1st Edition

Seriously Therapeutic Play with LEGO® The Guidebook for Helping Professionals

    238 Pages 20 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    238 Pages 20 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    LEGO® bricks are a staple in many child and play therapists’ offices, and Seriously Therapeutic Play with LEGO® shows therapists and counselors how to integrate LEGO® in a therapeutically valuable way. This book presents a therapeutic approach based in biological, psychological, and social research, one that supports participants as they build models that represent their thoughts, emotions, experiences, and reflections. Using a variety of evidence-based intervention techniques, chapters show clinicians how to incorporate the model and associated metaphors to help clients, and they do so in a way that is compatible with any number of therapeutic orientations or perspectives.

    Though based in current research, Seriously Therapeutic Play with LEGO® is designed for psychologists, social workers, school counselors, occupational therapists, clinical educators and supervisors, coaches, support workers, and other health care providers across the lifespan who wish to use play therapeutically.

    Introduction: Seriously Therapeutic Play: An Introduction via a Biopsychosocial "Lens"  1. LEGO® as a 3-Dimensional Tool  2. The Neuroscience of Play  3.The Biology and Evolution of Play  4.Psychology at Play  5. Speaking "LEGO®": The Psychology of Language  6. Breaking Down Brick Walls:The Relationship of STP to the Therapeutic Disciplines  7. The Social Side of Health: Building Relationships  8. When Social and Emotional Systems Play Together  9. Clutch Power: When Therapeutic Powers Connect  10. Building Socially and Emotionally: From Me to We  11. Putting it into Play: Practical Applications and Case Studies  12. More Than Just Instructions and More Than Just Bricks


    Kristen Klassen, PhD, is a facilitator, trainer, and therapist who believes that play is at the core of all that we do, and uses it to help others learn, grow, think, and be different.

    Alec Hamilton, PhD, has been a practising psychologist with people of all ages for over 30 years, utilising positivity, joy and playfulness to guide his clients and colleagues on their change journey.

    Mary Anne Peabody, EdD, LCSW, RPT-S, is an associate professor at the University of Southern Maine and has published on adapting LEGO® Serious Play® in higher education, play therapy, and clinical supervision. 

    "I couldn't wait to see what this book was about! Seriously Therapeutic Play will appeal to those who are passionate about inviting others to grow through self-expression and exploration. Offering a learning-by-doing experience where our fingers unlock the power of metaphors is seriously creative. Bravo!" 

    Ken Gardner, MSc, R Psych (CPT-S), senior faculty member and co-founder of the Rocky Mountain Play Therapy Institute, Alberta, Canada

    "My father, a bricklayer, always said how important the foundations are to create strong buildings. This book provides foundational knowledge to create, to construct, to communicate, to explore and to process therapeutic material through the magic of play. It is easy to read and is framed beautifully using the biopsychosocial lens and neuroscience to support the base and leads on towards therapeutic integration." 

    Judi Parson, PhD, MA play therapy, BN RN, discipline leader, and senior lecturer in play therapy at Deakin University, Victoria, Australia

    "Klassen, Hamilton, and Peabody have created the first of two texts dedicated to the biological, psychological, social, and biopsychosocial components of LEGO® play. This book is a must have. Intended as a guidebook for the facilitator of play, this book deep dives into the why behind the therapeutic use of LEGO®. Knowing what you are doing and why are essential to facilitating mental health services and this book does not disappoint!" 

    Jessica Stone, PhD, RPT-S, licensed psychologist in private practice, Colorado, USA, co-creator of the Virtual Sandtray App®©

    "This well-written, thoughtful book describes the biopsychosocial research behind Seriously Therapeutic Play with LEGO® and offers an integrated perspective to support practitioners in using this approach with their clients. I guarantee that after reading this book you will look at LEGO® bricks with a fresh perspective."

    Lesia Shepel, PhD, RPT-S, registered social worker in private practice, Manitoba, Canada

    "A must-read for anyone with LEGO® in their office, this book shares a profoundly impactful model as it describes the why behind a fascinating conceptualization of Seriously Therapeutic Play with LEGO®. Through the authors' invitation to play and the resulting journey through the exploration of emotional experiences via the metaphor of the bricks and the therapeutic powers of group and play therapies, this book brings the meaning of the model to life through personal and professional experiences."

    Julie Nash, PhD, RPT-S, licensed clinical psychologist at Riverside Psychological Associates, LLC, Connecticut, USA

    "The LSP facilitator in me needed to build a model in response to this book! Klassen, Hamilton, and Peabody provide a robust and comprehensive theoretical background to assist the reader in understanding the power of play using LEGO® as a medium for therapeutic interaction. The detailed practical case studies demonstrate a synthesised integration of the theory in practice to provide the reader with the stimulus to apply the knowledge for real-life situations." 

    Thomas Bevitt, MOT, occupational therapy professional practice program convener/lecturer and course convener, University of Canberra, Australia