Foundation Course in Play Therapy 2020

October 2020

Duration   20 weeks
Pattern of Delivery   18 x two hour evening classes plus two Saturdays
Start Date   24 October 2020
End Date   20 March 2021
Course Fee   £1150

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Course Outline

Experiential Workshops

These workshops will be facilitated by a qualified and experienced BAPT-registered Play Therapist. Experiential activities form the core of the course, providing students with an opportunity to explore and reflect on the process of Play Therapy on a personal level. Connections and links will be made to the theories that underpin Play Therapy as this emerges from the practical component, enabling students to learn from theory that directly relates to their experience. Please note that whilst the emphasis of the workshops is on an educational not a therapeutic experience, students should be aware of potential tensions between their personal and professional responses and should be prepared for a degree of self-exposure.

Seminars and Lectures

The seminars and lectures are integrated into the workshop experiences. Each workshop will be part experiential play therapy and part seminar/lecture. The seminars will often comprise presentations of clinical / therapeutic work and opportunity for group discussions. Visiting experts from different fields will lead seminars/lectures on particular specialist areas of play therapy practice.


Course attendees will be expected to keep a Reflective Log of their experiences while on the course which constitutes a record of their personal psychological journey including photographs of images created in the experiential workshops. As such the Log itself will be a highly personal manuscript and will not be assessed. In the last workshop of the course students will present a dramatised, artistic or narrative Story of this journey to share with the class. The Journey Story will be approximately 3 minutes long and may be presented in the play media of the student's choice.

Participants will need to complete a minimum of 80% of the course and a satisfactory final Journey Story in order to receive an attendance certificate. This will not automatically ensure a student’s entry to the Roehampton University MA in Play Therapy; however, individuals considering applying for Professional training are encouraged to complete a Foundation Course.

A programme of experiential workshops led by the course facilitators and seminars given by visiting Play Therapists from a wide range of fields.

One full-day Induction (Saturday) and introductory workshop to begin the course to be held in October 2020 with weekly evening classes to follow; finishing with a full Plenary Day to close in March 2021.

Suggested Reading List

The suggeted reading list is available here.

Course timetable and dates

This timetable is provisional - dates and times may be subject to change. The sequence of some of these work shops may be subject to change, due to availability of visiting specialist lecturers.

Date Time Title
24 October 1000-1630   INDUCTION DAY
  Introduction to the course and to one another.
  Course overview, boundaries and expectations
  Discussion of the Play Therapy profession and entry into training and the professional organisation:
  the British Association of Play Therapists (BAPT)
28 October 1900-2100   Workshop 1
  Why Play? The central importance of play in child development
4 November 1900-2100   Workshop 2
  Historical overview of the development of Play Therapy in the UK. Comparison of different models of Play Therapy, including 
  Non-Directive Play Therapy, Social Constructionist and Narrative Therapy appraoches
11 November 1900-2100   Workshop 3
  Sensory or embodiment play in Play Therapy - using clay, play-dough, slime, sand and other sensory materials
18 November 1900-2100   Workshop 4
  Projective or symbolic play in Play Therapy - using toy figures etc to create symbolic stories
25 November 1900-2100   Workshop 5
  Dramatic role-play in Play Therapy
2 December 1900-2100   Workshop 6
  Using art in Play Therapy
9 December 1900-2100   Workshop 7
  Providing a therapeutic environment – the therapist’s role. Developing reflective listening skills etc
16 December 1900-2100   Workshop 8
  Building self-esteem through Play Therapy
13 January 1900-2100   Workshop 9
  Where are we now? Review of the journey so far
20 January 1900-2100   Workshop 10
  Attachment and Loss part 1
27 January 1900-2100   Workshop 11
  Attachment and Loss part 2
3 February 1900-2100   Workshop 12
  Sand play therapy & Mosaics -  An introduction to Lowenfield Techniques
10 February 1900-2100   Workshop 13
  Using Stories in Play Therapy
17 February 1900-2100   Workshop 14
  Trauma and abuse in relation to Play Therapy
24 February 1900-2100   Workshop 15
3 March 1900-2100   Workshop 16
  Therapeutic play with children with special needs
10 March 1900-2100   Workshop 17
  Play Therapy and the Bereaved Child
17 March 1900-2100   Workshop 18
  Play Therapy and Looked After Children
20 March 1000-1630   PLENARY DAY
  Endings Including shared presentations of ‘Journey stories’