Movement is a child’s first form of expression. Dance/movement therapy builds on the natural language of children to:
- Build body-awareness
- Release tension
- Develop social skills
- Improve attention span
Dance/movement therapy integrates children’s emotional, social, cognitive and physical abilities. Group therapy sessions develop children's awareness of themselves and others. They are an opportunity for children to express themselves and communicate with each other in nonverbal ways. Therapists help children recognize when their symbolic movements reflect an awareness of the children around them. They also narrate children’s activities to encourage language development. As children gain greater self-awareness, they also develop the social resiliency that's so important to maintaining interpersonal relationships.
Children's individual abilities are evaluated in a variety of areas, including motor skills, verbal and nonverbal communication skills, social skills, impulse control and attention span. Our dance/movement therapists follow an interdisciplinary model, working with clinicians from other departments as well as teachers to share insights into each child’s progress. Over time, we see improvements in children’s impulse control, coordination, attention span and more.
You can try some dance/movement therapy techniques at home. One of our favorites is Rena Kornblum's 4 B's of self control: Brakes, Breathe, Brain and Body. If your child is feeling overwhelmed, try practicing the 4 B's illustrated below.
Dance/movement therapy is a part of our preschool's Creative Arts Therapy department.