Did you know that YOU, your child’s parent or primary caregiver, are THE most important part of your child’s therapy team? No doubt your TEIS therapist has told you this multiple times. As therapists, we are there to guide you and your family in your child’s journey to reaching his or her developmental milestones to the best of his or her ability. YOU are the reason your child continues to make progress, NOT us!
We understand that entering the Early Intervention system is often overwhelming and scary at first, especially if your child was recently diagnosed or you did not expect your child to qualify for Early Intervention services. At TEIS, all of our therapists aim to keep an open line of communication with the families we serve, so always remember “There is NO such thing as a stupid question!”. The more we communicate with you as a team, the better off our team will operate and you are the key player on our team in addition to your child. If we are talking about something or doing something in therapy that you don’t understand, please ask us why! Sometimes, some of us have been doing this job a long while and forget to explain the “hows and whys” of what we are working on with your child. Because we do this every day, what is common place to us as therapists, we realize, can be totally new and confusing for you.
Early Intervention is NOT like outpatient therapy. Some families expect that we will come to your home and bring a bag of tricks and expect families to keep siblings in another room and leave the therapist and child in seclusion so they can “do therapy”. This is NOT the case at all! Early Intervention services are built around your own family routines and is meant to be fun and play based, and we realize that each family we serve is different. Therapy is not a one size fits all approach, nor should it be. We want you and anyone else who cares for your child on a regular basis (siblings, grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles, friends, neighbors, child care staff) involved in your child’s therapy sessions. Our aim is to TEACH and give families and caregivers the guidance and the tools they need for their child to reach his developmental milestones and make your daily routines with your child easier.
Need suggestions on making bath time easier? TEIS can help. Need ideas for age appropriate toys for your 18 month old? TEIS can help. Need ways to work on stair climbing, but don’t have stairs in your home? Ask TEIS! Need ways to help your child communicate using gestures? Ask TEIS! Really, there is no question related to your child’s development or your family’s routines that we can’t help with…and if your specific therapist doesn’t know the answer, he or she will consult our TEIS team of therapists to find someone who can help answer your question. Remember, we have physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech therapists, developmental therapists and nutritionists on staff. So even though your child may only be receiving one service, the expertise of all of our team members is always available.
So, while at times it may be tempting to use your child’s therapy session as “babysitting” or “break time” we NEED your input. We are typically in your home one hour, one time per week. You are with your child the other 23 hours of that day and all 24 hours of each and every day of the rest of the week. It is what we teach and demonstrate in our one hour weekly session, and what you learn in our one hour session and carry over daily throughout the week that helps your child progress and succeed! Please always make it a point to be available or have another primary caregiver at home or at child care directly involved in your child’s therapy session. We always leave a copy of our session note for your records after each therapy session, so you can always see what your child worked on that day, how she is progressing toward meeting her goals and objectives and some ways to continue to work on certain skills throughout the week until the next therapy session occurs.