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What is
"Child Parent Relationship Therapy" ?


Child Parent Relationship Therapy (CPRT) deeply believes the parent-child relationship is very important to children's development and mental health. Through a group format, CPRT allows parents to learn the theory and skills of Child Centered Play Therapy in a mutually supportive atmosphere.  In a 30-minute "special playtime" with their children at home each week, parents learn to respond empathically to children's emotions and to set limits for children's inappropriate behavior, thereby enhancing their children's self-discipline, self-confidence and self-image.


CPRT became popular in the United States as early as the 1960s and was then introduced to other parts of the world. A large number of studies have shown that CPRT can effectively improve the parent-child relationship, alleviate children's emotional and behavioral problems, and enhance children's self-confidence. 


In 1995, Dr. Iris YF Chau conducted a CPRT group for Chinese parents living in the United States.  Her study and analysis of data showed that CPRT was helpful in improving children's emotions, relieving parents' pressure of discipline and promoting parent-child relationship. Her study was granted the Outstanding Research Award from the Association for Play Therapy in 1997.


Our association provides 6-8 sessions of online or in-person CPRT training sessions to schools or organizations. The purpose is to educate parents to learn the skills of play therapy, so that parents can, in effect, be their children's “counselors".

Group Content

"Parent Child Relationship Therapy" refers to a "special play time" between parents and children at home. Through toys that are most familiar to children, they can freely express their inner world, experiences and feelings to parents, and so that children’s stress, frustration and sadness can be relieved.  With ease, the parent-child relationship becomes more intimate. Some of these skills, such as reflective listening, setting limits for children's inappropriate behaviors, and helping children improve self-image, can actually be applied to daily parenting and can effectively improve children's emotional and behavioral problems.


The training includes:

  1. An explanation of the basic theories and concepts of "play therapy".

  2. After the third class, parents will have a half-hour "child parent play session" at home every week.  One of these sessions will be video-taped and played back in group so that the trainer can give feedback and support to the participants in the mastery of play therapy skills.


Through learning play therapy skills, parents can:

  • Enhance parents' empathy for their children, thereby helping children process their emotions more effectively;

  • Improve children's endurance and problem-solving ability in a time of adversity;

  • Enhance children's self-confidence and self-image;

  • Develop children's self-control;

  • Strengthen parent-child relationship;

  • Reduce parental stress due to effective parenting skills and support from group members and trainers;

  • Help parents employ the skills of "play therapy" in their daily parenting and discipline.


*Course content is based on the CPRT Manual (used with permission) by Guerney, L. (1972); Bratton, S., & Landreth, G. (2006) (2020), translated and adapted by Dr. Iris YF CHAU


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