What is play therapy?

Child Play Therapy

"Play therapy is a safe and consistent space for children to express themselves and make sense of the world they live in."

Clare Hammond BSc,PGDip

Play Therapy is a way of supporting children who are struggling to understand what might be happening in their lives. Perhaps there are times their behaviour is showing that they need some extra help, they have low self-esteem or big feelings they don't know how to deal with. 

The Play Therapy toolkit contains different medium which the child can use to communicate through when words are just not enough or perhaps they can't find the right words. 

  • Sand Tray

  • Figures and small world 

  • Art and craft

  • Clay

  • Puppets


  • Musical instruments

  • Role Play 

  • Masks

  • Therapeutic Stories

  • Creative Visualisation

Play Therapy for Private Sessions

I believe we need to give our children and young adults the skills to express and deal with their fears and anxieties in a safe and positive way. Play Therapy allows children the time and space to work out the answers for themselves, be it through talking or not. All children have the ability to find their answers, Play Therapy is just the vehicle which allows them to do it.

Private sessions take place at Sunrise Wellbeing Centre in Anstey or in some cases in local schools. 

What to expect:

My sessions are relaxed and safe, children can talk if they feel they need to. Sometimes children just want to express themselves through paint, clay or other creative means. My main focus is to enable children to be themselves and for this short time they can express themselves how ever they like.

Initially I will have a chat with you (parent or carer) over the phone to discuss your child’s needs, this is free of charge. Once I have all relevant information and it is agreed that Play Therapy would be appropriate, I will arrange to meet you to fill in a referral form and sign an agreement. Following this the first session is booked. This session focuses on getting to know your child and equally your child needs to get to know me. After the initial meeting "getting to know each other" session I plan a minimum of 11 further Play Therapy sessions of between 40-50 minutes long each session. 

I always review regularly with parent/carers to discuss progress and also to give any advice or support needed. All therapy is confidential and I follow my own or the school’s safeguarding policy.

Please contact me for costs and availability. 

Group Child Therapy Session

Sometimes school is the place where difficulties are more apparent. I regularly work within schools providing different levels of support: I can provide a day, morning or single session of Play Therapy. I also offer various training options. 


I measure the impact using Goodman’s strengths and difficulties scale and can provide written reports for records, paediatricians or EHCP applications. I also measure outcomes in a qualitative way which is often more meaningful for the child. I will also liaise closely with parent/carers, school staff and other agencies where necessary. 

In schools I ask for a consistent room, day and time. This is a very important aspect of the therapy, it helps children who don't like change and need the routine and security.

I also offer training for staff on subjects such as:

  • Attachment

  • Resilience

  • Trauma

  • Staff Well-being

  • Therapeutic Approaches to Play

If there is anything I haven't mentioned that would meet your requirements then please do not hesitate to ask.

Contact me here for more detail on costs and availability.

Play Therapy for Schools and Training


Rachel, Private Client

"Clare provided private therapy for my son and daughter aged 6 and 9. She has worked wonders, both my children feel safe and relaxed with her and I have seen their confidence grow. I couldn't thank Clare enough, she came into our life when we all needed a little help."

Flower Pop It

Parent of a Private Client

Our son suffers from anxiety and is highly sensitive.  He struggles with social situations and lacks confidence and can get quite down about some things. We looked into therapy for him and liked the idea of play therapy as he is only 7. We then came across Little Oak Play Therapy and decided to give it a try. It is the best thing we ever did for our son and our family.


Clare has not only helped our son but her guidance also helped us as his parents and our whole family. We feel we are better able to guide him now and know how to deal with certain situations.


We have, and will continue to, recommend Clare to other people and are so grateful for everything she has done. If you are considering play therapy with Clare but not too sure then our opinion is DO IT!!!


The only negative to play therapy with Clare is our son was devastated when it ended and misses Clare so much.


Marie Sandford, CEO

Inspiring Primaries Academy Trust 

"Clare has provided play therapy in a number of our Trust schools enabling children to communicate their difficult thoughts and feelings through play. Her valuable insight into children’s needs has had a profound effect on children’s behaviours and attitudes to learning."

brookside primary school.jpg

SENCo and Specialist Teacher 

Brookside Primary School.


"Clare came to work with one our most vulnerable and complex children.  He was experiencing extreme difficulties dealing with his emotions and would have multiple meltdowns a day.  This was having a hugely negative impact on everyone.  You would not believe the transformation that this child has gone through!  No meltdowns, he is playing with his peers, he is able to accept when he needs to tidy up and will even ask for some quiet time if he feels he is becoming frustrated.  The work that Clare did with this child has had a significant and long lasting impact on not only this childs play skills, but his emotional and social well-being both at school and home,  Thank you Clare, my classroom is a happier place because of your work. " 

What my clients say...