Nature-Based Play and Expressive Therapies
Interventions for Working with Children, Teens, and Families
Nature-Based Play and Expressive Therapies addresses a wide range of healing modalities and case studies that can be used in both indoor and outdoor environments.
Each chapter includes vignettes to support the interventions and approaches presented. Readers will find a diverse array of helpful handouts and topics explored, including tips for creating outdoor healing gardens and labyrinths, guidelines for using nature to address trauma, working with sandplay and storytelling in nature, adapting nature-based interventions via telehealth, and much more.
Chapters focus on work with young children and teens in individual settings as well as work with families and groups, making this book an important read for a wide range of mental health professionals.
Table of Contents
Part I: Essential Nature Foundations
1. An Introduction to the Emerging Practice of Nature-Based Play and Expressive Therapies
Janet A. Courtney and Jamie Lynn Langley
2. "Not Just A Walk in the Park: Complex Layers of Integrating Nature into Play Therapy Practice"
Judi A. Parson and Megan Ellard
3. Creation of Safe Space for Transformation and Healing: The Chrysalis Model of Intentional Design for Healing Gardens
Angela M. Cavett
Part II: Cultural Considerations
4. Let's Go Outside: Nature-Based Play Therapy through the Lens of Cultural Humility
5. Sacred Ground: The Cultural Implication of Nature-Based Therapy with Young Children and the Intersection of Culture
Part III: Healing Nature-based Trauma Therapies
6. The Nature of TraumaPlay®: Incorporating Nature into the Seven Key Components
7. Using Nature to Create Safety for Medical Trauma Integration
Rose Lapiere and Lisa Dion
8. The Integration of Nature-Based Play and EMDR Therapies in the Aftermath of Trauma
Part IV: Nature Play Therapy Models and Other Individual Therapeutic Applications
9. Cultivating Mindfulness Through Use of Nature in Play Therapy
Lynn Louise Wonders
10. Nature-Based Child-Centered Play Therapy: Taking the Playroom Outside
Jacqueline M. Swank and Sang Min Shin
11. Equine-Assisted Psychotherapy and Learning for Children: Why Horses?
Part V: Nature-Based Family Interventions
12. Tiny Hearts and Hands: Nature Sensory Play Promotes Infant Mental Health
Janet A. Courtney and Ashley S. Lingerfelt
13. Nature Play Therapy as a Healing Way for Children, Teens, and Families: Incorporating Nature with Play and Expressive Therapies
Jamie Lynn Langley
14. Using Nature-based Interventions in Family Play Therapy
Jennifer Taylor and Bree Conklin
Part VI: Nature-based Storytelling Interventions
15. Into the Great Forest: Fairy-Tale Themes of the Wild Take Shape in Sandplay
16. The Wisdom of Nature: StoryPlay®, Connecting Nature’s Gifts of Thriving and Resiliency to Play
Danielle Woods and Joyce C. Mills
17. Story Stone Play: Embodied Imagination in Virtual Therapy and Beyond
Cyndera Quackenbush and Janet Courtney
Part VII: Closing Activities
Closing Considerations: Nature Appreciation and Gratitude
Jamie Lynn Langley and Janet A. Courtney
Janet A. Courtney, PhD, RPT-S is founder of FirstPlay® Therapy and author of Healing Child and Family Trauma Through Expressive and Play Therapies, Infant Play Therapy, and Touch in Child Counseling and Play Therapy.
Jamie Lynn Langley, LCSW, RPT-S maintains a private practice and is teaching faculty at Middle Tennessee State University. She is president of the Tennessee Association for Play Therapy and provides play therapy training and supervision.
Lynn Louise Wonders, LPC, RPT-S is a child and family counselor, professional trainer, consultant, and author of When Parents Are at War: A Child Therapist's Guide to Navigating High Conflict Divorce and the Miss Piper's Playroom series of therapeutic children’s books.
Rosalind Heiko, PhD, ISST, RPT-S is a sandplay therapist, founding board member of the World Association of Sand Therapy Professionals and author of A Therapist’s Guide to Mapping the Girl Heroine’s Journey in Sandplay.
Rose LaPiere, LPC, RPT-S, ACS is a trauma therapist and is past president of NJCA-Creativity Division and currently serving on the board for the World Association of Sand Therapy Professionals.
"This book is a nourishing banquet of play and healing. It offers great resources for those who connect children, families, and communities to the natural world." — Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods, Vitamin N, and Our Wild Calling
"Brilliant! Blending the powers of play and expressive therapies with the robust healing of the natural world is a groundbreaking contribution! Highly recommended!" — David A. Crenshaw, PhD, ABPP, RPT-S, author and board-certified clinical psychologist
"Ready for an adventure? Nature-Based Play and Expressive Therapies guides you through the rationale, explores the research base for nature play, and reveals vital cultural considerations to meaningfully integrate the wisdom of the natural world into your practice. Offering abundant and detailed case studies and compelling interventions, the authors walk readers through a verdant landscape of techniques and models of using nature to nurture healing and growth. In addition, authors describe both individual and family interventions, address nature-based play therapy in urban environments and discuss how to bring nature into the therapy room. Readers of this inspiring anthology are invited into the woods to explore relationships, process trauma, and promote emotional well-being with nature as their co-therapist!" — Anne Stewart, PhD, professor of graduate psychology at James Madison University and registered play therapist supervisor