Advanced Nature-Based Expressive Arts Therapy: Healing Trauma and Grief through Nature

An Advanced Live Webinar Series

Advanced Nature-Based Expressive Arts Therapy: Healing Trauma and Grief through Nature is a five-session live webinar series and is a "sequel" to our Nature-Based Expressive Arts Therapy Level One Course. You can register for this advanced series without taking Level One-- this is a self-contained course with additional principles, concepts, frameworks, and practices in nature-based approaches across the lifespan. This webinar series will focus specifically on how nature-based expressive approaches address trauma and loss in adults, children, adolescents, and communities-- because with traumatic events, grief is also present. In fact, climate grief via environmental changes and natural disasters is becoming a concern in psychotherapy, counseling, coaching, and other helping professions. 

This course provides numerous strategies for using nature as a pathway to increasing sensory and body awareness; resensitizing body and mind through expressive and somatosensory approaches grounded in nature; using nature as a resource; reconnecting our clients and patients to health and wellness through eco-counseling and psychotherapy approaches grounded in current research; and cultural humility and indigenous wisdom as foundations for ethical practice and theory. 

We explore how an expressive continuum of practices informs nature-based expressive arts therapy; applying a Circle of Capacity model; using personal autonomic maps; and integrating the richness of nature-oriented cultural and spiritual traditions that attune us to awe, compassion, and community to address trauma and grief. Join us to learn how to re-sensitize and enliven body and mind through image, sound, rhythm, movement, enactment, and narrative found through nature-based practices with children, adolescents, adults, groups, communities, and yourself.

Continuum of Nature-Based and Eco-Focused Expressive Arts Therapy

A Model for Nature-Based Practice in this Live Webinar Series

Cathy Malchiodi, PhD, © 2022 Expressive Arts Therapy Nature-Based Model

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Will there be recordings that I can watch after the live webinar sessions?

    Yes-- we record the lecture portions of the events for replay and you can watch them for 45 days after the event. We do not post the experiential portions of the event where participants are sharing experiences to protect participants' confidentiality.

  • When are the Live Webinar Sessions held?

    June 16, 2022 from 12 noon-3:00 pm, June 23, 2022 from 12 noon-3:00 pm, June 30, 2022 from 12 noon-3:00 pm. July 7, 2022 from 12 noon-3:00 pm July 14, 2022 from 12 noon-3:00 pm All times are US Eastern Time/New York Time. All sessions are held on a Zoom platform.

  • Will I receive a Certificate of Completion?

    Once you complete all the required sections of the course site, you will automatically receive a Certificate of Completion for "Advanced Nature-Based Expressive Arts Therapy Live Webinar Series." Your continuing education hours will appear on the certificate.

  • I do not currently offer nature-based approaches--why should I take this course?

    Nature-Based approaches are increasingly becoming part of work with trauma survivors as well as other individuals with various challenges in psychotherapy, counseling, healthcare, and other settings. Gaining a deeper understanding of these approaches is important to all practitioners who work with individuals with traumatic stress or loss. Various approaches found in Polyvagal Theory, sensorimotor and bilateral stimulation methods, and expressive arts therapy are foundational to this form of treatment.

  • Does this course count as part of the hours for the EXAT and EXA-CE designations?

    Yes, of course! This is great opportunity to add to your knowledge of how expressive work can be integrated with nature-based work and understand the principles that support this integration.

Course curriculum

Expect the complete curriculum by June 1, 2022. And we always add resources, links, downloadable documents, and films throughout the course to meet participants' needs.

  1. 1
    • ▶️ ZOOM LIVE Format: Notes and Tips!

    • Walkthrough this Live Webinar Site and Its Features

    • About Your Instructors

    • Syllabus, Goals and Objectives of this Course

    • Special Note About Materials and Expressive Arts Assignments!

    • Introduce Yourself Here!

    • Nature Images for Collage and Course Experientials

    • More Nature Images for Collage and Contemplation

    • Basic Foundations: Expressive Arts Therapy

    • Nature Brushes and Paints

    • Making Nature-Based Paints

  2. 2
    • ▶️ ZOOM Link and Supplies!

