Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Balance and Coordination of Boys with Intellectual Disability

Balance and Coordination Levels in Boys with Intellectual DisabilityAdapted Physical Activity Quarterly published research examining the balance and coordination of 123 boys (ages 8-18) with intellectual disability (ID) but without Down syndrome.  The Bruininks-Oseretsky Test of Motor Proficiency (BOT-2) was used to measure 6 items for balance, 5 items for upper limb coordination, and 6 items for bilateral coordination.

The results indicated the following:

  • mean scores for balance,upper limb coordination and bilateral coordination were consistently below BOT-2 criteria for the boys ages 8-18.

The researchers concluded that overall motor skills of males with ID are below the competence expected for children and adolescents without disabilities.

Reference:  Pitetti, K., Miller, R. A., & Loovis, M. (2017). Balance and Coordination Capacities of Male Children and Adolescents With Intellectual Disability. Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly, 34(1), 1-18.




25+ Bilateral Coordination Activities – Download of 28 bilateral coordination exercise sheets including QR codes with links to video demonstration of exercises. Also includes hand out explaining bilateral coordination.  FIND OUT MORE.


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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Influence of Time Pressure on Handwriting in Children with ASD

Influence of Time Pressure on Handwriting in Children with ASD

Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders published research on the influence of time pressure on the handwriting of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).  The purpose of the current study was to determine the handwriting profile of children with ASD across both non-speeded and speeded conditions, with particular focus on spacing difficulties and handwriting errors. In addition, the researchers examined the relationships between handwriting and both intellectual and motor skills under different task conditions.

The subjects included 23 boys with ASD, matched with 20 controls, aged 8–12 years old.   Each participant completed a modified version of the speed subtest of the Handwriting Performance Test and each wrote a simple phrase (cat and dog) five times in each condition.

The results indicated the following:

  • no significant group differences were identified for handwriting errors or spacing between words in either condition.
  • the ASD group demonstrated greater variability relative to controls, particularly in the speeded condition.
  • significant negative associations were identified between motor proficiency and handwriting errors in the non-speeded condition.

The researchers concluded that motor processes have a significant role in overall handwriting proficiency, but motor ability may influence the handwriting process to different degrees, depending on the nature of the task.  The lack of group differences with respect to handwriting errors and spacing between words may suggest that children with ASD have the ability to compensate for underlying motor impairment when completing a well-practiced writing task.

Reference:  Grace, N., Rinehart, N. J., Enticott, P. G., & Johnson, B. P. (2017). Do children with ASD have difficulty handwriting under time pressure?. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 37, 21-30.

Handwriting Rubrics

Handwriting Rubrics – This is an electronic book of 26 rubrics to assess handwriting. A rubric is a scoring guide to judge performance on a specific task. Have you ever wanted to quantify handwriting skills such as letter formation, speed or copying? Handwriting Rubrics can be used as assessment tools to quantify an individual’s written productivity. By using the rubric, each individual can be scored based on the same criteria.   FIND OUT MORE.

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Saturday, March 18, 2017

Are You Ready to Work Clip Chart Freebie

Are You Ready To Work Free Clip Chart

Are you ready to work?  Are You Ready To Work Clip Chart helps students to identify their state of regulation and ability to learn using visual supports.  Each color category represents different emotions or levels of alertness.  The students can decide how they are feeling and clip the clothes pin to the correct color.  The chart provides students with a visual representation for self regulation.

Are you ready to work clip chart from Your Therapy SourceThe colors represent the following:

BLUE – Tired, Bored, Sick or Sad

GREEN – Calm, Focused or Ready to Learn

YELLOW – Wiggly, Upset or High Energy

RED – Mad, Angry or Out of Control

You can download your free clip chart when you subscribe below.  You will be directed to the download page after you enter your email.

Self Regulation Skills Curriculum

Check out the Self Regulation Curriculum for an effective, time-efficient structured system to provide classroom breaks, improve self-awareness and self advocacy and teach specific self-regulation skills so that kids have tools to use in their classrooms. This system will get kids moving, give them the benefits of a brain power boost [from getting their heart rate up], give them heavy work and isometrics to help them calm down, and help them learn techniques to quiet and control their bodies in order to return to their academic work.  Find out more information.

