Child Psychotherapy Homework: Seven Points To Keep In Mind

Children don’t always live in a beautiful world. There are those who due to a genetic problem or home trauma have psychological conditions that require therapy. There are trained professionals to do this, but their work has to go beyond the one hour session. Homework in psychotherapy is intended to build on what has been discussed in the office. There are number of things critically important to keep in mind.

  1. It Needs to Be Done. All activity reinforces the office treatment. Just as in regular school, much of the retain knowledge happens outside of the therapy room.
  2. Data Collection Can Be Part of the Assignment. Questionnaires and other forms of collecting data may be part of the work. These not only help therapist, but also probe the awareness of the child to his or her own feelings.
  3. Time Is to Be Scheduled for Homework. This should not be a rush job that is performed immediately before the scheduled therapy time. Setting aside 30 minutes or so every day gets the tasks done.
  4. Avoidance Has To Be Conquered. This is just procrastination but a child patient may have a very real fear of the homework. This young person already is going through internal pain and the homework may be viewed as adding to it. It is essential that avoidance habits be recognized and restricted.
  5. The Directions for the Assignment Need to Be Understood and Accepted. The child needs to have the directions fully explained at the same time an affirmation that the boy or girl understands the directions needs to be acquired.
  6. The Importance of This Activity Must Be Stressed. A psychological disorder does give a child the kind of recognition and attention he or she may not have received before. In a rather convoluted sense, the disorder becomes a benefit because of the notice received. A child in therapy has to be reminded why this is all important, and why treatment will help.
  7. Collaboration With the Therapist Helps. If there’s any difficulty with completing part of the assignment the therapist should be contacted. Some additional explanation can make things much easier.

Child psychotherapy can be a process that extends out for years. The ultimate goal is to help the young person become a contributing member of the community. There are ups and downs and there will be take home assignments. If as much attention is given to the homework as to therapy sessions, the road to rehabilitation will be that much shorter.