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Meeting Children Where They Are

In the heartwarming process of child development, every milestone achieved is a testament to resilience and growth. As therapists, witnessing the remarkable strides our buds make fills us with immense joy and pride.

Seeing the incredible progress our buds make continues to be the most rewarding part of our jobs. Small wins sustain us just as much as bigger developmental milestones—a child first using words, willingly trying new activities, or regulating emotions throughout the day.

We can’t predict exactly when a child is going to make that next step – it might look like a child is not making progress but really they’re often putting it all together before showing us when they’re ready. As partners in this process, we can help nurture their learning by holding confidence in their ability and enjoying the journey with them; noticing when we’re accidentally imposing our own expectations and pressure on their learning timelines.

Children thrive when gently guided, not compelled. We must therefore be mindful of where they stand emotionally and meet them there, not where we wish they stood. Sometimes, this means focusing on foundational skills instead of introducing many new challenges. When a child needs more time to solidify fundamental abilities, keeping sessions focused on practising what they know sets them up for being able to tackle harder tasks down the road. What looks like keeping sessions “easy,” carefully managed, can lead to greater gains later on once foundational skills are firmly in place.

So, what should we do?

Implementing strategies to support a child’s development and learning can’t be done effectively alone. Parents and the people making up the child’s immediate environment must be on the same page. We want to ensure everybody understands and is onboard with the purpose of different strategies, otherwise the child can’t benefit from them.

There is a difference between intellectually knowing something is important versus actually experiencing it. For us therapists, as the saying goes: there is knowledge and then there is knowing. Knowledge is what we logically understand to be true, while knowing refers to experiencing something to be true, which is much more powerful, and what we strive to communicate as therapists. Parents and caregivers may grasp the concepts we present, but internalising this knowledge takes seeing it in action. It’s up to the therapists to demonstrate what works to build comprehension more meaningfully rather than just describing to parents what a child needs.

Join Us in Celebrating Every Step Forward!

Let’s continue to support our buds with love, patience, and understanding as they navigate their developmental journey. Together, we can create brighter futures for every child.

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