Evidence Based Practice
For a child with disabilities, few transitions are as fraught as the passage from youth to adult, usually around age 21. While the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) makes some provision for transitional services for youth as they prepare to move out of the school system for “further education, employment or independent living,” these services are often poorly defined and...
Toileting Initiative Produces Great Results
It all started when therapists from the three special day schools of Baltimore County Public Schools sat down to talk at one of our yearly meetings. The discussion turned from the mundane to the visionary, how to provide more functional, purposeful activities for our kiddos throughout the day. And, of all things, we talked about toileting. As a vital part of the student’s day, we wanted the toileting...
Out in Front with Mechanical Lifts in Schools
Last week I attended the Combined Section Meeting of the American Physical Therapy Association. It was held in San Antonio (great choice, especially in February!) and included some excellent programming. I’d like to share highlights from one of the workshops which focused on using lift and transfer devices in schools. It was presented by therapists from four large school districts.
Nine TRAM Success Stories from the Public School Setting
Three years ago, because of significant work-place injury among the region’s educational staff, I along with other physical therapists from High Desert Education Service District’s (HDESD) proposed a safe patient handling and mobility (SPHM) policy which the region’s special education directors endorsed. This involved obtaining and teaching school staff how to use mechanical devices to...
My Thanks for a Magical Moment
About 40 miles north of Chicago, in Lake County, there is a special school called Laremont, and it was there a few weeks ago that I was reminded how fortunate I am in my line of work.
You see, I’ve worked for the last five years in customer service for Rifton. And because I cover the state of Illinois, every two years I attend an event there for school therapists. This year I scheduled an extra half...
A Great Book for a New School Year
Prince Noah is back in time for the start of a new school year. His second appearance on our blog heralds the sequel to the well-loved fairy tale The Prince Who Was Just Himself, a story about a child with Down syndrome unwittingly disarming a palace enemy through natural gifts of compassion and curiosity.
In the delightfully written Prince Noah and the School Pirates, Noah continues to be himself...
Tips & Advice
Toileting in Schools with the TRAM
Using the Rifton TRAM for toileting can make a huge difference for both students and staff, providing both safety during transfers to the toilet and dignity and privacy for the student. Because students with disabilities have a wide range of needs, there are many ways to use the TRAM for this purpose.
Here are some methods we’ve found here at Socorro, presented as three case studies. (I&rsquo...
Activity-Based Curriculum in Action
Students at Woodland Developmental Center are on the move all day. The hallways are busy, the classrooms noisy and full of activity as the children practice important life skills that have been incorporated into their curriculum. And that’s what’s different about Woodland. Where students with disabilities in other schools may be seen two or three times a week in the therapy department, Woodland...
Adaptive Equipment for Classrooms Series: Part 3 of 3
Today’s post is the third in a series of articles on the topic of adaptive equipment use in the classroom. Adaptive equipment, used appropriately, serves as a teaching tool for students to learn motor skills such as sitting, standing, and walking, while engaged in the curriculum. This post focuses on walking, emphasizing the importance of reducing prompts to increase independence.
Adaptive Equipment for Classrooms Series: Part 2 of 3
Today’s post is the second in a series of articles on the topic of adaptive equipment use in the classroom. Adaptive equipment, used appropriately, serves as a teaching tool for students to learn motor skills such as sitting, standing, and walking, while engaged in the curriculum. This post focuses on standing, including research evidence and tips to promote standing as a motor skill.