In general, you should try to cover a variety of exercises with clients at each session. You can pick exercises from the general categories outlined in ‘Planning Activities‘. There are a variety of exercises to choose from in each category, with more being added all the time. Do not feel that you have to do all activities, but you should try them all.
You might be able to cover all categories over the course of an entire week, even though you will not be able to cover all categories in one sitting. An 8-month program might look something like this:
Months 0-2: Emphasize gross motor skills, balance, VSA skills.
Months 3-4: Emphasize VSA and VSP skills.
Months 5-6: Emphasize VMI, VSA, VSP skills.
Months 7-8: Emphasize low-level and high-level reading skills.
This assumes 6h/wk of training or so, with some activities being repeated to make them harder (See ‘Loading’). Whether the program is of an 8-month duration or shorter, the sequencing would be somewhat similar, depending on the skills of the client and what was required. Most programming sequences currently run for 3-4 months and can be repeated or extended to continue to work on trouble areas.
Again, you must ensure that you integrate activities from a variety of skill areas (See ‘Planning Activities’) at each session, but you are encouraged to emphasize skills as indicated above. Bear in mind, this is a guideline only. If a child is finding gross motor activities too simple or trivial, then move on. Likewise, if an activity is too hard, then un-load it, or simply forgo the activity for the time being.
In effect, you should try to do all the activities at an ever increasing degree of difficulty so long as the child remains engaged. If they are good at an activity and find it tedious, move on. The order of activities is somewhat arbitrary, but you should ensure easier activities are mastered before moving to harder activities. Sequencing is critical and you should try to follow the general pattern laid out above. In other words, don’t simply pick any activity and start with that – have a plan. You should try to incorporate activities from all categories AT ALL TIMES, even though some areas will be emphasized more heavily at different times. For example, reading exercises will be difficult at first, so pick easy ones the child can succeed with, then later move to more complex activities.
Short-term (lesson) sequencing, that is, what you do in any one session/sitting, should follow these guidelines:
- Begin with focus and self-control exercises. This time is necessary to set the stage for therapy.
- Work on paper-pencil excercises (VSA/VSP).
- VSA exercises in free space (non-pencil-paper type exercises), auditory and memory exercises.
- Gross motor and spatial awareness activities.
Download the following document to assist with planning your program:
Watch for updates to this document as new activities are added.