PASSPORT TO THE PARK

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PASSPORT TO THE PARK

As pediatric occupational therapists, our job is to look at how a child’s sensory systems are working: what’s functioning well and what can use some support. As parents, wouldn’t it be great to learn how to recognize your child’s sensory-based challenge areas and understand how to help them? Over the years we have witnessed how combinations of fun activities can create the most amazing foundation for growth and optimal development. We want to teach you how to understand the sensory needs of your child, and share our therapeutic activities with you!

It’s time to grab your kids and we will see you at the park!

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Passport to the Park Introduction Video

Clinical Obs at the Park tool image

Clinical Observations at the Park Tool

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I Have a Little Pumpkin (an interactive rhyme!)

Whether you make your own pumpkin fidget or use a mini pumpkin from your local pumpkin patch, you and  your kids will have a blast with this cute, interactive FREEBIE! Not only is it a fun way to play with the holiday theme, but it taps into motor planning, coordination, following verbal instruction, self-regulation and […]

Fine Motor Skill Necessities Developed at the Park

This is one time of year that our phones are ringing a little more than usual. Summer is over and the kiddos are settling in at school. It’s parent conference time, which tends to expose concerns that often result in OT referrals. Challenges with fine motor skills are routinely pointed out in these conferences. Observable […]

DIY Pumpkin Fidget

Fall is in the air! Pinterest pins dropping everywhere! This is such an fun time of year for DIY inspiration with holiday themes. As OT’s, we LOVE crafts for their hidden therapeutic benefits. Simple and sweet, our pumpkin fidget incorporates fine motor and visual motor skill development, planning and sequencing of steps, and a fidget […]

Passport to the Park Kit

Getting quality time outdoors can do wonders. Fresh air, sunshine, ‘unplugged’ fun, and active exploration can have dramatic effects on the quality of your mood and how your body functions! OT’s around the globe LOVE hearing about their clients adventures outside. Sensory experiences are everywhere and something new is around every bend. This allows our […]

Summer Olympic Games

A time when the world unites in energy, efforts and friendly competition, the Olympic Games seem to be a two-week period when everyone ‘speaks the same language’. Replays of an exciting race, a courageous finish, the athlete to watch and the tally of gold medals are conversations echoed between people and countries. That doesn’t happen […]

Theme Play at the Park: Star Wars

Star Wars has been loved for generations. Starting with the movies, branching out to toys, and even DIY light sabers and masks.  Adults and children alike go crazy for all things Star Wars, so why wouldn’t you use its magnetizing powers for good (at the park)? Theme Play at the Park: Star Wars March 25th, […]

Common Questions from Parents to their Occupational Therapists

The park is all fun and games, until it isn’t! Playing at the park can present some interesting challenges, thoughts to ponder, and frustrations to navigate. Sometimes children just don’t seem to engage in playground opportunities like we hope they will. Common Questions from Parents to their Occupational Therapists March 25th, 2019Mary & Suzanne

The Highly Sensitive Child: Too fast, too high, too much?

A common question: How do I make the park fun for my sensitive and cautious child? There is a big assumption out there that the park is fun for all. Who wouldn’t want to fly down the slides, reach for the sky on the swings, and kick off their shoes in the sand box, right? […]

Park Swings: 4 Ways to Use Them (therapeutically!)

Flying through the air, floating weightless in the water, and laughing until milk comes out your nose  – can anyone think of moments more carefree than these?  Few things in life can hold a candle to that feeling of gliding through the air on park swings. Park Swings: 4 Ways to Use Them (therapeutically!) March […]

Park Slides: 3 of our favorite activities

Remember the thrill that first time you went down a new slide as a child? They felt so high, so fast, and (sometimes, eventually) so FUN! Slides are staple pieces of equipment found in most local parks. They come in all shapes and sizes and can all pretty much be used in similar ways. Park […]

Social Skills and Social Play: Park style

As pediatric occupational therapists, we naturally think about what skills, activities, and requirements occupy a child’s day. While the words occupation and child aren’t often thought of together, pediatric OT’s think in these terms a lot! So what occupations do children have? Social Skills and Social Play: Park style March 25th, 2019Mary & Suzanne

Focus and Attention: What day is it?

Ah, one of those broken record days. These are the days when you wonder if the words coming out are really reaching your child’s ears? Or maybe it’s a jumping bean day, when it is near impossible for anyone to stick with something for longer than 2 minutes (and 2 minutes is good!). We experience those […]

Eye-Hand Coordination and Visual-Motor Skills

You know that comforting smell of pancakes in the morning. Eyes sparkling and stomach growling, your nose pointing towards the sky as that big inhale takes in the scent spiraling through the kitchen.  You notice the light glow of the batter as it begins to bubble, and slide your spatula along the pan to scoop […]

Fine Motor Skills: Drop that pencil!

So often, children are identified with fine motor skill challenges when they begin picking up those crayons and pencils to draw and write. Ideas that our kiddos have in their heads just don’t seem to come out on paper with the same enthusiasm and clarity. Fast forward to homework time: frustrations flare, papers rip, and power […]

Developing Balance at the Park

To navigate the world comfortably, we seek balance.  As occupational therapists, we think about the idea of balance in a variety of ways. It can be thought of globally, referring to how much time we spend working, resting, and playing. Developing Balance at the Park March 25th, 2019Mary & Suzanne

Gross Motor Coordination: Let’s coordinate!

Gross motor coordination abilities are often noticed as we watch our children grow. They play chase with friends, scramble up rock piles, and attempt to ride that new bike without training wheels. Some are graceful (for the most part!), without missing a beat. Others, not so much. It just doesn’t seem to come as ‘naturally’ […]

Building Strength and Endurance at the Park

Does your child seem to lack the strength to hold on to overhead bars or pulling himself up when climbing? Does the day just seem too long for your child and he/she is exhausted by the end? When going up stairs, does your child seem to use to hand rails to pull himself/herself up? Building Strength and Endurance […]

Powering Up Muscle Tone

The term ‘muscle tone’ can be quite unfamiliar for many. Maybe this is the first time you have heard it, or maybe you feel you have heard it oh too many times! For those who are new to the term and wondering if your child might have low muscle tone, ask yourself these questions: Does […]

Welcome

Hey there! We are so excited that you are here! As we get started, we have a couple of questions for you: Are you noticing that your child is struggling at school or with attention, handwriting, or social interactions? Are home and community activities a daily challenge for your child? Welcome March 25th, 2019Mary & […]