According to the Association for Play Therapy (APT), ”play therapists use the therapeutic powers of play to help clients prevent or resolve psychosocial difficulties and achieve optimal growth and development.” Play therapy honors a child’s unique developmental level and looks for ways of helping through play. Practitioners in mental health agencies, hospitals, or private practice use play therapy to assist a child with behavioral problems, such as anger management, grief, or crisis, among others; or assist a child with behavioral disorders, such as anxiety, depression, autism spectrum disorders, or developmental disabilities, among others. Examples of play therapy might include playing with dolls or puppets, storytelling or creative visualization, arts and crafts, and many, many others. According to APT, “research suggests that play therapy is an effective health approach regardless of age, gender, or the nature of the issue, and works best when a parent, family member, or caretaker is actively involved in the process.”
[CJ1]This is waaaaay to jargon-y for a What Is..? post. I would shorten it to According to the Association for Play Therapy, “play therapists use the therapeutic powers of play…” Skip the first half of the definition.