The post Are You Ready to Work Clip Chart Freebie appeared first on Your Therapy Source.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Where is the Therapist Clip Charts

Where is the therapist? Clip CHart

Check out these adorable, new Where is the Therapist clip charts to indicate where you are in the school building.  Therapists are frequently traveling throughout the school from classroom to classroom or traveling from school to school.  These signs will certainly come in handy for when school staff needs to ask a question or stop by for a visit during the day.  They are only $1 per discipline!  It includes 5 signs for each related service – 3 in color and 2 in black and white.  The black and white versions have a similar pattern to the popular adult coloring pages if you are feeling crafty.  The last sign can be edited to include 8 different phrases that you choose.  You can type or write the phrases.

Where is the Speech Therapist Clip Chart on Door Where is the Door PT Clip Chart Where is the OT Clip Chart Door View

You will want to print the signs on card stock and laminate for durability.  Just grab a clothes pin and indicate where you are.  Color in the black and white version if you want or have the students help you color it in!

Where is the photos

Get more information on the clip charts.

Where is the OT, PT or Speech Clip Chart



The post Where is the Therapist Clip Charts appeared first on Your Therapy Source.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Food Tactile Play and Food Preferences

Tactile Play and Food Preferences

As parents and teachers, how many times have you said to children, “stop playing with your food”? There is evidence based research indicating an association between food tactile play and food preferences in children.  A recent experimental study examining preschool children and their parents, indicated that children in a sensory fruits and vegetable play condition tried more fruits and vegetables than both children in a non-food sensory play task and children in the visual fruits and vegetable exposure task.  It not only occurred for the five foods used in the activity but also three additional foods that were not used in the activity.  The researchers concluded that sensory play activities using fruits and vegetables may encourage fruit and vegetable tasting in preschool children more than non food play or visual exposure alone (Coulthard & Sealy, 2017).

A previous study evaluated children and their parents’ enjoyment of a tactile play task, measures of food neophobia (aversion) and tactile sensitivity using questionnaires.   The results indicated strong associations between parent and child scores across all three measures of food neophobia, tactile sensitivity and tactile play enjoyment. The variables most strongly related to child food neophobia were parental neophobia and enjoyment of tactile play (parent and child).  The researchers concluded that tactile processing is associated with food neophobia (Coulthard & Sahota, 2016).

Need some ideas for tactile food play?  How about trying some of the suggestions below on a large tray or bowl.  Children can finger paint, scoop, pour and explore for a tactile play experience.

  1. yogurt
  2. frozen peas or other frozen vegetables
  3. baby food
  4. pureed fruit for paint
  5. smashed bananas
  6. smash cooked vegetables (let the kids smash it, then play with it)
  7. wash the fruit and vegetables
  8. slice fruit and vegetables


Coulthard, H., & Sahota, S. (2016). Food neophobia and enjoyment of tactile play: Associations between preschool children and their parents. Appetite, 97, 155-159.

Coulthard, H., & Sealy, A. M. (2017). Play with your food! Sensory play is associated with tasting of fruits and vegetables in preschool children. Appetite.

Therapeutic Food Survey

Therapeutic Food Survey: Do you have students who need interventions due to sensory, self-help, oral, and oral-motor problems such as chewing, swallowing, touch, taste, or texture? Do you want a tool to help you work hand in hand with your client’s family to prioritize and set goals?

This Therapeutic Food Survey can be used to:
• Discover what and how much your client is and is not presently eating.
• Interview family members about history and family goals.
• Narrow down vague descriptions and create hard data.
• Use data to establish achievable goals.
• Use data to document progress.


