weekly header

February 4, 2011
Issue 4, Volume 5
It's All About the Choices!     
Hello there! 

It's Friday, and that means it's newsletter time.  A few things to call your attention to:  It is always wonderful when our kiddos get national attention to help foster awareness of their special needs.   This past Friday, the ladies on ABC's daytime talk show, 'The View,'  featured a poignant story on Rett Syndrome.  According to our friends at the Rett Girl, this is the first time Rett has been featured nationally since the mid-1990s.  In case you missed it, we have a YouTube link to that segment in this issue.  

I would like to welcome Suzanne Herman, CCC-SLP to our growing list of guest bloggers.  We also have a new not-for-profit organization that has started working with us to help us educate our readers. Please thank the Batten Disease Support and Research Association for allowing PediaStaff to share their resources on our pages.

News Items: 
  • Rett Syndrome on 'The View'
  • Injuries Up in Pediatric Runners
  • Brain Development May be Influenced by Bacteria in the Gut
  • Study Suggests Moral Reasoning a Struggle for Those with Autism
  • New Research Assess Differences Between Two Main Types of Pediatric Stroke
  • Technology News:  Eye Tracking Device Aids 9-Year Old in the Classroom
  • Lancet Published Study Supports Elimination/Restricted Diet for Kids with AD/HD
  • Feel Good Story of the Week:  Formerly Non-Verbal Girl with Autism Becomes Singing Inspiration
Therapy Activities, Tips and Resources
  • Product Review:  Thumball for Occupational Therapy
  • Resource: Video Introduction to Batten Disease
  • Valentine's Day Activities for Fine Motor Skills, Literacy and Language

Upcoming Events

  • Texas Speech-Language-Hearing Association Annual Convention
  • The SPD Foundation 12th International Institute and Symposium

Articles and Blogs 

  • Guest Blog: When a Child Can't Get His Work Done in Class
  • Guest Blog: (More) Winter Themed Books - Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow!
  • Pediatric Therapy Corner: The Sensory Smart Classroom
  • Worth Repeating: Electropalatography In The Assessment And Treatment Of Speech Difficulties In Children With Down Syndrome
  • Also Worth Repeating: Coping with Crisis: Helping Children With Special Needs                                                                                                  
Feel free to contact us with any questions about our openings or items in these pages. Have you discovered our RSS feed? Click on the orange button below to subscribe to all our openings and have them delivered to your Feed Reader!  Don't have an RSS Feed Reader set up? Sign up at
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Have a great weekend and Take Care!

Heidi Kay and the PediaStaff Team

The Career Center

The links to the right are "live" and reflect the most recent jobs with PediaStaff.  To further narrow your search by state use the drop down menus on the search page to select a specific state.   If a particular search is returning no hits it is Girlpossible that we do not currently have new openings
for you in that state.

To see ALL our openings click HERE
and select the checkbox for your discipline.
Recent Speech Language Pathologist and SLPA Jobs
Recent Occupational Therapist and COTA Jobs
Recent Physical Therapist and PTA Jobs
Recent School Psychologist Jobs

Hot School-Based Job of the Week
School-Based Occupational Therapist - Dayton, OH

Hourly Rate: $38 - $50 based on experience
Status: Contract through June 2011, planned to extend to SY 11/12 if desired

You have many choices available to tailor this great job to fit your needs! FULL time or part time OT needed to contract in a school based setting.

All mainstream caseloads K-8Excellent pay from $38/hr (new graduate) and higher based on experience.Your choice to work in Dayton, Cincinnati, or bothYour choice of Full-Time 5 days/wk or Part-Time 3 to 4 days/wkFull time contract includes benefits, healthcare coverage, etc.Minimum commitment ASAP through June 2011, may extend to include next school year 2011/12 making this a potential long-term contract

Qualifications - Degree in Occupational Therapy, NBCOT and OH license or eligible. New graduates welcome!

Pediatric therapy is our specialty - and our expertise is backed by excellent hourly rates and per diem offered based upon IRS eligibility. Additional benefits include: nationally recognized medical insurance, 401K, generous relocation and continuing education assistance, optional summer pay program, optional paid leave, reimbursement for state licensure and/or teacher certifications, and completion bonuses.

