As I discussed in my previous post How to Write Play Therapy Notes, it personally took me months in collaboration with my supervisors in order to come up with an effective way for me to write play therapy notes at my clinic.
One of the biggest things that held me back initially was that I was not integrating “behavioral terms” into my play therapy notes.
It makes sense, right?! Theoretically, child-centered play therapy (CCPT) is completely opposite of behavioral therapy!
However, my clinic and the governing agencies wanted me to include behavioral terms.
At first I was really confused and resistant. I felt like I was CCPT to my core (I still do!) and wanted to “fight the man!” When I really thought about it though, there are plenty of behavioral terms that accurately describe the work that is being done in play therapy!
For example, let’s take the term “emotional identification.” By reflecting the child’s feelings, we are in turn teaching the emotional identification and expanding their emotional vocabulary!
I created a list of behavioral terms that I keep right next to my desk to assist me with notes. Below is my entire list!
For play therapy notes, I typically use the terms “emotional identification,” “labeling feelings in self,” “labeling feelings in others,” and “problem solving.” That being said, it is also common for me to additionally use “limits and boundaries” and “self-esteem.”
Increasing positive interactions with others
Sharing and taking turns
Label feelings in self
Label feelings in other
Conflict resolution skills
Limits and boundaries
Ability to focus
Attend to small details
Increasing attention span
Increasing frustration tolerance
Appropriate expression of anger
Differentiating emotional states
Alternative ways to release anger appropriately
Identifying personal anger style
Increasing awareness of gradients of emotion
Identifying harmful behavior
Linking feelings to behavior
Identifying physiological components of feelings
Are there other behavioral terms that you use in your notes? Let me know in the comments below!
Until next time, Play On!