Therapeutic Engagement Of Children And Adolescents

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This book addresses the issues that child and adolescent therapists struggle with the most—how to meaningfully engage and create conditions for transformative change with children and teens who are unwilling participants at the outset and who regard any allowed influence by the therapist to be a competitive defeat. To engage these particularly reluctant children, Dr. Crenshaw has expanded the variety of stories offered in a previous book Engaging Resistant Children in Therapy, and added not only drawing, but symbol work and play therapy variations to offers choices and a range of tools to involve them in a meaningful collaborative therapeutic process. The book begins with a review of research and a rationale for using tools consisting of symbolic play for younger children and the therapeutic use of symbols, drawing, and storytelling in order to create portals of entry to reach disconnected children. The book is organized in chapters along major therapeutic goals as follows with specific tools described to meet the objectives: the challenge of therapeutic engagement with reluctant children; relational strategies to engage heart and mind; the therapeutic use of symbols to access the internal and relational worlds of the child or teen; building the therapeutic alliance with strategies that honor strengths; strategies to strengthen the self-observer; facilitating empathy for self and others; strategies to access the pain of social rejection; tools to address grief and traumatic loss; the 'quest for home' strategies; and the delicate operation of facilitating hope. The strategies described were chosen and developed based on and informed by a vast developmental psychopathology.

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Editorial Reviews

Eric Green
This book deftly combines symbols, heartfelt feelings, relational theory, bibliotherapy, and several developmentally-appropriate and creative art strategies to ultimately bolster the empirically-validated and single most important curative component of child psychotherapy: the nonjudgmental, nonevaluative relationship between the counselor and client. Having incorporated Crenshaw's heartfelt feelings activity (Chapter 2) into my play therapy practice and graduate school training curriculum, I can affirm that my child clients, graduate students and supervised clinicians find it effective as the child is freed to express his/her feelings in nonthreatening ways. I highly recommend this book to graduate students and mental health practitioners searching for innovative ways to therapeutically engage and connect to young children and resistant adolescents.
John W. Seymour
In this book, Dr. Crenshaw invites us into his office to watch over his shoulder as he and helpers such as 'Misunderstood Mouse' and 'Blow-Up Bernie' develop therapeutic relationships with children and adolescents who are facing major challenges in their lives. He then invites us into a conversation about the theory, best practice research, and practical resources for effective work with young clients and their families. This book is rich in content for both the reflective and active aspects of the therapeutic relationship.
Lois Carey
This is one of the most engaging 'how-to' books in recent memory. It combines play, symbol work, storytelling and drawing in ways that provide symbolic links to a child's inner world. The stories themselves are gems and when combined with Dr. Crenshaw's intuitive and sensitive questioning, they serve all children well. This book provides a major contribution that is of importance for teh novice as well as for the more experienced practitioner. I only wish I had it many years ago!
Terry Kottman
This book is a gem! Dr. Crenshaw presents a variety of incredibly helpful therapeutic strategies that you can use in your practice with children and adolescents. He does a beautiful job of outlining practical, easy-to-follow directions for the activities, along with touching case examples and citations of empirical research that make these techniques practical, therapeutically useful, and easy to "sell" to managed care providers.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780765705716
  • Publisher: Aronson, Jason Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/28/2008
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 176
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

David A. Crenshaw, Ph.D., is a licensed psychologist, board certified in clinical psychology by the American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP), and fellow of the Academy of Clinical Psychology. He is a registered play therapist-supervisor by the Association of Play Therapy and co-founder and current president of the New York Association for Play Therapy.

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Table of Contents

Engaging Reluctant Children in Therapy     1
Relational Strategies to Engage Heart and Mind     7
The Therapeutic Use of Symbols to Engage Children and Adolescents     29
Building the Therapeutic Alliance by Honoring Strengths     45
Strategies to Strengthen the Self-Observer     57
Facilitating Empathy for Self and Others     83
Strategies to Access the Pain of Social Rejection     99
Strategies to Address Grief and Traumatic Loss     117
The "Quest for Home" Strategies     131
The Delicate Therapeutic Operation of Facilitating Hope     145
References     159
Index     167
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