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Play Therapy and Social Skills

Our team of professionals is dedicated to providing practical tools to help parents and children find simple and effective solutions to mental health problems. Every child has moments of defiance, anger and adjustment problems, but more than 1 in 20 American children exhibit behavioral problems that are out of control. We provide therapy and counseling that will assist the child in developing emotional, social and behavioral skills that are the key to personal and social success. Parents will learn strategies for establishing clear patterns of discipline and communicating with children on a level they can understand, thereby reducing family stress overall.

Our staff will provide assessment and evaluation for ADHD, anger management, divorce recovery, grief, depression and anxiety. We will make the appropriate referral for medication management, if needed, to our committed pediatricians and psychiatrists that specialize in treatment for children. Our goal is to provide the most appropriate intervention for your child’s mental health needs.

What is Play Therapy?

Play therapy is a way for children to express feelings and conflicts through play rather than talking. Developmentally, children do not have the abstract thinking skills that are necessary to verbally express life’s experiences. Play therapy utilizes the natural behavior and self-expression of children: play. The play therapist, along with the provision of specific toys, guides children towards emotional growth and self control. In play therapy, children may learn to understand and express their feelings, develop problem-solving skills, reach new developmental milestones, develop coping skills, improve social skills and experience growth in a trusting and safe environment.

Play therapy may be especially beneficial for those children who:

  • Have experienced a traumatic or upsetting event (death of a friend or family member, accidents, natural disasters, divorce, abuse, etc.)
  • Experience anger or self-control problems
  • Experience anxiety or depression
  • Exhibit low self-esteem or a low level of initiative
  • Have nightmares
  • Have separation anxiety
  • Have been diagnosed with ADD/ADHD
  • Have difficulty expressing themselves

Parents and primary caregivers play an important role in healing and growth for their child. Through parent consultation and training, the play therapist teaches the skills that are necessary for parents to improve their parenting skills, understand their child better, and ultimately establish a loving and supportive relationship with their child.

If you believe that your child can benefit from play therapy, call and make an appointment with one of our play therapists.

Life Skills Play Group for Children

A Place to Grow and Make Friends

Mondays and Thursdays
(See calendar for times)
Separate groups for 3 – 5; Grades K – 2; Grades 3 – 5

Facilitated by Melinda Schoppe, M.A. L.P.C.A, this therapeutic play group is designed for social learning to instill life enhancing skills. Each group is limited to 4 or 6 children, depending on age and needs.

Purpose: Each child will have the opportunity to explore and understand oneself through facilitated play as they master fundamental skills in the social, emotional and cognitive areas. All of these skills can be used in future life experiences.

Positive: Each child will have the opportunity to develop to his or her fullest potential and enhance a sense of positive self-worth. Your child will become familiar with his or her own strengths and limitations in an encouraging environment. This type of environment will be provided so your child will attempt new challenges in an effective way.

  • Communication Skills
  • Management of Feelings
  • Making Good Choices
  • Boundaries
  • Making and Keeping Friends
  • Responsibility and Accountability
  • Respect
  • Brain Gym
  • Problem Solving
  • Methods of Relaxation

Also see the group tab for further groups that include information on children: Divorce Care for Kids (DC4K), Stepfamilies, Child-Parent Relationships Training (CPR)