The Child in Focus & Focus Box

Communicate with children creatively, with a goal in mind and with regard to the specific childrens‘ world.

The Child in Focus methodology and the set of tools Focus Box will help you:

To conduct a conversation with a child with a goal in mind, creatively and successfully.

To ask appropriate questions even in tense and demanding situations.

To decide with regard to the needs and the situation of the child.

To activate children more and to deal with them in a fair manner.

To help children understand life changes.

Join us and work with children creatively and professionally!

The Child in Focus is a project of the Czech non-profit organization Velký vůz Sever.

The authors are a team of psychologists, psychotherapists and special needs teachers.

The Child in Focus Methodology and the Focus Box Set

is a set of communicational-diagnostic techniques and tools for conducting conversations with children aged 6-13.

The methodology and the tools are designed for professionals caring for children, i.e. for psychologist, social workers, therapists, pedagogues and other specialists who need to be able to conduct a goal-directed conversation with a child.

The Child in Focus and Focus Box

  • Map out the life area of a child
  • Help to aquire the child’s trust;
  • Motivate the child to cooperate;
  • Make passing on information between the worker and the child easier;
  • Enable the child to express their opinion in important decisions;
  • Lead to finding the child’s strengths and his/her sources of support.

The Child in Focus Methodology

The Child in Focus methodology develops communicational skills with regard to the child’s abilities, it teaches an appropriate structure of a conversation and it provides concrete guidelines about what to do in difficult situations.

6 pillars of The Child in Focus methodology:

  1. The principle of being transparent and fair to the child
  2. The informative and the interventionist types of dialogue with the child
  3. Communicative skills focused on the target group of children
  4. Being creative while conducting a conversation
  5. Being in compliance with the legislative and other requirements of the service provided to the child
  6. The relationship network of the child – the family, the close ones, the specialist services

The Child in Focus Methodology Training

By completing The Child in Focus Methodology Training you will enhance your skills in conducting conversations with children and increase your self-confidence. The training is done in an interactive way and you are going to try the tools an methods in model situations. Part of the teacher training are also follow-up supervisions.

Training variants

Basic training in using the Focus Box tools – 2 days

Training in The Child in Focus methodology and in using Focus Box – 6 days

Training of teaching skills for the future trainers of the Child in Focus methodology – 8 days

A supervision session for future trainers and methodology mentors – 2×2 days

Focus Box

Focus Box is a set of practical communicative-diagnostic tools for everyday use and for an easier conversation with the child. It deals with key areas like relationships, family, school, opinions, self-esteem, emotions and the wishes of the child. It is an ideal supplement of the Child in Focus methodology.

Board game The Space Quest

The game is situated on a journey to a space ship where the child together with the worker answers personal questions from his/her life – about relationships, school, self-esteem, emotions and wishes.

A set of representative objects

This set helps to understand relations among people, investigate serious events or depict a situation which awaits the child. The set contains pictures of various people, exteriors, interiors and things, e.g. adults, children, institutions, rooms of a house, a courtroom, clothes, books, sweets and a lot of other things a child encounters. It is possible to put the things into a little backpack made of cloth if the child is demonstrating packing things for the journey to the other parent or to an institution.

Cards of emotions and relations

The set contains 17 cards which lead the child to expressing feelings and relations to various people.

Curious Tasks

Curious tasks comprise a notebook with 68 creative sheets. The sheets contain a set of tasks and completion work which, by their non-pushing picture form, motivate children and lead to cooperation. The tasks find out information from the child’s life about the family, relations, school and self-esteem.

Colourful questionaire SRES

A short questionaire with basic 25 questions is used for mapping out 4 important areas in the life of a child – school, relations, emotions ans self-esteem. It helps the workers especially in the first contact with the child client, when it is needed to find his/her sources and to identify problematic areas.

Three glove puppets

A toy is a natural tool to a child. Conversations through glove puppets enable to initiate communication, map out the situation of a child, investigate a serious act, to work with the past or experienced trauma.

Magical wands

A wand helps to find out the child’s wish, his/her preferences or what change he/she needs.

Visit cards

A visit card is a guide between the individual meetings of the child and the worker and it strengthens the feeling in the child that he/she is an equal partner.

A manual and everything packed in a bag

Part of the Focus Box is also a methodology manual for conducting a conversation with a child. Inside you will find out how to adjust communication to a child and how to structure the conversation. You will also get tips for solving frequent situations, e.g. when the child is silent or in a state of agitation. In the manual you will also find a precise description of Focus Box tools and instructions how to use them.

