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This course prepares psychotherapists to provide play therapy to highly sensitive children. Children with the "Highly Sensitive Child Trait” (HSC), also known as “Sensory-Processing Sensitivity” (SPS), reflect more deeply on their experiences, are more easily overstimulated by social and other stimuli, are more emotionally reactive, and have higher levels of empathy. Studies show that 15 to 20% of children have the trait and that approximately 50% of adults and children in psychotherapy are highly sensitive persons.

Participants will learn the neurobiology of SPS, recognition and assessment of SPS, the impact of SPS on the well-being of children and their families, psycho-education with parents, and play therapy adaptions to meet the needs of children with SPS, including structuring the therapy room, optimization of non-verbal communication, sensory soothing toys and play, use of sounds and scents, play-based mindfulness and relaxation strategies, and the benefits of involving parents of HSC children in play therapy sessions.

Note: Elective in Play Therapy certificate program.

Course Number: PSY-40406
Credit: 0.50 unit(s)