EPR considers and explores the drama of being a child and the attachments formed in the early stages of development.

This method addresses the drama, ritual, risk taking, problem solving and skills which the child incorporates to mature into a member of the social world.

EPR was developed by the Dramatherapist, Dr Sue Jennings following her observations of the key stages of development and progressions with young children.  Sue’s framework now forms a key element within assessments and Dramatherapy practice.

Embodiment addresses the proximity to primary carers, e.g. Mother following birth.  Being held and the trust a child develops for this to happen, then the introduction of external stimuli, e.g. paints, clay, fabrics, something which is not part of the child, but can be experienced in a physical and sensory manner.

The child may then begin to experiment with more symbolic objects such as kitchen equipment toys, swords and hats.  Again, an object which is not part of the child’s body but has become a physical addition.  Through these symbolic objects the child can begin to explore Role.

Through the exploration of the Role the child can encompass new voices, sounds, physicalities all within the realm of their imagination.  Via this kind of experimentation, the child can begin to form more ‘organised’ play and Project onto objects such as dolls, pictures and further symbolic toys.

Children can experience EPR through play, movement, dance, games, singing, sensory work and stories.  As with Myth, Fairytales and Six Part Story Method, the child can experience roles, identity, relationships, risk and resolution.

EPR was initially aimed at children from birth to 7 years of age.  Sue has also developed a framework for mothers during pregnancy and early months; Neuro-Dramatic-Play

NDP considers the aspect of attachment, play and how babies can interact with immediate attachments within hours of their birth.  Sue describes this framework as a highly physical, sensory, rhythmic and dramatic interaction.

Although developed earlier than NDP, EPR takes the attachment, play and developmental observations to a further stage following the first months following the birth of the child.  EPR addresses the physical, cognitive, emotional and social developmental stages of the young child.  Sue describes EPR as the key stages in the individual’s life, each stage is ritualised by the presence of play and drama, incorporating the development of playful attachments.

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