OT and Speech Definitions

Every week at CMP we have an Occupational Therapist and a Speech-Language Pathologist on campus to observe and brainstorm with parents and staff the best way to support students. After an observation Erin, our OT, and Noopur, our Speech-Language Pathologist, will write up what they saw and will give suggestions if needed. In these notes parents will see words such as proprioception, vestibular, social-pragmatic language, or intelligibility. But what do these words mean? Below is a list of words that will be used frequently and what they mean.

Occupational Therapy:

Proprioception: The sensory input into our joints and muscles. Often looks like needing to climb, leaning or bumping into others,hitting, biting, draping onesbody over items. Often calming and organizing.Contributes to body awareness.

Vestibular: The sensory input we feel when our head changes position. Is greatly impacted by visual stimuli. Often looks like wiggling or being “on the go”, laying down, or rolling. Contributes to body awareness.

Seeking: When an individual is actively looking for MORE of a certain type of sensory input

Sensitive: When an individual is looking for LESS of a certain type of input or retracts/freezes due to too much of a certain type of input.

Gross Motor: The movement of larger muscles of our body. Think core/trunk, legs, and arms.

Fine Motor: The movement of smaller muscles of our body.Think hands,eyes, and mouth. Gross motor supports fine motor.

Speech and Language:

Expressive Language: The language we use to communicate with others. This can be verbal, written/typed, gestures, signs, and body language. Includes vocabulary, grammar,information sequencing, and retell.

Receptive Language: Our understanding of language- both spoken and written. Includes our ability to understand and answer questions, follow directions, and understand stories.

Social-Pragmatic Language: The language we use to interact with others. Includes the purposes we use language for (commenting, requesting, self-advocating, social negotiation) and how we interpret and useverbal and/or non-verbal language.

Speech: The sounds of language. Looks at the accuracy of sounds, clarity of communication, rate, and volume.

Language: Expressive, receptive, and social-pragmatic skills.

Intelligibility: What percentage of a child’s speech is understood by others. We often look at the difference of understanding them with or without environmental context.

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