Date of Award
Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT)
Child Behavior -- psychology; Sensation Disorders; Somatosensory Disorders
It is estimated by Miller (2006) that 1 in 20 children are impacted by Sensory Processing Disorders (SPDs). The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 1990 is legislation that places families at the core of the intervention process and acknowledges the importance and the influence families have on a child's development (Cohn, Miller, & Tickle-Degnen, 2000). Cohn et al. stress family-centered practices require therapists to understand and listen to the hopes and outcomes that are most important for the children's families. At STRIDE Learning Center, a developmental preschool in Cheyenne, Wyoming, parents and teachers have requested more information on Sensory Processing Disorders (SPDs) and how to help children who struggle with sensory processing.
The purpose of this scholarly project was to review the literature and research on SPDs in order to develop relevant, up-to-date educational materials, specifically to inform parents and teachers about SPD and provide resources to assist children to be more appropriate and functional within different environments. During a review of the literature, research was found that supported the importance of family education, family-centered practices, and the involvement of the family in the care of a child with a disability. Miller, Colligan, and Colver (2003) confirm that families value information received from professionals regarding the condition of their children. Cohn, Miller, and Tickle-Degnen (2000) also validated the importance families put on education and strategies they learn to help their children.
Based on the literature, a workshop was developed to meet the needs of parents and teachers. The workshop materials include information on how sensory processing disorders affect children in different contexts. It provides information on how to support children in a variety of ways in order to improve a child's function in areas where the child is experiencing deficits. In addition, resource materials were summarized and provided for future reference. The Power Point presentation, handouts, and resource materials were critiqued using principles of adult education. Learning activities were developed to apply course content. A workshop evaluation was developed to gain feedback following the workshop and refine materials for future presentation.
Thomas, Stephanie and Emmerich, Karla, "Sensory Processing Disorder: Raising Awareness" (2009). Occupational Therapy Capstones. 315.