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10:00 - 12:30


Standard Fee £45.00


United Kingdom

Watch Me play!

This Saturday morning online workshop about Watch Me Play! will provide an overview of the approach and its applications including in perinatal services and services for children with neurodiversity. Findings from current research will be shared and there will be time for discussion, case studies illustrating the approach and information about further training.

We invite ACP Members and ACP Friends who are interested in this intervention, specifically those who work with children aged 0-5 and want to train in this area.

Presenters will include Child and Adolescent Psychotherapists Dr Jenifer Wakelyn, Dr Rachel Allender and Cath Hunter and will be chaired by Kate England, Director of ACP Community Matters.

The workshop will include presentations with illustrative case studies, interactive discussions & small group discussions in break out rooms.

Aims & Learning Objectives

The aim of the event is to inform members and friends about the Watch Me Play! approach: how it started; its roots in infant observation and child psychotherapy practice, what the approach involves for parents and for practitioners, where, how and when it is used, an overview of current research, and the potential contribution of child psychotherapists to practice, training and research.

Participants in the workshop will:

  • Understand the key principles of the Watch Me Play! approach and its applications in work with parents or carers and their baby or young child.
  • Learn more about the applications of Watch Me Play! in a range of contexts.
  • Be informed of the potential contributions of Child and Adolescent Psychotherapists to training, supervision and research.


About the Presenters

Dr Jenifer Wakelyn worked in early years education before training as a Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist. She was for many years Lead Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist in a mental health service for children in care in London and a tutor and lecturer for the Tavistock child and adolescent psychotherapy training where she co-convened the Fostering, Adoption and Kinship Care Workshop. The Watch Me Play! approach developed from her clinical research has been disseminated across the UK and internationally since the manual was published in 2019. She currently provides training and supervision in the UK, China, Italy and Japan, and is the trainer for a pilot feasibility of Watch Me Play! in early years services across the UK, funded by What Works for Children's Social Care.

Rachel Allender is a Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist who trained at the Tavistock Centre. During her training, she developed a specialist interest in infant mental health and parent-infant psychotherapy, which was the topic of her doctoral research project. In 2020, she began working in a Perinatal service in Bristol, leading the parent-infant pathway within the team. She is a Visiting Lecturer at the Tavistock, offering training and supervision in Watch Me Play! as well as using it in her own clinical work in the Perinatal service.

Kate England is a Principal Child & Adolescent Psychotherapist working in Bexley CAMHS, Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust. She is also the ACP Director of Community Matters. She has worked with children and adolescents for over twenty years in early years settings, schools and the NHS. Kate originally trained at the Northern School of Child & Adolescent Psychotherapy (NSCAP) and worked in an outpatient setting in Manchester before moving to London. She has been a visiting lecturer at the Tavistock & Portman Trust for Infant Observation.

Cath Hunter qualified as a Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist in 2023 following training placements with MOSAIC CAMHS, a specialist service for children with disabilities in Camden, and South Camden Community CAMHS, where she continues to work full time. Prior to training, she worked in secondary schools in London as a mainstream teacher of English and Head of Inclusion, overseeing provision for children with SEND and additional needs. Her interest in Watch Me Play! (WMP) stemmed from offering psychoanalytic psychotherapy with under-5’s with autism whilst working at MOSAIC. Her research aimed to explore parents’ experience of WMP alongside the diagnostic assessment for under 5’s with possible social communication difficulties - with the view to seeing if the offer of WMP would support this process.