    • Template

    • Three Part Harmony of the Expressive Therapies Continuum

    • Resensitizing the Body Through Expressive Arts

    • Looking at the Expressive Arts Therapy Continuum with Nature in Mind

    • Film Presentation: Expressive Arts Therapy and Trauma: Movement, Sound, Image, Silence

    • Bottom Up or Top Down? An Expressive Arts Therapy Perspective

    • Trauma and the Circle of Capacity | Psychology Today

    • Five Patterns We Can Find in Nature and Apply in Re-Sensitizing the Body and Mind

    • Connecting with Nature through the 5 Senses

    • 53 Senses

    • Sensation & Perception

    • Grief as an Antidote to Trauma

    • Re-Sensitize Yourself

    • Positive Effects of Nature

    • Recovering with Nature

    • Nature Prescription

    • Health Benefits of Immersion in Nature

    • Session One Replay Part One

    • Session One Replay Part Two

    • After Session One...Share Just One Thing Here

    • Please UPLOAD an image from Today's session!

    • A Dandelion Story...

    • How Animals Perceive the World and How We Humans Impact Their Senses

    • Optional Circle Journal-- A Quick Tutorial

  3. 3
    • ▶️ ZOOM Link and Supplies!

    • Eco-Spirituality: A Brief Definition

    • Spiritual Ecology

    • Eco-Spirituality | Thailand

    • Eco-Spirituality: A Call to Reconnect

    • Visit a Centre for Ecotherapy

    • Watch: How Ecotherapy is Defined in the UK

    • Eco-Spirituality | Holistic Nursing Study

    • Deep Ecology

    • Eco-Feminism

    • Eco-Spirituality | Cardiovascular Disease Abstract

    • Eco-Recovery

    • Eco-Spirituality Scale

    • Dark Green Religion

    • Eco-Spirituality | African Mythology

    • Session Two Part One

    • Session Two Part Two

    • After Session Two..Share Just One Thing Here

    • Please UPLOAD an image from Today's session!

    • Assessing Connection to Nature

    • Bonus Articles from Today's Lecture

  4. 4
    • ▶️ ZOOM Link and Supplies!

    • Cultural Appropriation and Cultural Humility

    • Kaani Tribe | Climate Change & Eco-Spirituality

    • Visit this Website on Climate Change and Eco-Spirituality

    • Latin America | Indigenous Wisdom & Eco-Psychology

    • Ecological Attachment | Indigenous Perspective

    • Healing and Talking Circles

    • Art Therapy and American Indian Medicine

    • Healing Pathways Study

    • Creative Arts Therapy | Indigenous Perspective

    • Wild Therapeutic Garden

    • Empowering Native Youth | Maria's Story

    • Dibaajimowin (Stories) | Health Promotion through Digitalized Oral Stories

    • Session Three Replay Part One

    • Session Three Replay Part Two

    • Session Three Replay Part Three

    • Session Three Replay Part Four

    • Session Three Replay Part Five

    • After Session Three...Share Just One Thing Here

    • Please UPLOAD an image from Today's session!

    • Video | Art Therapy & American Indian Medicine

    • Cultural Appropriation and Cultural Humility | Cathy Malchiodi PhD

  5. 5
    • ▶️ ZOOM Link and Supplies!

    • Feeling Stressed about the Environment? You’re Not Alone

    • From American Psychological Association: Is Climate Grief Something New?

    • Climate Grief: The Emotional Toll of Climate Change

    • Interventions with Children Post-Earthquake in China

    • Play Therapy and Natural Disaster

    • An Affirming Talk on Climate Change and Disaster

    • Climate Change | Children's Mental Health

    • Climate Crisis | Mental Health Impact

    • Indigenous Knowledge | Climate Change

    • Art-Based Research | Stress and Immunity

    • Session Four Replay Part One

    • Session Four Replay Part Two

    • Session Four Replay Part Three

    • After Session Four...Share Just One Thing Here

    • After Session Four...Share Just One Thing Here

    • Experiential | Part 2 | Dialogue

  6. 6
    • ▶️ ZOOM Link and Supplies!

