Group Counseling with Children: A Multicultural Approach
by Sam Steen, PhD, & Sheri Bauman, PhD
Watch this diverse group of children engage in activities and discussions that increase their awareness of their own cultures and their appreciation for differences. 
How do you introduce the topic of cultural diversity to children, when so often it is the “elephant in the room”? What are age-appropriate ways to talk about such complex concepts as discrimination and culture? Watch as group counseling experts, Drs. Sheri Bauman and Sam Steen, demonstrate the answers to these and other thought-provoking questions in this complete recording of six live, unscripted counseling sessions with a group of fifth graders.

Then go behind the scenes with the co-leaders as they process each session, providing the viewer with rich insights into their thinking processes. As you get to know the leaders through their revealing conversations, you will learn what works and what mistakes to avoid, while gaining a deeper understanding of the benefits and challenges of co-leading groups.

Chock-full of tips on everything from participant screening to self-disclosure to termination, this uncut video is an exceptionally valuable learning tool for professionals who want to improve their group facilitation skills, no matter the topic or population.

What therapists are saying…

"This is a wonderful window into how groups can be used with children to deal with the hurts and pain of cultural/ racial discrimination or bullying. The co-leaders orchestrate a 6 session activity focused group designed to elicit, educate and begin to heal these wounds. It is touching to see the kids take ownership of the group, become more comfortable, take bigger risks and finally decide the most powerful session was their most painful. This is an extremely useful teaching tool for both general group work with young people as well as more specifically dealing with issues of cultural diversity."

-- Linda G Rose, LCSW, Adjunct Faculty at the Wright Institute, Group Therapy Trainer, San Francisco, CA
"Great primer on early stages of group, working with children of diverse backgrounds. Issues of diversity are woven in, in a non-threatening way. Children respond well to the exercises and create a safe space to explore personal issues."

-- Vernon Lee, PhD, Private Practice, San Francisco, CA
"This film delivers a poignant and heartwarming illustration of how a group of culturally diverse 5th graders cope with the complex challenges and negative effects of discrimination and stereotyping. Educators, counselors/therapists, parents, ‘tweens’ and teens will benefit from the innovative model courageously presented here by Drs. Steen and Bauman to facilitate children’s discussion of painful feelings associated with society’s intolerance of difference. This DVD demonstrates that supported open dialogue fosters safe, constructive exploration of differences and allows the richness of diversity to emerge in the service of children’s improved social and psychological wellbeing."

-- Lois Friedlander, MFT, Associate Clinical Professor, USCF School of Medicine
"The video is exceptional in how the children are addressed and encouraged to engage. The lack of cognitive development can limit a younger client’s ability to evaluate connections between therapy tasks and goals, and the involvement of parents and other caregivers in youth therapy can complicate the issue of goal consensus. Steen and Bauman effectively illustrate how to go beyond such roadblocks to create a therapeutic alliance and establish treatment outcomes for these multicultural issues. This video shows that Steen and Bauman are successful in demonstrating a practical and technical approach using innovative techniques and activities. I would highly recommend this video to anyone who works with younger clients even if it is only to add techniques to your battery of information to help these young people view the world in a new way by appreciating differences."

-- Josephine L. Rodriguez, MS, Reviewed in The Professional Counselor Journal Read Full Review 
"The video provides a model for introducing cultural diversity discussions with youth and demonstration of various group techniques. The included instruction manual gives broader insight into the activities presented in the sessions, evaluation methods for sessions, and assignments for students."

-- Michael Verrilli, MA & Jeanmarie Keim, PhD, reviewed in International Journal of Group Psychotherapy
In Depth
There are so many wonderful activities demonstrated in this video that are easy to learn and implement. One particularly powerful exercise takes place in the third session, when the group begins to directly face the pain of discrimination and ignorance. In this activity, called “Words Hurt,” Dr. Bauman reads words which represent hurtful or discriminatory things that many people hear throughout their lifetime. The children are given Styrofoam balls, which represent the inner self, and are asked to insert toothpicks into their “self” when Dr. Bauman reads a hurtful comment that they have heard directed towards them. In this emotional session, we begin to see how prevalent teasing and discrimination are in these young children’s lives, and how important it is to offer safe spaces where children can talk about the pain they have experienced, so they can begin to heal from shame and learn to celebrate differences. This comprehensive video will help you create such a space.

By watching this video, you will:
• Learn how to create a therapeutic environment to increase children’s awareness and appreciation of multiculturalism.
• Increase your skills in leading and co-leading groups.
• Understand how to facilitate developmentally appropriate activities and discussions that foster reflection.

Length of video: 4:48:00

English subtitles available

Individual ISBN-10 #: 1-60124-296-4

Group ISBN-10 #: 1-60124-297-2

Group ISBN-13 #: 978-1-60124-297-6

Sam Steen, PhD, is an associate professor at George Mason University. He has published on the topics of group work and school counselors.

Sheri Bauman, PhD, is an associate professor and director of the School Counseling program at the University of Arizona. She is the author of Essential Topics for the Helping Professional. 

See all Sam Steen and Sheri Bauman videos.
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