Creative Counselling 101 : Play Therapy 101 Technique, Case Study, & Testimony : Part 1

by Latia Nell
(New Zealand)

Play Therapy Case Study & Testimony Technique

Play Therapy Case Study & Testimony Technique

Creative Counselling 101 : Play Therapy 101 Case Study, Testimony, Technique Assessment : Part 1
Case Description
T is a 5 year old boy. He has three siblings : C (3), E (7) and B (10). B does not have the same biological father as the three boys. T’s father is currently in prison for sexually assaulting B. The father also has a record of domestic violence against his wife. As far as C, E and T know, their father is in jail for his violence against their mother. T, E and B have been removed from their mother for a five week period and put in a resilience building facility to give her a respite period.
Presenting issues
T is a friendly child, who happily engages in counselling. He displays extreme anxiety around the idea that his father will be neglected and abused while in prison.
Counselling goal;

The goal has been to educate T around the situation in New Zealand prisons, and to alleviate his anxiety around his father’s care.

Session progression:

T was happy to play with the toys, and took an immediate liking to the pirate set. While playing pirates, he took the captain (representing his father), and scolded him for being a bully (domestic violence).

He then placed him in a cage (prison), and told him he couldn’t be near the other pirates (removal from the family). After a while, he opened the cage and placed miniature items from the doll house in the cage, until the cage was full. These items included :

1) Beverages and food
2) Blankets and pillows
3) Playing cards, books, a skateboard, a ukulele
4) A big knife

He explained these items as :
1) Food and beverages to meet the prisoner’s basic needs
2) Blankets and a pillow so he will be warm and comfortable
3) Entertainment items so he will not be bored – all are things his father enjoys doing.
4) A knife to protect himself against the dangerous prisoners.

T’s mother and social worker were tasked with addressing particular aspects of his issues around his father’s imprisonment. This play was repeated through the next four sessions. During this time, T’s mother spoke (in the guise of normal conversation) about a nice meal the father had eaten, a movie he had seen and the friend he had made. T’s social worker showed him pictures about how prisons function, and in particular how the guards protect the prisoners from “bad” prisoners.

In the last two sessions, T placed the pirate captain in the cage, and told him to just behave until his punishment was over. He then played a game of pirates with no other indication of earlier anxiety.

This was a wonderful play therapy activity to use with my client.

For more free ideas on creative therapy visit the link below:

Creative Counseling Home

Click here to post comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Submit Your Creative Counseling Ideas / Lessons with Other Professionals / Publish Your Ideas Here!.

Disclaimer: This website and its content is intended for trained licensed mental health professionals and school certified mental health professionals to use for their clients / students at their own discretion.

*If you ignore the disclaimer above are using these techniques on yourself and you feel any discomfort or upset it is highly suggested that you seek out a licensed  mental health professional immediately.

"Beyond Art Therapy" is the concept from Dr. Stangline that combines all creative fields in therapy. It is not the traditional "art therapy" but goes beyond to include sand tray therapy, play therapy, mindfulness, meditation, color therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, and a vast majority of other therapies.

For any other type of mental health emergency call your local 911 / Police Number immediately.

Dr. Stangline does not offer advice / suggestions to anyone who is not a professional mental health provider, or a student who is studying this field and has questions about mental health programs of study.

Share this page:
Enjoy this page? Please pay it forward. Here's how...

Would you prefer to share this page with others by linking to it?

  1. Click on the HTML link code below.
  2. Copy and paste it, adding a note of your own, into your blog, a Web page, forums, a blog comment, your Facebook account, or anywhere that someone would find this page valuable.

See our Exciting Selection of eBooks:

Award Winning:

Creative Counseling 101 eBook 
Our Best Seller!

Step By Step Therapy:

Learn how to be a more Creative Therapist with the Book that started it all!

- Graduate School Counseling book used by hundreds of graduate counseling students!

- Includes full color reproducible worksheets with most activities.

- Winner of the Counselor Writer of the Year Award, 2011, Georgia Regional Award

Download Your Copy Today Only $39.95: 

See Creative Counseling 101 eBook Information Here:

Get the Set
of all four  

eBooks for only $98.95:
An incredible collection of how to do therapy eBooks!
A $159.80 Value,
You Save Over $60!

Get your complete set of the Creative Counseling eBooks by Dr. Michelle Stangline for only $98.95, that's less than $25.00 per eBook (Regular Price is $39.95 for each eBook.).

Your complete set includes:

- Creative Counseling 101

- Creative Group Counseling 101

- Creative Play Therapy 101

- Creative Sand Tray 101

For more information click the link below:

See Complete Set of eBooks For Sale Here:

New!!! "Beyond Art Therapy" 101 eBook

Over 300 pages of Beyond Art Therapy activities and techniques. Learn what I teach graduate counseling students!

See the link below for more information.

Only $39.95

Art Therapy 101 eBook for Sale Link

See More Invividual eBooks For Sale:

Sand Tray Therapy 101 eBook:

Learn how to do Sand Tray Therapy or enhance your skills.

Sand Tray Therapy eBook for Sale Link

Play Therapy 101 eBook

Learn how to do play therapy or enhance your skills.

Play Therapy eBook For Sale Link

Small Group Counseling eBook For Sale:

Learn how to do creative group therapy and enhance your skills.

Creative Group Therapy eBook For Sale Link

School Counselor Guidance Lesson & Social Stories eBook for sale:

Get a year's worth of school counselor guidance lessons with "Creative Warm & Fuzzy Classroom Guidance Lessons eBook". Introduce your students to the "Warm & Fuzzy Way". Click the link below for more information:

Warm & Fuzzy School Counselor Guidance Lessons eBook