Lately I have been researching more about how to help children who have difficultly in motor planning and/or knowing where their body is in space.
The Anat Baniel method was mentioned in a recent online webinar. Information on Anat’s website : wwww.anatbanielmethod.com and her book “Kids beyond limits” reveal an approach which compliments most of the occupational therapy aproaches eg looking at her nine essentials:
- Movement with attention – beinging attention to what you feel as you move – your brain will start builing neurological connections to help you learn (Moshe Feldenkrais’s book Awareness through movement oulines some specific ideas)
- Go slowly – to learn new skills and form new neural pathways
- Variation – introduce variation and playfulness into everything you do – to create new possiblilites in movemetns, thoughts and actions
- Subtlety – reduce the force with which you move, think and act – developing greater sensitivity and enhancing your brain’s ability to perceive fine differences
- Enthusiasm – practice enthusiasm in your daly life – this amplifies what is important to you
- Flexible goals – knowing your goals (this fits with self determination theroy) and embrace all the unexpected steps , mis-steps and re-routes along the way
- The learning switch – needs to be ON for the brainto properly do its job – expect that you will do, think, or learn something new in each situation
- Imagination and dreams – imagine how to carry ot your tasks and dream up as many possiblities as you can – imaginatin and dreams guide your brain to continue growing and developing
- Awareness – become aware of what you are dong, sensing, thinking and experiencing at any given moment. Anat uses the term ‘awaring’ – which aligns with the concepts of ‘focus’ “concentrating’ and self regulation.
This is a very relevant list, and I’m looking to research further on ways of applying body awarness along with the other features aready in my OT skills set.