Depending on your child’s individual needs, Stepping Stones is able to offer a comprehensive assessment of their abilities and overall functional capacity, or a handwriting assessment. If you are concerned with any of the following areas of your childs development, Stepping Stones can help:
Assessments in Newcastle, Charlestown, Merewether & Toronto
Handwriting is a complex skill that involves many different components. Occupational therapists are trained to assess each of the different components, to see where the breakdown is happening for your child.
The main components involved in handwriting include:
- postural stability (i.e.: to be able to sit upright at their desk)
- visual perception (i.e.: being able to accurately interpret what you’re seeing)
- Fine motor coordination (i.e.: using the fingers and hands in a coordinated way)
- Pencil grasp and pressure used
- Pencil control and fluency
- Letter and number recognition
- Formation of letters and numbers
If your child is struggling with slow or messy handwriting, then Stepping Stones can offer a detailed assessment of handwriting legibility and speed. Assessments will include a range of standardised and observational tasks that the child is asked to do in our clinic. It is also useful to bring along a handwriting sample from your child’s school work books.
Assessment information can be used to design a treatment program to help improve speed and/ or legibility. It can also be used to write a letter in support of Special Provisions for NAPLAN, HSC or other requirements.
Handwriting assessments are typically done over a 1 hour period.
Stepping Stones Therapy for Children is proud to offer Functional Capacity Assessments (FCAs) for children who are accessing the NDIS. FCAs are in-depth assessments that provide valuable information about a child’s abilities and any diagnoses they may have. Our FCAs capture important details about how a child can participate in all aspects of life and the level of assistance they require.
We cover in depth, all of the FCA areas required by the NDIS including all aspects of your child’s:
- Social interaction
- Social participation
- Economic participation
At Stepping Stones Therapy for Children, we understand the importance of providing the NDIS with all the relevant information they require. In order to do this, our FCAs usually require 1.5 hours for an in-depth caregiver interview; 1 hour for any necessary standardised assessments; 1.5 hours for a home or school visit; 3 hours for report reading, assessment scoring; and liaising with other professionals involved in your child’s care; and up to 6 hours for report writing.
It’s important to note that our FCAs may not take as much time as outlined above, as this is a maximum guide. Contact us now to book an FCA for your child and get the comprehensive information NDIS needs to help support your child’s development.
Contact us today to make an enquiry about booking a FCA for your child now.
Occupational therapists are trained to assess children’s independence and participation across a range of different daily life activities such as:
- Dressing, bathing and personal hygiene
- Eating skills (including picky eating) and meal preparation
- Completing age appropriate chores
- Following routines
- Social skills including making and keeping friends
- School participation
- Play skills
- Community participation (including attending extra-curricular activities)
- Getting to sleep and staying asleep
Where there is a disruption in a child’s ability to participate in any of these areas, the occupational therapist is able to make a comprehensive assessment of the underlying challenges that might be contributing. Assessments may involve both standardised assessment tools and the therapists’ own detailed observations.
The occupational therapist will look in detail at the child’s:
- Motor coordination (including fine and gross motor)
- Muscle strength and tone
- Sensory skills
- Cognitive skills (e.g.: attention, memory, problem solving, flexible thinking)
- Social skills
- Self-regulation skills (i.e.: ability to manage emotions)
This information will be used to design a treatment plan and to set specific functional goals that are important to you and your child. This information can also be put into a comprehensive Functional Capacity Report, that can be used to help others involved in your child’s life understand your child’s unique strengths and any areas where they need some additional support. A Functional Capacity Report is also useful for those considering applying to the NDIS.
A comprehensive assessment typically takes between 2-3 hours to complete. The first session is done with just the caregiver in attendance, and a detailed history of the child’s strengths and areas for development are discussed. This can be done in person at one of our clinics or via telehealth. Some children prefer to be in attendance during this session and they are most welcome. The following session/s are typically conducted in one of our clinics with the child and caregiver in attendance.