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Expressive Arts Therapy in the Classroom

This past Friday, October 19th 2018, WHEAT was present at the MTS PD Day (Manitoba Teachers Society - Professional Development Day) for MART and MSCA - Manitoba Association of Resource Teachers and Manitoba School Counselors Association, respectively. It was great connecting with teachers and school staff about the therapeutic use of the arts!

Our 200-hour Expressive Arts Therapy Certificate program offers an experiential exploration of the therapeutic use of the arts. Designed with School Counselors and Resource Teachers in mind, classes take place on weekends during the school year and are eligible for credit with the University of Winnipeg. You may also elect to register individually for courses or drop-in for weekend workshops.

Expressive Arts Studio: Theory & Practice and Practicum Skills - a series of 8 weekends

Expressive Arts Therapy: Personal and Professional Practice – a series of 5 weekends that explore mindfulness, poetry, creative drama, Indigenous knowledge and movement!

Registration Deadline: October 31st, 2018 More information can be found at

The American Art Therapy Association (AATA) published a blog about the benefits of school-based art therapy. Children and youth benefit from art therapy in a variety of ways. Research has shown that children with autism may use art to communicate and hospital patients, such as children in cancer wards, are often comforted by art therapy. However, art therapy is not only beneficial to children with special needs or those facing long-term hospital care. AATA believes that one way to make art therapy accessible to every child is to bring it to the schools.

"Creating art promotes sequential reasoning and organization of thought for those faced with overwhelming feelings but lacking the coping mechanisms to properly process them. Art can serve as a way to map pictorially that which cannot be examined verbally. Order can be visually established in the midst of psychological chaos." 

Expressive Art Therapy Artwork Reflection of inner thoughts
A girl feels disoriented and hopeless in her familial and social context. This represents her alone in a forest, standing in a puddle during the midst of a storm and approaching quick sand under a dark sky (photo credit: AATA)

Further information about using art therapy in the classrooms can be found in this paper written by William C. Forrester (Regis University, 2007) Art Therapy in the Mainstream Classroom. Forrester writes that "[t]he purpose of this project will be to provide art educators with a curricular unit plan that is based on the premise of art therapy."

If you are interested in learning more about our Expressive Arts Therapy Certificate, or any of the individual courses or weekends, please send an email to

October 22, 2018


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