SAND BOX THERAPY
When you enter the sand
you will suddenly find yourself on an unending journey of seeking and finding yourself in the most unexpected places
of the real - self
STORY BEHIND THE STORY
My Journey with Sand Box Therapy started when I did a practical Capstone Project for my Masters in Spiritual Formation and Discipleship through the University of the Nations (UofN) under Youth with A Mission (YWAM).
During my M.A research on how storytelling affects our lives, I became involved with sand-tray therapy especially with children. Being a trained counselor and knowing how to immerse myself in 3rd century reflective reading, I saw the raw potential in attempting to mix the three disciplines: sand-tray therapy, transformational prayer ministry (TPM) and reflective reading.
A Brief History of Sand Tray Therapy
In the 1920’s Dr. Margaret Lowenfeld first developed the therapeutic use of Sand Play and miniatures. Her approach was called the “Lowenfeld World Technique”. She asked her clients to combine the sand tray and miniatures to create “world pictures”.
Dora Kalff, a Swiss Jungian analyst adapted Lowenfeld’s method and called the approach Sand Play. Dr. Kalff said
“Lowenfeld understood completely the child’s world and created with ingenious intuition a way which enables a child to build a world – the child’s world – in a sandbox”
Sandplay therapy is often used with those who have suffered some form of trauma, neglect, or abuse. Although sandplay is especially well suited for working with young children, who often cannot express their inner feelings in words, it is also a technique that is helpful for some teens and adults who are having trouble expressing themselves and who may have suffered some form of severe trauma.
What to Expect
Sandplay therapy takes place in box-like containers referred to as sand trays. The trays are filled with sand that clients use, along with miniature toys, to create a play world that reflects some aspect of real people and real experiences in their own lives. The client chooses from a large collection of toys and builds a small “world” in the tray that reflects what is going on in their lives. The therapist observes the choice and arrangement of toys without interruption, allowing the person to find answers within themselves. After sandplay is completed, the client and therapist analyze and discuss the client’s toy choices, their arrangement pattern in the sand, and their symbolic or metaphoric meanings. Upon discussion, the client often chooses to make changes to the world they have created in sand. Sandplay therapy may consist of a single session or last as long as several years.