Addressing Children’s Emotional & Behavioral Issues through Sandplay & Expressive Art

Children process life’s challenging experiences through imaginative, symbolic play. Creating a piece of art or sandplay scene in the presence of a trained facilitator provides a safe way for children to express emotions that may feel overwhelming to them. Depending on the circumstance, observed changes can range from reduced anxiety, greater confidence, improved neurological and social functioning, to improved feelings of well being. These can be observed over time or after a few sessions, depending on the child.

A child’s behavioral difficulties are often an indicator that something deeper may need to be addressed. In other words, Unprocessed emotions can be the root cause of behavioral issues. Through the process of sandplay and creative expression, children are given the opportunity to unravel the sources of their anxiety, anger or other pent up emotions. Expressing themselves non-verbally helps children to articulate their experience in a way that is natural and developmentally appropriate. When a therapist understands the symbolic language of a child’s creative play the child is heard and empathized with on a very deep level.