Superheroes and the super charging room
Here’s a great game to play with your kids that lets them use their imagination to build resources and resilience.
Talk to them about coming to hospital, and get them to imagine they are a superhero.
We’re going to ask your child to pretend to be their favourite superhero. But if they prefer, it could be an animal or a magical creature such as a dragon or a unicorn.
You’ll get the idea. You can make up your own similar games too.
For this example, we’ll ask them to be a super-hero as there are lots of things we can work into the technique.
The first step is to choose a superhero. It could be anyone – preferably one they are familiar with and one that they choose but you may need to prompt them. Here are some suggestions – but work with which ever superhero they choose.
Next step is to choose a costume and then put it on (in their imagination). If they choose spider man or bat girl that will be fairly easy but explore it fully – the colour, the belt, what’s on their head and so on. The more detail the better.
Step 3 is to find their super powers. You may like to explore why they chose a particular super power? As much as possible let them tell you, as they will have their own ideas about what powers they need to overcome challenges.
Next ask them to choose some sort of shield. Something which they can use to protect themselves. This could be a shield like Captain America’s or it could be an umbrella or it could be a force field or a magical bubble that appears when needed. Again, explore what and why with them.
Next ask them if they need some sort of zapper to help deal with any challenges? A zapper could be a magic wand or it could be a ray gun, or freezing zapping.
Again, explore why they have chosen their particular zapper. You could suggest a back pack with various zappers for different situations.
Friends, allies and mentors. When they face their challenge, they can bring some friends – this may be mum, dad, friends or other super heroes.
Now we take them to the super charger room. They need to be the superhero, in their costume, with their shield and their zapper.
Before facing the challenge, they need to pass through the super-charger room. They can bring their friends, allies and mentors too. When they enter the supercharger room, they can press the button or pull the lever to activate their shields, to boost their super powers, to energise their zappers and to do the same for their friends and allies.
After they have pressed the button the lights in the room get brighter, the room may shake a little and they can feel the energy passing into them. Noticing how strong and brave they are.
Now they are ready to face any challenge.
a. They can use their super powers to remain strong and brave.
b. They can use their shield to deflect any fears.
c. The can have their friends and allies ready to help them.
d. They can use their zappers to deal with the challenges.
e. And now they are ready to face any challenge that comes their way!
This is a great technique that you can practise in the weeks prior to surgery. Make a game of it. Make it a story. Build on it. And in the background your child will be building a strong image of themselves as someone who has special powers, as someone who can do things that are challenging.
Make it fun.