    • The Circle of Capacity | A Review of Applying a Strength-Based Model to Our Practices

    • Maintaining a Connection to Nature for Health and Wellness in Ourselves and Others

    • Trees and Contemplative Practices

    • The Spiritual Wisdom of Trees | A Pathway to Reconnect and Stay Connected to Nature

    • The Cicada: A Process of Re-Emergence from Darkness to Light

    • Rhythms and Sounds of Cicada!

    • Empirical Research | Forest Bathing

    • Response to Eco-Psychology and Climate Crisis

    • Recovering with Nature

    • Replay Session Five Part One

    • Replay Session Five Part Two

    • After Session Five...Share Just One Thing Here

    • Please UPLOAD an image from Today's session!

    • Cathy's Tree of Nature-Based and Eco-Focused Practices Graphic

    • Prompts from Cathy Malchiodi PhD

  7. 7
    • Mourning Nature

    • Braiding Sweetgrass

    • Children & Nature Network

    • Natural Earth Paint

    • Vital Signs

    • Rooted

  8. 8
    • Final Steps to Your Certificate

    • Course Evaluation

    • Regarding the Use of Material in this Course

    • Final Questions

Get on the Mailing List for More Information

This course can be applied to our upcoming Nature-Based Expressive Arts Therapy Practitioner Certificate. More details are coming soon and will be posted here!


Institute Faculty

Elizabeth Warson, PhD

Elizabeth Warson, PhD, ATR-BC, LPC, NCC, EMDR II, EXAT is the founder of American Indian Art Therapy, based on her faculty research associated with the Graduate Art Therapy Programs at George Washington University and Eastern Virginia Medical School (2004-2013). Elizabeth currently resides in northern Colorado where she maintains an equine-assisted and arts-informed private practice, Healing Pathways LLC. As a faculty member for the Trauma-Informed Practices & Expressive Arts Therapy Institute, she teaches in person and online poly-informed, equine-assisted, and bilateral stimulation/sensorimotor-informed expressive arts therapy courses. Since 2003, her research interests comprise stress and pain reduction interventions for American Indian cancer survivors and their family members, culturally responsive stress reduction and visual journaling, and trauma-informed interventions. Elizabeth is a recipient of a 2010 National Endowment for the Arts (folk and traditional art) for a community-driven Coharie Heritage Empowerment Project, focusing on cultural preservation. Elizabeth received her BFA from the Cleveland Institute of Art in 1989 and an M.A. in Art Therapy from Vermont College of Norwich University in 1993. She completed her Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies, with a specialization in research, from the School of Education at Colorado State University in 2008. Elizabeth has presented at regional and national American Indian and Alaska Native conferences on topics related to medical art therapy, stress and pain reduction interventions, culturally-responsive art therapy, visual journaling interventions, and narrative-based art therapy. Her publications comprise over 20 peer-reviewed journal articles and chapters in books. As a professional artist, she has exhibited her sculptural work nationally and internationally and is a recipient of an Ohio Arts Council fellowship award.


Institute Faculty

Cathy Malchiodi PhD

Cathy Malchiodi, PhD, LPCC, LPAT, ATR-BC, REAT holds a doctorate in psychology and is a licensed and board-certified art therapist and mental health counselor and has published numerous books, chapters, and articles in the field of art therapy including, Trauma and Expressive Arts Therapy: Brain, Body, and Imagination in the Healing Process, Creative Interventions with Traumatized Children, Breaking the Silence: Working With Traumatized Children, and Understanding Children's Drawings, which are standards in the field. She has trained counselors, therapists, and teachers throughout the United States, Canada, Asia, and Europe. In 2011, Cathy founded the Trauma-Informed Practices Institute to meet the need for professional education in the use of arts therapies, expressive therapies, mind-body approaches and resilience-building in trauma integration and recovery for children, adults and families. You can learn more about Dr. Malchiodi at her website