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Occupational Therapy Education Information Resources

Introduction

Occupational Therapy teaches skills and strategies to children with developmental needs, educational needs, and emotional behavioral needs as the child progresses to different learning stages.  Occupational Therapists can help develop fine motor skills such as cutting with scissors, handwriting, holding utensils, drawing pictures and other learning motor processes.

Autism is a sensory-based disorder and ASD children may benefit from seeing Occupational Therapists trained in Sensory Integration (SI) starting as soon as they are diagnosed.  Sensory Integration addresses the needs of a child who has auditory and language processing difficulties, touch sensitivity issues, poor motor planning skills, decreased awareness of body position in space, extreme reactions to mild stimuli, speech and language delays, limited coping skills, lack of focus and concentration, abnormal gait, and many other daily living challenges.  SI therapy can have positive outcomes on sensory processing dysfunction.

Related Sites

Benefits of Occupational Therapy for Autism
Description:  This webpage provides a short write up on the benefits of occupational therapy for children with Autism.

Sensory Integration Global Network (SIGN)
Description:  This is the website of A. Jean Ayres, PhD, OTR/L, who was the founder of Sensory Integration Theory and intervention methods. Her methods provide a neuroscience-based approach to sensory integration concerns.

Sensory Integration Activities: Treatment That Works Skills That Matter
Description:  A sensory checklist, activities, and articles about Sensory Processing Disorder is provided at this web site.

Brain Balance Centers
Description:  Balance Brain Centers provide sensory and academic training, daily exercise at home, in addition to “clean” nutrition all with on-line and community support systems.

American Occupational Therapy Association, Inc.
Description:  The American Occupational Therapy Association provides additional resources for parents seeking further information on the use of Occupational Therapy for children with Autism.

Books

Sensory Integration and the Child: 25th Anniversary Edition by A. Jean
Description:  An in-depth description of sensory integration dysfunction and the recognition of it. Also, several helpful hints, frequently asked questions, checklists, and parent information sources are covered.

The Parent's Guide to Occupational Therapy for Autism and Other Special Needs: Practical Strategies for Motor Skills, Sensory Integration, Toilet Training, and More by Cara Koscinski
Description:  This essential guide provides parents with occupational therapy activities for their children that can be completed at home.

The Out-of-Sync Child by Carol Kranowitz and Lucy Jane Miller PhD OTR
Description:  Uncovering a widespread, but incorrectly diagnosed issue, this book discusses Sensory Processing Disorder as it relates to each of the senses.

The Pocket Occupational Therapist for Families of Children With Special Needs by Cara Koscinski (Dec 15, 2012)
Description:  What is Occupational Therapy? What can it do for my child? These questions are answered as well as many more basic inquiries in this book. In addition, easy-to –use OT activities that can be performed in the home are provided.

Tools

75 Occupational Therapy Tools That Cost Less Than $1:
Description:  The list is now at about 75 tools that cost less than $1 including ideas for both pediatrics and geriatrics.

Therapy Street for Kids
Description:  Therapy Street for Kids website provides therapeutic activities to work with your child at home to enhance your occupational program.

Handwriting Without Tears
Description:  This site informs parents of the benefits of teaching their child how to hand write in a painless, easy-to-learn way.

Sensory Processing Made Simple
Description:  Calming activities for students who have Sensory Processing Disorder are described at this web page.

Parent Forums/Blogs

Some forums require you to sign in to Yahoo or Facebook to locate forum names.

Forum/Blog Name:  The Recycling Occupational Therapist
Description:  A blog developed by an Occupational Therapist to demonstrate creative ways to treat children with autism.

Forum/Blog Name:  Sensory Integration Tools for Meltdown Management
Description:  This blog discusses sensory meltdowns usually associated with autism. Such topics as the role of self-regulation, sensory integration tool kits, play dates in school, and the delicate sensitivity of an autistic meltdown depicted through a song.

Forum/Blog Name:  Interacting with Autism
Description:  A blog on Occupation Therapy where you can post comments or questions.

Forum/Blog Name:  Autism Parents & Occupational Therapists Group
Description:  This Facebook page is a discussion group for parents and occupational therapists to post questions, experiences and information.