The arts are a powerful thing. Whether acting in a play, singing a song, performing a dance, drawing a picture or writing a poem, the arts allow people to express themselves and their ideas without having to put them into words.
If you have a young child in your life, you have probably seen her pretend to be a superhero, or act out scenes from a favorite movie or story using her friends or toys. Children are natural storytellers, and they love to take on the roles of their favorite characters and heroes. This type of play is the foundation of drama therapy!
In general, drama therapy can be an asset for any child who has a hard time
verbalizing his feelings. Even bright and talkative kids often have a hard time articulating deep, underlying worries or emotions. Even if they can verbalize them, many kids are hesitant to share these deep-down feelings out of a fear that they may become too overwhelming for themselves or others to handle. For these kids, traditional talk therapy alone may not be the most helpful option. Drama Therapy can help children begin to access and explore their emotions in a less threatening,
more playful environment.
Drama therapy has some unique benefits for children when compared to other forms of therapy. Here are a few of the common positive outcomes for children who participate in drama therapy:
- Reduced Social Isolation: Drama Therapy is a community-building activity that helps children build empathy and social skills. Young people have the opportunity to walk in another person’s shoes and may discover that their peers not only understand their worries and problems, but share them.
- Increased Self-esteem: Children can experience the confidence that comes from learning a new skill, whether performing for a full house, a group of peers, or an audience of one. Theater performance celebrates the uniqueness of each individual and can help young people to identify their own strengths.
- Practicing New Skills: Roleplaying allows kids to try out new coping and
social skills in a safe, low-risk environment. The role-player is free to
experiment and make mistakes, and discover how different approaches to a problem have different outcomes.
- Creative Problem-Solving: Drama therapy increases children’s creativity and spontaneity, encouraging young people to trust their instincts and come up with new, out-of-the-box ways to approach life’s challenges.
- Growth and Development: Kids are naturally inclined to work out their
feelings and learn through play. Child therapists like to say that “play is the child’s language,” and research has shown that imaginative, make-believe play is a critical part of healthy child development. Even when children are exploring pretend scenarios in play, they are learning important lessons about real life. Drama therapy builds on this natural capacity for imaginative play to help children work through feelings and events that might be too big to describe with words.
Putting their feelings into a poem, song and painting gives children a safe outlet for all emotions through the medium of an enjoyable activity, which accelerates the growth process.
All the World’s a stage and let our children do their ‘Play’.. Since a child’s play isn’t simply a recreation of what he/she has experienced; but a creative reworking of the impressions he has acquired.