Speaking Engagements

Paris Goodyear-Brown is an internationally recognized speaker and has provided training in all fifty states, Turkey, Mexico, Nepal, Ireland, England, Morocco, Canada, and South Africa. She delights in training clinicians, parents, and teachers.

Paris trains organizations, agencies, and institutions of all sizes and is invited to keynote a variety of conferences. A selection of trainings are offered below. Click on a title to see a more detailed description. Workshops can be provided in 1.5 hr, 3 hr, 6 hr, or 12 hr formats. Click here for TraumaPlay℠ Certification information.

Learn how to use this playful, components-based, evidence informed treatment with traumatized children and teens. Paris will share her flexible, sequential model, identifying specific treatment goals with corresponding interventions. She will differentiate between trauma treatment goals that are can be accomplished through non-directive methods and goals that are best served by integrating parents as partners, utilizing somatic grounding techniques, cognitive-behavioral play therapy interventions, expressive therapy techniques, dyadic work and playful ways to complete trauma narrative work. Participants will leave with an expanded toolkit of interventions and a revived sense of excitement about the process. Come prepared to play!

The workshop includes the following topics:

* Using a child’s safety metaphors to create a safe place for trauma processing
* Assessing a client’s current coping strategies and augmenting the adaptive ones
* Soothing the child’s physiology
* Ensuring that caregivers are facilitative partners at key phases of treatment
* Increasing emotional literacy
* Delivering gradual exposure exercises in a developmentally sensitive way through play
* Building a coherent trauma narrative that integrates somatosensory information related to the trauma
* Addressing the child’s thought life (dealing with cognitive distortions)
* Making positive meaning of the post-trauma self

This workshop will review the basics of choosing sand, sand trays, and miniatures but will dive deeply into the continuum of non-directive to directive uses of the sandtray in mental health work with children, teens, and parents. The power of witnessing, the ways in which this might look different with clients of different developmental levels and when to give more directive prompts or move into a posture of curiosity with a client will be discussed. Clinicians will leave with new sandtray tools for their toolkit.

Many of the families we see are so distressed by the time they enter treatment that parents and children are no longer able to enjoy each other. While the material presented was developed for foster and adoptive families and families who have experienced trauma, the approach presented can help families who struggle with any level of attachment disturbance. This workshop will focus on enhancing our capacities as clinicians to help children and their parents heal or enhance their attachment relationships with each other. Much of the time will be spent translating core attachment principles into practical play-based strategies for enhancing dyadic attunement, building connections, effectively soothing the child, lightening difficult discipline moments, creating and rehearsing coherent narratives, and maximizing delight. Practical ways to help parents become more effective co-regulators of their children will be described and modeled. Many dyadic nurturing games will be shared and practiced. Time will also be spent on bringing back the joy in our own work and delighting in each other. The workshop format will include experiential activities aimed at helping clinicians grapple with their own attachment relationships, build their own family narratives and enhance the delight in their own relationships in order to become better agents for fostering delight in our client systems. Come prepared to play!

Many parents need help co-regulating their children more effectively. This workshop will introduce a set of strategies codified in the acronym SOOTHE that expand the parenting toolkits of children who have experienced trauma or neglect, children who rage in anger, carry anxiety, or are highly sensitive children. While behavior management tools can be helpful, this workshop offers help to parents for whom traditional parenting strategies are not working. The workshop can be geared for clinicians or for parents and can be given in a 45 minute window or as a half-day workshop.

Teachers are more challenged than ever before as they attempt to teach academics to children who have not had their lower brain regions regulated. This workshop will offer a neurobiologically informed approach for teachers to implement in the classroom that focuses on regulation and connection prior to academic learning. Classrooms that implement this approach see an increase in social kindness and connection in the classroom while also seeing gains in educational performance.

Sometimes there are no words. Trauma can be stored iconically and somatically, requiring the engagement of the right hemisphere through play and expressive arts work, as well as bi-lateral integration work. So to help children “speak” the unspeakable, we offer them drawing, music, sand trays, miniatures, puppets, poetry, and more. This talk will begin with key concepts in creating trauma narratives and end with multiple examples of trauma narrative work in each of the above modalities.

This workshop will synthesize the current research and literature on treating anxiety disorders into a developmentally sensitive play therapy approach. Fighting our fear can be difficult, especially for children who may need to externalize the fear, who literally need to put a face on it, in order to begin mastering it. Participants will learn dozens of techniques to help children articulate their worries, interventions that aid in relaxation and stress management, and strategies for including parents as partners in the process. Clinicians will learn play-based interventions that help craft “boss back” talk and counter cognitive distortions. Playful tools for designing and tracking gradual exposures will also be covered. Specific play therapy techniques will be augmented by detailed case examples, video clips, slides of children’s completed therapeutic creations and experiential learning.

This workshop will talk about the neurobiological underpinnings of dysregulation that can lead to diagnoses of ADHD, ODD, and Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder. This workshop will offer a multitude of play therapy techniques for helping children with affect-regulation, soothing the physiology impulse-control, emotional literacy, and social skills. This workshop can be presented in a half-day, full day or two day workshop.

This curriculum begins with a celebration of our bodies, playfully approaches private parts and public parts, offers nuance in when, where, how and with whom children may engage in various forms of touch, body autonomy and safe and unsafe secrets. The curriculum offers multiple play therapy interventions for empowering children to set verbal and physical boundaries with others. Components of the curriculum are most appropriate for families of children with sexual behavior problems or in families who are working to develop safety procedures or new sexual behavior rules following inappropriate sexual behavior. This workshop can be given in a 90 minute format or a half-day workshop.

