Thursday, January 20, 2011

Are You Effective?

Considering it is mid school year, it may be time to evaluate your skills as a therapist. Are you effective? Sometimes, children miss extensive class time due to therapy sessions. Is it worth their while? Annual review time is quickly approaching and therapists should be thinking about what is working and what is not working. Don't just retest your children annually and when gains are made pat yourself on the back. Get to the core of each issue and determine have you made a difference.

Step 1: Make sure you have baseline measurements. Be very specific in your baseline data. Here is where a standardized test may be beneficial. For some issues, standardized testing is not available. Here is where you need good data - how long? how far? how many times in a 5 minute period?

Step 2: Establish goals. What are you trying to achieve for the child? Be very specific. Include what needs to be measured, how you will measure it and when you will measure it.

Step 3: Determine an intervention. What will you do to teach the child the skills necessary to meet the goal? Again, be very specific.

Step 4: Record data! Write down results for every therapy session. Record your data - how long did it take the child to walk from the classroom to the cafeteria? How many times did the child stand up during circle time? How many letters did the child write legibly? How many words did the child write in 1 minute? Also, record data regarding environmental modifications i.e. When the child was sitting on a therapy ball, he could pay attention for 5 minute intervals. Read more on collecting data in the schools, home or therapy clinic here.

When you are recording the data, be consistent so that you can show that what you are doing is working over time. In hard economic times, if you can show what you are doing is working that equals job security.

The Scale of Sensory Strategies (S.O.S.S.) Tool Kit™ provides an evidence-based plan of care with sensory strategies that will optimize a child’s behavior in the school, home and community.

Find out more.

1 comment:

Rebecca said...

great post!

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