Incorporating therapeutic activities that are client-centered and promote functional motor skills so a client can function as independently as possible in their daily life is incredibly gratifying. As an occupational therapist, I have observed clients with attention deficits and learning differences gain independence with self-care tasks (such as adaptive cooking and dressing) with the right visual supports and scaffolding in place. One client who struggled with daily transitions appeared to benefit from preparing breakfast for himself upon arrival to school. In addition to increasing his sense of self-efficacy, the predictable and familiar motor task of stirring the ingredients together often appeared to produce a calming and modulating effect. Another client with fine motor delays developed adequate strength and coordination to cut with scissors, and created a birthday card for a peer in his classroom. This task promoted functional eye-hand coordination, but in a holistic way, as his finished craft was gifted to a friend.
From an occupational therapist perspective, it is always encouraging to come across recent news articles which reinforce the many benefits of these types of therapeutic interventions! Read on to learn more about how even the mundane daily tasks have both physical and psychological advantages.
Marika Minczeski, Occupational Therapist