Teaching Special Needs Kids How to Write? I Wrote a Handout Pack for YOU!

My handout packs for pre-writing and handwriting with neurotypical kids have been a big success; lots of therapists, teachers, and parents have learned things that took me decades of professional experience and continuing education to master! NOW…it is time for children with special needs to get their own handout pack! I started with an expanded…… Continue reading Teaching Special Needs Kids How to Write? I Wrote a Handout Pack for YOU!

Toothbrushing Tools For Autism That Work!

Families ask me to come to their homes and teach their autistic kid how to correctly brush and floss their teeth.  As an occupational therapist, I know good tools can do half of my work for me (Shush:  don’t tell anybody that it isn’t always my many years of training and experience that make the…… Continue reading Toothbrushing Tools For Autism That Work!

Why Your Kid With hEDS Doesn’t Seem to Know They Need the Potty… Right Now!

    “Daddy….I gotta go.  Right NOWWWW!” No parent wants to hear this coming from the back seat of their car while driving down a freeway or on a rural road.  But it happens.  And it can happen to older kids with hypermobile Ehlers Danlos syndrome (hEDS), well past early childhood.  It can happen to…… Continue reading Why Your Kid With hEDS Doesn’t Seem to Know They Need the Potty… Right Now!

Finally… A Desk Chair For Your Hypermobile Kid, And it Has a Footrest!

  The SitRite chair might be for you. After sending parents to the Stokke website for years, it became clear that this chair wasn’t “all that” for every kid.  No armrests, a really hard seat, and once a child pushed away from the table or desk, they needed an adult to help them get closer…… Continue reading Finally… A Desk Chair For Your Hypermobile Kid, And it Has a Footrest!

How To Start Toilet Training..Today

Many parents believe that their special needs child isn’t ready to train, and might not be for years. They have doctors and teachers who agree. That is a shame, because they can begin the process right away. Today. Regardless of whether a child has the neurological maturation or the receptive language to do “boot camp”…… Continue reading How To Start Toilet Training..Today

Low Tone In The Summertime Heat? 4 Reasons To Hydrate

Here in the northeast, we are simmering all day, every day.  The little ones on my caseload with low muscle tone are getting floppier and crabbier with each week at camp or daycare. We know why. The effects of heat on muscles is a big part of the problem.  Bring them indoors in the A/C,…… Continue reading Low Tone In The Summertime Heat? 4 Reasons To Hydrate

A Fun Way to Help Kids With Low Tone Stand Up Straight: Stomp-Stomp!

Kids with hypermobility or low tone are often found standing in the most dysfunctional of positions.  Toes pointing in, feet rolled in or out, feet on top of each other: take your pick, because these kids will alternate between these wobbly choices and more!  Read How To Improve Posture In Children With Low Muscle Tone… Without…… Continue reading A Fun Way to Help Kids With Low Tone Stand Up Straight: Stomp-Stomp!

Why Joint Protection Solutions for Hypermobility Aren’t Your Granny’s Joint Protection Strategies

I spent almost 10 years working in adult rehab before I transitioned to pediatrics.  I still teach joint protection, but I teach it differently to hypermobile kids and their parents.  Kids rarely have JRA, or joint damage in general.  What they have in spades are serious degrees of hypermobility.  And the methods to use joint…… Continue reading Why Joint Protection Solutions for Hypermobility Aren’t Your Granny’s Joint Protection Strategies

Toilet Training? Your Child Needs the Right Shorts!

  In my first e-book, The Practical Guide to Toilet Training Your Child With Low Muscle Tone, I wrote almost a full chapter just on clothing management.  If your child needs you to pull clothing on and off, they are NOT fully trained.  And if they have clothes that make it impossible for them to…… Continue reading Toilet Training? Your Child Needs the Right Shorts!

Helping Children With Low Muscle Tone Manage Summertime Heat

I write a version of this post every summer.  Puzzled parents ask me about their child’s sometimes dramatic reactions to playing outside in the heat.  Kids are melting like popsicles, tripping and whining.  Time to explain the way low tone and heat interact to create less safety, less stability, and less cooperation. Yup, low tone…… Continue reading Helping Children With Low Muscle Tone Manage Summertime Heat

Is Your Child With Low Tone “Too Busy” to Make it to the Potty?