Our management team provides 24/7-telephone support to our therapists - you are not alone when you are on assignment with us. In addition, we provide Clinical Coordinators to assist our therapists in managing their caseloads effectively. Our Clinical Coordinators are experienced therapists who have excelled within their profession and are able to help you succeed. Respond now and learn how YOU can be a part of our team! There is never a charge to applicants and new graduates are always encouraged to apply.

Interested in this job?  Contact PediaStaff today!..


Hot Mixed Setting Job of the Week

Pediatric/School-Based Occupational Therapist, San Antonio, TX 

If Pediatric Therapy is what you are passionate about....then this just might be your calling!

PediaStaff has a wonderful opportunity awaiting you in the most beautiful city in Texas....San Antonio! Our preferred client is looking to add Occupational Therapists to their team...working with children in schools, pediatric home care, early childhood intervention, and an Autism Clinic. Looking to add at least three to their team, you can choose to work in one setting...or a variety of all....it's YOUR choice!

San Antonio is one of the most sought-after locations in the nation....warm weather, the River Walk, Theme Parks, Professional Sports, shopping, and much more. If you have a family, San Antonio boosts some of the best schools in Texas. If you are single....there's always something happening!

To be considered for this position, please call our office or visit our Website and register...then apply for this job opportunity today! It's quick and easy.

Interested in this job?  Contact PediaStaff today!..


As Seen on TV:  Rett Syndrome on the View 
Before last week, Rett Syndrome as a rare disorder has not been featured nationally in thirteen years.  For those of you who missed it - here is the segment on Rett Syndrome that aired on 'The View' this past week. It is about 9 minutes long. Please watch and share the Rett Story with others!

Watch the Video on our Blog

Pediatric Overuse Injuries in the News: Injuries Up in Pediatric Runners
[Source: PhysOrg.com]

Researchers at the Center for Injury Research and Policy of The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital examined running-related injuries among children and adolescents 6 to 18 years old and found that an estimated 225,344 cases were treated in U.S. emergency departments from 1994 through 2007, for an average of more than 16,000 each year. During the 14-year study period, the annual number of running-related injuries increased 34 percent.

According to the study, appearing in the February 2011 issue of Clinical Pediatrics, the majority of running-related injuries were sprains and strains to the lower extremities. One third of the injuries involved a fall and more than one half of running-related injuries occurred at school.

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog
Developmental Neurology in the News:  Brain Development May be Influenced by Bacteria in the Gut
[Source: PhysOrg.com]

A team of scientists from across the globe have found that gut bacteria may influence mammalian brain development and adult behavior. The study is published in the scientific journal PNAS, and is the result of an ongoing collaboration between scientists at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden and the Genome Institute of Singapore.

The research team compared behavior and gene expression in two groups of mice - those raised with normal microorganisms, and those raised in the absence of microorganisms (or germ-free mice). The scientists observed that adult germ-free mice displayed different behavior from mice with normal microbiota, suggesting that gut bacteria may have a significant effect on the development of the brain in mammals.

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog
Autism in the News: Moral Reasoning a Struggle for Those with Autism
[Source: Disability Scoop]

Individuals with autism are more likely than others to assign blame based on a situation's negative outcome - whether or not malice was intended - a new study suggests.

The reason: people with autism tend to have poor use of a skill known as "theory of mind." This ability, which is generally developed in children by age 5, helps establish moral judgment by allowing a person to understand that bad things can happen without bad intent.

In the study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers presented a group of 26 adults - half with autism and half without - a series of hypothetical scenarios.'

Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog
Pediatric Stroke Research in the News: New Study Assesses Differences Between Hemorrhagic and Ischemic Strokes in Children

[Source: Health News Digest]

The first study to assess the differences between hemorrhagic and ischemic stroke in children finds an urgent need for more rapid identification of stroke symptoms in children, and attributes delays in treatment to the lack of valid pediatric stroke recognition tools for emergency physicians and paramedics. The study, "Acute Childhood Arterial Ischemic and Hemorrhagic Stroke in the Emergency Department," is being published online today in Annals of Emergency Medicine.

Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog
Technology in the News: Eye Tracking Device Aiding 9-Year Old in the Classroom
[Source: The Middletown Journal]

Madison third-grader Lianna Bryant received eye tracking hardware about a year ago to help her communicate with others, a challenge for her because of cerebral palsy.  

After a few technical issues with the device, a Tobii C12 with CEye, Lianna started using the software in full this school year and teachers say she has turned an academic corner.

