On February 24th, 2017, LIH Olivia’s Place Shenzhen Pediatric Center successfully hosted its first Spring Parent & Teacher Community Presentation. The topic was “Sensory Motor Strategies Help Promote Children’s Self-Help and Self-Care Skills”, with approximately 700 audience members attending the workshop online and offline. Dr. Fengyi Kuo (occupational therapist), the presenter, first introduced our sensory system and how it works with our central nervous system by engaging the audience in sensory activities during the talk. Audience members were then able to quickly grasp the concept and learn the reasons behind a child’s seemingly troublesome behaviors, which Dr. Kuo explained might be signs of sensory needs. Dr. Kuo also taught the audience to use Alert Program as a tool to help parents and teachers communicate with their children about identifying their sensory levels (“engine speeds”) and learn strategies to regulate their ups and downs.
“The presentation was very interactive and provided practical strategies for me to use in classroom”, one teacher from Princeton-Shenzhen International Children's Learning Center said. She told Dr. Kuo that they had trouble making children pay attention in their classrooms, and now they would try to incorporate sensory-motor activities in between to make it more fun and engaging for their children.
During the Q&A session, Dr. Kuo passed out fun tools she uses in her occupational therapy sessions for the audience to get more ideas of activities to do to promote children’s sensory-motor development. Daily items, such as straws, chalkboards, sponges, shaving cream, and gum, can all be used as fun tools to provide sensory experiences. “Dr. Kuo surprised me by making occupational therapy so accessible and approachable to us, and I thought it would be quite a complicated topic before”, a parent said, “I look forward to attending the upcoming workshops and learning more about ways to support my child.”