My First Sandtray Experience: Reflections from a Sand Tray Therapy Student in Sand Tray Therapy Class

(Sand Tray Student , Atlanta, GA)

First Sand Tray from a Sand Tray Therapy Student in class.

First Sand Tray from a Sand Tray Therapy Student in class.

Okay, so I made my sand tray in sand tray therapy class by hand and by the time I was ready to do sand tray with miniatures my sand tray and I had a love hate relationship. I loved her because I made her but goodness she was difficult and talk about a labor of love. At the same time I was excited because just the previous weekend I had seen how my family members had reacted to the Zen garden box and so I was very curious to see the sand tray at work.

So, slowly I poured the sand into the sand tray and looked over my miniatures. Earlier that day I had found a bag full of toys from my childhood and most of them were the small mini toys in the kids meal from various fast food places. I found my self shying away from those toys filled with so many memories and being drawn to the newer items or the items I had intentionally picked out for the sand tray.

I began the placements of all the miniatures and found my self reworking the lay out over and over again until I was satisfied with what I had. I first noticed that I had wanted more greenery and shrubs and bushes, just anything that would signify nature but I had very little to choose from. However, I had a good selection of miniatures from fantasy to dinosaurs and cars; I was pretty happy.

I also noticed how I liked to use certain miniatures more than others and had more positive reactions to some than others. After stepping back I realized the sand tray for sand tray therapy was telling a story. I wasn’t sure what it was exactly but I had noticed some patterns. After looking at it for a while I put away the miniatures and started all over again and again.

I recognized more patterns appearing and noticed that I gravitated toward certain miniatures. After seeing these patterns I wondered if this would hold true for my clients and if they too would use some of the same miniatures over and over again. After some training we’ll see what this is all about and how the sand tray therapy processing works.

More Ideas for Play Therapy Link:

More Ideas on Play Therapy

How to Use The Sand Tray for Sand Tray Therapy Link:

More Ideas on Sand Tray Therapy

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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.

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