Discovering african american parents' perceptions of play therapy: A phenomenological approach

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A qualitative investigation illuminating the perceptions of eight African American caregivers of elementary school-age children. In particular, this study explored questions that pertained to African American parents' (a) thoughts about counseling, (b) beliefs about the purpose of play, and (c) perceptions about play as a therapeutic agent in counseling. Analysis of African American caregivers' responses to interview questions revealed information about two main themes: (a) value of play and (b) receptivity to counseling. Participants identified developmental learning and energy release as two of the main values surrounding play. They also indicated that receptivity to counseling was directly related to specific facilitative factors, or lack thereof. Implications for play therapists' work with parents and directions for future research are explored. © 2011 Association for Play Therapy.

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