Thursday, 20 November 2014

Play Therapy - Making Christmas Elves


Studying medicine isn't all hard work, you know. I'm currently on a paediatrics (children's medicine) placement which means that there is plenty of excuse for playtime too. When we first got our timetables for this week, what immediately caught my eye was "session with the play specialists, in the ward play room." It was nestled in there between seminars and nursing shifts, but it stood out a mile!

Now I didn't want to get my hopes up straight away. There was still a distinct possibility that this would end up being just a talk on the theory of play as therapy, but the day before the play specialists had passed us on the ward and suggested that we'd be doing something more practical- and that maybe we shouldn't wear our best clothes...

Tuesday morning we arrived at the play room and took a seat at a table covered in newspaper, stacked with scraps of paper and fabic, coloured pens and even a few tubs of glitter and sequins. As a child, mum always encouraged us to be creative so this kind of scene is pretty familiar to me- but perhaps not while at university! They told us they wanted us to make elves, just like they would be getting any of the children to do over the next few weeks too. 

We got into small groups and instantly got started fashioning hats and tights and fancy tops for our elves. One group even went for an impressive 3D structured elf. While we worked (played?), the play specialists talked about their role in the hospital, helping children to deal with an unfamiliar environment, coping with any anxieties and generally just trying to make their stay in hospital a little more enjoyable. They had lots of useful tips that we can use as future doctors when it comes to distracting children that need treatments or examinations. They also talked about how they can often be a support for parents who are just as anxious when their child is ill.

Two hours went by very quickly and it was soon time to pack things away- but we made sure to get plenty of photos of our creations! The play specialists also told us they'd be putting them up on their new display- so I'll be looking out for those on the ward!




What do you think?!
Jennifer
xXx
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11 comments

  1. Hahaha so cute! I love being on paediatrics, I love kids! I don't know why I chose medicine, should've become a play therapist instead.

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    1. Haha that was my thinking too! Paeds is brilliant, I never thought I'd love it as much as I do

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  2. This is so cute! It's great when people can appreciate the benefits of the creative arts, I used to work at a music charity and my favourite project while I was there was one in a paediatrics ward :) This reminds me of when it got near to christmas at the end of the school term and you'd just to making instead of lessons, glad to see that tradition still lives on at uni! :') haha x

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    1. That music project sounds really interesting, there's so much effort made for kids in hospital which is lovely :) And yes, it did feel a lot like that- if only ever uni Christmas could be the same! x

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  3. Oh my god, stop it. This is too adorable! I'm glad they had a more hands on approach to the topic. I always loved labs in undergrad (and so far in grad) because I learn much better that way.

    xo, Rachel
    babblingloon.blogspot.com

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    1. Haha :) I'm quite lucky that a lot of my course is pretty hands on now, it does definitely make it a lot easier to learn x

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  4. Aw this looks great fun! I'm so glad there is such an effort to make children's time in hospital easier. Glitter cheers everyone up!

    Heather x
    http://heatherrrrm.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. There is so much effort made and it seems to really make a difference. Glitter is great medicine! x

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  5. I still love this type of thing as an adult. I've spent all evening scrapbooking and it's pretty much like therapy!
    Cx
    charliedistracted.com / Bloglovin

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    1. I always say I don't have time for this kind of thing- but I should just make time because it's definitely good for you! x

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