Play 123

The ethos of Play 1 2 3 embraces sustained change for the child, adult and the family, and supports strengths and interests to encourage more stable and playful parenting. It is a three-layered creative movement therapy service that provides for parents with a history of social and psychological instability, and their young children aged 1 – 3 years. This might also include working with adoptive and foster parents to enhance the attachment with their new child.

Play 1 is 1:1 family support focusing on disrupted attachment between parent and child, and aims to develop positive relationships through increasing empathy and trust.

Play 2 is small group work with up to 3 parents and children focusing on the developmental needs of the child while encouraging playful and creative parenting to enable optimal growth and well-being.

Play 3 is a drop-in creative dance/movement group aiming to provide a fun and physical experience between parent and child, where creative play and movement games build resilience and confidence.

Need for the service

‘Throughout the lifespan, play supports neurological growth and development while building complex, skilled, flexible, responsive, and socially adept brains. Play also improves the natural ability to convey emotions. Yet clients who suffer from early trauma sometimes experience a reduced capacity for play, which may impact their potential for spontaneous laughter, joy, excitement, creativity and connection.’

UCLA Extension and Lifespan Learning Institute, LA, USA, March 2015 conference flyer

Outcomes of engagement in this service

  1. Parents will become more playful, creative and positive in their parenting style that will directly impact family life, the child’s sense of self and a parent’s sense of success.
  1. This entirely person-centred approach offers parents an experience of trust, respect and support, where they will feel able to engage at a level achievable for them. The parent will gain a greater sense of self-worth and value and transfer these feelings onto the child.