Therapy for children might look a bit different than it does for an adult, but it can be incredibly beneficial to their development and well-being. It also doesn’t have to be hard to do. When you’re in a position where you might counseling children it can helpful to come equipped with tools such as counseling games.
One important thing to keep in mind about counseling children is that it can take a little effort to open them up. One of the easiest ways to do this is to play games since after all, they are kids. By the time children turn six years old they will have spent 16,000 hours playing, which means they’re practically professionals at it.
Play therapy is actually a common therapy practice for kids, and while it’s best for ages three to 12 it’s actually good for people of any age. Counseling games like icebreaker cards can help open kids up sot hat they’re capable of dealing with anxiety-provoking situations. It’s hard for anyone to open up, but kids often face the fear of getting in trouble if they speak about their parents or teachers. Children can be very trusting, but when they’re dealing with stress or anxiety they might already be dealing with some trust issues as well.
Another popular counseling tool for kids is the therapy workbook. Sometimes it’s easier for them to draw and write how they are feeling as opposed to saying it, and this is a great opportunity for that. The language of emotions poster is another great tool that can be helpful for identifying the way a kid is feeling. Sometimes it’s hard for them to put it into words, and sometimes they just don’t know even know how to identify an emotion that they’ve been told not to have.
It’s never too young to start working in types of counseling games. Anxiety disorders tend to start developing at the age of six, and ten to 20 percent of kids have anxiety. Ten to 15 percent of kids and teens are already clinically depressed.