feeling cookie activity for play therapy!

Rationale: The play therapy client will identify feelings with frosting and a cookie. I have used this play therapy technique for years with children, teens, and adults.

Some people use a gingerbread man cookie for this play therapy technique, but they are too hard to find. I just use inexpensive ready made sugar cookies from the grocery store.

I buy the "processed" ones as they keep longer than the fresh baked ones. You can even freeze these cookies and have them on hand when you need it for your play therapy clients.

As a school counselor I always have some frozen cookies and frosting with sprinkles on hand. I use this play therapy technique with students several times a year.

One of my most gifted graduate students, Telithia, loved this activity so much and said, "Dr. S. this is the best activity I have ever done!"

Another feeling cookie story is when a coworker was displaced to another school. The faculty and staff gave her a "Feeling Cookie Goodbye Party."

We all cried while we were making feeling cookies. The best part of this was that I was able to help this coworker see that there was a silver lining when she put a little yellow (happiness) in her feeling cookie. The yellow was due to her new school was going to allow her to use a microwave in her office!

Students know that I have these and when they feel sad they often say they want to come in and make a feeling cookie. I also allow students to make these in group sessions or for a positive reward!

I love the feeling cookie because it allows play therapy students and client's to express their feelings with frosting and sprinkles in a tasty play therapy activity.

Actual Feelings Cookie from Play Therapy Class Student Below:

play therapy activity with the feeling cookie


1 Round Cookie (Sugar cookies work the best). You can also use a paper cookie cut in place of the real cookie (See Below). Any type of cookie will work.

Frosting with food coloring if you are using an edible cookie Markers if you are using the paper cut cookie below.

Food Coloring (blue for sadness, red for anger, black for numbness, grey for grief, green for jealousy, pink for feeling ecstatic, yellow for happy, purple for embarrassed, or orange for playful).

Plastic Knives to mix frosting and spread frosting

Sprinkles for real cookies of the above colors or mixed sprinkles to denote “Mixed Feelings” / or glitter in the above colors for paper cookies


1. Have the play therapy client pick at least five colors and attach a feeling word to each colors. Write each color with what feeling it relates to on a separate piece of paper. Discuss the feelings identified and how the client identifies with the feelings.

2. Mix up the frosting with the feeling colors that the play therapy client has identified if you are using frosting.

Actual Frosting Mixture of Student Feeling's Cookie Colors Below:

play therapy activity feeling cookie 1

3. Talk about where the feelings that were identified are located in the body when you do this play therapy technique.

4. Ask the play therapy client to put to frost the cookie or color the paper cookie in a way that shows where each feeling color lives in the body.

5. Discuss ways to acknowledge the feelings in the body and release them when they become overwhelming such as exercise, drawing, or talking to someone about them.

6. Eat and enjoy the cookie with your play therapy client!

You can also translate your colors from the cookie into feelings:


Color: ____________________Feeling:________________________



Fun play therapy activity with the famous Feeling Cookie

(Alternate Play Therapy Technique Activity) The Feeling Cookie Worksheet

Use the paper cookie below in lieu of a real cookie:

play therapy technique feeling cookie cut out

The Feeling Cookie to Free Creative Counseling Techniques

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