present a conference

Art Therapy with Children:

Made possible by a gift from Marc Chelnik in memory of Harriette and Martin Chelnik

Saturday, April 8, 2017 
9:30 am – 4:30 pm

Art therapists face unique challenges in the treatment of children. A major focus on art therapy as a preventative tool, with emphasis on early diagnosis and treatment, could significantly decrease the later development of pathologies that are more difficult to treat. Our children are the future of our society. Can much of the hatred and violence we now see in the world around us be eliminated by early intervention? The conference will address this question in depth.

NYS LCATs earn 4 CEs from New York Art Therapy Association

Conference Fees: Professionals - $25*; Students with current ID - Free
NYATA members fee - $15.00. In collaboration with NYATA, LCATS will earn 4 CEs.


See Full Schedule


The Developmental Story of Child Art Therapy
Judith Aron Rubin, PhD, ATR-BC, HLM

Learning Objectives: Attendees will be able to:

  1. state two pioneers in art therapy whose contributions were firmly in the psychoanalytic and/or ego psychology traditions;
  2. identify two challenges facing contemporary art therapists in their work with children;
  3. identify two developments and directions anticipated in the near future that could require further training.

Panel Discussion: Integrating Art Therapy in Diagnosis, Prevention, & Treatment – A Model for Educational Institutions

Moderator: Professor Robert I. Wolf, MPS, ATR-BC, LCAT, LP

Panelists: Marygrace Berberian, Heather Genovese, Christina Grosso, and P. Gussie Klorer
Clinical art therapists describe ways they provide art therapy treatment for children with various diagnoses, prevention, and differences among patient groups. They discuss challenges and successful interventions, as well as what they anticipate will be future developments in the treatment of children.

Learning Objectives. Attendees will be able to:

  1. state three specific methods used with children in art therapy and describe the model for interventions;
  2. describe two successful and two challenges in art therapy with children and ways to prevent problems from escalating;
  3. identify three diagnoses or classifications applicable to art therapy treatment of children and two ways to assess these children.


Workshops (select one)

School-Based Art Therapy - Marygrace Berberian, ATR-BC, LCAT, LCSW
In communities and families in distress, school facilities emerge as the initial point of entry for mental health services. School-based models of art therapy intervention vary to serve diversely abled populations in both public and private educational institutions. In the school community, art therapy has been an effective modality for students to overcome social and emotional challenges, improve self-concept, increase motivation towards goals, and validate successes. Case material from school-based programs will highlight both the current breadth of art therapy intervention and address future opportunities for programmatic growth.

Learning Objectives. Attendees will be able to:

  1. State two protocol for models of art therapy school-based programs in New York State;
  2. Identify two roles of the school-based art therapist in relation to other school-based mental health practitioners;
  3. describe two strategies to utilize art therapy services for collaborative opportunities with students, parents, and school staff.

Creating a Personal Narrative: The Art of Bookmaking to Heal & Process Trauma -Heather Genovese, MS, ATR-BC, LCAT, LP
This experiential workshop integrates mindfulness practice, trauma theory, and the bookmaking process. Attendees are guided through a mindfulness exercise and learn how to identify states of hyperarousal and hypoarousal. Upon reflection, participants choose a style of bookmaking and by interacting with various art materials, they explore the bookmaking process alongside learning the stages of trauma treatment. Considerations one should take when working with traumatized children are introduced throughout the experiential. Participants learn how to implement bookmaking when working clinically.

Learning Objectives. Attendees will be able to:

  1. state at least one mindfulness exercise they can use clinically when patients are dis-regulated;
  2. demonstrate the ability to complete at least one method of therapeutic bookmaking;
  3. identify at least three considerations they should take into account when implementing bookmaking with traumatized children.

DASH© – Draw a Superhero: The Role & Significance of the Superhero in the Art of Children with Trauma - Christina Grosso, ATR-BC, LCAT, BCETS
The superhero is a popular symbol in pop culture and is familiar to all of us. We have been raised with their stories of strength, resilience, and power. Due to this familiarity, the superhero can serve as a powerful projective capable of uncovering symbolism from the unconscious and providing insight into the emotional and ideational experiences of the drawer. The superhero serves as a powerful ego ideal for children with trauma and mental illness who can feel the lack or absence of power and control due to abuse and their psychological state. The DASH© Assessment provides a method in which the art therapist can discern the impact of trauma and mental illness on the child and further develop coping skills and mastery of these experiences, fostering resiliency and recovery.

Learning Objectives. Attendees will be able to:

  1. state three trauma symptoms that manifest in children’s behavior and art;
  2. explain the role and symbolism of the superhero in modern culture and in the artwork of children;
  3. describe the DASH© assessment and state the steps used in its procedure, its utility, and effectiveness in treatment.

Video Vignettes of a Traumatized Child: A Neurobiological Study of Post-Traumatic Play & Dissociation P. Gussie Klorer, PhD, ATR-BC, LCSW, LCPC, HLM
This case study presentation includes artwork and video vignettes of a 4-year old child’s therapy. The traumatized child creates incredibly detailed and coherent stories through her use of sand-tray and figurines. During and following the case presentation participants dissect the case to identify symbolism evident in the post-traumatic play, as well as the neurobiological processes inherent in trauma and dissociation.

Learning Objectives. Attendees will be able to:

  1. list three advantages of sand-tray play in trauma work with children;
  2. identify and interpret symbolic content evident in one child’s post-traumatic play;
  3. describe the role of the right hemisphere in trauma, dissociation, and therapy.


Phototherapy with Children - Robert I. Wolf, MPS, ATR-BC, LCAT, LP
The workshop begins with a PowerPoint and brief lecture on the history, theory, and application of phototherapy with children and adolescents. It is followed by an experiential offering participants several options of exercises that demonstrate the effectiveness of this technique.

Learning Objectives. Attendees will be able to:

  1. describe three seminal moments in the historical development of phototherapy with children and adolescents;
  2. create two phototherapy exercises for application for children and adolescents;
  3. analyze two projects to uncover unconscious material.




9:00 – 9:30 am - Registration & Continental Breakfast

9:30 – 10:00 am - Welcome & Introductions
David Donnelly, PhD - Dean, Graduate School and School of Arts & Sciences
Patricia St John, EdD, ATR-BC, LCAT - Chair & Professor, Graduate School, Division of Professional & Fine Arts
Dana Wedin, ATR-BC, LCAT, President, New York Art Therapy Association

11:15 am – 12:45 pm Panel - Successes, Challenges, and Future Developments in Child Art Therapy
Marygrace Berberian, ATR-BC, LCAT, LCSW, Heather Genovese, MS, ATR-BC, LCAT, LP, Christina Grosso, ATR-BC, LCAT, BCETS, P. Gussie Klorer, PhD, ATR-BC, LCSW, LCPC, HLM, Robert I. Wolf, MPS, ATR-BC, LCAT, LP, Moderator

1:00 – 2:00 pm Lunch (included in fee & free for current students)

2:00 – 3:30 pm - Workshops (select one; descriptions above)

3:30 – 4:30 pm - -Cocktail Reception - Certificates of Attendance will be distributed at 4:00 pm