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All Things Sensory by Harkla
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All Things Sensory by Harkla

Author: Rachel Harrington, COTA/L, AC & Jessica Hill, COTA/L

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Rachel Harrington and Jessica Hill, are two passionate Certified Occupational Therapy Assistants who answer your questions related to all things sensory, occupational therapy, parenting, self-care, nutrition, and health, from a therapist’s perspective. Providing raw, honest, fun ideas, and strategies, for parents and families to implement into daily life. Great for those who work with children with sensory processing disorder, special needs, autism, and ADHD. This podcast is brought to you by Harkla. At Harkla, our goal is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives.
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Did you know Amazon's big sale, Prime Day is next week, June 21st and 22nd?While small, family-owned businesses like ours can sell products on Amazon, Amazon takes a big chunk of each sale from us.So, while Amazon has its sale next week, we're going to have our own sale at Harkla called (Anti) Prime Day where we'll have a big discount equal to the amount Amazon takes from us on sales.Click here to be notified of our biggest sale this summer:https://harkla.co/primeIn today’s episode, Rachel and Jessica have a look at constructional praxis, the neurological process by which cognition directs motor action. In their conversation, they discuss what it is, how kids engage with it, and how parents can facilitate learning in children. There are four areas of praxis, namely motor planning, execution, feedback, and adaptation. More specifically, construction praxis is the ability to draw, copy, or manipulate spatial patterns or designs. You’ll hear about the various ways that kids engage in constructional praxis, like when they draw or play with Legos, and how they can engage in these activities by either copying, executing an original idea, or following auditory instructions. Our hosts share their favorite games for facilitating constructional praxis with kids, including some original DIY hacks for keeping things fresh. For all this and more, join us today!Key Points From This Episode:The definition of constructional praxis.The four areas of praxis.Examples of constructional praxis, like doing drawing or building with Lego pieces.The different ways a child can draw or build with legos by either copying, building an original idea, or following auditory instructions.How children engage in constructional praxis at different ages, from interacting with objects and container play as infants or toddlers to practicing math in school.Imitating others and how it’s part of constructional praxis.Games for facilitating descriptive language skills and constructional praxis.Examples of how constructional praxis is applied in adult life, like balancing a budget, gardening, or taking care of animals.How parents can engage in play with their children to facilitate constructional praxis.This podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order with the code "sensory". Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:All Things Sensory: Episode 37All Things Sensory, Primitive Reflex Podcast Series: Episode 100-104JengaPictionaryLincoln LogsMarble MazeHarklaAll Things Sensory on InstagramAll Things Sensory on Facebook
This episode is all about hand-eye-body coordination! To help us unpack this exciting and important subject, we have none other than Dr. Jacob Weiss, who is the Director of the HandEyeBody Academy! We talk about how he got started, his magical history as a professional juggler, and unpack how hand-eye coordination can be utilized for different contexts and issues. Jacob also situates his work in the realm of similar strategies, commenting on Bal-A-Vis-X specifically, and the founding principles of what he does, focusing on fun and novelty. One of Jacob's main aims is to empower trainers and teachers to spread the methods he has developed. This sharing and collaboration is a key part of how our guest envisions positive change. We hear about some of Jacobs amazing first hand success stories, and examples from the classroom. Our chat ends thinking about the near future for the Academy and how to get involved!Key Points From This Episode:Jacob's role at the HandEyeBody Academy and how he got started. The time that Jacob spent as a professional juggler! The importance of hand-eye coordination in different contexts and age groups.  Therapeutic activities that Jacob uses and has developed for a range of abilities.   Comparing Jacob's methods to other similar approaches and how combinations can help. Focusing on fun and novelty - how this helps influence the mindset when learning. 'Training the trainer': the emphasis that Jacob puts on educating coaches and therapists.The wide array of interdisciplinary training available online at HandEyeBody Academy.  Challenges that Jacob has faced in his work, and recently, during the pandemic. Examples of simple and fun exercises for the classroom!  How Jacob incorporates his methods in his own home with his young daughter.The next steps for HandEyeBody Academy; bringing in more personnel and developing a specific ball kit.  Where to find and connect with the HandEyeBody Academy online.Jacob's advice to listeners around the important questions to assess value. Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, & The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:Dr. Jacob Weiss on LinkedIn HandEyeBody AcademyDr. Jacob Weiss on InstagramVanderbilt UniversityHow I Built ThisBal-A-Vis-XHarklaAll Things Sensory on InstagramAll Things Sensory on Facebook
