How to make your own weighted lap pad!

Weighted lap pads, and other weighted items are often used by occupational therapists. They are a helpful tool that promote regulation and body awareness by providing proprioceptive input to the body. Some children may feel more comfortable and relaxed when using a weighted item because they have more information about their body which helps them feel regulated. The following blog …

What to Expect from an Occupational Therapy Evaluation

What is an Occupational Therapy Evaluation? A thorough evaluation is critical to assessing your child’s need for occupational therapy services as well as identifying specific goals to be addressed throughout therapy.  This post outlines Chicago Occupational Therapy’s typical approach to an initial evaluation, however this process may look different based on your child’s specific needs and setting.  We believe in …

Visual Perceptual Skills Continued

In our previous Visual Perceptual Skills post, we discussed how our eyes are responsible for performing a variety of complex functions to help us interact with the world around us.  In this post, we will take a closer look at the four remaining visual perceptual skills: form constancy, sequential memory, figure ground, and visual closure. Form Constancy Definition: the ability …

Visual Perceptual Skills

Visual Perceptual Skills Vision is arguably the most critical of the senses.  According to the American Optometric Association, 80% of learning is acquired through our visual system. While many people are familiar with visual acuity, or the sharpness of your vision at a given distance, our visual system is very complex and uses a variety of skills to help us …

What are Primitive Reflexes?

Primitive reflexes are the reactive actions that a newborn baby uses to survive in the beginning stages of life. These reflexes are essential in allowing the body to develop properly, and in order for this to happen, these reflexes must be integrated before childhood. If these reflexes are retained and milestones of development are missed, the child may experience some …

Exercises for Core Strength

What is Core Strength? Core strength comes from the muscle group that control the front part of the belly, also known as the torso. Core strength helps the human body turn, reach, balance, stabilize, sit in a tall posture and use arms and hands for fine motor tasks. When a child has decreased core strength, lots of tasks can be …

What is Sensory Processing Disorder and How Does it Impact Participation in Daily Activities?

Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) occurs when a person’s sensory systems (visual, auditory, tactile, olfactory, gustatory, vestibular, and proprioceptive) are unable to effectively receive sensory information from the environment and process it to create an appropriate response.  While Occupational Therapists (OTs) do not diagnose SPD, they are considered the experts in how sensory processing issues can impact a person’s ability to …

What is Sensory Processing?

Our sensory systems are made up of seven senses: Visual, auditory, tactile, olfactory, gustatory, vestibular, and proprioception. Sensory processing is the way our bodies use these senses to interpret and interact with the world around us. Our nervous systems receive information from our environments (e.g., a sight, a sound, a smell, a touch) and that information travels to our brains …

What is Occupational Therapy?

Occupational therapy is a unique discipline that is centered around the belief that engagement in everyday activities (i.e., occupations) is essential to health and wellbeing, and a vital source of joy and happiness.  Occupational therapists work with their clients to identify occupations that are difficult to complete due to injury, illness, or varied ability and collaboratively find unique ways to …

Signs Your Student Might Benefit from Occupational Therapy

As a teacher, you have an important role in recognizing your students’ strengths along with their areas of need. You want your students to be successful and to continue to make progress each day. As a teacher, you have a pivotal role in identifying students that may benefit from occupational therapy. But do you know the signs? Below are some …