Play gives us an insight into a child’s internal world. The freedom of play allows children to test out different concepts, solve problems, and strengthen their language skills. Struggles in foundational play hinders relationships, linguistic abilities, and social-emotional development. Therapy with play at the core supports regulation, a crucial milestone in executive functioning. Children are thus empowered to express their ideas, self-advocate and build empathy.
Social skills can be quite challenging for children with different ways of thinking and interacting. Some are a little more vulnerable because they find it difficult to understand the intentions of others. Our goal is to acknowledge and validate the child’s experience and view the situation from their lens, showing them the value of authentic connections.
Therapy centered around each child’s unique profile supports you, as the parent, to truly understand how your child communicates. This involves considering multiple modes of communication, from giving and receiving information to acting on that information. Strong language skills pave the way for a child to be self-expressed and freely engage in a variety of interactions. Autistic and ADHD kiddos have differing communication styles too, and when you’re tuned into what your child is truly telling (and showing) you, the shared bond deepens.
Competent readers and strong writers have learned the “how-tos” of gathering ideas, organizing details, figuring out the author’s intent and revising effectively. Students struggling with executive function skills find reading comprehension exhausting and the writing process impossible. A solid pillar in the work that I do is focusing on the students’ strengths. By providing them with a foundational knowledge base to tackle any academic challenge we are simultaneously boosting self-confidence and a growth mindset.
Behaviors and emotions are too often viewed as “things” that needs to be stopped or controlled – using charts, rewards, gold stars, you name it. Actually, a behavior is a natural response to what the brain and body are experiencing. Emotional regulation is also the overarching goal as it leads to improved problem solving and capacity to self-reflect. Autistic and ADHD kiddos, as well as children with sensory processing differences, encounter daily obstacles that push the nervous systems beyond its means. This therapeutic process is all about meeting your child exactly where they are with small changes that make an impact – and life bit easier.
The reason we provide parent coaching is to foster a collaborative partnership. The parenting perspective is also imperative to the child’s progress. Our philosophy is to apply sound research methods in the areas of play and brain development to ensure the family’s success. Many parents feel that they may not be ready, are waiting until their schedules clear or hoping the situation eases somewhat. However, most clients I have helped come at a time of crisis. From discovering how simple language shifts impact a child’s responses to enhancing their own understanding of parenting styles, parents gain awareness and empowerment. We love this work and encourage the mindset of preemptive strategies. Building healthy habits for you and your family can start today!
My expertise in feeding therapy comes from a unique understanding of the mealtime mindset. I utilize elements of motivational interviewing and theories of health behavior change, including your own beliefs and obstacles, to investigate the impact of past experiences on your current perspectives. Together, we uncover connections among your present ideals, and how they have influenced your relationship with food, such as seeking food for comfort or to combat boredom. Those are the intricate processes that you pass on to your children. Through weekly sessions, you gain knowledge about the significance of a balanced lifestyle, modeling and adopting new habits for the benefit of the entire family unit.
When parents and kids work with me, they are given full access and mastery to the 3Es of Mealtime™: Engagement, Exposure, and shared Experiences. The overarching goal is to transform the home environment, facilitating positive, meaningful meals for the entire family.
Let’s look at some typical mealtime challenges you may be experiencing:
1 – constant tantrums before, during, and even after meals
2 - bargaining over which foods to eat or not
3 - a constant power struggle
4- eating a very limited variety, like the beige diet
5- using screens to distract from the meal, rewards to eat the meal
Mealtime is a complex process that involves the entire family unit. Several factors can contribute to a young child adopting cautious and restrictive eating habits, such as aversions to certain foods and sensitivity to textures. These preferences can eventually become ingrained habits that disrupt mealtime routines and create stress for the entire family. Additionally, children miss out on the joy of exploring foods.
My feeding therapy program takes into account the child's physical, psychological, and emotional development, as well as their nutritional deficiencies. In a supportive setting, we aim to reduce feelings of frustration and uncertainty by actively involving the child in the entire mealtime process. Let's transform mealtime into a gathering that everyone eagerly looks forward to!
Play to Learn operates as a private practice accepting payment via cash, check, or credit card. Payment is expected at each session unless otherwise agreed upon. A complimentary, 20-minute phone consultation is offered to discuss rates during a scheduled time. Sessions are either 50-60 minutes in length based on individual needs and professional recommendations. Session times include all contact with parents and discussion of session outcomes. Individual parent coaching appointments may be advised during our work together.
It is recommended that you allocate 60-90 minutes for a screening, including explanation of findings. Screenings simply focus on a single area of concern whether it is play and language or feeding. Timing and cost for full, comprehensive evaluations will vary depending on testing protocols.
Play to Learn is considered an out-of-network provider. If you will be seeking reimbursement for services, please contact your insurance carrier prior to our first session. Pre-authorization may be required, which would necessitate a screening and written explanation of findings to be submitted. Kindly inquire about the number of visits allotted per calendar year. As you are in the process of being on boarded as a client, I will email you a comprehensive list of questions to ask your insurance company so that you have all the information needed to proceed.
HSA, FSA and HRA allow you to pay for healthcare expenses and are an acceptable form of payment. At the end of the month, you are provided with an invoice containing all necessary information and billable codes for reimbursement.