|The Wellbeing team provides input universally at Kestrel House through ‘whole school’ and ‘whole class’ approaches. Therapeutic approaches are embedded into the fabric of the school day to enrich and develop skills as part of naturally occurring routines and activities.
Further indirect or direct support from the well-being team can be provided on a needs basis and/or to meet EHCP requirements. This may be at a specialist level (e.g. 1:1 therapy blocks or specialised equipment issue) or a targeted level (e.g. small group therapy, programmes of support handed over to staff).
Universal training opportunities are offered throughout the year to both parents and staff. This may include training topics such as Therapeutic use of self, Adult Child Interaction, Sensory Processing Challenges, Autism Awareness training). Additional targeted therapy training is also offered as required. This is dependent on the needs and goals of the learner (e.g. SCERTS, Attention Autism, TACPAC, Zones of Regulation, Adult and Child interaction, PECS).
What is an Occupational Therapist?
Occupational Therapists (OTs) assist people in developing skills and achieving optimum independence in such areas as self-care, academics and play/leisure. They might do this through identifying and supporting regulation needs, developing motor skills and/or adapting tasks and the environment around the child. OTs work with the person, their family and other members of the Well-Being team/staff team to identify areas of need in order to plan and implement meaningful and functional interventions.
Occupational Therapy at Kestrel House School
I will be supporting issues that a learner might be experiencing relating to their ‘occupations’ within both the school and home environments. Usual occupations for children include eating, toileting, dressing, brushing teeth, sleeping, going to school and engaging fully in learning and play.
One area that I can support a lot for those with autism is ensuring that sensory needs are recognised and accommodated for within the physical and social environments to support occupational participation. This can be very important within a classroom environment to support the learners in reaching and maintaining the ‘just right’ level of arousal for curriculum access.
What is a Speech and Language Therapist?
A Speech and Language Therapist (SaLT) works with young people, their families and school staff to support the young person to develop their attention and listening skills, play, understanding and use of language and social interaction skills. Information gathering, observation and assessment is carried out in order to inform the young person’s strengths and needs when devising a therapy plan. The therapy plan is then agreed with school staff and parents and support is provided by the Speech and Language Therapist to implement and embed the therapy plan across the school day. The therapy plan is monitored and updated regularly by school staff and the SaLT.
Speech and Language Therapy at Kestrel House School
As the Speech and Language Therapist I will be working with the staff, pupils and their families to provide, assessment, therapy, training, modelling and support to allow the learners to develop independence in communicating in an effective way at both home and school. I support the staff team with infusing motivating communicative opportunities for the learners across the school day so that the learners are able to practice their communication skills multiple times a day. I also ensure that parents understand how to create these opportunities at home to increase the learner’s ability to communicate at home.
What is a Music Therapist?
Music has a role to play in every aspect of our lives. It moves us physically and emotionally, aids communication when other methods might not be working, supports us through the difficult times and helps us celebrate the good times. No matter the circumstances of one’s life, this positive relationship with music remains. A music therapist’s role is to support individuals, groups and whole communities in utilising this relationship to realise their potential both at the personal and collective level.
Music Therapy at Kestrel House School
At Kestrel house we aim to use music to support communication and playful engagement at every opportunity. Our provision includes school wide programs of transition songs aimed at supporting all learners as they move from one part of the day to the next, to one-on-one therapy sessions focusing on individual learners with more personal aims. With the majority of sessions occurring in classrooms we aim to create opportunities for all learners to experience social interaction via activity songs and improvised music making. All members of staff attend musicality workshops in order to collectively encourage the learners to be as musical as possible.
My name is Sharon Manikham, I have been the Family Liaison Lead at Kestrel House School since January 2019. I am the bridge between home and school. I work to encourage parental involvement within school and sign post agencies (where appropriate) and to support our learners in school.
As a Thrive practitioner I use strategies to help develop our learners emotional and development. This is to support our learners to build positive supportive relationships and to be able to cope with life’s ups and downs.