Teaching Children to Problem Solve

I have worked with many children in occupational therapy sessions who struggle with executive function skills.  One specific area that is almost always an issue is problem solving.  I have a favorite tool that I use to help both parents and therapists grasp what “problem solving” looks like and how to break it into concrete steps that are teachable: Goal, Plan, Do, Check Where this...
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Why You Should be Playing Cooperative Board Games

The work of a child is play.  Play is what drives learning and development.  Play comes in many forms, each with its own developmental benefits for children.  Family game time is one of my favorite ways to play with my children (and one of my favorite occupational therapy treatment tools).  It gives parents a chance to share in the joy of play and to model skills.  My favorite games to play my...
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Amazing Local Resource: PACER center

I have been working with special needs children in Minnesota for over a decade.  I have always been aware of the PACER center and have referred a number of families to them for a variety of services, but I never really knew exactly what they did, but I recently learned more.  Pacer is located in the south metro area, just off 494 in Bloomington, MN. If you haven’t ever looked, check out...
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Tips on Actually Doing the “Home Program” Your Therapist Recommends

“Home Program” is a therapy phrase that your OT, PT, and SLP use when we talk about the ideas and assignments we recommend to families to do each week at home to try to reinforce the skills we are teaching in the skilled therapy session. I think everyone would agree that the follow-through at home is critical to children learning new skills, yet both sides (therapist and parents)...
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Impulse Control: Home Activities and Games

One of key parts of self-regulation, emotional regulation, attention, and executive function skills is the development of impulse control. Want an easy to use handout of these ideas?  Visit Teachers Pay Teachers Site for my handouts What is impulse control?   These are a few of the definitions I found online: “The degree to which a person can control the desire for immediate...
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Taking Charge of ADHD- The Complete Authoritative Guide for Parents- A book and program review

I was searching for an up-to-date, research-based book on ADHD and came across this book by Russell A. Barkley, PhD: Taking Charge of ADHD- The Complete Authoritative Guide for Parents.  I’ve read a lot of books, but this one was a nice change of pace from the overly simplified “parenting guides” that I normally come across.  That being said, it as very in-depth, probably too...
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