Course Description

*Use this course for 2.5 APT non-contact hours under  Play Therapy Skills & Methods

In this course, you will discover the underlying theories and models that support FirstPlay® Therapy and Somatic Storytelling (previously known as Kinesthetic Storytelling®). These include Developmental Play Therapy, Ericksonian-based storytelling (StoryPlay®), adapted Filial play therapy principles, peer-to-peer massage in schools program, Attachment Theory, the research in touch, and mindfulness practices.


 At the end of this course practitioners will be able to:

  • List at least five foundational underlying models of FirstPlay® Therapy.

  • State three ways in which Developmental Play Therapy was adapted to FirstPlay Therapy®.

  • Explain how joyful Exciting-Play and Joyful Nurturing-Play builds secure attachments within sessions.

This course is led by Janet Courtney, PhD., RPT-S. APT credits available as listed in the course description are sponsored by Developmental Play & Attachment Therapies (APT Approved Provider 10-287) Play therapy credit available to mental health professionals only as listed in each course description.  Courses that do not qualify for play therapy credit are clearly listed.

Technical support for this course is provided by Jennifer Taylor of Jennifer Taylor Play Therapy Services, LLC.

No NBCC Credit available.

Interested in Somatic Storytelling Certification? 

This course is also Module 2 of the FirstPlay Somatic Storytelling Level 1 course. 

If you are interested in becoming certified in First Play Somatic Storytelling (formerly known as First Play Kinesthetic Storytelling), you can start with this FREE course, Intro to FirstPlay Therapy. 

If this material resonates with you, you can go directly to this course, Somatic Storytelling Level 1 to complete the remaining of Level 1.

If you are not sure (yet) about certification or just need to spread your resources out over time,  Dr. Courtney has offered the next three modules of Somatic Storytelling Level 1 as stand-alone courses.  

After the FREE Into to First Play Therapy course,  you would purchase this course (that you are currently previewing) Attachment Theory in FirstPlay Therapy. 

Next, you would purchase these courses

3). The Ethics of Touch in Play Therapy

4). Parent and Child Attachment and Assessment 

Once you complete all 4 of the courses listed above, please email Jen Taylor at [email protected] to purchase Module 5, which will be the final course needed for you to complete Level 1 of the Somatic Storytelling Series.  Once you have completed that course, you can move directly to Level 2 of the Somatic Storytelling series.  

The three-part Somatic Storytelling series is 37.5 hours of training in all three Levels of the Somatic Storytelling series.  After completing the training, contact Dr. Courtney to schedule individual or group consultation sessions to review the material and demonstrate competency in the techniques.

Instructor Janet Courtney, PhD, LCSW, RPT-S

Janet Courtney, PhD, LCSW, RPT-S is the Founder of FirstPlay® Therapy and offers a Certification to Practitioners in FirstPlay® Infant Massage & Kinesthetic Storytelling®. Since 1997, she has been an Adjunct Professor at Barry University, Miami, FL where she also obtained her Doctoral degree in Social Work completing a dissertation in Developmental Play Therapy, touch and attachment. She is a Registered Play Therapy Supervisor and past President of the Florida Association for Play Therapy. Dr. Courtney is author/editor of the books Infant Play Therapy: Foundations, Models, Programs and Practice and Healing Child and Family Trauma through Expressive and Play Therapies: Art, Nature, Storytelling, Body, Mindfulness” book. She is co-author of the groundbreaking book, Touch in Child Counseling and Play Therapy: An Ethical and Clinical Guide, and is published in the International Journal of Play Therapy, the Journal of the American Art Therapy Association, and the Journal of Therapeutic Horticulture. Other publications include chapters in the books, Environmental Expressive Therapies: Nature-Assisted Theory and Practice (2017) and in Play-based Interventions for Children and Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorders (2012). Janet’s career has focused on attachment and bonding, and the importance of nurturing touch between parents and their young children. As a wholistic oriented practitioner, she believes in the power of infant massage and joyful “first-play” activities (for example, patty cake and peek-a-boo) as the best start for infant mental health.Dr. Courtney is an internationally recognized play therapist and has been invited to speak on topics of infant and childhood play therapy in England, Ireland, Morocco, Russia, Ukraine, and the Cayman Islands. She has acted as a consultant to several Florida based children’s agencies, and supervises clinicians seeking Florida board licensure, as well as, those seeking Certification as a Registered Play Therapist. Dr. Courtney has developed a new process of storytelling called FirstPlay® Kinesthetic Storytelling® which merges imagery relaxation skills with joyful first-play interactive parent-child activities. Her children’s book, The Magic Rainbow Hug©, makes this technique directly accessible to professionals, parents, and the children who can most benefit from its use.

Course curriculum

    1. Course Powerpoint Part A

    2. Course Video Part A

    3. Course Powerpoint Part B

    4. Course Video Part B

    1. Videos - Looking for Me

    2. Video - Calm, Focused and Friendly

    3. Dr. Courtney's Ted Talk on The Curative Touch of a Magic Rainbow Hug

    1. Evaluation (Required)

    2. Quiz (Required)

About this course

  • $65.00
  • 11 lessons
  • 2.5 hours of video content