This film shows four different children in therapy using puppets. The children range in age from approximately 6 years old to about 13 years of age. Through these four different sessions, conducted by three different therapists (two drama therapists, and one child psychiatrist), one can see how the clinician listens to and follows the interactions. The viewer also sees how the therapist adds comments meant to aid the child in whatever he or she needs to work through by using the puppet story as a metaphor for the child’s own experience that has caused a disruption in some developmental milestones.
Each session begins with the therapist introducing the planned activity and what the child’s role will be. The child then picks the puppets he/she wants to work with, makes up a story for the puppets to act out, and introduces each puppet to the therapist. Following this the child has the puppets act out the story. At the conclusion, the child is asked to tell what the “lesson” is in the story. This sequence of events is a template for any creative arts therapist wishing to invite children to use puppets in treatment, providing a structure that helps the child first to tell the story, and then to reflect on it in order to learn from the experience.
Total Running Time: 1 hour, 14 minutes, 9 seconds