Play Therapy for Deaf Children
What is Deaf-aware play therapy?
This is play therapy offered by a trained Play Therapist who is aware and sensitive to Deaf cultural, social and psychological
issues. The Play Therapist may be Deaf or hearing but has experience or training in Deaf awareness and is able to sign
with SSE or BSL skills (BSL Level 2 is recommended but please check with the individual therapist). The Play Therapist
will continue to improve their sign and Deaf awareness over time but will begin with a good understanding. A Deaf-aware
Play Therapist may also have a basic understanding of the physical aspects of Deafness and hearing impairment.
Some people are trained as Therapeutic Play practitioners which means that they are skilled to offer therapeutic play. Therapeutic
Play practitioners sometimes go on to train as Play Therapists. Both Therapeutic Play practitioners and Play Therapists
are happy to tell you about their qualifications, skills and experience as well as their level of signing and Deaf-awareness,
so do ask.
Whom is Deaf-aware play therapy for?
"In the UK there are 34,000 Deaf children of whom 40% are estimated to suffer from a mental health problem at some point
in their life" (www.signcharity.org.uk).
Please contact us if you feel that the child you are thinking about is struggling emotionally, socially, academically, at
home or school and
you are concerned, and they are either:
- Profoundly Deaf, either pre or post-lingually, with either hearing or Deaf parents.
- Are deafened, hard of hearing, or have any hearing impairment.
- Are BSL or SSE users.
- Are predominantly oral.
- Have a cochlear implant.
- Are hearing children with BSL-using,
- Deaf parents or sibling.
Deaf - aware play therapy can be offered to children in schools and organisations with the arrangement of the
individual Play Therapist. Referrals can be made by the school, GP’s or social services.For more information a
PowerPoint presentation Play Therapy for Parents, Schools & Organisation. Download as
(note that appropriate viewers and/or software is required to view these files, always save a file before opening it)
National database of PTUK Play Therapists with BSL skills:
||Berks, Bucks and Hamshire
||Deaf Certified Play Therapist (2015), Qualified to use Theraplay principles, NDCS volunteer trained, Works in
Deaf Schooles and Deaf CAMHS
||BSL Level 3, Oral and Deaf CAMHS
||Helen@playtherapy4deafchildren.com, 0765913022 (SMS only)
||Certified Play Therapist.
||Qualified in BSL NVQ Level 4.
||firstname.lastname@example.org 07736 279239 (SMS only)
||Post Graduate Certificate in Therapeutic Play (2009).
||BSL Level 1 (2002) Deaf Awareness Certificate (2002) Worked with RNID.
||Certified Play Therapist
||Reached BSL Level 2 (2008) Teacher of Deaf, experience as drama teacher with Deaf children.
||Registered Trainee in Therapeutic Play Skills
||Signature NVQ Level 6 Certificate in British Sign Language (2012)