How are things going at preschool? Do you have a 3, 4 or 5 year old at home? Occupational Therapists help preschoolers get ready for kindergarten by helping them build important fine motor, sensory processing and social skills. If your child is experiencing any of the following that limit his or her participation in the classroom, then OT intervention can be helpful. Click Here for a Printable Version.
How Do I Know If My Preschooler Needs Occupational Therapy?
- Says “I can’t” or “I won’t” to age appropriate activities
- Needs more practice than other children to learn new skills
- Clumsy, falls frequently
- Low muscle tone; seems weak or floppy
- Bumps into furniture or people, has trouble judging body in relation to space around him/her
- Dislikes coloring in lines, doing puzzles or cutting with scissors
- Overly active, unable to slow down
- Short attention span. Moves quickly from one toy to another.
- Delayed language development
- Difficulty self-calming
- Doesn’t notice or over-reacts to touch, taste, sounds, or smells
- Dislikes bathing, cuddling, or haircuts
- Very picky eater. Eliminates eating whole food groups.
- Has difficulty handling unexpected changes and transitions
- Difficulty following 1 to 2 step directions
- Avoids playground activities. Prefers sedentary play.
- Does not enjoy jumping, swings or having feet off the ground
- Finds it difficult to make friends with children of the same age.
- Prefers to play with adults or younger children rather than peers
- Easily frustrated or lacks of confidence to try new things
If you find that your child is experiencing several of these challenges at home or preschool, then it would be worth having your child assessed.
Many parents worry about their child being feeling different, however if foundational kindergarten readiness skills are not addressed early on, kids may struggle more later on. OT sessions should be really fun, because all of the “work” happens through play. The primary goal of OT is to find ways to help your child be more successful, so if you think there’s a problem, my advice to you… Don’t wait!
Early intervention is essential to give your child the tools he or she needs for school readiness and to play with confidence. Check out the most important developmental foundations for your child’s development.
If you’re ready for this next step, I encourage you to contact your home school, ask your pediatrician for local referrals or come visit us at Stepping Stones Therapy Network in Bellevue, WA!