Skip to content

About Play Therapy

Play Therapy is a special form of counselling for children. In play therapy, materials and toys are used by children to communicate their thoughts and feelings through play – children’s natural form of expression. The child and play therapist build a therapeutic relationship where the child can safely express, explore and make sense of their life experiences.

Who can Play Therapy help?

Play therapy is a well-researched and effective form of counselling for a wide range of emotional, behavioural, social and psychological difficulties in children.  It is especially appropriate for children aged between three and eleven years.

Play therapy can assist in a range of areas, including (but not limited to):

  • Adoption and foster care
  • Aggression/acting out
  • Anxiety
  • Attachment issues
  • Depression
  • Grief and loss
  • School difficulties
  • Peer relationships
  • Sleeping/eating
  • Emotional issues
  • Developmental delays
  • Chronic illness
  • Impacts of trauma or harm

At Kids Compass, we practice child-centred play therapy, filial therapy, and AutPlay® therapy.

Child-Centred Play Therapy

How does Play Therapy work?

Non-Directive Child-Centered Play Therapy (CCPT) takes place in a uniquely designed space that offers a sense of safety, predictability, belonging, and wonder. The play therapy room is set up and equipped with specially chosen toys that allows children to fully express themselves.

The essence of Child-Centered Play Therapy resides in the therapeutic relationship – where the therapist trusts the child to direct their own process and lead the therapist towards issues they need or are ready to work on. This allows children to resolve issues from a deeper level, promoting life-long changes from the inside-out.

Why Child-Centered Play Therapy?

While adults may use talk therapies to resolve their emotional conflicts – most children are not developmentally equipped to effectively verbalise their thoughts and feelings until their teenage years. Play helps children bring their problems to the surface so they can resolve conflicted feelings and play out new ways of coping.

Play Therapy offers a more developmentally appropriate means for children to communicate and make sense of their thoughts, emotions, and difficulties.

AutPlay Therapy®

AutPlay is a Play and Behavioural Therapy Approach for working with children and families affected by Autism and related conditions.

AutPlay encompasses established psychological theory and evidence-based behavioural approaches in a comprehensive model, designed to assist children and adolescents in gaining needed skills and abilities, and to teach parents/ carers how to assist their children in gaining skills and abilities.

Who can AutPlay Help?

AutPlay Therapy is designed for children and adolescents with neurodevelopmental disorders, such as; Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD, and Intellectual Developmental Disorder. AutPlay Therapy is appropriate for children aged 3-18 with severe to mild impairment in skill functioning.

AutPlay Therapy is designed to focus on strengthening the core deficit areas found in children with ASD;

  • Emotional Regulation
  • Social interaction
  • Play skills
  • Relationship and connection
  • Anxiety
  • Sensory Processing

How does AutPlay Therapy work?

AutPlay Therapy utilises a unique combination of Play Therapy approaches and Behavioural methodology, with directive Play Therapy techniques to improve skill deficits related to social functioning, emotional regulation, and relational connection.

The AutPlay Therapy approach acknowledges and caters for the unique play styles that children on the Autism Spectrum possess. The AutPlay protocol is designed to identify and increase skill deficits using structured play therapy interventions that are both therapist and parent-led.

AutPlay® Therapy incorporates a parent training component which teaches parents how to conduct individualized structured play therapy interventions at home, and become co-change agents with the therapist in helping their children develop needed skills.

Paediatric Therapies at Kids Compass

Kids Compass in Chirnside Park offers individualised therapeutic services to children of all ages. We offer an inclusive approach that encompasses not only the child; but their family and supportive networks too. We offer Occupational Therapy, Play Therapy, Animal-Assisted Therapy, and Filial  Therapy. Please get in touch to find out how we can help your child.


Occupational Therapy

OT can help your child improve functional skills needed to engage in everyday activities – from playing, dressing, to making friends and participating at school.

Read more

Animal Assisted Therapy

AAT provides therapeutic enrichment by helping children exercise relational skills, develop empathy, and provide valuable insight on how children perceive their world.

Read more

Kids Compass Newsletter

Get the latest news and articles from the Centre, straight to your inbox

Don't worry, we won't spam you, or give away your details without asking!