Continuing Education Report: What Our Pediatric Therapists Are Learning

pediatric therapy continuing educationOur team of pediatric therapists seeks to deliver the best possible care to help change the lives of children in need. To provide high-quality pediatric therapy, it’s important for us to continue to develop professionally and to pursue opportunities to learn and grow as therapists. That’s why our team members regularly attend continuing education courses.

Our therapists have either recently attended or will soon attend the following courses to deepen their understanding of various topics related to pediatric therapy and child development. We will hold a meeting this August during which we’ll hear presentations from our therapists about these classes. Here’s a brief overview of each topic:

Rhythm Words Integrative Dance (Attendee: Marisol Pineda, OTR/L)
This certification course – which involves research-based lectures and hands-on activities – teaches attendees how the rhythm and dance program Rhythm Works Integrative Dance can be customized to improve individual outcomes for patients with ADHD, autism spectrum disorder, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, sensory processing disorder, and other special needs.

Baby Steps: Building Ambulation Interventions for Infants and Young Children with Posture and Movement Dysfunction (Attendee: Brittney Ferrone, PT, DPT)
This course focuses on early ambulation and interventions for the newborn to 3-year-old population. It informs pediatric clinicians about normal and abnormal aspects of gait in young children. Topics covered include examining typical and atypical gait patterns, determining and incorporating therapeutic interventions, and applying interventions during treatment sessions in the clinic and at home. The program has both lecture and hands-on portions and will teach attendees strategies for specific diagnoses such as Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, and developmental delay, among others.

Improving Function: Tools to Enhance Motor Learning, Motor Control and Strength (Attendee: Sarah Kelly, PT, DPT)
Clinicians who attend this course are informed about how characteristics of autism, cerebral palsy, and other neuromotor diagnoses affect motor control, motor learning, strength, and function for children of all ages (birth to teenage years). This intermediate level lecture and lab course involves the presentation of evidence-based examination and intervention strategies that promote motor learning and functional outcomes based on a child’s specific diagnosis.

If You Can’t Breathe, You Can’t Function (Attendee: Shannon Murphy, PT, DPT)
Attendees learn about the effect of regulation of trunk pressures and breathing mechanics on postural control. Topics covered include training on assessing breathing patterns to identify the right interventions for patients. The course also reviews interventions to improve postural control (e.g., breathing facilitation techniques) and ventilatory and movement strategies.

Therapeutic Evaluation and Treatment of Toe Walking/Pediatric Equinus Gait (Attendee: Julie Hesch, PT, DPT)
This course teaches clinicians how to ask the right questions to establish a systematic approach to treating a child who “toe walks.” By identifying causes and appropriate intervention strategies, pediatric therapists can develop an effective treatment plan that leads to successful long-term results.

PROMPT (Attendee: Erica Suennen, MS, CCC-SLP)
PROMPT is a tactile-kinesthetic method to increase the repertoire and accuracy of phonemes – distinct units of sound in a language that differentiate one word from another (e.g., the p and b in “pad” and “bad”). This course covers the application of PROMPT to the pediatric population.

Fluency (Presenter: Quinn Goodwin, MS, CCC-SLP)
This course will be written and presented by one of our speech therapists at our continuing education meeting in August. It will cover fluency disorders in children, including the distinction between developmental stuttering and atypical fluency disorders. Additionally, the course will detail the different types of fluency disorders and address treatment options to assist children in overcoming these conditions.

At Little Steps, we’ve devoted to providing comprehensive and compassionate care to children of all ages. To learn more about our team of pediatric therapists and the services we offer, please call 847-707-6744 or email           

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