Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Cut, Rip, Crumple, and Throw

This is one of my favorite activities to do with students.  People forget how hard ripping can be.  It is a GREAT fine motor tasks.  I also love how this activity gets kids to use the tips of their fingers and strengthen the in-hand muscles.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Classroom Supports for Focus, Attention, and Emotional Regulation

I find that many students benefit from some sensory supports to help maintain focus.  Visual prompts are extremely useful to help students manage their behavior.  Click on this picture for a downloadable file.

Click on picture to download file.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

This is one of the best handouts I've found for sensory accommodations in the classroom.

Click on picture for download.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Lower Case Practice

I have noticed that many students have not achieved automaticity with their handwriting.  This greatly affect handwriting speed and thought generation.  I have seen many older students (2nd and 3rd graders) struggle with writing a sentence because they loose their train of thought half way through the sentence.

I am working more rhythm and timing tasks into my practice to help increase processing speed.  In addition, students need to be able to recall the image and motor plan of a letter without a visual cue.  I developed these worksheets for this purpose.

Click here to see the product on my TpT page.  

Hope you like it.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Favorite product!

These are great!  So many of my students love to fidget with items in their hand to keep them focused.  This item is great on so many levels:
- hand strengthening - check!
- fidget - check!
- scented - check!
- affordable - check!
- non-intrusive - check!
- kid friendly - check!

Click on the picture below for a link to purchase some for yourself.

Monday, August 17, 2015

TPT store

Hey everybody!  Check out my brand new TPT store.  I have a couple freebies, and one OT welcome packet for teachers.  It took me FOREVER to put together, but it is chocked full of great info.  I plan to use this to introduce myself to the new teachers at my school, and to educate teachers about what OT can offer in the school system.

Joanna Verdone TPT page

Classroom Coping Skills

Back to school time is here!  I made this visual to help teachers to manage difficult behaviors in the classroom.  This tool does a few different things:
1. Helps the student to name and rate their feelings.
2. Gives the student tools in order to change their attitude.
3. Helps the teacher teach the student to manage their own behavior.
4. Gives the student and teacher concrete words and meaning for emotions.
5. Helps with self regulation for the student.

I am going to be giving this out to all my elementary teachers.  I will include the following directions for use:

You can use this visual in a few different ways:

  1. Go over the packet with the student at a time they are calm and open to instruction.  You will not be able to teach them when they are in the midst of being upset.
  2. Try to have the student either point or rate their emotions before and after they take a break or do an activity.  If they are too upset at first, have them think about how they felt before they took a break.
  3. Look for signs the student’s body is reacting to an emotional state: sweating, red face/cheeks/ears, dilated pupils, fast breathing, gritting teeth.
  4. When you see a student getting out of control, bring them over and read the packet together and have the student pick which activity they would like to do in order to calm down.
  5. After you have talked to the students about these activities, show one of the visuals to a student who is starting to become upset.  Have them perform one of the activities and then check in with you when they come back.
  6. Always check in with the student after performing a “cool down” activity.  Look for signs that they have regained control such as: slower heart rate, slower breathing rate, normal pupil size, calm appearance.
  7. Depending on the age of the child, you may be able to train them to perform these activities on their own in the hallway.  
  8. For older students (2nd-4th) You can use the “Take a Break Card” as a silent visual that the student needs to do something to change their mood.  Younger students will have to be supervised either in the classroom or in the hallway.