Traveling can be quite challenging, so it's time to revisit this topic as the world is opening back up again and there are more opportunities to travel. Here we give you some helpful advice on how to put together sensory diets to help your kiddos feel successful during times of travel, and tips, tricks, and strategies to make your life and your child's lives just a little bit easier. You’ll hear about what a sensory diet is and how it can be used to help both kids and adults cope with traveling. Find out how to prepare your child prior to the trip, what to do the day of the trip, how to help your child adjust when you get to your destination, and how to help your child decompress when you return home. For some great activity ideas to incorporate more movement into the experience, and a long list of tried and tested traveling hacks and products that we never leave home without, tune in today!Key Points From This Episode:What a sensory diet is and how it’s not necessarily related to food. Incorporating sensory diet strategies into travel. Preparing your child for what's going to come. Practicing for the trip beforehand. Planning more activities than you think you'll need. Benefits of visuals, a visual timers and a visual schedule. Packing different textured snacks. The day before travel: calming sensory activities.Cramming as much movement as possible if your child is going to be sitting for a long time. Getting your child to help you pack. What a sensory diet on the day of traveling may look like. A long list of helpful items to pack/purchase before your trip. Sensory hacks Rachel and Jessica have found and heard from the community. Setting up a quiet sensory space when you get to your destination.  Maintaining their routine in a new environment as much as possible.Empathizing with your child. Allowing time for decompression when you get back home.Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, & The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:Sensory Diets Super FlyersBrainWorks Sensory CardsARK ChewelryHarklaAll Things Sensory on InstagramHarkla on InstagramAll Things Sensory on FacebookFor a full list of the items we recommend please visit this episode on our website, Harkla.co.
There is still so much to learn and share in the world of autism, parenting, and just pushing forward the conversation around difference. We are happy to welcome Kristi Brewer today, who is very difficult to put into a box! She is a mother to two daughters, weightlifter, CPA, business-owner, and all-around powerhouse for positive progress. Kristi admits when her second daughter was diagnosed with Autism she felt very overwhelmed and scared due to her ignorance on the subject. Kristi explains how a whole new world of appreciation opened up for her, and why she is so grateful for this unexpected path. We talk about the way we describe Autism, sensitivity to language, and supporting genuine curiosity for the subject. Kristi explains the positive impact of her daughter Kale'a's diagnosis, and how it made it more manageable. We also discuss some personal practices in Kristi's home, how they approach activities and furniture, and the important balance needed in order meet her eldest daughter's needs too. Kristi shares some of her interesting life philosophy with us around routine, priorities, and much more!Key Points From This Episode:Kristi's background and the amazingly different chapters of her life and what she does.  Thoughts on the different ways to denote autism and the conversation around language. The journey of raising a child with autism and how this compares with Kristi's older daughter. Kale’a’s diagnosis at age two, and Kristi's feelings of fear during this process.How Kristi gained a new perspective and appreciation for a different life path of parenting.The important conversations that need to happen in order to spread awareness about difference. Ways of communicating with children; Kristi shares her thoughts on better parenting habits. The sensory-focused items that are in Kristi's home right now - swings, trampolines, and gym mats. The relationship between siblings and the challenges that Kristi and her family have faced. The story behind Kristi's company, Auya, and their message and mission!  Kristi's belief in kindness and confidence; making the world a better place with more acceptance.  An amazing piece of advice from Kristi regarding pursuing your dreams.  Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, & The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:HarklaKristi BrewerKristi Brewer on InstagramAuyaWelcome to Holland Southpaw Bolster Swing All Things Sensory on InstagramAll Things Sensory on Facebook
