18 March, 2021 | Posted by Michelle Hogan

What to expect on our Therapeutic Play Skills course?

Play Therapy, Therapeutic Play Skills

Heard about Play Therapy recently and interested to know more? Portobello Institute has an upcoming Therapeutic Play Skills course suited to growing the skillset of early years practitioners and special needs assistants.

This QQI Level 6 Minor Award in Therapeutic Play Skills will equip you with the knowledge, skill and competence to use play as a therapeutic medium in a range of early years and special needs settings to facilitate young people, focusing on children’s specific needs in relation to holistic development. 

This course will allow you to complete a missing piece in terms of pre-school education because the focus now is on the holistic child. This course gives you the skills to understand children's emotional development.

Research has found play to be an effective therapeutic medium for children in difficult and challenging circumstances such as family changes, separation and divorce, new schools, chronic illness and even death and dying.

It is a natural means for children to work out difficulties they might face such as in making friends, dealing with excessive anger, fear, sadness, worry and shyness. 

Play also helps in dealing with issues emerging from aggression and acting out; school difficulties; abuse and neglect; social adjustment; sleeping and eating difficulties; poor self-concept and low self-esteem; trauma; grief and loss; hospitalisation; and identity.

Our tutor, Aoife Kelly, shares some of her experiences here.

The course is delivered online through blended learning meaning you can fit your study around your busy working and home life.

Practical workshops are delivered by webinar and designed to give you the practical insight into Therapeutic Play Skills from an experienced practitioner.

You will also be assigned a tutor who will give you one-to-one support and guide you through your learning Journey.

During this course, you will learn extensively about the role of therapeutic play as a medium to help children work through difficult circumstances they may be enduring.

You will learn about the different therapeutic play theories and principles and their relevance in different situations.

You will also learn the key practical skills needed to facilitate therapeutic play with children.

Play Therapy in a Pandemic: More Referrals as Children Cope with Covid-19 Impact

At the end of this course, you will be able to;

  • Evaluate the key concepts, principles and practice in utilising play as a therapeutic medium in a variety of child settings.
  • Appraise therapeutic play theories and their relevance in different settings.
  • Demonstrate understanding and awareness of interpersonal communication to include one to one and group dynamics.
  • Explore the limits in terms of helping children develop self-control and decision-making and also in terms of personal security and ethical relationship.
  • Examine the needs of specific individuals such as children who are bereaved, behavioural issues or those experiencing long term illness or medical care in a hospital setting.
  • Identify own personal skills and competences in terms of practice.
  • Contribute as an effective member of a team in an early years, education or healthcare setting in adhering to supervisory or management structures and maintaining appropriate documentation.
  • Design and implement a range of practical play techniques to include the creative expressive therapies of art, drama, music and dance activities.
  • Manage the planning and preparation of group work to include facilitation of a range of techniques for children and adolescents.
  • Facilitate individual needs with ensuring equal opportunities and best practice to enable children to reach their full potential.
  • Demonstrate the academic and vocational language, literacy and numeracy skills relevant to therapeutic play skills.
  • Exercise substantial personal autonomy and responsibility.

Our upcoming course will be delivered over two Saturdays; March 27 and April 10 from 10am to 4pm. 

Webinar 1: Introduction to Therapeutic Play Skills

  • Introduce the course aims, objectives and discuss the assignments.
  • Introduce the history of play therapy power point presentation with general discussions around this.
  • Lecture of play and explore the difference between “play” and “therapeutic play”.
  • The concept of the therapeutic relationship introduced.
  • Introduction to Bowlby and attachment types, then Erik Erikson’s stages of man.
  • Webinar 1 wraps up with  explaining the mediums we will discuss on webinar 2.
  • Question and answer session.

Virtual breakout rooms used for group discussions throughout the day.

Webinar 2: More insight into the practical elements of Therapeutic Play Skills
  • Introduction to sand play and experiential exercises.
  • Introduction to art therapy and experiential exercises.
  • Introduction to clay/play dough and experiential exercises.
  • Introduction to therapeutic stories and discussion/ideas about stories.
  • Introduction to puppets and discussion.
  • Catch up on Eric Erikson stages of man theory and Bowlby attachment theory.
  • Time allocated to support students with queries about content and assignments.

Our admissions expert Jennifer Matteazzi is available to talk you through all aspects of the course, fees, delivery method and qualification in more detail. Book a consultation with Jennifer here, call 018920031 or email jennifer.matteazzi@portobelloinstitute.com. 

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