To The


Play Therpy


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Founded in 1990, APTA is an incorporated non-profit organization that seeks to bring together individuals who understand and utilize play as a natural medium of expression and healing for children. Play therapy techniques include fantasy, art, sandplay, music, story telling, drama, etc.

Membership includes those currently using these techniques in their therapeutic work with children and adults, as well as those beginning to explore these modalities.

APTA is interdisciplinary and eclectic in orientation, serving professionals in a variety of work settings. From its modest beginning, APTA continues to coordinate Workshop-based Training Events with exceptional leaders and practitioners these therapeutic modalities.

What is Play Therapy?

excerpt by Garry Landreth & Sue Bratton

Play is to the child what verbalization is to the adult. It is a medium for expressing feelings, exploring relationships, describing experiences, disclosing wishes, and self-fulfillment. Because children’s language development lags behind their cognitive development, they communicate their awareness of what is happening in their world through their play. In play therapy toys are viewed as the child’s words and play as the child’s language–a language of activity.

Play therapy, then, is to children what counseling or psychotherapy is to adults. In play therapy the symbolic function of play is what is so important, providing children with a means of expressing their inner world. Emotionally significant experiences can be expressed more comfortably and safely through the symbolic representation the toys provide.

Play therapy is based on developmental principles and, thus, provides, through play, developmentally appropriate means of expression and communication for children.

The use of toys enables children to transfer anxieties, fears, fantasies, and guilt to objects rather than people. In the process, children are safe from their own feelings and reactions because play enables children to distance themselves from traumatic events and experiences.

APTA Board of Directors

Who Are We?

Co-Chair: Shannon Littke

Co-Chair: Crystal McNaughton
Treasurer (interim): Travis Colley, Emilie Amai
Secretary: Amarjit Chima
Conference Coordinators: Belinda Mendes, Davina Reiner, Dina Vella
Membership: vacant
External Relations / e-Communications:
Karla Eskerod
Social Media:

Board Member at Large

Distant Board Member (Edmonton): vacant
Distant Board Member (Lethbridge): vacant

Contact us: admin@albertaplaytherapy.ca

Shannon Littke








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