Using the Communicube in family therapy:
See a new article "Involving Children Playfully in Family Therapy" by John Casson and David Steare, published in Context, the magasine for family therapy and systemic practice in the UK. No. 97, June 2008.
The authors wish to acknowledge that Drew Bird, dramatherapist, contributed to the development of this paper. It is published on this website through kind permission of Context magasine.
Download the full article.
Using the Communicube in supervision
Psychodrama, A passion for action and non-action in Supervision
I am grateful for Anna Chesner's permission to reproduce a section
from her chapter 7 published in:
Shohet, R. (Ed.) (2008) Passionate Supervision, London, Jessica Kingsley
In this section she describes her use of the Communicube in Supervision.
Download the file.
The Communicube with young people who are deaf and hard of hearing
Martin Gill, dramatherapist, has used the communicube with young people who
are deaf and hard of hearing. "I have been offering dramatherapy assessments for young people who have
moderate to severe hearing loss. Many of these young people have been
identified as having developmental difficulties due to the barriers to
communication they experienced in their early years. Group story telling and
imaginative play therefore have a beneficial effect for this client group.
The communicube was used as a story telling tool with the central square as
the last 'tellers' move. The group sat around the central visual focus of
the structure and this was very well suited to the deaf and hard of hearing
participants. Visual en-face clarity when speaking or sharing is a
prerequisite for good communication practice with these clients. In one
exercise the group was asked to create a story using toy figures. The
stories tended to be of the magical healing and the rescue of a central
protagonist who was lost.
On one occasion a young man of 15 explored ideas about his future career. It
became clear that he had rather grandious expectations. He said that he
envisaged himself lying on a beach surrounded by women in bikinis soon after
completing his A levels and degree. Other players were able to affirm his
intention to do well with his studies but invited him to consider how our
fantasies about wealth and abundance were sometimes ungrounded. The game was
therefore used as a tool for looking at future expectations. Furthermore the
work with the communicube has flagged up some self-esteem problems and this
has led to additional counselling being made available to this client.
In conclusion: the Communicube, being a visual tool, offers both diagnostic
and treatment possibilities for deaf and hard of hearing young people."
Using the communicube with young people who are close to permanent exclusion
Jo Christensen, dramatherapist,
works with young people who are close to permanent exclusion from
mainstream schools and has been researching the use
of the Communicube for her M.A. at Plymouth University.
Jo Christensen, has researched the use of the Five Story Self Structure
and Story Making with troubled adolescents who are struggling at
school. She describes how Lucy chose buttons to represent members
of a family. She placed the buttons carefully into the structure
as she created a ‘perfect’ family, moving the buttons
around as she told a tale about an idealised day on the beach. Christensen
“At the end of the story I invited Lucy to view the structure
from above and comment on the relationships she could see between
the different members of the family. Lucy made a couple of comments
but continued to uphold the notion of an ideal family. I asked her
if she could see anything else in the structure. Lucy looked carefully.
When Lucy spoke her voice was lower. She shared that she was able
to see other people. Each member of the family (button) cast a reflection
on the structure and it was these reflections that held the ‘shadow’
family. Lucy was able to consider a very different family dynamic
that existed in the ‘shadow’ family. Relationships were
much more difficult and there was less movement around the structure.
At times sharing the stories of the ‘shadow’ family
appeared to be very uncomfortable for Lucy. Yet it was through this
work that she was able to communicate a far from ideal family. Lucy
could work safely using this method knowing she did not have to
reveal which aspects belonged to her real family and which aspects
belonged to the family she desired. The structure by its very nature
could contain both the good and the bad.”