Receiving a diagnosis for your child can elicit a wide range of emotions, and that is completely normal. In today’s episode, your hosts Rachel and Jessica, dive into ways to deal with your own feelings around the diagnosis, as well as the best things that you can do for your child once they have been diagnosed. The discussion dives into the importance of doing your research and finding a community; this can be found in online or offline groups. It just depends on what resonates with you. The Harkla Sensory Club, and of course, the All Things Sensory podcast, are great places to go for support and advice. Your child deserves happiness, and so do you; you can’t pour from an empty cup, so make sure you are practicing self-care and always remember that you are not alone on this journey!  Key Points From This Episode:Feelings that often arise when children are diagnosed. Why seeing an Occupational Therapist is a good first step if you have noticed your child struggling with something. Trust your gut instinct if you feel like something isn’t right.The upsides and downsides of Facebook support groups for parents with children who have been diagnosed.Listening to the All Things Sensory podcast will provide you with a lot of helpful information and advice. Don’t be afraid to fight for your child’s right to get the help and services they need.The importance of processing your own feelings, and not pushing them to the side, after a diagnosis has been given.Research, research, research!Your happiness matters; you can’t pour from an empty cup.Rachel and Jessica share advice from the All Things Sensory Podcast and Harkla Family.What the Harkla Sensory Club is and why it may be a good option. Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, & The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:HarklaHarkla Sensory ClubAll Things Sensory on InstagramAll Things Sensory on FacebookDiscount Code — SENSORY
This is an extra special bonus episode with an incredible lactation consultant, infant massage instructor, and postpartum doula, Melanie Henstrom, on the subject of all things tongue-tie! Melanie lives and works in Boise, Idaho, specializing in teaching prenatal breastfeeding, educating professionals on tongue tie, and how to better support the breastfeeding dyad. This podcast is illuminating and potentially life-changing! Melanie shares her professional and personal journey with issues related to the tongue, focused on sleep, breastfeeding, ADHD, and Down Syndrome. Melanie explains the need for greater awareness of the tongue to infant developmental stages, and is fighting to bring the tongue into the conversation on issues not traditionally associated with it. We hear about her son's struggles with ADHD symptoms and his successes as a result of releasing the tongue. Join us to learn about this vital muscle!Key Points From This Episode:Melanie's career path to lactation consultant, and her wonderful big family.Training and transitioning into lactation consultancy and certifications.Early symptoms of tongue-tie: frustration, painful nipples, weight loss, and more.How tongue-ties present in surprising symptoms and tendencies in babies. Connections between tongue-tie and ADHD symptoms, sleep deprivation, and early signs of tongue-tie. Alleviating breathing issues that can lead to increased anxiety and higher cortisol levels. Narrow palates and treatments through palatal expansion. A recent case study conducted by Melanie on tongue-tie and Down Syndrome. Melanie explains 'bodywork' and why it is integral to tongue-tie release procedures. Closing advice from Melanie and the possibility and realistic nature of release treatments. Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, & The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:HarklaMelanie Henstrom on LinkedIn MacroBar Everlasting JoyMelanie Henstrom on InstagramMelanie Henstrom on TwitterPortland Community CollegePortland State UniversityInternational Board-Certified Lactation ConsultantJane MortonStanford Medical CenterCenter for Orofacial MyologyAll Things Sensory on InstagramAll Things Sensory on Facebook
Today’s guest, Dr. Sam Zink, is a dentist who focuses on airway dental medicine. Dr. Zink’s practice is rooted in the belief that all dentistry should support and enhance an optimal airway. In today’s episode, Dr. Zink shares how having his three sons struggle with upper airway resistance syndrome drew him into this specialization. We hear about why tongue and lip ties often go undiagnosed and the importance of finding a team that understands what it takes to diagnose and treat these issues. For so long, these problems have been diagnosed on appearance alone, but as Dr. Zink highlights, there is a spectrum, and as such, you should be looking for functional signs rather than ones based on appearance. We also discover how tongue-ties can manifest in adults and some tell-tale signs that you might have one. Gain