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OTS 123 - Incorporating Movement and Sensory in the Classroom

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Welcome to the show notes for Episode 123 of the OT Schoolhouse Podcast.

Ready to talk All Things Sensory?

In this episode of the OT Schoolhouse podcast, Jayson interviews Rachel Harrington, COTA/L AC, and Jessica Hill, COTA/L, about incorporating movement and sensory activities in the classroom and at home.

We discuss sensory diets, fidgets, primitive reflexes, and other strategies for supporting children with sensory needs. Jessica and Rachel also share practical tips for teachers, parents, and caregivers on how to create a sensory-friendly environment and promote self-regulation.

Tune in to learn more!

Listen now to learn the following objectives:

  • Learn how sensory diets can help children regulate their sensory input throughout the day.

  • Learn how fidgets can be a helpful tool for children who need to move or have tactile stimulation.

  • Identify how primitive reflexes can impact a child's development and should be addressed through movement activities.

  • Learn how you can help teachers to incorporate movement breaks into their lessons to help students stay focused.


Impactful Quotes From the Episode

"Kids need to move more. So we always recommend that if they are sitting in the classroom or sitting down for a focus task for 30 minutes, then after 30 minutes, they get up and move for between five and fifteen minutes" -Jessica Hill, COTA/L

"We like to teach practitioners and teachers and parents to incorporate these functional movements, that not only wake up the brain and facilitate that sensory break, but they're also rhythmic, and they're also beneficial for working towards integrating those reflexes" -Rachel Harrington, COTA/L AC

“When it comes to educating our teachers, we need to recognize the limited time that they have, and they just want the strategies that they can use right now” -Jayson Davies, M.A, OTR/L

"75% of a classroom has retained primitive reflexes" -Rachel Harrington, COTA/L AC

"We're all sensory beings, and so all students can benefit from these sensory activities that the therapists are providing to the teachers, and so just teaching them how to do it with the entire class is important" -Jessica Hill, COTA/L

Guest Bio

Rachel Harrington and Jessica Hill are Harkla's in-house Certified Occupational Therapy Assistants (COTA). They have worked with children for over seven years in outpatient pediatric settings. They specialize in sensory integration, primitive reflexes, teaching regulation strategies, and child development. They are the hosts of the All Things Sensory Podcast and have created several digital courses for parents, therapists, and educators.

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Thanks for visiting the podcast show notes! If you enjoyed this episode, be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcast, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts


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