"I wish my own kids worked as hard as she does," said Jenny Fink, Lianna's full-time aide. "She is about the hardest working student I have ever seen."

In previous years, instructors would test Lianna by asking her to identify words they were holding on oversized cards in front of her. She now takes multiple-choice exams through her Tobii that are closer to the level of her peers.

Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog
ADHD in the News: Lancet Published Study Supports Elimination / Restricted Diet for Kids with ADHD
[Source: Reuters]

Children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) should be fed a special diet to help their carers determine whether certain foods are making their condition worse, Dutch scientists said on Friday.

In a study of 100 children with ADHD - one of the world's most common child mental disorders - scientists from Radboud University and the ADHD Research Center in the Netherlands found that a restricted diet led to significant improvements in the symptoms of some ADHD sufferers.

"Dietary intervention should be considered in all children with ADHD, provided parents are willing to follow a diagnostic restricted elimination diet for a five-week period, and provided expert supervision is available," the scientists said in their study in The Lancet medical journal.

Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog
Feel Good Story of the Week: Formerly Non-Verbal Girl with Autism Becomes Singing Inspiration
[Source: Essex Chronicle (UK)]

A GIRL with autism who doctors said would never speak has just auditioned for the hit ITV show Britain's Got Talent.   Unable to speak until she was six, Charlotte Fieldson, who has atypical autism, is now a confident singer.

Late last year the inspirational 15-year-old made it to the top three of the Chelmsford Schools Singstar competition, sharing a stage with her hero Olly Murs in front of 10,000 people at the town's Christmas lights switch-on.

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog
Product Review: Thumball for Occupational Therapy
Editor's Note: The following is the first of two product reviews we will feature on the Thumball.  This one was written by an OT, and the second will be from an SLP perspective. When we first saw a Thumball two years ago at ASHA, I thought that it looked like a very versatile tool for pediatric therapists of all types. Basically a smaller version of a soccer ball, each panel features a word or phrase, graphic, or photo. It can be used to stimulate conversation, improve social interactions, develop communication skills and much more.

We would like to thank Mary at Thumball for the product samples so we might bring you product reviews from both the Occupational Therapy and Speech-Language Pathology points of view. The following is a review by our friend Susan Orloff, OTR/L.

She chose to write her review as a table - which is sure to please our visual learners!

Read the Review on our Blog
Therapy Resource of the Week: Video on Batten Disease
We are grateful to the Batten Disease Support and Research Association for permission to reprint articles and videos from their website. The following is a wonderful introductory video that they have on their homepage. We will share more of their information with you as we integrate their materials into our site.

Watch this Video on our Blog

Therapy Activities of the Week: Valentine's Day Activities for Fine Motor Skills, Literacy, and Language
Special Thanks to Literacy Speaks for suggesting this week's Therapy Activity of the Week - Valentine's Day Crafts for Fine Motor Skills, Literacy and Language. 

Activities include crafts, vocabulary, poems, sequencing activities, coloring activities, songs and more.

Check out these Activities Through a Link on our Blog
Upcoming Event: Texas Speech-Language-Hearing Association Annual Convention

Come meet the PediaStaff Team at Booth #729!

March 3-5, 2011 at the George R. Brown Convention Center - Houston, Texas
Keynote Speaker:  Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor, Author of My Stroke of Insight

Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor is a Harvard-trained and published neuroanatomist who experienced a severe hemorrhage in the left hemisphere of her brain in 1996. During her presentation, Dr. Taylor will use her insight as a doctor and patient to help practioners be more compassionate and motivating therapists. She will discuss the obstacles present when teaching a person with a brain trauma, and how practioners can encourage their clients to control their own brains and make it do what they want it to do.

Contact us to Set up Your Personal Interview at TXSHA with our Team!

Learn More About/Register for This Conference

Upcoming Event: The SPD Foundation's International Institute and Symposium
The Sensory Processing Disorder Foundation's 12th International Institute and Symposium will be held in Austin, TX, on March 31, April 1 & 2, 2011.  Their host this year is the University of Texas Autism Project on the campus of the University of Texas, Austin. They have some very special programming and hope that you will join them for their first-ever symposium in Texas!