The post Food Tactile Play and Food Preferences appeared first on Your Therapy Source.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Sensory Profiles of Children in the General Population

Sensory Profiles of Children in the General Population

Child: Care,Health and Development published research on sensory profiles of children in the general population.  The cross-sectional study used a large sample of 3-14 year old children (n = 1132) gathered from a larger study of the reliability and validity of the Sensory Profile 2nd Edition.  The community sample included children with and without developmental conditions.  The researchers used latent profile analysis to determine what sensory subtypes are present in a large community-based sample.  The results suggested that five sensory subtypes characterized a large community-based sample of children with and without conditions.  The five sensory subtypes were:

  1.  Balanced sensory profile – characterized by evenly distributed and low frequency of sensory behaviors.   These children may explore different sensory stimuli and easily engage in different sensory experiences. The majority of typically developing children fell into this subtype (88.6%), 35.1% of children with ASD, 53.1% of children with ADHD and the majority of children with other conditions also were in the balanced sensory profile subtype.
  2. Intense sensory profile – characterized by high frequencies of all sensory patterns.  The children concurrently showed high avoidance, sensitivities, registration and seeking. Children in this profile may dislike many sensory experiences and also have difficulty with registering sensory stimuli. They may engage in sensory-seeking behaviors.  Only 2% of typically developing children fell into this subtype.  For children with ASD, 19.5% had this subtype and 10.4% with ADHD.
  3. Vigilant sensory profile – characterized by increased sensitivity and avoidance. The children likely avoids sensory experiences and shows aversion to different types of sensory stimuli.  Typically developing children had the lowest percentage in this subtype with only 1 1% and the highest percentage of participants with ASD (24.7%) and ADHD (12.5%).
  4. Interested sensory profile – characterized by increased sensory-seeking behaviors with other sensory patterns in the expected range.  This profile was the significantly youngest group. Children in this group may be seeking out different sensory stimuli, such as movement, tactile or auditory, and enjoy intense sensory experiences.   Statistically, 6.1% of typically developing children, 8.9% of children with ASD and 13.5% of those with ADHD fell into the interested sensory profile.
  5. Mellow until… sensory profile – characterized by increased scores in avoidance and registration. Children in this profile may not exhibit low registration although when a stimulus becomes enough for the child to notice, the stimuli may quickly avoid it.  Statistically, 2.3% of typically developing children, 11.7% of children with ASD and 10.4%% of those with ADHD fell into the mellow until… sensory profile.

The researchers concluded that sensory experiences are universal because every individuals’ daily activities and routines include sensory stimuli. This study suggests that there are 5 sensory subtypes occur across the general population of children including those with and without various developmental conditions.  They recommend future research on intervention strategies and environmental supports for children and their families based on their responses to sensory stimuli as opposed to a diagnostic category alone.

Reference:  Little, L. M., Dean, E., Tomchek, S. D., & Dunn, W. (2017). Classifying sensory profiles of children in the general population. Child: care, health and development, 43(1), 81-88.

Headphones 1c

BrainWorks Online Membership – an exciting online tool for creating effective sensory diets for children, teens, and adults. BrainWorks takes pride in being USER-FRIENDLY, from start (selection of what you need) to finish (empowering the child to select appropriate activities). Our web-based product allows you to print out visual sensory diet tools, helpful forms, and activity picture cards. FIND OUT MORE INFORMATION.

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Monday, March 13, 2017

Prewriting Lines and Strokes Hot Air Balloon

Prewriting Activity Page Hot Air Balloon Freebie

Complete this picture of the hot air balloon while practicing prewriting lines and strokes.  This is a free printable that you can download below to practice diagonal and curved lines.  It is from the Prewriting Handwriting Activity Pages packet.  After the child completes the picture, he/she can color or paint it.


50 Prewriting Activity Pages

Prewriting Activity Pages includes 50 black and white pictures to trace and color. This is a “just right” activity for children who are learning to write, draw and color. Each picture has dotted lines for the child to trace to practice visual motor skills. Once completed, the child can paint or color the picture. Various prewriting practice strokes are included throughout the packet such as vertical lines, horizontal lines, diagonal lines, curves, circles, squares, loops, wavy lines and more! FIND OUT MORE.

The post Prewriting Lines and Strokes Hot Air Balloon appeared first on Your Therapy Source.

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