The Structure of a Psychodrama Session and Therapeutic Techniques
In the following chapter we would like to describe the structure of a group session and the therapeutic techniques which may be applied. Each individual session is the creative product of interaction between the children and the two leaders and therefore cannot be planned in detail ahead of time. Every session is ‘unique, the first time, not repeatable’ (Moreno 1973, p. 64). Despite all of the freedom that is allowed for spontaneity and creativity, the structure of each session is nevertheless defined. The process is structured into three phases: the initial phase, the play phase and the closing phase. Especially in therapeutic work with children, it is important to introduce this structure from the very beginning and also to maintain it. The regular repetition of the three phases in every session provides the children with a secure reference framework which they are soon able to internalise. This ‘container function’ that the setting provides offers the children safety and support. If we handle a structure too loosely, we will pay for it bitterly in the form of chaotic and destructive group processes. At a later point in time when, in the security of the group setting, the children rebel against the leaders’ orders, it will be almost impossible to restore it.