Play Therapy Interventions

What Do You Want in a Therapist? Child Therapy Intervention

Inspiration can be found from all around you! This intervention was actually inspired by one of my supervisors. When we started supervision, she asked me to create a pi-chart of what I would like out of a supervisor. I think it was helpful for us to be on the same page of what exactly I look for in supervision. I took this intervention and adapted it to working therapeutically with my clients and it similarly assists the client and counselor in understanding their expectations of one another. This intervention can be used with clients of all ages, however, I believe that the activity is more suited for teens overall.

Here is what you need:

-Coloring Utensils

FREE What Do You Want in a Therapist? Handout

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This intervention is most useful when starting therapy with a client in order to understand their perspective. I introduce the intervention by stating that different kids want different things out of a therapist. Some kids want to learn from the therapist, want their therapist to be someone who listens, or someone who is supportive. I say that it would best help me help you to know what you are looking for in a therapist.

Then, prompt the child to complete the worksheet, creating a pi chart on what they look for in a therapist. The worksheet provides the child with the opportunity to write exactly look for in a therapist. If the child is having difficulty, I usually provide them with examples of things other children have put (i.e. a teacher, a listener, an artist, a role model, a motivator, a supporter, a friend, or  an empathizer).

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Example of “What Do You Want in a Therapist?” Worksheet

I really like how this intervention not only provides the therapist with specifics of what the child is looking for in a therapist, but how much they are looking for a specific characteristic as well. It’s easy for a child to say I want my therapist to be a friend and a role-model, but there is a big difference between wanting a therapist to be 95% friend 5% role-model or 95% role-model and 5% friend.

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Close Up of “What Do You Want in a Therapist?” Pi Chart

I hope this activity allows you to have a better understanding of your clients. Until next time, Play On!

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