  • Carol Kranowitz, MA - Author of The Out-of-Sync Child, Co-author, Growing an In-Sync Child and Editor-in-Chief, S.I. Focus magazine
  • Lucy Jane Miller, PhD, OTR - Founder & Director, Sensory Processing Disorder Foundation and STAR (Sensory Therapies And Research) Center; Author of Sensational Kids: Hope and Help for Children with SPD
  • Sarah A. Schoen, PhD, OTR - Assistant Director of Research, Sensory Processing Disorder Foundation Clinical Services Advisor, STAR (Sensory Therapies And Research) Center
Learn More About this Symposium

Guest Blogs This Week: PediatricOT, The Speech House
When a Child Can't Get His Work Done in Class - Loren Shlaes, OTR/L

Grownups, please do some detective work if your child {or student} is struggling in the classroom. You may be expecting him to function under circumstances that you would be unable to tolerate yourself.

I recently evaluated a little boy whose teacher reported that he was unable to produce much, if any, written work during morning writing time. He would sit quietly, not bothering anyone, but not getting anything done, either.

The first thing I saw, when I walked into his classroom, was that my little friend, who is a bit small for his age, was sitting in a chair that was so low that the height of the table came up to the top of his chest.

What's the big deal? You say. Furniture is furniture, what's the difference?

Read the Rest of this Guest Post on our Blog
Winter Books: Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow! - By: Suzanne Herman, M.Ed., CCC-SLP

Books are an excellent source for therapy ideas and expanding a child's speech and language skills. For more information on using literature in therapy go to my blog in July.

Living in East Texas, snow is a rare and very short lived occurrence. But that doesn't mean we can't make our own winter fun. Grab a great winter themed book, search the internet for resources, pull together a few items, and you are ready for some fun speech/language therapy, pre-school lessons, or just spending quality time with a child. On my Facebook Business Page I have created a WinterBooks file under the Photos tab. I have listed a few of my favorite books along with links (in the comments boxes) to online resources that include everything from lesson ideas, craft projects, art lessons, snacks, and sometimes ready to print items.

Read the Rest of this Guest Post on our Blog

Pediatric Therapy Corner: - The Sensory Smart Classroom
By: Christina Sparker, MOT, OTR/L and Tiffany Sparks-Keeney, MOT, OTR/L

Reprinted with the express permission of SPD, Sensory Processing Disorders Foundation as originally published on their website

This article appeared in the Winter 2011 Issue of the Sensory Processing Foundation Newsletter. You can read the entire Winter 2011 Issue HERE and or Subscribe to this great publication HERE!

Today's savvy teachers are aware of the importance of meeting students' sensory needs in the classroom and even know various strategies to address these needs. At the same time, these teachers often have difficulty incorporating these strategies into their every day classroom routine. In actuality, it can be very easy to integrate sensory strategies in the daily schedule. Examining a day in the class of one fictitious 1st grade teacher, who is dedicated to running a sensory smart classroom for her 25 students, reveals relatively easy ways most teachers can begin to address her students' sensory needs in the context of the classroom.

Ms. Sorensen's classroom in a suburb outside of Seattle is carefully crafted to address her students' sensory needs. The walls in the classroom are purposefully uncluttered and free of extraneous posters and pictures to help her students avoid visual distraction. The one set of posters prominently displayed proclaims "Ways to move my body," and has pictures of children demonstrating various yoga poses and isometric exercises designed to provide deep proprioceptive input to the child. Prominently and distinctly displayed on the board at the front of the room is the daily schedule in words and pictures. There are also several visual timers, which Ms. Sorensen uses throughout the day.

Read the Rest of this Article on our Blog

Worth Repeating:  Electropalatography In The Assessment And Treatment Of Speech Difficulties In Children With Down Syndrome
[Source: Down Syndrome Online]

Abstract - Many children with Down syndrome experience significant speech difficulties which in turn affects their speech intelligibility. This paper describes how electropalatography, a computer-based technique which uses visual feedback to alter speech production, is being used at Queen Margaret University, to assess and treat speech difficulties in a group of children and young people with Down syndrome. Encouraging results from a single case are reported.

Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog

Also Worth Repeating: Coping with Crisis: Helping Children With Special Needs

[Source: National Association of School Psychologists]   


When a crisis event occurs-in school, in the community or at the national level-it can cause strong and deeply felt reactions in adults and children, especially those children with special needs. Many of the available crisis response resources are appropriate for use with students with disabilities, provided that individual consideration is given to the child's developmental and emotional maturity. Acts of healing such as making drawings, writing letters, attending memorial ceremonies and sending money to relief charities are important for all children.


Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog 

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