“One of the best tools in my toolbox as a Therapist working with children. When I
used The “Magic Rainbow Hug” with some of my most difficult clients with behavior
and communication problems; I was able to observe immediate change in their
attitudes. They immediately became receptive, engaged and loved the activity. It
is done professionally with a lot of thought behind it.” -Daniela Roccelli, MSW
|My Granddaughter, Sophia, 22 months upon seeing The Magic Rainbow Hug© story for the first time
Thank you for your interest in the The Magic Rainbow Hug©. I will be very interested to hear your experiences with the story and most importantly your child’s experiences. As a therapist in practice for 30 years, I have witnessed increasing numbers of children who manifest problems with fear and anxiety. As parents and caregivers we all wish for our children to be emotionally healthy, and to live long lives filled with joy and happiness.
The Magic Rainbow Hug© story is designed to help children learn relaxation skills and methods of calming while increasing the bonds between parents (caregivers) and children through joyful touch and play. In essence, this story is really a “manual” to teach kids coping methods and anxiety relief skill building…but, shhhhh…we can just keep that part to ourselves…because this story is meant to be a funfilled, playful, parent-child activity. That’s the best way for kids to learn. The “How to Use this Book” section written in the beginning pages of The Magic Rainbow Hug© story, offers an introduction on how to use the story in practice. I am offering it again here on this page below. I hope you and your child enjoy The Magic Rainbow Hug© story as you begin to “play” with the relaxation methods that are offered. The Magic Rainbow Hug Activity Book© is full of fun activities designed to help children reinforce some of the story ideas into practice.
How to Use The Magic Rainbow Hug© story
Like any children’s story, it can be read to capture your child’s imagination. However, the intent of this book is to teach you how to use this story as a playful activity drawn on your child’s back with your fingers. Each hand movement activity includes instructions, located in brackets on the bottom of each page, on how to specifically perform each technique. As your child is listening to the story they are engaging their imagination while at the same time connecting to an awareness of sensation by also feeling the story.Research has shown that touch can help reduce stress in children while also increasing levels of empathy and parent-child bonding. When we give caring touch, the feel-good “love” hormone oxytocin is released, and instantaneously the stress hormone, cortisol, is decreased. Children have varied touch sensitivities. Therefore adjust the amount of touch from light to firm pressure.
Positive suggestions are in italics and interspersed throughout the story. When you read these words ~ change your tone to make it livelier, slower, quieter or louder. Your vocal variety entices your child to listen more intently. Some of the instructions suggest you participate in the relaxation methods with your child. For example, the instructions may indicate for you to also take a breath and breathe out, or to sing a sound such as “Ahhhhhhh.” Your modeling of the relaxation method helps to increase your child’s eagerness to practice while also increasing a level of mutual attunement.
The Magic Rainbow Hug© is more than just a metaphoric story. It is also about skill building. Once you have learned the basics of the hand movements, you can adapt this story to meet the needs of your child. For instance, your child may have a favorite animal, such as a kitten, that can be sketched as the main character. This enhances your child’s own connection and enthusiasm to the story as their imagination is engaged to further embellish the storyline.
For more information about Dr. Courtney visit her main website at MyPlayTherapy.com