A physical therapist is working on developing Jake’s motor skills, particularly his ability to roll, surrounded by a roomful of classmates. What could have been a pull-out, one-on-one therapy session was turned into a fun group activity where all children are participating and modeling his exercises (running time: 3 min. 25 sec.).
This segment shows physical therapy with a child with a fairly severe neurological impairment. I found in this 2-year-old classroom using the free-play time is a great opportunity to work on some of the floor skills that we’re working on. The child spends a good part of his day in adaptive equipment whether it’s in an adaptive positioning chair or a stander, but it’s important that he has some time to get out on the floor where he can move around the most easily.
So you can see how these young, rather rambunctious classmates can easily be encouraged to participate and how much they’re enjoying participating in Jake’s therapy time. Jake, at the same time, feels very much at home with his classmates there. He can hear their voices and hear his teachers’ voices. With his rolling, currently without some facilitation he’s just rolling pretty haphazardly, but one of his goals is to try and get him to roll towards either a familiar voice or a familiar toy making a recognizable sound.
We can do that or we can do our exercises. Exercises with the pillows. Riley, do you remember how you got a pillow yesterday? Wanna go get a pillow? Ok go get a pillow.
You’ll see that this child has a strong extensor thrust pattern, so one of the things that we work on consistently is to try and strengthen his neck and trunk flexors. And in addition to working on this during his therapy time, we have also taught the teachers to do the same up-up activity during diaper changing, or I should say after diaper changing, both to encourage use of the proper muscle pattern but also to try and recognize up-up as the cue that he is to do that pattern.
Why are you having trouble finding your pillow? Ok. Legs up. Legs up. That’s it. Legs up, Riley. Oh. Good job.