Creative Ways to Help Children Manage BIG Feelings: A Therapist’s Guide to Working with Preschool and Primary Children


SKU: 9781785920745 Categories: , , ,

To be able to effectively offer therapy to children, complex therapeutic concepts need to be presented in an appropriate and engaging manner. This practical guide provides clinicians with a way in which to do so, with numerous games and imaginative activities to help children aged 4-12 to express and understand their feelings.

Part I provides a comprehensive guide to working therapeutically with children and families, while Part II outlines 47 creative therapeutic activities. Each activity is presented with clear instructions using inexpensive and readily available resources and the objective and rationale of each activity is given, making it easily applicable. Activities range from using an easy to make volcano to help children better understand anger, to using a ball of string to illustrate how one person’s feelings affect the whole family. This book is an invaluable resource for newly qualified clinicians, and also a treasure trove of creative ideas for experienced therapists.


  • Acknowledgements.
  • Foreword by Dr Lesley Bretherton.
  • Preface.
  • Part 1 – Therapeutic work with children and families.
  • 1. Therapeutic frameworks and why working with children is different.
  • 2. The importance of assessment.
  • 3. Purposeful and playful therapy.
  • 4. Working with families and schools.
  • 5. Developmental considerations when working with children.
  • 6. Key approaches and helpful ideas.
  • 7. How to use this book.
  • Part 2 – Creative therapeutic activities.
  • Appendix – Our favorite children’s books for therapy. Reference list.

Author Bio:

Dr Fiona Zandt is a clinical psychologist who currently works at the Royal Children’s Hospital and has a successful private practice in Melbourne. She has over 15 years’ experience working with children and families with a broad range of psychological difficulties.

Dr Suzanne Barrett is a clinical psychologist who has over 17 years’ experience working therapeutically with children and families as well as significant experience in training and supervising psychologists working with children. She previously worked for the Royal Children’s Hospital Mental Health Service, and now has a successful private practice in Melbourne.


“Creative Ways to Help Children Manage Big Feelings’ is an excellent book FULL of practical and creative ideas for working with young people and their families. It is easy to navigate and incorporates theoretical frameworks relevant to working with children and families. Most importantly, it is full of simple yet meaningful therapeutic activities/interventions which can be modified according to the child’s developmental stage and cognitive ability. This is now my go-to book for therapeutic ideas and inspiration, and would be relevant for therapists at any stage of their caree” – Nicole Francke, Psychologist