Those involved in teaching and caring for children and adults with exceptionalities are familiar with sensory processing challenges. Heightened or even diminished sensitivity to stimuli reaching the five senses of hearing, sight, touch, smell and taste cause either avoidance or seeking of certain sensations. Often, occupational therapy (OT) is recommended for sensory integration – a common route to help individuals cope with their sensitivities.
Some examples of sensory processing issues include:
Excessive preference for particular textures of clothing or food.
Experiencing a panic attack when the school bell rings.
Or in contrast, having no response upon hearing a fire alarm.
Covering eyes when faced by bright lights.
Anger at getting a waft of a certain scent.
Hitting, screaming, throwing tantrums or isolating oneself in reaction to an unpleasant feeling.
March. The third month of the year, my birthday month, and the month to commemorate my most treasured activity – reading! 1 March saw us observing World Book Day.
World Book Day is one of my favourite days. Not only is it a day to celebrate what I love but it is also a day I reminisce a wonderful childhood spent curled up with a book in hand. While there are adults who discover reading in later years, after stumbling upon a genre they enjoy, the majority of bookworms have been reading since they were very young. A love for reading most often begins early. Just like a lot of other matters in childhood, reading must be encouraged gently and lovingly. I know this is easier said than done, especially with struggling readers.
As 2015 draws to a close I can’t help but reflect on the year gone by. Special education is an ever changing, fast paced and challenging field. Working with children is tough, gratifying, stressful and joyful all at the same time! The burn out rate among special educators is extremely high. Personally, the highlight of the year was the chance to slow down. Continue reading “New Beginnings”→