Since writing my first e-book, The Practical Guide to Toilet Training Your Child With Low Muscle Tone, I have fielded a ton of questions about the later stages of potty training.  One stumbling block for most children appears to be “potty fatigue”.  They lose the early excitement of mastery, and they get wrapped up in…… Continue reading Is Your Child With Low Tone “Too Busy” to Make it to the Potty?

How To Improve Posture In Children With Low Muscle Tone… Without a Fight!

With pediatric occupational therapy going on at home using parents as surrogate therapists, it isn’t helpful to ask a parent to do too much repositioning of children with low tone.  First of all, kids don’t like it.  Second, kids really don’t like it. I have never met a child that enjoys therapeutic handling, no matter…… Continue reading How To Improve Posture In Children With Low Muscle Tone… Without a Fight!

Potty Training in the COVID-19 Age

  Parents are staying home with their toddlers and preschoolers now.  All day.  While this can be a challenge, it can also be the right time to do potty training. Here’s how to make it work when you want to teach your toddler how to “make” in the potty: You don’t have to wait for…… Continue reading Potty Training in the COVID-19 Age

Joint Protection And Hypermobility: Investing in Your Child’s Future

  Parents of hypermobile kids are taught early on not to pull on limbs while dressing them or picking them up.  It is less common to teach children how to protect their own joints. In fact, parents may be encouraged by their child’s doctors to let them be “as active as they want to be,…… Continue reading Joint Protection And Hypermobility: Investing in Your Child’s Future

The JointSmart Child Series: Parents of Young Hypermobile Children Can Feel More Empowered and Confident Today!

My first book, The Practical Guide to Toilet Training Your Child With Low Muscle Tone, was a wonderful experience to write and share.  The number of daily hits on one of my most popular blog posts  Hypermobility and Proprioception: Why Loose Joints Create Sensory Processing Problems for Children helped me figure out what my next e-book…… Continue reading The JointSmart Child Series: Parents of Young Hypermobile Children Can Feel More Empowered and Confident Today!

Have a Child With Low Tone or a Hypermobile Baby? Pay More Attention to How You Pick Your Little One Up

Carrying and holding kids is such a natural thing to do.  But when your child has hypermobility due to low muscle tone, joint issues or a connective tissue disorder, how you accomplish these simple tasks makes a difference.  Your actions can do more than get them from one position or location to another: they can…… Continue reading Have a Child With Low Tone or a Hypermobile Baby? Pay More Attention to How You Pick Your Little One Up

Kids With Low Muscle Tone: The Hidden Problems With Strollers

Whether you live in the city or the ‘burbs, you almost certainly use a stroller for your infant or toddler.  Even parents who use slings or carriers for “baby wearing”  find themselves needing a stroller at some point.  Why are strollers a problem for children with low muscle tone?  The answer is simple:  sling seats…… Continue reading Kids With Low Muscle Tone: The Hidden Problems With Strollers

Picking The Best Bikes, Scooters, Etc. For Kids With Low Tone and Hypermobility

Welcome to the world of faster (and faster) movement! After mastering walking and possibly running, kids are often eager to jump on a ride-on toy and get moving.  If a child has had motor delays and has had to wait to develop the strength and balance needed to use a bike, they may be a…… Continue reading Picking The Best Bikes, Scooters, Etc. For Kids With Low Tone and Hypermobility

Hypermobile Kids, Sleep, And The Hidden Problems With Blankets

Everyone knows that sleep is important.  Research in sleep science (yes, this is a thing) tells us that our brains are working to digest the day’s learning, the immune system is active during sleep, and our bodies are repairing and renewing tissues and organs while we slumber.  As much as we need sleep, kids need…… Continue reading Hypermobile Kids, Sleep, And The Hidden Problems With Blankets

A Simple Strategy To Improve Your Child’s Posture In A Stokke Tripp Trapp or Special Tomato Chair

Therapists often recommend these well-designed seats for kids that need solid foot support, but even the best hip and chest strapping doesn’t always mean that a child is actively using their feet for postural control. As a young therapist, I used tape, foam, and towel rolls everywhere, as if I was creating a modern sculpture.…… Continue reading A Simple Strategy To Improve Your Child’s Posture In A Stokke Tripp Trapp or Special Tomato Chair

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