Some of our students with special needs may have impairments in oral-motor structure or function, difficulty motor planning, or apraxia, or other conditions that impede typical communication development. When it…
In previous posts, we have talked about what classroom integration is, examples of classroom integration, collaborative consultation, and natural environments. In part 5 of this discussion on school-based practice, we take on another factor that influences successful classroom integration of related services: parent perception. Parents are experts on their own children, and are key members of the IEP team. As such, it is very important that the relationships between therapists and families are mutually trusting and respectful. Maintaining open communication is a way to form and maintain a relationship with parents.
Preschool Classroom Processes as Predictors of Children's Cognitive Self-Regulation Skills Development An article to be published in School Psychology Quarterly describes the findings of a large study of preschool classroom in the US Southeast. The researchers found that preschool classroom environments had an impact on the development of executive functioning. More specifically, they found that positive interactions in the classroom supported the development of self-regulation skills. The researchers discuss the need for more preventative classroom management, rather than using "behavior disapproval" to correct young children. The Influence of Childhood Aerobic Fitness on Learning and Memory
“Life is for service.” ― Fred Rogers Sunday, October 27, 2013 marks the Occupational Therapy Global Day of Service. This is an observance to promote the profession of occupational therapy and…
Did you know there are many ways to further your knowledge of research and evidence on a budget? In this post, we summarize a variety of resources to keep up with current evidence and best-practice!
As we return to school, everyone starts feeling the stress. Students, parents, teachers, and therapists, all experience the seemingly abrupt transition from summer fun to the classroom. But there are ways to manage the stress and ease the back to school pains!
To help make the transition back to school easier for the therapists, we are sharing a schedule template! This free download contains 4 different templates: a 5 day, 7:30-3 schedule a…
What Are Natural Environments?In Early Intervention, "natural environments" are emphasized as the primary and most desired setting for therapeutic and educational services, and are included in the legislation mandating EI services (Part C of IDEA). In the school system, "least restrictive environment" is a related concept, though not as intuitively understood. However, both concepts emphasize participation in typical settings, or those that non-disabled peers access. Examples of natural settings in the schools might look like: A speech therapist supporting literacy instruction at the elementary level, a social studies group project in middle school, or interview practice in the high school. An occupational therapist supporting writing centers at the elementary level, a cooking task in home economics in middle school, or a driver's education course in high school. A physical therapist supporting recess participation in the elementary school, participation in team sports in middle school, or accessing community and vocational environments at the high school level.
How To Incorporate Natural Environments Into Practice
Welcome to the third part of our discussion on classroom integration - check out part 1 and part 2, where we talked about the different models of integrating therapy services into the classroom, and the factors that can support more integrated services. Now that we have talked about the factors supporting integration of related services into the classroom - how do we engineer these factors into our environment?
What can inclusion look like? In our last post on including therapy sessions in the classroom, we talked about the range of service delivery models, from individual, pull-out sessions, to providing individual support within the classroom routine. In this post, we share two references that discuss what inclusion can look like in the school setting.