2021 Annual Conference

September 9-10, 2021

Masks Required for This Event (Updated 8/23/21)

With the continued risk of COVID-19 and the Delta variant, the IAPT Board has decided to require masks at our 2021 annual conference.  All participants will be required to wear a mask covering both their nose and mouth while in conference areas.  Participants may remove masks for eating or drinking only.

While we realize that this policy may not appeal to everyone, the Board believes that we have both personal and professional responsibilities to protect people in our communities.  Our policy recognizes that many of us may be at higher risk ourselves or be adjacent to those who are high-risk.  Additionally, as all of us work with children who are not yet able to be vaccinated, the Board views our responsibility to mask as a professional ethical responsibility to protect the young clients we serve.  Appreciating that the pandemic has greatly affected our abilities to enjoy life in ways we were previously used to, IAPT has implemented this policy to allow us all to gather as safely as possible.

Presenter: Rise VanFleet, PhD, RPT-S, CDBC, CAEBC-I

Thursday Topic: The Secret Ingredient to Long-lasting Play Therapy Results: Family Approaches to Play Therapy (6 Contact CEs)

Workshop Description: Play therapy is an effective, developmentally appropriate approach to child mental health intervention. Even though its use has increased dramatically during the past 20 years or so, the changes can be short-lived if parents, foster or adoptive caregivers, or other family members are not substantially involved. Research also bears this out. This workshop highlights different family play therapy approaches, and emphasizes skills and methods that can greatly increase play therapists’ effectiveness. Drawing from Filial Therapy (Guerneys) and a variety of other evidence-based family interventions, this presentation will cover challenges and solutions for issues such as parent resistance and engagement, continuity and follow-through, ways to include family members, developing an integrative family perspective, infusing family work with playfulness and acceptance, working with separation and divorce, overcoming interpersonal violence, and a number of other areas that therapists have often brought up in supervision including expanding one’s competencies in family play interventions. Lecture will be augmented by live demonstrations, case studies, videos, and small group skill practice of specific skills and strategies.

Learning Objectives:

After this workshop, participants will be able to…

  1. Describe at least two reasons why parents and caregivers are essential to play therapy success.
  2. Use empathy to the deepest levels to overcome parent hesitation or resistance to play therapy.
  3. Describe and use the skill of building relevance and establishing common goals to recommend and motivate greater family involvement in play therapy.
  4. Conduct at least two new play-based family interventions.
  5. Incorporate the use of gentle affirming humor in their work with parents.
  6. Describe the essential features of Filial Therapy and why they can be applied with all families.
  7. Identify at least two challenges that can undermine play therapy with families experiencing interpersonal violence, and how to avoid or handle them.

Friday Topic: Play-Based Interventions for Children and Families with Trauma and Attachment Challenges (6 Contact CEs)

Workshop Description: This interactive workshop covers a wide range of effective play-based interventions for children who have been maltreated, have been exposed to domestic violence, and have had serious disruptions to their attachment processes. Participants learn a wide range of therapeutic interventions that are anchored to a core values that focus on building or strengthening family agency, mutual respect, and healthy attachment relationships. The intricacies of decision-making for complex trauma cases are also covered. Specific topics include prioritizing goals and treatments, the intersection of family frustration or desperation with individual play therapy, Filial Therapy, a variety of whole-family interventions and how to process them, Animal Assisted Play Therapy®, dramatic family play therapy, and the need for emotional, behavioral, and social support for the entire family. Lecture material will be illustrated by live demonstrations, videos, case examples, and experiential activities for developing the skills and methods that can be helpful. A successful model for working with these problem areas, including severe ones, will be presented.

Learning Objectives:

After this workshop, participants will be able to…

  1. Describe the stresses and struggles of families experiencing trauma and attachment problems with at least one example each from the point of view of parents, the affected child, and other children in the family.
  2. List at least 10 reasons why the Guerneys’ Filial Therapy can be important to include in treating this population.
  3. Implement a comprehensive treatment planning approach that prioritizes the approach to individual families.
  4. Describe the temptation of behavioral control and how relationship and emotion focused approaches approach it differently.
  5. Conduct at least two new interventions with this population.
  6. Design a new family play therapy intervention that integrates an understanding of, and addresses, whole-family needs.
  7. Describe four contributions that Animal Assisted Play Therapy® makes to the treatment of this population of children and their families.

Thursday/Friday Registration Link: https://iowaassociationforplaytherapy.regfox.com/2021-annual-conference