I have so many years experience of working with children, it's embarrassing and I'm starting to claim fewer in case you work out how old I am! In my market research days of projects for TV companies, toy companies and publishers, I had to find ingenious and fun ways to get kids talking and over the years I've become more and more inventive. Children don't respond well to direct questions and the word 'why' simply sends them into their conscious brain where they won't find the answer because it just doesn't work like that.
Let me tell you the sort of things your child will do with me...............
Using a sand tray children create their world with dinosaurs, sea creatures, shells and moshi monsters. I get to understand who is in their world, family and friends, how school and home is for them and the main obstacles they have in their life right now.
They then recreate it as they would like it to be and we have an idea of what we will work on in our sessions.
This is a set of LEGO designed for therapy use so it has all sorts of interesting bits and pieces rather than simply being blocks to make a set thing. I invite children to create a model of friendship or confidence or make a happiness machine. As they do this, I observe their process and we can chat without it being direct and without eye contact which children find easier. As they explain how their model works, i learn a great deal about them and what they feel as well as how they'd like to feel.
By choosing a crystal that represents them, they project onto the crystal, aspects of their own personality which helps me to understand them in a way that a direct question wouldn't. They then choose crystals to represent their family members and friends which enables me to get a feeling for their world and who's in it.
I also use crystals to get an understanding of what they've experienced in their life so far. We take each school year and they choose a crystal that represents it and talk about what that year was like for them and we can use this as a basis for working on compelling outcomes and overcoming limiting beliefs.
I'm afraid I can't find any pictures that don't have identifying names etc on them to show you.
Children may be asked to draw themselves as a superhero, draw their dream, a feelings pizza or draw their fear. There are lots of coloured felt pens and the colours all have meanings which tell me more about what we might need to work on.
Children and young people love to create vision boards from the Visual Explorer cards and then use them as Home screens on their mobile. This could be a vision of their new school year, friendship, their future, their family life or indeed anything I might decide will be helpful.
NLP explains how we have a number of metaprogrammes which we use to process our world and knowing how we do that, helps children best choose how they work more effectively when it comes to revision, tests or important exams. It also helps parents know how to communicate so their child can process what they are saying quickly without having to translate it into their own metaprogramme.