Presentation on theme: "Busy Fingers 17 th March 2015. What is O.T? Occupational Therapy is a specialist field whereby all physical barriers to life, learning and the acquisition."— Presentation transcript:
What is O.T? Occupational Therapy is a specialist field whereby all physical barriers to life, learning and the acquisition of new skills is assessed and supported. O.T is not physiotherapy and does not replace this discipline. An O.T will look at how a child sits on their chair, how a child holds a pencil, (hyper mobility of joints) the angle a child has their book or paper, tracking from the board to their book. An OT will also assess whether there are any sensory presentations (proprioceptive, vestibular or other barriers to learning including, fine and gross motor needs, spatial awareness, balance, co-ordination, and gross motor planning (riding a bike/climbing over a style/running).
What are fine motor skills? Fine motor skills are the hand and eye skills which require small, controlled and refined movements such as handwriting, flipping over a coin, selecting and retrieving a small object, crossing the midline, threading and building towers. Crossing the invisible midline of the torso is an essential developmental milestone and is usually practised and refined when a child is learning to crawl. Children who bypass this stage and “just walk”, tend not to have these cross body links which affect the links made across the two hemispheres of the brain. Poor handwriting can be down to a tracking issue (hand eye coordination), too little or too much pressure on a pencil (proprioceptive input), or poor ligament, small joint co- ordination (orientation). Issues such as binocular vision can also have an impact on the development of these skills.
What are gross motor skills? Gross motor skills are the larger cluster of skills required to make larger movements such as running, riding a bike and more complex manoeuvres such as climbing objects. Gross motor planning is the process by which individuals prepare to undertake a physical activity such as riding a bike or crossing a style. Children with issues in this area are sometimes labelled “clumsy” or “uncoordinated” depending on the outcome of any assessments conducted by a qualified O.T the child may receive a diagnosis of dyspraxia. Children with dyspraxia often have more global issues with personal organisation, reading, writing and spatial awareness, hence its link with dyslexia -although the two are not exclusively co-morbid.
How do the OT activities help ? It is best to conduct a wide diet of O.T based activities, in order that a wider range of skills be developed. Like any form of whole body exercises, when combined they have a cumulative benefit and will support a wide range of physical skills. These exercises can not cause damage or harm and will improve the fine motor skills of the most dexterous person. The two hemispheres of the brain need to be connected, in order that messages can be sent across them and so that coordination of the whole body can occur. Hand and eye, brain and feet and spatial awareness are all essential elements of humans moving around their environment and interacting with stimuli successfully and safely.
So what are the activities? Each table has an activity set up on it, as it would be in class. There should be no more than 6 to an activity. Have a go at the activity and on the post-it notes write down which skill you think it is developing. After 5 mins we will swap. I will give a 1 minute warning, whereby I would appreciate if the activity could be left how it was found for the next group. We will regroup to discuss our findings and discuss any questions you may have.