Healing Trauma in Children with Clay Field Therapy: How Sensorimotor Art Therapy Supports the Embodiment of Developmental Milestones
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The first book of its kind on treating trauma in children through creative play with clay, written by a leading voice in the field of art therapy.

From the moment we’re born, we rely on our hands to perceive the world. It’s through touch that we communicate with our primary caregivers and attain an abiding sense of love and security. In Clay Field therapy, client children work with clay and water in a rectangular box. The therapeutic focus is not on object creation, but on the touch connection with the clay as a symbolic external world. Movement, touch, and sensory feedback that have long been out of reach are actualized through the creative process, enabling the child to heal past wounds and regain a more fulfilling sense of self.

Author and therapist Cornelia Elbrecht has been a leader in groundbreaking art therapy techniques for over 40 years. In Healing Trauma in Children with Clay Field Therapy, she shows how embodied expression within the Clay Field can be an effective tool in treating children suffering the mental, emotional, and physical effects of trauma. She discusses the theory and practice of Clay Field therapy using dozens of case examples and more than 200 images.

Working within a fun, safe, and trusting environment, children respond with their embodied braced, chaotic, or dissociated structures of the past, but are then able to foster new sensorimotor experiences that enhance self-esteem, empowerment, and a restoration of developmental deficits. Child therapists will find this book to be a valuable tool–working with a Clay Field can reach even the earliest developmental trauma events, repairing their damage through the haptic hands-brain connection.

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