Community-Based Programs for Children and Youth: Our Experiences in Design, Implementation, and Evaluation

Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Sciences, College of Nursing and Health Professions, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA 19102, USA.
Physical & Occupational Therapy in Pediatrics (Impact Factor: 1.46). 05/2012; 32(2):111-9. DOI: 10.3109/01942638.2012.668089
Source: PubMed
Download full-text


Available from: Margaret E. O'Neil, Nov 01, 2015
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Background: Children aged 3-5 years in Head Start Programs often have or are at risk for delays in motor and social skills. A Group Yoga Program was designed to promote skill development. Methods: Two Head Start Programs located in underserved neighborhoods partnered with physical and occupational therapy departments at nearby universities to design, implement and evaluate a Group Yoga Program delivered during summer. Children (n=105) participated in these Yoga Programs (55% boys; 45% girls). The Yoga Programs included sequences to promote motor and social skills. Sequences were contextualized in stories of journeys to city landmarks to motivate children; improve attention and retention; and for fun! Yoga instructors were therapists, therapy students and teachers. Focus groups were conducted with instructors (n=11) to identify themes on Yoga Program feasibility and effectiveness. Some children were measured pre and post Program to evaluate changes in motor (n=38) and social (n=13) skills. Data analysis included mixed methods approaches. Results: Themes from focus groups suggest that instructors: 1) valued interdisciplinary team approaches, 2) considered the Yoga Program a good fit for Head Start; and 3) observed positive changes in child motor development. Preliminary analyses of child outcome measures suggest that children improved on motor planning and strength but not on behavioral or social-emotional factors. Conclusion: Yoga Programs using an interdisciplinary model may be feasible and effective to promote motor and social skills in pre-school children in Head Start. However, future studies should evaluate environmental adaptations and Program duration to support child social and motor skill development.
    No preview · Conference Paper · Nov 2013
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Purpose of review: The high prevalence of childhood obesity continues to persist, especially in children and youth with special healthcare needs (CYSHCN). The International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health model and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommendations are appropriate frameworks related to increasing physical activity and healthy eating habits among CYSHCN. This review aims to provide pediatric providers with recommendations in the assessment, treatment, and management of obesity in CYSHCN. Recent findings: Personal, environmental, and parental factors contribute to participation of CYSHCN in physical activity and consumption of healthy foods. Findings demonstrate that physical activity among CYSHCN is possible with proper guidance and supervision from families, healthcare providers, and community recreation staff. Proper direction from parents can help CYSHCN with food restrictions consume healthier food options. Creative solutions for promoting physical activity and healthy foods are vital for this special population. Summary: Promoting healthy weight and addressing health behaviors can contribute to favorable health outcomes and quality of life in CYSHCN. Pediatricians are encouraged to assess risks contributing to obesity in collaboration with families and interdisciplinary teams (specialists, psychologists, primary care providers, mental health professionals, social workers, physical therapists, and dieticians), providing their patients (CYSHCN) with essential skills and resources to prevent and manage obesity.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2014 · Current Opinion in Pediatrics
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Purpose: This case report describes the effects of a 6-week progressive tap dance program on static and dynamic balance for a child with type 1 congenital myotonic muscular dystrophy (congenital MMD1). Summary of Key Points: A 6-year-old girl with congenital MMD1 participated in a 1-hour progressive tap dance program. Classes were held once a week for 6 consecutive weeks and included 3 children with adaptive needs and 1 peer with typical development. The Bruininks-Oseretsky Test of Motor Proficiency, second edition (BOT-2) balance subsection and the Pediatric Balance Scale were completed at the beginning of the first class and the sixth class. The participant's BOT-2 score improved from 3 to 14. Her Pediatric Balance Scale score did not change. Conclusion: Participation in a progressive tap dance class by a child with congenital MMD1 may facilitate improvements in static and dynamic balance.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2014 · Pediatric Physical Therapy
Show more