About Us

Child Therapy Chicago is the #1 child psychotherapy practice in the Chicagoland area.  

Our main office location is in Chicago's Lakeview neighborhood, with Naperville services Coming Soon for the Western suburbs.  

Our mission is to help children and families. 

Our practice is dedicated exclusively to helping families, children and parents who are facing emotional, behavioral and relationship problems.

Unlike other local practices, we do not see numerous types of clients. We focus on children (even very young ages) and families.

Email or call us today to discuss how we can help.

We are experts in:

  • helping children understand their experiences
  • helping children work through what troubles them
  • helping children with issues at school or with friends
  • helping children manage their behaviors
  • helping parents better understand their children
  • helping parents support their children
  • helping parents and children have better relationships
  • helping families through divorce and other events

    Our Psychotherapists
    The therapists at Child Therapy Chicago are very experienced in the areas of child development, child mental health and behavior problems, family issues, parent coaching, and parent-child relationships.

    Denise Duval Tsioles, PhD, LCSW -- Founder of Child Therapy Chicago

    Dr. Duval Tsioles, PhD, LCSW, is an expert in children's issues and behavior. She is a psychodynamically oriented child psychotherapist who founded Child Therapy Chicago, a private practice that focuses on understanding the meaning of children's behavior.

    Dr. Duval Tsioles works with infants, toddlers and children, adolescents, young adults, parents and expecting couples‎‎. She has worked with children and families since 1994 as a clinician and researcher in child welfare, counseling agencies, educational institutions, and private practice.

    Dr. Duval Tsioles has worked as a psychotherapist, clinical supervisor, instructor, and researcher in a variety of settings including private practice, educational institutions, child welfare services, and community counseling agencies. She has experience working with behavioral problems, mood issues, emotional regulation, school problems, divorce, sleep difficulties, aggression, parent-child relationships, attachment and adoption, social skills, and parent coaching.

    Dr. Duval Tsioles is also on faculty at the Institute for Clinical Social Work (ICSW) where she teaches and consults with doctoral students on their clinical cases and dissertations.  She also conducts trainings in early childhood mental health and development, is a practicing clinician, and is involved in several clinical research projects with other advanced clinical institutions. She is a published author, has presented at several conferences, and is a peer reviewer for a major clinical social work journal.

    Courses Taught at ICSW:
    • CF 550: Development I: Infancy and Toddlerhood
    • CF 560: Development II: Early Childhood and Latency
    • RM 621: Quantitative Methods
    • RM 741: Dissertation Seminar I
    • ESRM 800: Advanced Research Seminar


    Institute for Clinical Social Work, Ph.D.
    University of Illinois at Chicago, M.S.W.
    The Ohio State University, M.A.
    Erikson Institute, Infant Mental Health Certificate Program
    Cathedral Counseling Center, Clinical Fellowship

    National Association of Social Workers
    American Psychoanalytic Association

    Duval, D. (2006).Affect and Behavior Regulation Among Homeless Young Adults Formerly Involved with the Child Welfare System.
    Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal,Volume 26, Issue 2, pages 155-173.

    Centralized Assessment of Early Developmental Delays for Children in Foster Care: A Program that Works, May 2008, Child and Family Services Review

    Trainings on Clinical Assessment of Social-Emotional Development in Young Children, Positive Discipline and Guidance, and Assisting Young Children and Parents Adjust to Out-of-Home Care for the Professional Development Series at the Erikson Institute, 2007, 2008
    Training on the Importance of Consultation when Treating Trauma for the Professional Enrichment Program at the Institute for Clinical Social Work, 2007
    Duval, D. (2008). Evaluation of Services and Barriers to Delivery of Rehabilitative Services to Infants and Toddlers in the Custody of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services. Child and Family Services Review – May 2008, Volume 30, Issue 5, pages 536-545. http://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/cysrev/v30y2008i5p536-545.html

    Duval, D. (2013). The Experience of Remarried Couples in Blended Families.
    Journal of Divorce and Remarriage, Volume 54, Issue 1, pages 43-55.

