Dr. Sylvia Peske
Registered Psychologist
Certified Synergetic Play Therapist 
Clinic Director

I am a Registered Psychologist with the College of Alberta Psychologists and I completed my doctorate degree through the University of Alberta’s Counselling Psychology Program. I work primarily with children and their parents, and as such, have sought out additional training through The Play Therapy Institute of Colorado and The Canadian Association for Sandplay Training (CAST). In addition to my clinical work, I enjoy guest lecturing for the psychology program at Spruce Grove Composite High School and the counselling program at the University of Alberta.

I consider myself a depth child psychologist – someone who works collaboratively with parents and children to explore, discover, address, and heal deeper influences related to symptoms for the potential of establishing long-term change. My counselling approach and research-informed play therapy model focuses on helping children integrate their challenging experiences in order to alleviate and shift their symptoms. Wouldn’t it be great to have your child talk about their feelings, understand their needs, ask for what they want, and move and use their body in appropriate ways to address their challenges instead of acting out? These are some of the most common therapeutic goals I see in my practice. Please check out my comprehensive approach detailed below.

I treat many different types of issues including behavioural (ADHD, Oppositional, tantrums, yelling, etc.), emotional (Anxiety, Depression, anger, sadness, grief, loss, etc.), trauma (PTSD, abuse – sexual, verbal, physical, neglect), self issues (self-esteem, self-confidence, self-worth, identity, etc.) and transitions (divorce, separation, adoption, moves, etc.). We are all unique with different presenting concerns, different contexts, different histories and different therapeutic goals. Although complexity can lie in our unique experiences that impact our brain and body functioning, as a facilitator and collaborator, I look forward to getting to know each child and parent on an individual basis and working together toward healing and change.

Clients also tend to find a source of comfort through the incorporation of Animal-Assisted Therapy and my hypoallergenic co-therapist poodle, Venus. We enjoy supporting those who struggle in varying aspects of life.”


Comprehensive Therapy:

The therapeutic goal of Synergetic Play Therapy in a comprehensive format is to calm a child’s nervous system quickly through sessions that occur 2 – 3 times per week. Compared to traditional weekly or biweekly methods, a comprehensive approach offers the potential to see results more quickly and to attend fewer number of sessions overall. The total average number of therapy sessions needed to address average situations is 15 from a Synergetic Play Therapy model. Single-event challenges may result in fewer number of sessions; ongoing trauma-related situations potentially require more. Through a comprehensive approach, a therapeutic process may be completed in as little as 1½ – 2 months compared to 6 – 12 months on a weekly or biweekly schedule. 

To learn more about Synergetic Play Therapy, click here.