KIDS ARTiculate


Programme designed by Di Wicks Play Therapist


The Kids Articulate programme is for children who have experienced domestic abuse and is suitable for children aged 6-11 (primary school).


The programme incorporates group theory, attachment theory and play therapy techniques. The programme ethos is one of unconditional positive regard and the direction is based on a short-term, structured, playful intervention that uses Theraplay® principles and interventions based on:


Art and drawing,

Clay and play doh,

Music, games,




Puppets, Masks,

Dance and movement


The goal of Theraplay® s to enhance attachment, self-esteem, trust and joyful engagement, using principles that focus on strengthening four main components


Structure – setting limits for children so they can feel physically and emotionally safe.

Engagement – excitement, stimulation, and surprise to maintain a child’s alertness and interest.

Nurture – warm, soothing and comforting ways of caring for children, including the use of safe touch (positive touch is an integral part of healing for children who have experienced domestic abuse).

Challenge – encouraging the child to learn new skills, to take some age-appropriate risks, and to experience success and increase self-confidence.


Parents are a vital part of the programme and contact is maintained throughout to ensure both parties are kept aware of any difficulties arising with the children, and that they are able to complete in partnership with their child/ren the worksheets that are closely connected with the sessions, so they are able to support their children through the programme process.


Please note


Programme ratio 1adult to 3 children - with a minimum 2 adults per group.

Articulate programme runs for 10 x 1 ½ hour sessions.


The training for the programme will cover instruction on:


  • Group theory – including suitability for group work

  • Neuroscience and abuse (effects of trauma on brain development)

  • Attachment theory

  • Play therapy and counseling reflective techniques


The training will be delivered using a mix of power point and experiential exercises as the programme delivery is hands on and requires the group leaders to participate in all the activities.


Training will be given on assessing suitability for group work – as this programme is designed with touch as an integral part all participants (children and adults) must be comfortable with this . Please note children who have been sexually abused may not be - unless they have already received professional therapy.


Instruction on the assessment tools will be given and cut off levels of difficulty discussed so all facilitators are aware of when and who to refer to, and the dynamics of potential groups discussed. Assessment tools include both pre and post qualitative and quantitative measures for later evaluation.


Neuroscience and the specific effects on domestic violence on brain functioning will be discussed so trainees will gain an understanding of why children and young people behave in the ways they do – this will also include a discussion on intergenerational abuse and family difficulties.


Attachment issues will be looked at and an understanding of how domestic abuse affects bonding with a non-abusing parent as well as strategies to aid a better bond will be discussed – this will be linked to Theraplay® techniques.


Play therapy techniques around specifically developing an unconditional positive regard and reflective language that is limit setting but inclusive, plus a basic understanding of counseling theories will be taught so an understanding of transference, projection and embodiment will be gained.


Instruction takes three days and attendees will gain a basic understanding of all the above.


All attendees will receive the programme itself, references for further reading and training and a CD rom with all the assessement tools (inc. forms, games, safety planning book etc.)