insights into tongue-tie release surgery and the vital role of aftercare, and why constricted airways can put you in a state of chronic stress. Be sure to tune in today!Key Points From This Episode:Get to know Dr. Zink and how he got into a career in dentistry after working in IT. Why Dr. Zink decided to focus his practice on tongue-ties; his personal experience. Some of the reasons why tongue ties often go undiagnosed. The importance of defining optimal health. An overview of what a tongue and lip tie are and some of the common symptoms. Why you cannot diagnose tongue and lip ties on appearance alone. What fascia is and the role it plays in the body. The importance of finding the right team when it comes to treating you or your child’s tongue-tie. How the process of releasing an adult and a baby tongue-tie differs. The bureaucracy and politics around diagnosing tongues-ties; what to be aware of. Why Dr. Zink usually does not recommend letting a lip tie split on its own. A look at what the procedure entails and the team approach that Dr. Zink uses. What can happen if you do not do post-op stretches and care correctly. What compensating for a small airway can lead to; your body is in constant fight or flight. The role that genetics and environment play in tongue-ties. Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, & The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:HarklaAll Things Sensory on InstagramAll Things Sensory on FacebookDiscount Code — SENSORYZink DentalDr. Sam ZinkA Pattern Language
Back in episode 16, we talked about disciplining a sensory kiddo and it has remained one of our most listened-to episodes. So, we thought we would revisit the topic and incorporate some new ideas. Discipline is a tricky topic, and it presents challenges even without a sensory difficulty or diagnosis, so we are here to share what we think works best. We walk through a case study in a classroom setting, unpacking the child's response to being overstimulated and overwhelmed. It appears that the child's behavior is "bad," but when we dig deeper, we can see that he is just responding in the only way he knows how. We share some of the types of discipline we believe have the most positive outcomes, offer some reasons as to why your child might be acting out, and highlight the importance of tailoring your disciplinary approach according to what your child feels most comfortable with. Remember to always go into these situations with all the kindness and empathy to help those having a hard time!Key Points From This Episode:A case study to highlight a common challenge for sensory kiddos.The steps Rachel and Jessica would take to help the child in the case study.Types of discipline that work best for sensory children: consistency, kindness, visual cues, and more.Think about how you want to be disciplined and how you would want someone to react to you.You have to discipline your children differently regardless of diagnosis or label.Some reasons that your child might be having a hard time or acting out.The value of taking preventative measures to help your child manage their triggers.Be empathetic to children and adults with sensory challenges.How teachers and therapists can approach working with their sensory students or clients.Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, & The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now,.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:HarklaAll Things Sensory on InstagramAll Things Sensory on FacebookAlli Things Sensory Episode 16Discount Code — SENSORYSensationalBrain
Aquatic therapy can be used as a treatment modality for Occupational Therapy and comes with a range of benefits for both adults and children. Today we sit with Nicole Nickell, an Occupational Therapist and founder of Lullaby Waters. In this episode, we take a deep dive into aquatic therapy and what makes it so impactful.We talk to Nicole about the genesis of Lullaby Waters, as we discover how her love for water-based therapy evolved from a stint at St. Luke's Rehab Institute. We then take a closer look at why Nicole enjoys aquatic therapy so much. As the daughter of a physicist, we find out that Nicole loves water all the way down to a molecular level. She continues to tell us about water’s helpful characteristics, like buoyancy, viscosity and hydrostatic pressure. Later in the show, Nicole expands on the sessions she provides, sharing details about its structure, and how she incorporates daily routine skills into them. We also discover more on what types of patients benefit most from aquatic therapy, like those with Down Syndrome and Cerebral Palsy. To hear more on Nicole’s practice and why aquatic therapy is such a popular mode of occupational therapy, be sure to tune in today!Key Points From This Episode:Nicole shares a little about her professional background and her work in aquatic therapy.Hear the genesis of Lullaby Waters.Nicole shares the biggest benefits that water therapy can offer. Find out Nicole’s approach to water and in-clinic therapy.We learn about what one of Nicole’s typical sessions looks like. How Nicole works with kids who have a fear of water. We touch on Lullaby Waters’ unique environment.Some of the ways water therapy can help adults with conditions like anxiety.Nicole’s biggest challenges at work and how she deals with them. Nicole shares how she keeps herself and her team motivated.Find out how you can find aquatic therapy near you.Nicole’s parting advice to therapists and parents.Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, & The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:The Sensory Project Show PodcastThe Sensory Project on FacebookThe Sensory Project on InstagramHarklaLullaby WatersNicole Nickell on LinkedIn
