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What is Occupational Therapy?

· mission,homeschool ideas,occupation

Interestingly to the homeschool world, Charlotte Mason spoke frequently in her books about occupation. She mentioned the term primarily when referring to chores/ habit training and with handicrafts. The definition she used was any activity that occupies one's time. Occupational Therapy as a profession was founded in 1917, which was during Charlotte Mason's lifetime. Hence the commonality of the term. Today, the term is often confusing since most think of occupation as a career. I have never, and probably will never, advise a person in their job choices. Well, maybe with my own children... I will, however, help people participate in how they choose to occupy their time.

Simply put, Occupational Therapy is used today to help people of all ages participate in their desired activities, otherwise known as "occupations". For young children, this is play. For school aged children, this is still play but also added in school responsibilities and starting to take care of themselves. Occupational therapists help teenagers with social participation, skills needed to transition to the work force, and higher level activities around the house like cooking and cleaning. This progression continues all the way to late life stages.

My role within the homeschool setting is to consider the student and what they need and want to do. We then discuss what is keeping the student from succeeding. This could be something that we can rehabilitate within the person like strength, endurance, executive functioning, and frequently sensory regulation. It could be something we can adjust within the environment like seating and ergonomics, a busy environment, or the the order of a schedule. Finally, it may be the occupation. We may need to adjust the size of paper used or weight of a ball in soccer. Whatever the issue, we as the parent-consultant team will discuss, set goals, and address.

I believe a parent knows their child best so is, therefore the best educator. I believe each child was purposefully and wonderfully made. Since those beliefs are at the core of Collins Academy Therapy Service, I believe I can use my skills as an Occupational Therapist to help you and your child succeed in this crazy, beautiful world of homeschooling. Please contact me to set up your consultation.

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