The first year I was in my school I did not have a dollhouse. Most dollhouses are large and wouldn’t fit well in my small office. In addition, most are costly, and you will quickly learn that I am all about finding the bargains when it comes to play therapy toys. So I was very excited when I found this dollhouse from IKEA. The house gets used in almost all of my play therapy sessions.
- Sturdy, neutral in color and easy to play in with its open floor plan
- Easy assembly (my son had fun helping me assemble it!)
- IKEA also offers the coordinating furniture that I have purchased as well
Click here to link to it.
If you have been to any of my trainings, you have heard me rave about these. I discovered them last year at the APT conference. In fact, my dollhouse started being used a whole lot more once I acquired these figures. I had other family dolls for the house, but the appeal of these is they can be ANYONE! Like most toys I find, these are not marketed as play therapy toys, but they will be a real asset to your school office.
- They come in different sizes and colors and even include pets!
- They not only work great in the dollhouse, but in the sandtray
Here's where you can get yours.
If you aren't familiar with Todd Parr's books and other fun materials, you need to check them out! One of my favorites is the Feeling Flashcards. I like to use them to help kids check in about how they're feeling that week , as well as basic feeling identification.
- Fun and colorful way to help kids share feelings
- Illustrations are marvelous - kids love them!
You can get your set here.
My clients love the sand! Some will use it to make a sandtray, and many enjoy it for relaxation and calming as well. My favorite sand is the Sandtastik brand.
- Comes in several different colors
- Glitters and shines when the light hits it
- It's so soft!
Click here for my favorite Sandtastik sand.
I know there are some play therapists who are concerned about the mess factor of sand, and I totally understand that. But the sensory quality of sand is essential. If you are looking for sand that is still a ton of fun and easier to clean up, check out kinetic sand.
It's so hard to narrow it down to just five toys! But when I think about not only my favorites, but the toys that get the most use in my office, the Nerf hoop and ball have to be in the top five. Kids love letting off steam in my office by shooting a few hoops or checking out my poor athletic skills by challenging me to a game of "horse."
I have also come up with some play therapy interventions that make use of the Nerf hoop and ball. One of these involves writing different feeling words on pieces of paper. The client places the papers in different locations around the office. Whenever it is someone's turn, they decide which paper to shoot from and stand on that one. If they make the basket, they share a time they felt that feeling or a coping skill they use when they have that feeling. Fun, feelings and exercise all in one!
You can get a Nerf hoop here.