    Duval, D. (2014). Psychoanalytic Training Experience and Post-Graduate Professional Development: A Survey of Six Decades of Graduate Analysts. International Journal of Psychoanalysis.
    Analytic Identity, Poster Presentations, American Psychoanalytic Association Annual Meeting, 2009, 2010

    Analytic Identity, Poster Presentation, International Psychoanalytic Association Annual Meeting, 2009

    Peer Reviewer for the Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal

    Isa Salvador, MSW, LCSW, IMH-E(III) -- Psychotherapist

    Isa Salvador is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who specializes in working with young children within a variety of capacities; individual, parent – child dyads, and family treatment.

    Isa is an endorsed Infant Mental Health Specialist and has considerable experience working with parent child relationship issues, behavioral issues, sensory processing disorders, school issues, anxiety disorders and autism spectrum disorders.

    She integrates infant mental health practices through parent - child psychotherapy, supporting parent – child attachment and bonding, play therapy, family interventions and developmental guidance. Understanding the importance of the therapeutic alliance, Isa strives to build a strong working relationship to guide children and families in feeling comfortable and empowered.

    In addition to Isa's clinical skills, she is also pursuing a PhD in clinical social work at The Institute for Clinical Social Work.

    • Wayne State University, M.S.W.
    • Albion College, B.A.


    • National Association of Social Workers
    • American Association for Psychoanalysis in Clinical Social Work 

    Shawna Paplaski, MA, LCPC, Type 73 -- Psychotherapist

    Shawna Paplaski is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor with experience working with children, adolescents, parents and families. Shawna has experience providing individual therapy, group therapy, and creating behavioral management plans for children and adolescents. Her clinical experience includes work in private practice as well as in the schools and residential and inpatient settings. She is well versed in school Individualized Education Plan (IEP) development and comes to us with experience from the school perspective.

    Shawna has worked with a wide range of family problems and emotional and behavioral issues including anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, school avoidance, psychotic disorders, OCD, oppositional defiance, eating disorders, issues with executive functioning and a variety of other issues.

    She also specializes in working with students on the Autism Spectrum. Shawna created a specific school program to better meet the needs of students with Asperger’s/Autism Spectrum Disorders, and conducted social skills training and daily group therapy.

    Some other areas that Shawna specializes in include Animal-Assisted Therapy, LGBTQ (more specifically, transgender teens), internet safety for teens, social media for teens, body image issues amongst tweens / teens, self-harm, and educating parents on these issues and how they can best support their child.

    In addition to her clinical work at Child Therapy Chicago, Shawna continues to conduct therapy in the school setting. She works with families, teachers, school social workers, and psychiatrists on a regular basis.

    Ball State University, M.A. in Counseling
    Indiana University, B.A.

    Minnie Tao, LPC, MA

    Minnie is a Licensed Professional Counselor and graduate from Northwestern University’s two-plus program with a specialty in working with children and adolescents.

    She has clinical experience working as a child/adolescent and family therapist in various community mental health settings that present with a variety of clinical presentations including depression, anxiety, attachment issues, ADHD, abuse, trauma, and grief.

    In addition, Minnie has clinical training and experience in play therapy, psychodynamic case conceptualizations, dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), trauma-informed relational therapy, and working with Spanish speaking families.

    During her Northwestern University clinical training, Minnie actively immersed herself in experiences to increase her knowledge of group work and group dynamics that inform her way of showing up for clients and working with individuals, families, and groups. Clinically, she ran psychoeducational and support groups for children and adolescents, which included:

    • Trauma-informed CBT through the SPARCS model (Structured Psychotherapy for Adolescents Responding to Chronic Stress), 
    • Rainbows groups (support for all youth as they navigate grief and heal from loss), 
    • Chemical education,
    • Prosocial skill building (skills necessary to succeed in group settings and in society). 

    On campus, Minnie worked as an assistant for two years for undergraduate and graduate group dynamic courses, tutored at the NU Writing Place, and participated in NU’s sustained dialogues exploring different intersectional identities.  She also participated in Mental Health Human Rights Clinic for three years, scribing, conducting, and writing up psychological evaluations.

    Before pursuing her aspirations to be a psychotherapist, Minnie worked in various capacities in the education field and volunteered as an advocate for a rape crisis center in Texas.

    Northwestern University, M.A., in Counseling
    University of Texas at Dallas, Post-baccalaureate
    University of Texas at Austin, B.A., in English