Archives for May 2016
No crashed spaceships or radioactive spiders were involved.
When someone finds out about Wheelhouse Workshop, after they ask us why we use tabletop games in our groups, we often get asked how we ended up here. We’ve been running Wheelhouse Workshop since 2013, but had actually been “therapeutic game masters” for a few years prior.
Adam and I have spoken around the country about the benefits of tabletop role-playing games like Dungeons and Dragons. At our PAX South panel, we outlined four reasons we use tabletop games in our social skills groups in the Seattle area. We recently came across this TEDx talk by Ethan Gilsdorf, author of the book Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks, about his personal experience with the game and some other ways tabletop role-playing games benefit all who play.
In addition to giving a great summary of what a tabletop role-playing game actually looks like, Ethan highlights an impressive list of important benefits given by tabletop games: Collaboration, teamwork, preparedness, innovation, problem solving, resilience, character building, moral choice, empathy, tolerance, and of course imagination… just to name a few.
After our last blog post about perspective-taking skills in tabletop games, we received some questions about the psychological concept of "Theory of mind."
In this post we’ll explain in a little more detail the concept of theory of mind to better illuminate the way tabletop role-playing games help players develop perspective-taking skills and empathy. Next week we’ll get back on track and share how tabletop role-playing games help players develop frustration tolerance.
If you haven’t done so yet, check out the last post where I unpacked the term "tabletop role-playing games" for a background.
Now you know what tabletop role-playing games are. Why, you may ask, do we use them to help our clients build social skills, instead of a more traditional talk-therapy approach?