It can be difficult to hold the brokenness within our children when we have not accepted the brokenness within ourselves. Many parents want to be able to connect more deeply with their children. Parents want to offer kindness and compassion, but this is difficult to do with our children if we have not extended compassion to our own vulnerabilities and weaknesses. Come and learn strategies for remaining more present and mindful with ourselves and our children.


I have been doing this work and coming to training events for 20 years. This day of learning with Paris was by far the most inspiring and practically useful day of training-would love to learn more from her! -Sarabeth, LMFT

Paris combines a passion that is inspiring with a finessed ability to meet children and parents where they are and help them grow from hard places. – Laura, LPC

Paris is amazing and brilliant! -participant at Bivona Child Abuse Summit

This training was the most valuable of the week. I learned so many new interventions. Your ability to explain why and how to do activities was so helpful. I am going to have so many great ideas to bring back to clients for trauma narrative work. -participant, Krimes Against Kids conference

Best session I attended at this conference! The presenter seemed to be a master clinician who understands children and her work very well. She was creative in her teaching style, which kept the audience engaged, and left me inspired in my own work of play therapy. -therapist, Child Abuse Symposium

Here are some of the conferences, organizations, and agencies where Paris has been invited to speak:

  • TedXNashville, Nashville, TN
  • Association for Play Therapy, International Conference
  • American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children, International Conference
  • EMDRIA International Conference
  • Chadwick Maltreatment Conference
  • Child Abuse Symposium, Huntsville, AL
  • Midwest Conference on Child Sexual Abuse, Madison, Wisconsin
  • Krimes Against Kids Conference, Orlando, FL
  • District of Columbia Public Schools
  • Metro Public Schools
  • Franklin Special School District
  • Play Therapy International, UK (World Congress on Child and Play Therapy)
  • Nashville-Area Association for the Education of Young Children (NAAEYC)
  • Grassland Day School
  • Shepherd’s Lamb Counseling and Training, Belfast, Ireland
  • Hope Force International, Kathmandu, Nepal
  • Tennessee CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) Volunteers Conference
  • Connecting for Children’s Justice Conference-Nashville, TN
  • Bivona Child Abuse Summit, Lake Placid, NY
  • Alaska Child Maltreatment Conference,
  • Christian Alliance For Orphans (CAFO)
  • Refresh Conference, Chicago, IL
  • Grandparents and Other Relatives Raising Children Training Program
  • University of North Texas Summer Institute
  • Northwest Play Therapy Institute
  • UCLA
  • Play Therapy Institute of New Jersey
  • Texas Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • Michigan Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • North Carolina Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • South Carolina Association for Play Therapy Conference
  • Tennessee Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • Kansas Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • Georgia Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • New Jersey Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • New York Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • New Mexico Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • Colorado Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • Utah Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • New England Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • Play Therapy Works Summer Institutes, Cape Cod, MA
  • British Columbia Play Therapy Association
  • Bluegrass Community Mental Health Center
  • Centerstone Community Mental Health Center
  • Sexual Assault Center, Nashville, TN
  • Mid-Atlantic Play Therapy Training Institute
  • Los Angeles Play Therapy and Expressive Arts Summit
  • 29th Annual San Diego Conference on Child and Family Maltreatment
  • WestCoast Children’s Clinic, California
  • Wediko Children’s Service, Boston, MA
  • Children’s Cove Conference, Cape Cod, MA
  • Family Service Society, Corning, NY
  • Currey Ingram Academy
  • Alberta Play Therapy Association
  • Siouxland Mental Health Center
  • Pathways, Inc.
  • Pediatric Therapies
  • Istanbul, Turkey
  • Alabama Children’s Home Camp
  • Philadelphia Children’s Alliance
  • Tennessee Association of Independent Schools
  • Safepath Children’s Advocacy Center
  • Nashville Area Association of Christian Counselors
  • Nashville Psychotherapy Institute
  • Missouri Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • Alabama Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • Louisiana Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • University of Texas at Austin School of Social Work
  • Pediatric Mental Health Conference, Springfield, MO
  • Lake Havasu
  • Parent Child Center, Riviera Beach, FL
  • Salesmanship Club, Dallas, TX
  • Minnesota Association for Play Therapy Annual Conference
  • Hawaii Association for Play Therapy
  • Kentucky Association for Play Therapy
  • MD/DC Association for Play Therapy
  • Virginia Association for Play Therapy
  • ChildHelp
  • Washington Association for Play Therapy
  • Iowa Association for Play Therapy
  • University Behavioral Health of El Paso
  • Ohio Association for Play Therapy
  • Trauma Across the Lifespan Conference, Perth, Australia
  • Leading Edge Seminars, Toronto, CA
  • Downstate Conference on Child Abuse, Illinois
  • Kansas Association for Play Therapy
  • Kentucky River Community Care
  • Idaho Association for Play Therapy
  • Eastern Conference on Child Sexual Abuse, Arlington, VA
  • Arizona Association for Play Therapy
  • Oklahoma Association for Play Therapy
  • COMCARE, Wichita, KS
  • Overbook School
  • Arkansas Association for Play Therapy
  • Pawnee Mental Health Services
  • Play Therapy Program, Istanbul, Turkey
  • Sumner County Schools

Schedule a Training with Paris