Become a Certified FirstPlay® Kinesthetic Storytelling Practitioner!
Nurturing touch experiences are essential for human growth and development. Trauma exposure and attachment disruptions can impair healthy functioning of touch between children and their caregivers. FirstPlay Kinesthetic Storytelling® is a unique attachment-based play therapy model wherein practitioners learn how to facilitate parents and their children in multi-sensory therapeutic storytelling or “BACK” Stories™—as kids know them. FirstPlay® combines nurturing touch activities with Ericksonian-based storytelling that is facilitated by practitioners who model, guide, facilitate, and supervise parents to provide attuned touch to their children to heal and repair relational bonds. Practitioners demonstrate the “story-massage” activities on a pillow or large stuffed animal while the parents (caregivers) simultaneously practice the storytelling techniques with their own child.
Founded by Janet A. Courtney, the instructor of the course, you will learn the FirstPlay® theoretical and research underpinnings, including Developmental Play Therapy, Modern Attachment Theory, Ericksonian-based storytelling, and the literature and research pertaining to neurobiology and touch, and the peer-to-peer massage in school’s programs. This course will provide you with a FirstPlay Kinesthetic Storytelling Parent and Child Manual© that you can use within play therapy sessions to facilitate the creation of therapeutic kinesthetic stories as well learning “ready-made” stories, and much more (see course modules) that you can immediately put into practice. This course will also provide you with several methods to assess children and families for touch experiences as well as a course module addressing the ethics of touch.
Most importantly, this training will teach you the art of therapeutic storytelling and by the end of the training you will know all of the vital ingredients to write and publish your own therapeutic kinesthetic children's "BACK Story™" book.
Testimonial: "Dr. Courtney’s ongoing heartfelt, guidance and encouragement on my book was amazing. She helped me understand the art of therapeutic storytelling and offered suggestions that brought my story to life. I am forever grateful for her time, patience and wisdom. I highly recommend Janet Courtney to be a part of your book journey. I had no idea how challenging it would be to write a children’s book, but Dr.Courtney’s overwhelming support turned my dream into a reality.” Tammi Van Hollander, LCSW, RPT, Author, Casey's Greatness Wings
[Note, there is also a FirstPlay® Infant Story-Massage model for ages birth to two years, however, this course will only present the FirstPlay® model for children two years and older.]
Janet Courtney, PhD, LCSW, Registered Play Therapy Supervisor, is Founder of FirstPlay® Therapy and offers a Certification to Practitioners in FirstPlay® Infant Story-Massage and FirstPlay Kinesthetic Storytelling®. She is an Adjunct Professor at Barry University, Miami, FL where she also obtained her Doctoral degree conducting research in Developmental Play Therapy, touch and attachment. She is Chair of the Association for Play Therapy Ethics and Practice committee and past President of the Florida Association for Play Therapy.
Dr. Courtney is author and co-editor 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 (2014 & 2018), the Journal of the American Art Therapy Association (2011), and the Journal of Therapeutic Horticulture (2014). 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).
She has developed a new attachment-based play therapy model of storytelling called FirstPlay Kinesthetic Storytelling® which merges skills of mindfulness with joyful first-play interactive parent-child activities. Her children’s book, The Magic Rainbow Hug©, makes this model directly accessible to professionals, parents, and the children who can most benefit from its use.
As a wholistic oriented practitioner, Dr. Courtney believes in the power of therapeutic storytelling, nurturing touch interactions, and joyful “first-play” activities between parents and their infants and children as vital foundations for healthy growth and development and to heal and repair relational bonds. Dr. Courtney 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. She is an internationally recognized play therapist and has been invited to speak and keynote on topics of infant and childhood play therapy in England, Ireland, Morocco, Russia, Ukraine, and the Cayman Islands.