All the parts of the Focus Box are packed in a practical bag which you can take even into the field, right to the children.

With the use of Focus Box your work with children will become entertaining, creative and, at the same time, well focused.

Join us and help improve communication between professionals and child clients!

We welcome everyone who wants to participate on the project, use its tools and help us improve the world in which children live!

How can you join us?

Support us!

We are still developing Focus Box. By donating a financial gift for development and distribution of the methodology you will help a good cause!

Focus Box

Are you interested in using Focus Box in your country?

We will provide you with:

  • Counselling and consultations for adjusting Focus Box and its manual according to the principles of professional work in your country.
  • Modifications of the graphics, illustrations and the text.
  • Manufacturing and delivery of your own Focus Box.
  • A training in using Focus Box (2days).

Focus Box +

Do you want to teach other colleagues of yours to use Focus Box?

  • An extended training in using Focus Box (3days)
  • The right to teach using Focus Box including the program and the teaching materials.

The Child in Focus

Are you interested in using The Child in Focus methodology and Focus Box?

We will provide you with:

  • Counselling and consultations for adjusting Focus Box and its manual + The Child in Focus methodology according to the principles of professional work in your country.
  • Modifications of the graphics, illustrations and the text.
  • Manufacturing and delivery of your own Focus Box.
  • A training in using The Child in Focus methodology and Focus Box (6days).

The Child in Focus +

Are you interested in spreading The Child in Focus methodology and Focus Box in your country?

We will provide you with everything mentioned above and on top of that:

  • Training of teaching and mentoring skills for future trainers (8 days)
  • A supervision session for future trainers and mentors of the methodology (2×2 days)
  • The rights to providing the training to other future trainers and mentors including the program and teaching materials.

Are you interested in cooperation?

Contact us!

From our social worker’s diary: “I’m thinking about them, the two children – with a serious traumatic experience. Each of them carries in themselves a story of abandonment and serious neglect.

It’s super that today we got to the space ship together and that on the way we drew multiple question cards. Thanks to this we quickly overcame the initial stress, I know much more about them and we also had a good laugh and talk.

One of them wanted to win by getting as fast as possible to the space ship and by becoming its captain, the other enjoyed more answering the questions as much as possible… However, by the time we had launched from the ground, flown through the air and got onto the spaceship, I got to know about what troubles them, when they were last afraid, who they feel safe with, when and why they lie, who at school they would confide their problems to, what they would wish most where they live, if they want be like their biological or foster parents and various other things… So for the next time we can prepare, in this or another way, also for finding answers to if they would wish a contact with their biological family… or for their child protection case meeting/conference. Involving children in deciding about their lives can happen in different playful ways… but, most importantly, it must happen at all. These are their lives! PS: The Space Quest is a game from Focus Box (games and game-like activities for children in the area of social and legal protection of children), which I bought in the organization Velký vůz Sever.

Mgr. Dana Žilinčíková, coordinator of the family centre Návrat, Slovakia

We use Focus Box especially while working with children in foster families. We appreciate that we can have everyhing close at hand, ready to use, when visiting a family. 

For making full use of Focus Box, we still have to get more hands-on experience with it, however, for example the substitute objects and the emotions cards have already proved successful to us. The cards substituting people help us for example during a conversation about the biological family of the child. They make it easier for the child to show all the people who belong to his/her family, who he/she considers part of the family. Children in foster families have difficulties expressing their emotions and the emotions cards can help them a great deal. The Environments cards help, for example, while explaining the role of the court in the child’s life story, or in preparing for some environments (visiting a parent in prison etc.). We use Velký vůz Sever quite often for educating our employees. We appreciate high professionalism of the trainers, and the topics are always communicated in a comprehensible way. The trainers suitably combine a theoretical basis with interactive methods (model situations etc.). Their education is always directly usable in practice, it is not detached from reality.

Jana Luhanová, coordinator of Klub náhradních rodin Routa (The Routa Club of Foster Families), Czech Republic

Contact information


The Child in Focus project is the product of the Czech non-profit organization Velký vůz Sever (website only in Czech)

The non-profit organization Velký vůz sever educates professionals working with children in courses and training sessions like Conducting a Conversation with a Child, Crisis Intervention, The Safe Transfer of a Child from a Family to Alternative Care, The Basics of Facilitation, Family Diagnostics, Narrative Work with a Child Trauma and others.