Kids' Club Letters provides an innovative approach to group psychotherapy for school-aged children who experience a range of social and emotional problems. A narrative therapy approach is adapted, taking the form of letters written by the therapist in the voice of a child who is asking for advice about interpersonal or emotional problems. The child in the letter is asking for guidance from the participants in the group. These letters were devised and written for the purpose of structuring responses in group psychotherapy, allowing the participants to address relevant issues for them individually and at the group level. The children in the groups had previously experienced difficulty discussing these issues spontaneously. Hence the 'Dear Group' letter format was born. The children did not know that the therapist had written the letters.
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Georgia DeGangi, PhD, OTR, FAOTA, is a clinical psychologist and an occupational therapist in private practice at ITS (Integrated Therapy Services) for Children and Families, Inc., in Kensington, MD. She is the co-author of Effective Parenting for the Hard-to-Manage Child and has over 25 years of experience working with infants, children, and their families.
Marc Nemiroff, PhD, is co-chair of the Infant/Young Child Mental Health Training Program at the Washington School of Psychiatry in Washington, D.C. In his private practice, he specializes in the treatment of pre-school and early elementary grade children.
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