Term 3 2017
Welcome back to the 3rd term of this year! As usually it will be a very busy term with lots of new challenges!
Currently we have the following Staff allocation in our Therapy Department.
Psychologists 3 full time and 1 Intern posts
Remedial Therapists 5 permanent and 1 temporary post
Speech Therapists 7 permanent posts
Occupational Therapists 6 permanent and 1 temporary post
Social Worker 1 permanent post
Speech and Occupational Therapy are given individually and in small groups, from Grade R to Grade 5. Remedial Therapy is given in small groups from Grade 1 to Grade 5. We are fortunate to have enough Psychologists now to form part of our therapy teams, so we can provide an even better service to our learners.
THE OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY DEPARTMENT
Our newest addition to our team, Lauren Sokolich has settled in well as part of our team after Nicky Kenrick left for the UK.
The DID did a splendid job to complete our Department’s renovations over the school holidays and we are extremely happy and grateful to be moving back into our offices. It is also a great opportunity to clean out and get rid of old outdated stock, which has passed their sell by date. We plan to replace some of these items with new, updated equipment by using our remaining and future fund raising profits.
Our therapy load has grown tremendously due to the rapid increase in the number of our foundation phase learners. In order to improve the quality of our therapy due to the large number of learners requiring therapy, we plan to proceed with block therapy, which we have introduced this year. This enables us to do more individual therapy where required and is proving to be be very successful and beneficial to the learners so far. Our therapists are very knowledgeable and creative and have come forward with various innovative ideas to implement during therapy. We also have a number of therapists who are in the process of broadening their knowledge and qualifications in Sensory Integration therapy. We were very fortunate to purchase a SI Test battery, which hopefully will inspire more of our therapists to get their qualification in SI Therapy. We feel blessed and privileged to be part of such enthusiasm and good team spirit!
Our holiday activity book launched in 2016 proved to be extremely popular. We are sold old at the present time, but hope to have more stock available soon. It is full of great ideas for parents wishing to give extra stimulation to their children at home. Not only was this an incentive for occupying the learners during the holidays, but it also turned out to be a valuable marketing tool for our school. We have distributed quite a number of books to our disadvantaged schools, as part of our service as a Resource Center.
Our next fundraising will be be another Toy Sale, which will be held on the 25th of August. Our recipe book, launched in 2011, which also has fun recipes for learners, is still available at the finance office.
THE SPEECH THERAPY DEPARTMENT
We recently received updated versions of our assessment tests, which will assist us in performing assessments with the latest versions of these tools. We are constantly using the large whiteboards installed in each of our therapy rooms. These are valuable tools that we are all excited about having and we can see that the children are largely benefiting from these tools. The Speech Therapy Department will also be continuing with Hearing screenings within the school to promote ear care, early identification and management of hearing difficulties. We also held a juicing day for the Staff in order to raise funds for a workshop that we aim to host later on this year. The therapists are also engaging in ongoing professional development, in order to ensure that we continually develop our skills and knowledge as therapists.
Our annual jumble sale (White elephant sale) , which is more successful and popular each year will certainly happen again. We are always ready to collect all your previously loved items (in good condition). Please support this ongoing fundraiser by donating your previously loved items in good condition.
REMEDIAL THERAPY DEPARTMENT
Our learners have been involved in both class and individual therapy as well as fun activities as arranged by our team.
We have hosted a study skills workshop for our grade 10 and grade 12 learners which they found helpful. In addition, members of our team have received training in the RAVE-O literacy intervention program which we have implemented in our group therapy sessions. We have also been trained in the CTOPP (comprehensive test of phonological processing) assessment in order to assist the identification of learners who struggle with analysis and synthesis in spelling and reading. We have also received training in PREP (pass reading enhancement program) to enrich reading skills of our learners who present with difficulties in reading.
We also organize a Reading Hat Day every year, where our learners are given the opportunity to wear civvies and create a hat based on a book they have read. Book prizes are awarded to the learner with the best hat in each grade, which proves difficult to choose as the learners exceeded expectations!
Our team is continually looking to improve and provide innovative learning opportunities for our learners to invest in their success and well-being.
THE PSYCHOLOGY DEPARTMENT
The Psychology Department hosted a follow-up Study Skills Workshop for Grade 4 parents. This workshop aimed at providing parents with some tools that they could use in assisting their child in preparing for writing their first exams. Positive feedback was received from the parents that attended. The Grade 4 study skills program will be implemented on an annual basis. We have also been approached by other schools to present the Study Skills Program to their learners and staff. The Psychs also assisted the Remedial Department with the study skills presented to Gr. 7 to matric learners in the first week of the second term. The first meeting for the Parent Support Group will take place this term (2 August). This PSG is open to all parents of DPS. The aim of the group is to provide parents with a forum in which to obtain further knowledge, skills and support to assist them in detailing with all the challenges that life, and children, can throw at them. Whether this is obtained by parents sharing their knowledge and experiences with each other or by inviting various speakers to these meetings to speak about topics they feel they may need further information on, will be determined by the needs of the group. To raise funds for our department, we had a cake sale 26 July. This was a huge success as we were sold out before break had ended. Thank-you to all the learners that supported us.
Article “The Single Mom’s Survival Guide on Discipline” is available at www.parentinghub.co.za ,as well as other useful articles such as “Three Pieces of Valuable Advice for Single Dads” and “End Childhood Swearing”. This is a useful website as it covers pregnancy and babies through to teenagers, as well as general parenting issues, recipes and arts / crafts projects to keep kids busy, especially during those loooooong school holidays.
We continually attach articles and/or links to interesting topics, which we hope you will find learn some.
Please feel free to contact us at any time with comments, or suggestions on how to improve our Therapist Couch. e-mail address
- Visual Perception – Possible impact on a child’s success at school and at home
- Crossing of the Midline : Learning Delays
- Low muscle tone – an overview for parents
- Why core strength is so important
- Ban on ‘fidget toys’ in schools
- Is it ok to be ambidextrous?
- When to “fix” a pencil grip
- How Hand-eye-coordination helps Readers
- The importance of friends / what do video games do to the ADHD brain?
- The debate on ‘W’ sitting continues
- Love: The most Powerful medicine for ADHD