I always say how much I love being an OT. I also love to learn. I’ve been so lucky that I’m still energized and excited about my profession.
However….. sometimes you need to shake things up a bit.
Last year, I became certified in PuzzleArt Therapy Systems, a form of therapy that combines Perceptual, Oculomotor, Binocular and PuzzleArt Therapy Sensory protocols using hands-on art. I’ve always been interested in the vision aspect of Occupational Therapy, so I was really eager to learn new ways to incorporate PuzzleArt Therapy into my Occupational Therapy sessions.
What is PuzzleArt Therapy? PuzzleArt Therapy is a program designed to assess and remediate problems with visual motor integration, visual perceptual skills, oculomotor skills, etc.
The course is taught by International PuzzleArtist Alli Berman and Dr. Susan Fisher, a respected Optometrist in Westbury, NY. Occupational Therapists Linda Telford and Serena Zeidler also helped to design the materials to give a therapist’s perspective on the program.
If you are an OT, this course is accredited by NYSOTA and NBCOT. You can get a certification in PuzzleArt Therapy Systems while getting your CEU’s all in one day.
How Can You Use PuzzleArt Therapy?
What I really love about the program is how it combines sensory, gross motor, and visual components into every activity.
AND… every single activity can be adapted and used a ton of different ways. I often push-in to special education classes to work with multiple children at once or even the whole class. I love how this program can be easily used with a whole class while addressing:
- Johnny’s gross motor weakness
- Sally’s visual tracking
- Matthew’s fine motor weakness
- Brenda’s left/right coordination
- Gerry’s balance issues
- Alex’s letter reversals
- Mark’s difficulty copying from the board
WOW. I can work on all of that in just one thirty minute session! I love using my PuzzleArt Therapy materials and vision assessment. I’ve been using the PuzzleArt Therapy System with all of my push-in classes. The self-contained classes range from Kindergarten to 5th grade. The children represent a variety of levels of functioning.
What I’ve found is amazing. I’m able to use different aspects of the PuzzleArt Therapy System with all of my classes to address all of the children’s needs in different ways.
Talk about differentiated instruction!
PuzzleArt THeraPY for WHole Class OT
For my Kindergarten class, I had the children stand on the rug and I put a PuzzleArt tracking sheet on the Smartboard. We worked on tracking from left to right as we identified the letters and colors. We also worked left/right coordination and crossing midline as we switched arms to point as we called out the letters. We worked on trunk stability and upper extremity stability as the children practiced keeping “tight bellies” while switching our arms. Then we practiced the One-Two Finger Follow – pretty tricky for my little guys.
In my fifth grade class, we worked on tracking and copying from the board. Some of the children copied by letter, and some by color, depending on their levels. My higher functioning students had to do both! While some children worked diligently to copy letter by letter, others were done quickly. So they spent the remaining time searching for sight words! All of this occurred at the same table in the same half hour. I was able to work with every single student to meet their “just right challenge”. It was awesome.
This therapeutic tool is something I reach for again and again. Not only is it fun, it’s simple, requires little setup, and literally can address hundreds of goals. It’s a win-win. I’m hooked.
It is geared toward:
TBI and PTSD Professionals
AND- GREAT NEWS!
If you are interested in attending The Next Training, register with the code “MissJaimeOT25” to get A Discounted rate and a Free Gift Valued at $25 dollars…
Check out this you tube video about Puzzle Art
Again, don’t forget to use the code “MissJaimeOT25” to get your free gift if you plan to attend. Tell them Miss Jaime, O.T. sent you!
Want to learn more? PuzzleArt Therapy was just featured in the Open Journal of Occupational Therapy!
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