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F23-101 Aggression in Play Therapy

Total Credits: 3 including 3 Category I CEs

100 Children & Adolescents
Kristian Owens, LCSW-C, CPT-C, RPT
Course Levels:
3 Hours 15 Minutes



Aggressive play is a controversial topic amongst therapists who work with children in play therapy. Understandably, there is much uncertainty around children being allowed to exhibit aggression in sessions and whether a therapist is promoting aggression by allowing it in the play therapy space. In this workshop, we will explore how aggression is an important and necessary theme in the play therapy process, especially with children who are trauma survivors. We will also explore the neuroscience around aggression and how therapists can use play therapy to promote growth in the child. 



Kristian Owens, LCSW-C, CPT-C, RPT Related Seminars and Products


Kristian Owens is the Owner/CEO of Resilient Child Therapy Institute, LLC, where she provides brain-body based psychotherapy and integrative wellness services to children and families impacted by trauma and loss. She also has a special interest in training and supporting clinicians in their clinical work with Communities of Color. Ms. Owens is a licensed clinical social worker and supervisor in Maryland, a certified yoga teacher, certified Reiki Master, and a play and expressive arts therapy enthusiast.  

Agenda & Learning Objectives


08:50 – 9:00 Log On/Registration  

9:00 – 10:30 Understanding Aggression  

10:30 – 10:45 Break  

10:45 – 12:15 Understanding Aggression (cont.), Teaching Regulation and Boundaries  

12:15 Reflection and adjournment   



Upon the completion of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Identify at least two reasons why aggression is a necessary theme in play therapy with trauma survivors.    

  • Identify three ways play therapy can address aggression based on the neuroscience of aggression.    

  • Gain at least three practical skills for interacting with children during aggressive play.   

Bibliography & References



Dion, L. (2019). Aggression in Play Therapy. New York, NY: W.W. Norton & Company.  

Gil, E. (2017). Posttraumatic Play in Children: What Clinicians Need to Know. New York, NY: Guilford Press  

Landreth, G. (2012). Play Therapy: The Art of the Relationship. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis Group.  

Siegal, D., & Bryson, T. (2012) The Whole Brain Child. New York, NY: Bantam Books.   

Van der Kolk, B. (2014). The Body Keeps Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of  Trauma. New York, NY: Penguin Books.  

Crenshaw, D. A., & Swan, A. (2020). Play therapy for children exhibiting aggressive behaviors. In H. G. Kaduson, D. Cangelosi, & C. E. Schaefer (Eds.), Prescriptive play therapy: Tailoring interventions for specific childhood problems (pp. 192–210). The Guilford Press 

Parker, M. M., Glickman, C. P., Smelser, Q., & DeRaedt, M. (2021). Therapeutic or traumatic: An exploratory study of play therapists’ perceptions of toy guns and aggressive toys in the playroom. International Journal of Play Therapy, 30(1), 61–71. 


Course Completion & CE Information

Category I Maryland BSWE Requirement

The Office of Continuing Professional Education at the University Of Maryland School Of Social Work is authorized by the Board of Social Work Examiners in Maryland to sponsor social work continuing education programs. This workshop qualifies for {3} Category I Continuing Education Units. The Office of Continuing Professional Education is also authorized by the Maryland Board of Psychologists and the Maryland Board of Professional Counselors to sponsor Category A continuing professional education.

Please refer to the tab "Live Interactive Webinar Policies & FAQs" for UMSSW Office of CPE policies regarding all live interactive webinar related matters.

Target Audience

Social Workers, LCPCs, and Psychologists

We welcome anyone interested in the topic!


Late Fees and Refunds

Fee & Registration:

Cost is $70 and includes CE credit. Registering after 9/15/23 will incur an additional $20 late fee. Cancellations* must be received 24 hours in advance prior to the workshop to receive a refund or an account credit.


*ALL cancellations will be subjected to a $35.00 administration fee.

Live Interactive Webinar Platforms


The Office of Continuing Professional Education hosts Live Interactive Webinars through two platforms: Zoom and WebEx.

Both platforms offer high quality and user-friendly webinar platforms for our registrants.


System Requirements:

  • Operating Systems: Windows XP or higher; MacOS 9 or higher; Android 4.0 or higher.
  • Internet Browser: Google Chrome; Firefox 10.0 or higher.

Our system is not compatible with the Safari web browser.

  • Broadband Internet Connection: Cable, High-speed DSL and any other medium that is internet accessible.

**Please have your device charging at all times to ensure that your device does not lose power during the webinar.


Course Interaction Requirements:

To participate in Live Interactive Webinars, you MUST have a device that allows you to view the presentation on screen and hear the instructor at all times. We do not allow participants to call-in from their phones or mobile devices and solely listen to the presentation. Participation in Live Interactive Webinars is mandatory.

Webinar Policies & FAQs

Click The Link to View The Webinar Policies & FAQs