TERRY IS AN eleven-year old boy with a diagnosis of autism. He was referred to dramatherapy to help with his bereavement and help him to recognise and manage his difficult feelings. He had problems staying in class and maintaining positive relationships with his peers.
TERRY RESPONDED WELL to the repeated structure of the sessions. Each week Terry was invited to take turns with the dramatherapist to choose how he would like to say hello: this could be as a shout, a whisper, a silent voice, a normal voice, or a something else from his imagination. This was then followed by copying sounds and movements. The mirroring work took on different forms, which supported Terry to build a trusting relationship with the dramatherapist.
THE MAIN CREATIVE activity involved a wide range of dramatherapy interventions, included role play, story making, throwing games, sensory work and using props from the dramatherapy equipment that is always in the room.
THROUGH THE WORK Terry did with the Roundabout dramatherapist, he really developed his ability to express his feelings and learned to understand how others can have different feelings to his own, which is a huge step for him. Listening to stories and acting out scenarios helped him to feel calmer and better able to self-regulate in difficult situations.
TERRY’S CONFIDENCE and self-esteem increased both in school and at home. He has begun to develop more successful peer relationships and is more able to speak about his needs and opinions. Terry’s teacher has seen an increase in his confidence in the classroom and a decrease in withdrawn behaviour and anxiety.
* All names have been changed to protect the identity of our clients.
Image by Rich The Geek
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