I Spy Nature Walk

I Spy Nature Walk Activity

April showers bring May flowers! This month is a beautiful one to spend outside! Create an I Spy scavenger hunt or bingo with your child. This activity helps build

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Way to go Arabella!

Your're a Star! Way to go Arabella!

little girl eating peachings in high chair

Arabella during Feeding Therapy

 

TheraPLACE would like to recognize Arabella for her excellent progress over the past several months, especially in the areas of feeding and expressive communication.  She began her time at TheraPLACE with a very limited diet and concerns with lack of weight gain as well as use of only a few words.  Arabella has greatly increased her diet variety to include things like yogurt, raspberries, mangos, strawberries, blackberries, and peanut butter!  She has  improved significantly in her self-feeding skills and is gaining weight.  Arabella says many more words independently and has began to imitate words she hears.  She says new words during every session and her vocabulary grows all the time!  Her hard work is really paying off—way to go, Arabella!

Speech Therapy Scope of Practice

Speech Therapy Scope of Practice

The overall objective of speech therapy or speech-language pathology services is to optimize individuals' abilities to communicate and swallow, therefore improving quality of life. Speech Language Pathologists (SLPs) are responsible for providing the following services: collaboration with other disciplines for holistic care (i.e. OT and PT),

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SHARE

SHARE - Special Needs Help Finding Activities and Recreational Events

This month TheraPLACE’s spotlight is on the Facebook Group SHARE-Special Needs Help Finding Activities and Recreational Events. When Donna Bleuel McGraw, the founder of SHARE,

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3 Therapy Tools to Build Core Strength

3 Therapy Tools to Build Core Strength

Spring often means more outdoor play! Help your child build core strength for confident, skilled play using the same therapy tools as your child’s therapist. Below are therapy tool descriptions and activity ideas from TheraPLACE therapists.

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SHARE

SHARE - Special Needs Help Finding Activities and Recreational Events

This month TheraPLACE’s spotlight is on the Facebook Group SHARE-Special Needs Help Finding Activities and Recreational Events. When Donna Bleuel McGraw, the founder of SHARE, was asked why she started this network she replied, “As an aunt to two kids with Autism, I was always looking for activities to bring them to that wouldn’t be too loud or too crowded for them. I knew many others were in the same position so I decided to form a Facebook group where we could all SHARE special needs friendly events in the area.” Donna is also the president of River City Turners Gymnastics, a non-profit gym, which offers a monthly open gym as well as weekly Zumba classes for kids and adults of all abilities.

River City Turners Upcoming Events

What: Special Needs Open Gym: trampolines, foam block pit, balance beams, tumble tracks, and more!
When: this is a monthly occurrence, the next few dates are --->
• Saturday, May 13th from 3pm to 5pm
• Saturday, June 17th from 3pm to 5pm
Where: River City Turners Gymnastics (non-profit gym)
                 8009 Terry Rd, Louisville KY
Cost: $5 dollars per child, siblings are welcome

What: Zumba for Special Needs Friends with Licensed Instructor Kristi Kelty
When: Monday mornings 10:30am-11:30am
Where: River City Turners Gymnastics (non-profit gym)
                8009 Terry Rd, Louisville KY
Cost: $5 dollars per person

 

If you have any questions about SHARE or upcoming events at River City Turners, please contact Donna at 502-741-1982 or by email at Donnalmcgraw@yahoo.com.  Join the SHARE facebook group to learn more about fun events and happenings around town!

Make sure to tell Donna you saw this article on our website 🙂

Core Strength Important for my Child

Why is Core Strength Important for my Child?

 

First let's define core strength- it is the development of the abdomen and back muscles that stabilize, align, and move the trunk of the body in space. Poor core strength can negatively impact a lot of our other skills and abilities, including:

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3 Therapy Tools to Build Core Strength

3 Therapy Tools to Build Core Strength

Spring often means more outdoor play! Help your child build core strength for confident, skilled play using the same therapy tools as your child’s therapist. Below are therapy tool descriptions and activity ideas from TheraPLACE therapists.

Large Exercise BallCute little girl sitting on large exercise ball.

How can a large exercise ball help build core strength? By supporting your child’s hips on a dynamic surface, you ensure she/he must activate core muscles to remain sitting upright.
Age suggestion: 1-5 years (or as long as their feet can not reach the ground)
Activity Ideas:
Bounce Play: Sit your child on top of the ball and provide support at the hips (for greater stability) or at their knees (for a greater core strength challenge), then you are ready to go! Bounce them, move the ball slightly side to side, and then in all directions to challenge them to keep from falling over.
Sit Ups: Sit your child on top of the ball, supporting at the hips or upper legs, have them slowly fall back so they are laying over the ball belly up. At this point ask her/him to grab a bean bag or small stuffed animal placed behind the ball and pull back to sitting (make a crunch motion). Praise and repeat!
Where can I buy this? Most retail stores like Walmart and Target carry this item, or you can purchase it online.
Average cost? $15-$40

 

T-stoolBoy sitting on t-stool playing on ipad.

How can a t-stool help build core strength? This therapy tool is essentially an adjustable chair with only one leg. Your child must work to balance on this seating device while feet are planted on the floor with hips, knees, and ankles at a right angle (90/90/90).
Age suggestion for use:
3-10 years (consider weight limit)
Activity Ideas:
Grab N’ Balance: Ask your child to sit on the t-stool (you may have to hold it upright for them until they get their feet planted). You can hold rings or bean bags overhead and to the sides to encourage core muscle activation as she/he reaches outside of her/his base of support to grab each object.
Core Strength during Tablet Play: Ask your child to sit on the t-stool (you may have to hold it upright for them until they get their feet planted) while they play their preferred i-Pad/tablet game. This way they are working on core strength as they play, much better than sitting on the couch!
Where can I buy this? You can purchase it online from Amazon or therapy tool websites like https://funandfunction.com.
Average cost? $45-$100 

 

Bosu “Ball”Little girl sitting on bosu ball, playing with balloon.

How can a Bosu ball help build core strength? This piece of exercise equipment is great for adults and children alike. A Bosu can help to work on many areas including balance, trunk control, strength, endurance, motor planning, and body awareness. A Bosu is flat on the bottom and round on the top; it can be used either with the flat side down on the floor or with the round side on the floor.
Age suggestion for use: 1 year to adult (consider weight limit)
Activity Ideas:
•Balloon Volleyball: Have your child stand on the flat side of the bosu ball while bopping a balloon back and forth. See how long you and your child can keep the balloon in the air before it hits the ground and/or before your child loses balance.
•Play Catch: Have your child stand on the flat side of the bosu ball and toss a ball back and forth. You can use a variety of size/weighted balls. By mixing it up, your child’s center of gravity will stay challenged.
•Reaching Across Midline: Have you child sit cross-legged on the rounded or flat side while reaching for preferred toys on the right and left side with opposite hand, reaching across their body.
Where can I buy this? You can purchase a bosu ball online from Amazon or a store that sells exercise equipment. You may even be able to find one used.
Average cost? $100

**Special thanks to Arabella on the large therapy ball, John Mark on the T-stool, and Hadley on the Bosu ball for modeling our TheraPLACE therapy tools so well!**