Art therapy uses art-making, creativity and play to help children who are
struggling with emotional or social issues to experience greater wellbeing and better functioning in their day to day lives.
Within art therapy, children can explore and express themselves through
painting, drawing, collage or sculpture. While some children arrive in therapy already able to talk about the struggles that they are dealing with, others may not yet have the words or the self-awareness to describe what they are experiencing. As they paint and draw, some children learn to put words to their experiences. Others process their emotions and experiences within the art-making itself, on a more symbolic level. In all cases, art therapy can help children to externalize their thoughts and feeling and to work through their struggles.
As each child is different, each child’s experience in art therapy will also be different. At the start of therapy, the therapist assesses each child’s needs and sets meaningful goals, in communication with the child and his or her parents. Art therapy can help children to deal with issues such as : anxiety, low self-esteem, struggles in family or friendship relationships, anger or difficulty regulating emotions, grief, traumatic experiences as well as many other emotional or social challenges.