Today’s episode is about another primitive reflex: the palmar grasp reflex. Primitive reflexes impact so many things! Be sure to check out our 5-episode series on primitive reflexes (#100-104), as we continue our mission to get this information out there to everyone! The palmar grasp reflex happens when pressure is put on an infant’s palm & they reflexively curl their fingers to grasp whatever is in their palm. You’ll hear about all things related to palmar grasp reflex, including 3 key related learning disabilities, when it emerges & integrates normally, what happens when it doesn't, and how it correlates to speech & feeding. We also discuss potential reasons why it doesn’t integrate & end off the episode with loads of different activities to help your kiddos integrate their reflexes & assist in their development. Tune in & enjoy!Key Points From This Episode:What the palmar grasp reflex looks like.Hear about 3 key terms: dyslexia, dysgraphia, & dyscalculia.When the palmar grasp emerges & integrates.Learn about the integration & development of the grasp as the baby ages.  What happens when the palmar grasp reflex isn’t integrated at the expected age.The potential correlation with speech issues; the relationship between hand & mouth.Overflow associated movements into the mouth during fine motor tasks, & opposite hand movements during novel or complex tasks.The correlation between the palmar grasp reflex, the rooting reflex, & feeding.Some activities to try if you think your kiddos palmar grasp reflex hasn't integrated.Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, and The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Links Mentioned in This Episode:HarklaAll Things Sensory on InstagramAll Things Sensory on FacebookPrimitive Reflex Series: The Moro ReflexPrimitive Reflex Series: The Tonic Labyrinthine ReflexPrimitive Reflex Series: Asymmetrical Tonic Neck ReflexPrimitive Reflex Series: The Spinal Galant ReflexPrimitive Reflex Series: The Symmetrical Tonic Neck ReflexKathy Johnson on LinkedInPyramid of Potential
Whether it's your first or fifth child, today’s guests are here to help! Every child has successes and challenges, and every family needs support, regardless of whether or not those families include members with special needs. Tuning in, you’ll hear from Sonya Abegglen and Lynnelle King from the Family Seasons Postpartum Clinic, where they offer pre- and postnatal education, advanced lactation care, specialized bodywork, parenting resources, and – the topic of this episode – craniosacral therapy. You’ll hear about their morning routines, how they like their eggs, and what their sensory quirks are before learning more about Family Seasons and craniosacral care, from a definition of the practice and its emotional components to whether or not it can be practiced at home and how it is different from seeing a chiropractor. Sonya and Lynelle also share their biggest challenge and their advice for trusting your mom-gut and never giving up. Getting the word out about craniosacral therapy is important to them, so make sure to tune in today to find out more!Key Points From This Episode:Sonya and Lynnelle go through the 5 secret questions. Find out who Sonya and Lynnelle are, what they do, and the people they serve.The gentle practice of craniosacral therapy defined.The intertwined physical and emotional components of craniosacral therapy.What a “typical” session might look like, even though each session is unique.Whether or not these techniques can be practiced at home using different exercises.Chiropractic care versus craniosacral: the difference is in bone structure or soft tissue.Lynnelle performs an experiment to illustrate the difference between craniosacral and massage therapy.How Sonya knows that an issue has been resolved, depending on the case.With this kind of non-resistant therapy, paying attention to signals from the body is key.How payment is covered for craniosacral and when it isn’t currently billable for insurance.The process of getting trained in craniosacral therapy through the Upledger Institute.Sonya and Lynnelle reflect on their biggest challenge: getting the message out there.Hear Lynnelle and Sonya’s parting advice: trust your mama gut and never quit!Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, and The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:Sonya AbegglenLynnelle KingFamily Seasons Postpartum ClinicUpledger InstituteAutism Awareness Month GiveawayHarklaAll Things Sensory on InstagramAll Things Sensory on Facebook
