When children are struggling with issues or life crises and attempts at talking do not work, engaging them with alternative approaches will often prove more helpful. Participants of this workshop will develop competency in engaging and communicating with children (ages 3-12) and their natural support systems. Drawing from the expressive arts (play, art, drama) and integrative body-based techniques (mindfulness, sensory, and whole-brain activities); practical skills that promote and build resilience in children will be presented. Informed by attachment theories, developmental psychology, family therapy and neuroscience, this training uses a variety of experiential exercises, role-plays and interactive activities to enhance participant learning.

About This Workshop

Workshop Outline

 Day 1

  • Attachment Overview: Relationship, Rhythm and Resilience
  • Developmental Knowledge and Putting it in Context
  • What We’ve Learned About Growing Brains – Neuroscience
  • Why Talking Doesn’t Always Work and Strategies that Do
  • Somatic Approaches for Self-regulation – Working with Unsettled Bodies
  • Why Imagination and Play are Still Important
  • Creative Strategies for Engagement and Building Empathy Skills

 Day 2

  • Emotional Literacy and Expressive Techniques
  • Skills for Working with Resistance
  • Building Connection and with Parents/caregivers: How to have Insight Before Giving Advice
  • Tips for Handling Transitions and Crises
  • How to Work with Groups for Maximum Benefit
  • Capacity-building for Prevention and Transformation


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Method of Delivery

Experiential practice of activities and exercises, small group work, lecture, video, and case study discussion.

Target Audience

This is an introductory-intermediate level workshop intended for school personnel, social service and health care professionals, counsellors, parents and caregivers.

Learning Objectives for Resilience in Children

  • Understand the foundation of attachment for effectively working with children and families to support optimal development
  • Describe ways to use play, expressive arts, movement, guided imagery, and mindful awareness with children
  • Describe how to help children and families undergoing natural transitions and crises
  • Steps to becoming an effective helper by engaging one’s own imagination, intuition, and ability to play