Why Teachers are the Game Changers in Therapy

Why Teachers are the Game Changers in Therapy


Whether you are new to speech, occupational, physical, or behavioral health therapy or your child has been in one of these therapies for a while, it is important to remember how crucial the teacher’s role is for success. Therapy sessions make up a small amount of time in the child’s life. Change really happens when children are involved in daily activities aimed at improving their skills. This only happens when teachers are involved and encourage practice within the school setting. Here are just a few reasons why teacher involvement is so beneficial. 

Teachers understand their students better than almost anyone else Period.

As children start therapy, it may or may not take time for them to be comfortable with their therapist. It could be that the child is uncertain how to act around a new face or in a new environment. Perhaps the therapist is asking the child to do a difficult physical activity that the child has previously avoided. Every child is different and teachers can help the transition to therapy by getting involved in the sessions. 

Teachers Improve Enjoyment

Teachers know what games or toys excite the child. They also understand how the child learns best. Teachers can improve enjoyment of the activities and success when working with a new therapist. After all, therapists don’t want children to be miserable each session! In pediatric therapy it is important for therapists to be creative in order to make the activities as fun as possible because they know it might be difficult for the child. They strive to make sessions entertaining for children in order to encourage a love of activity and practice.

It’s easier to carryover changes at school when the teacher is    involved during sessions.

Teachers can help in this process by participating in activities geared towards improving their child’s deficits. Seeing the teacher actively involved can increase participation and willingness to continue. This can become a great way for the teacher and child to play/work together at school. After all, if the child is having fun in therapy it’s likely the teacher will have more fun too. This also makes practicing with the teacher at school much easier. 

Active Participation

Not only is it pertinent that the child enjoys therapy, but therapists want teachers to get the most out of each session as well. With active participation in a session, teachers will be provided with education and first hand experience helping the child achieve their goals. Therapists can educate on why certain activities are difficult for the child, how they measure success, and how to make changes at school to help with the achievement of goals. 

Active participation can reduce time needed for Therapy

While this may not always ring true, the likelihood of reducing time spent in therapy or reaching results faster increases when teachers are involve during sessions and at school.  Making improvements in strength, flexibility, or gross motor skills doesn’t happen when children are only involved in 30 minutes to 1 hour of therapy each week. This is not enough time or frequency to make those big changes. Teacher involvement can improve participation, increase enjoyment, and speed up success. Active participation from teachers should be achieved each session in order for the child and adult to gain as much as possible each visit.


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