Life can be challenging if you’re struggling with knowing where your body is in space. Some of your kiddos might be facing daily challenges if they lack body awareness, mid-range control, or force modulation, so today’s episode is all about these skills and tips for improving them. These three “skills” act like a little triad that you have to think about when you are addressing these challenges with a client (as a therapist), or if you are a parent and you are trying to figure out what the heck is going on - why is your child having these challenges? Tuning in, you’ll get a quick overview of what the terms body awareness, mid-range control, and force modulation mean, what they look like if your child is struggling with any of them, and, of course, some activities and strategies to try to make a difference. Tune in for all this and more on today’s episode of All Things Sensory by Harkla!Key Points From This Episode:What body awareness is: the ability to recognize where your body is in space.How proprioception and body awareness are the same, but also different. Some signals you might notice if your kid struggles with body awareness, like clumsiness. Here’s an example: try to put on Chapstick with your eyes closed.Things you can do to help improve body awareness, such as proprioceptive activities, bilateral integration tasks, and video feedback.Force modulation - another word for how much force is required for a specific task.What to look out for if your child is struggling with force modulation, like too much or too little force and abnormal arousal levels.How to help with force modulation issues: when in doubt, prop it out!An explanation of mid-range control - the ability to go through a movement with control.Signs that your child is struggling with mid-range control, such as poor fine motor skills.Activities that help with mid-range control, including proprioceptive activities, weighted object tasks, and using visual feedback.Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, and The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:FREEBIE - click to download 5 Activities to Complete BlindfoldedHarklaAll Things Sensory on InstagramAll Things Sensory on FacebookHarkla GiveawayProprioception Episode
The topic of essential oils gives rise to varying opinions & reactions, & to help us understand this often misunderstood topic, we invited our friend Erin Owings, who runs The Supernatural Project, to have a discussion! As the mother to two children who have struggled with Laryngomalacia, which can greatly inhibit a baby's ability to breathe, Erin discovered the power of essential oils out of necessity, to help her children thrive. The immense difference that a few simple products made had a huge impact on Erin & sparked a continued journey into healthier living & better home practices, with more natural products & habits. We get to hear from Erin about the evolution of her approach & how she has slowly transformed the way things are done in their family, swapping out almost all of the chemical-based cleaning & care products for cheaper, & healthier, natural alternatives. One of the greatest things about this story is that it illustrates just how possible & approachable a healthier life is, so tune in with us to hear all the great wisdom that Erin has to share!Key Points From This Episode:An introduction to Erin's life! Her career, family, & philosophy towards managing her time. Erin's pregnancy & how motherhood shifted the course of her life. Unpacking Laryngomalacia & the difficulties that Erin's daughter experienced.How Erin was introduced to essential oils (EOs). The success that Erin experienced using EOs to help her daughter.   Safe practices for EO use & info on doTerra's transparency. Using EOs with young ones; dilutions, carrier oils, & starting at a low dosage. Troubleshooting reactions & accidents. Non-toxic household hacks from Erin; cleaning products, personal care, & lifestyle changes.Erin's method for DIY baby wipes! The insightful & exciting classes that Erin hosts on the topic of healthier homes. Closing advice from Erin about advocating & making the most of the important things.Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, and The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:HarklaAutism Awareness Month Giveaway at HarklaThe Supernatural Project on InstagramdoTERRASource to YouEWG Skin DeepJust Ingredients on InstagramSensory Plus Essential Oil ClassMama School
