Play Outside Inside Natural Therapy

Making changes from the inside out.

who are we? image
We are seeking to take on a transformative approach to nurturing children's emotional well-being and promoting their personal growth. POINTed is a brand-new business founded by Play Therapist, Leah Crockford, driven by a passion for enhancing children's lives through the therapeutic powers of play.

Led by an owner equipped with a Master of Play Therapy, POINTed offers a unique and innovative approach to therapeutic interventions for children and their families. The goal is to create a safe, supportive environment where children can explore, express themselves and develop the essential life skills they need to thrive.

At POINTed we prioritise collaboration with parents, caregivers, and other professionals involved in a child's life. We provide comprehensive assessments, regular progress updates, and offer guidance and support to help parents understand and navigate their child's emotional journey. POINTed is committed to helping identify the right intervention and treatment needed to enhance health, well-being and healing for your children and family. From time to time, it may be necessary to refer children and families to other services.

Professional Qualifications and Experience
Qualifications: DipTeach Prim/ECE, BEd, MEd, GDipLCM, MChildPThy (to be conferred February 2024), FCBA. Over 30 years experience in education in the Northern Territory.

Making Changes From the Inside Out

Play Therapy is a specialised approach that is effective in meaningfully addressing a wide range of childhood/adolescent emotional, behavioural, developmental and social presentations and concerns. It can provide a healthy way for your child to sort through and process their feelings in the therapeutic environment, be free to transform past experiences, and make sense of new ones.

At POINTed we believe that play is the language of children, and it is through play that they communicate their thoughts, feelings and experiences. Play Therapy is a developmentally appropriate, evidence-based treatment approach for use with children and adolescents. Play is the universal language for children and is critical to children's cognitive, socio-emotional, and motor skills development.

Play Therapists apply the use of theoretical models to establish an interpersonal process whereby they are trained to interrelate the therapeutic powers of play. Through these therapeutic powers, play therapy facilitates children and adolescents to make new connections, build healthy brains and bodies - increasing their sense of empowerment, emotional regulation insight and self-belief.

The 'therapeutic powers of play transcend culture, language, age and gender'. (O'Connor, K.J., Schaeffer, C.E., and Braverman, L. D., 2016, p. 35).

Guide for Families

Play Therapy is typically an approach that involves an individual within a therapeutic relationship that supports their point of need. The therapist helps them process perceptions, behaviours, emotions and experiences of themselves and others around them in a respectful and confidential way.

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Play Therapy

What to expect? Individual Play Therapy is assessed on a case-by-case basis. The length and intensity of a Play Therapy intervention can be discussed with the therapist. Short-term, medium-term or longer-term Play Therapy is available.

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Evidenced Based Positive Outcomes

We are committed to helping your child be the best version of themselves. We are passionate about quality outcomes. Through play, therapists can help children learn more adaptive behaviours when there are emotional and social skills challenges.

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How does play therapy work?
Play therapy is an amazing child-led, evidence-based modality for children (between 3 and 12 years), that focuses on the child, their relationships and their experiences, drawing on interpersonal neurobiology and understanding of child development. Play therapy may allow your child to experience and process their feelings and needs, at their own pace, using play as their most natural form of language and they use toys as their words.

What issues can play therapy address?
Through the power of play we address a wide range of emotional, behavioural, and social challenges that children may face, including anxiety, trauma, grief, self-esteem issues and more. By fostering a non-judgemental and empathetic environment, we empower children to explore their emotions, build resilience, enhance their problem-solving abilities, and develop healthy coping strategies.

Is play therapy suitable for teenagers?
Further, play therapy is a proven approach that can be adapted to work with teens. Baggerly, Ray and Bratton (2010) provide an overview of research including meta-analytic reviews that show the effectiveness of play therapy for participants ranging from 3 to 17 years. The impact of treatment resulting in positive outcomes highlighted those participants self-efficacy increased significantly.

Fee Structure



There are many clinicians that have written books or created excellent YouTube videos to help provide ways for us to understand our children and sometimes ourselves. Daniel Siegel is a neuropsychiatrist and author of best-selling books Mindsight, and Brainstorm. He has also written the book, The Whole Brain-Child with expert Tina Payne Bryson. They help demystify the reason children have meltdowns and aggravation, explaining the new science of how a child's brain is wired and how it matures. Daniel Siegel's book Brainstorm is about the power and purpose of the teenage brain from 12 to 24 years. These books provide great practical strategies that help with creating calmer ways of being or simply understanding the child or young person. Early Childhood Australia have published the Circle of Security: Roadmap to building supportive relationships. Written by Robyn Dolby, a psychologist with more than 35 years of experience working in the infant mental health field. You can always ask your therapist for other credible sources of information that may be of help to you.

Health and Education Professionals

Although the fields of education and mental health pride themselves on being grounded in evidence-based practices, glaring exceptions sometimes occur. The idea that we need to "think with our body" has gained support from a convergence of new evidence from psychology and neuroscience. Especially thinking about how we have approached the use of play in the mental health and education fields. When the PLAY system is accessed, it profoundly influences growth in individuals and can strengthen relationships in schools, clinical settings and at home. Given our focus on children and adolescents (i.e., youth) we can benefit greatly from theories that deal with psychological change in them and that address aspects of human development that unfold during youth. It is imperative in the health, healing, and education professions that we come to better understand the connection of these theories and how we can enhance creativity and social and emotional growth as a core developmental process across the lifespan. Refer to the reference list for further reading.

Understanding Trauma

Understanding how trauma affects a child's mind - and how traumatised children recover is beautifully presented in the book, The Boy Who Was Raised As A Dog. It explores the crucial role of why empathy is so important in all of our lives and what it can bring to our relationships and the pain that is suffered when empathy is lacking. The groundbreaking work around Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) that has led to an understanding that early traumatic events have long-term consequences on everything. Bessel van der Kolk's book, The Body Keeps the Score explains the devastating effects of traumatic events. The Developing Mind by Daniel J. Siegel and Trauma and Memory by Peter A. Levine, PhD masterfully explain neurological underpinnings of how and why we humans engage in the ways we do. The role of the therapist is to be grounded and have an expanded awareness when working with clients in service of their healing process. Through an enhanced sensitivity, there in lays the foundation of the therapeutic relationship. Resolving our past frees us to live a healthier future.

Acknowledgement of Country - Larrakia People

Acknowledgement of Country - Larrakia People

POINTed respectfully acknowledges the traditional custodians, the Larrakia people, of the land on which we live. We pay our respects to Elders, past and present and remain committed to working together with future generations, honouring, and celebrating this land and surrounding seas of which they lead. The Larrakia people are the traditional custodians of Darwin, Northern Territory and have a unique place in the community where we are privileged to live and grow. Along with the Larrakia people, our commitment is to respectfully honour and value people of every kind.

  • Suite 4/53 Ross Smith Avenue, Parap Northern Territory, Australia
  • Also known as the "Guest House".

This is a service availability notice for POINTed. Families, educational institutions, government and non-government providers may wish to make contact.


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