Sandplay therapy is a nonverbal, therapeutic intervention that makes use of a sandbox, toy figures, and sometimes water, to create scenes of miniature worlds that reflect a person’s inner thoughts, struggles, and concerns. This form of play therapy is practiced along with talk therapy, using the sandbox and figures as communication tools.
In the town of Sliven in the conditions of kindergartens and in the center for special educational support sand therapy has been successfully used with children of the autistic spectrum, children with cognitive deficits, children with CCP, children from social institutions. The method used stimulates the speech development of the children, enriches their conceptual apparatus, develops fine motor skills.
Here a little part of the interview with Raia Popova, Psychologist of the school Bratya Miladinovi in Sliven (Bulgaria).
“What is the main goal of the project and when the idea started?”
“The main goal is to play with sand and at the same time learning with fun; The pioneers of the sand therapy were Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud, the idea started on a beach, where Jung was taking relax and a question came in his mind: why not use sand as a means of helping people”.
“How is working the therapy?”
“Different types of toys are used that represent humans, animals, family situations and emotional feelings. The process involves the use of these toys reproducing past situations without traumatizing them again, dealing constructively with the experiences. Sand in its nature is a tool with which you can easily build shapes, but it is also very easy to destroy it. This is another important message inside the therapy: nothing lasts forever.”
“Do you need additional education for improving the project?”
“Yes, we need training for sand therapy, it is our dream, it would be amazing to find a course that could improve the project. Currently, there are training in Germany, USA, and Ukraine, but not in Bulgaria which also makes it difficult to find and obtain materials.”
“What is your motivation?”
“My studies as a psychologist have led me to this type of project, and from a non-formal point of view I love working with children, especially children who need different attention.”
Here the Link of the interview on YouTube: https://youtu.be/VbH8OcAEwAo