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The magic of real-plays

Real-plays, otherwise known as role-plays in sessions I facilitate are ways to share a "tricky" situation. In general, people tend to be hesitant and I get a couple of "what the !?**" looks when I preface what we're getting up to. After many years of incorporating real-plays into sessions, I can tell you a couple of things:


  • incorporate social emotional learning's benefit of being able to take another's perspective and grow in understanding and empathy, and

  • allow us to get out of our analytical minds and into being present which allows for less "shoulds" and more being able to respond thoughtfully.

The biggest joy of real-plays however is seeing groups of educators, and community leaders laugh and sigh a big sigh of relief in not being alone in a challenging situation. Every time, we begin the real-plays, I kid you not, warmth and humor fills the room. I think it's because, many of us put pressure on ourselves to have it altogether and in the real-play, we're able to access our humanity and understanding. Not to mention that some situations are challenging and being able to take space allows for increased insight and patience.

Any real-play adventures to share? Looking to book a real-play session? E-mail Katy at


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