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Book review: Children's Use of Board Games in Psychotherapy
Board games can play an important role in psycho-therapy and cognitive development of children in their early childhood, latency period and for differently abled children.

However, there is not much popularity of board games for linking them to academic learning and cognitive development. In such a scenario, the book 'Children's Use of Board Games in Psychotherapy' is a welcome volume.

Authored by Dr Jill Bellinson, the book explains how board games can be used for psycho-therapy and cognitive development of children.  Taking cues from the book, teachers and therapists can structure board games in developmentally appropriate ways for latency-age periods and during the situations marked with learning difficulties.

The book is valuable since it discusses appropriately and adequately the therapeutic use of board games.  The specially structured board games not only reveal the internal psychodynamic working of the child but also provide directions for creating relevant new games for children's contextual cognitive needs.

When board games are used for the development of interpersonal and transferential relationships, the therapists look for underlying dynamics of playing the game rather than prematurely into the verbal world of adults which most teachers tend to do.

The book spread into 184 pages demonstrates the power of board games in therapy and learning. Taking cues from the book, we at Disha, developed four board games to be played in pairs for pattern and colour recognitions and classification on these two attributes for differently abled children whose pace of learning is very slow to a good effect. The play was linked with simple ticking worksheets for a shift toward cognitive learning.

However, the book published by Jason Aronson, Inc stresses the need for having trained play-therapists and teachers to prevent or resolve psycho-social as well as learning difficulties and achieve optimal growth and development of children across the full ability spectrum.

It is good book for school teachers, special educators, therapists and medical practitioners dealing with education and universal health care of children.

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