Occupational Therapy

  • Sensory Processing

    All of us engage in sensory activities that help keep us alert and better able to attend to our daily tasks. Examples include drinking a bottle of water throughout the day, doodling during a meeting to help stay focused, or stretching after a long period of sitting. These activities serve to keep us alert and functioning throughout our day. When a student is not properly processing sensory information, it may interfere with routine functional skills. Some students need specific sensory opportunities throughout the day, in order to maintain proper alertness and organization for learning. For these students, a specifically tailored sensory plan may be beneficial. Differences in processing can occur in any of the senses: sight, touch, taste, smell, hearing, vestibular, or proprioception.

    Some students may be over-sensitive in certain systems, while other students may be under-sensitive. A student with over-sensitive sensory processing, when bombarded with too much or too intense information, may have difficulty organizing the information for an appropriate learning response. For example, when a student is unable to filter out non-pertinent auditory information, they may not be able to adequately focus on what the teacher is saying. A student with under-sensitive sensory processing may have the need to touch every thing in his environment, or may take risks due to lack of feeling pain. For example, a child may enjoy jumping and crashing into the furniture, because the deep pressure gives positive input. However, they often get hurt because they have difficulty knowing when to stop.

    Please refer to this website for ideas to help with sensory processing issues: