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Del Morrill, M.S. C.C.H


A Center for Counseling & Hypnosis
Tacoma, Washington, USA
(253) 752-1506

Methods with Younger Children


            I received Great Escapes yesterday and it looks to be a very valuable addition to my storehouse of "goodies" for children.  I have all of your books. Thank you. I would appreciate your input on what age range would be suitable for each of your inductions and scripts...I get a lot of 4,5 and 6 year olds.  What do you feel is best for that age, from the scripts you have written, or from any other methods you use?


           Any of the scripts in Volumes I, IV and VII will work for the younger children, especially if you "break some of them down", e.g., in Volume I, instead of using the Star-Worry Tree-Garden all at one time, you might use just one section at a time.  The little ones don't need much encouragement to participate or be "entranced." I have had 6-year olds, and older, do just fine with the entire script.  The pendulum works fine, but you can shorten that, as well. Blowing up balloons works. The 6 little scripts on “Being Animals” are excellent for the youngest ages, and are written in such a way tat they can be used individually.  Rainbow People works well with very young children.  Receiving Gifts also fine. Burning the Ship also is fine, but needs to be shorter with children, especially by leaving out the preparation in getting to the ship.

        The scripts I have written thus far for other therapists are mostly to get your own imagination stirred.  Often I might start with a story from a story-book, and then take off on "flights of fancy." A good number of my scripts have been a result of this “system.”  The books by Maureen Garth, called Starlight and Moonbeam, are excellent for launching into adventures with a client, whether a child, teenager or adult.

       With 3 to 5 year olds, often I don't use scripts.  I'll do something different with each child, so it's hard to list the methods. I have "magic stones" I keep in a little box that has drawers--these are colored and shiny.  When a very young child comes to me for pain control I have them choose a stone that they think has the most magic, and rub it on the painful area, saying something like "Go away pain.  I don't need you any more." 

        I keep other magic boxes for different things, as well.  I also have pages of black and white images that pull you eyes into the center.  A small child enters a very receptive state by simply coloring such a picture while you talk to them, giving them positive suggestions for changing whatever is necessary.  I also have a spinning circle on my low table that a child can play with on the floor or the table, as I suggest they keep looking at the center of it.

         To get more comfortable, the child might choose one of the puppets in my puppet and doll basket, or one of the cuddly animals I have sitting around in the room.  For a child who has trouble talking, I have the puppet tell me their problem; and I let the puppet or animal make suggestions to them while the child has his or her eyes closed.  The therapist, or the child, can play the role of the "puppeteer".

        Amazingly, with a small child these little moments can be just as affective as any script would be.  Remember that children are already very close to the "trance state" most of the time.  They don't have a lot of barriers put up yet, and their imaginations are very keen. Also, they don’t make the distinction between what is “real” and “unreal,” like adults do.  Since the imagination is the bridge between the conscious and unconscious mind, it doesn't take much to affect them--positively or negatively.

       By the way, I teach a course, both on and off "campus" on working with children and hypnotic methods, should you ever wish further training. You would be certified, by Transitions, Inc., as a Pediatrics Hypnotherapist.





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