Today’s show is all about speaking to your pediatrician about the different developmental stages of your child when they are between the ages of three months and one year old. Your hosts, Jessica and Rachel, are both mothers, so they are speaking from experience, and the episode is full of their personal stories. Rachel and Jessica want all new parents to know that decisions regarding your child’s health are entirely up to you! Don’t feel bad to ask as many questions as you need to, ask for referrals if you aren’t getting answers, and even change your pediatrician if they aren’t meeting your requirements. All children develop at their own pace but certain milestones should be reached by a certain age, and this episode will help bring awareness to some potential red flags regarding your child’s development. The show covers topics such as tummy time, choosing a vaccination plan for your child (and a book recommendation on this topic), primitive reflexes (and where you can get more information on these), object permanence, and so much more! If you are a new or new-ish parent, this episode will be immensely valuable to you.   Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, and The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Key Points From This Episode:Rachel and Jessica’s personal experiences of taking their children to pediatricians.This episode is about helping parents find their voice and advocate for their child’s health. One of the signs that you may be with the wrong pediatrician.A simple way to keep track of the questions you want to ask your pediatrician. Don’t be afraid to ask for referrals if your pediatrician doesn’t have all the answers.3 month check-up questions: head shape, tummy time, vaccines, eye tracking, and more.6 month check-up questions: weight gain, sounds, eye contact, sleep, solid foods, and more.Details about how to receive a 10% discount on your first Harkla purchase.9 month developmental milestones: interest in their environment, pincer grasps, imitating sounds, and more.1 year milestones: primitive reflexes, responses to foods, recognition of caregivers, imitation, object permanence, and more. Rachel and Jessica’s goal for the podcast for 2021! Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:HarklaHarkla on InstagramBaby BeginThe Vaccine Friendly PlanKinesio KidsFREEBIE What to ask your doctor checklistUniversity of Washington Autism Centre
Raising a child with Level 3 autism and a combined diagnosis of PANDAS can be a challenge for parent and child. Today we welcome back the Blymillers. We first interviewed Angela and Shawn 122 episodes ago! Much has changed since then. In this show, we check in with these super-parents to find out how their five-and-a-half-year-old boy, Theo, is responding to his various therapies, and to hear some of the lessons they have learned. We hear how Angela and Shawn have refined their priorities, how it has been important to make changes, and what has led them to go down a path of following intuition, rather than outward advice. We cover some of Theo’s most impactful therapies and why they’re so beneficial. We touch on chiropractic, listening programs, CBD, and revolutionary FMT therapy. The Blymillers share what FMT therapy is and how it can create a healthier microbiome while protecting sufferers of PANDAS from flare-ups and infection. Later in the show, we ask the Blymillers to share details on their Pure Living Family brands, which include protein powders, magnesium, and vitamin D. They furnish us with pertinent information about the importance of proper binders, and how to detox your body effectively.  Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, and The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Key Points From This Episode:Introducing today’s guests, the Blymillers.Catching up with Shawn and Angela, we ask them a series of questions.Shawn and Angela give listeners a life update and how their child is doing.Angela and Shawn tell us they refined their priorities.Why it has been important for the Blymiller’s to lean into their intuition.We cover some of Theo’s therapies and how they have benefited him.Hear the Blymiller’s background in FMT and their experiences with it.How FMT has helped Theo’s journey with PANDAS.What the symptoms of PANDAS are.How an unfortunate car accident led to a regression in Theo’s immune health.Angela and Shawn discuss their experiences with CBD.Hear about the Blymiller’s protein powder and other Pure Living Family brands.How Theo’s diagnosis has pushed his parents to live healthier lives.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:The Sensory Project Show PodcastThe Sensory Project on FacebookThe Sensory Project on InstagramHarklaThe Blymillers on emailTrader Joe’s Functional Medicine Coaching
As parents, therapists, and teachers, we have specific goals we want our kids to be able to achieve, whether it’s something like brushing their teeth at home, drinking water from an open cup, or working on their handwriting. What we don’t always think about are those underlying skills that we need them to establish before they can actually work on and achieve those specific goals. Today, on All Things Sensory, we are going to talk about how to address those underlying skills for specific goals. Some of these underlying skills include bilateral integration, primal stability, coordination, strength, visual perception, and attention, and these are just a few! Be sure to check out the show notes on our blog at  Harkla.Co/Podcast.Brought To You By HarklaThis podcast is brought to you by Harkla.  Our mission at Harkla is to help those with special needs live happy and healthy lives. We accomplish this through high-quality sensory products, child development courses, and The Harkla Sensory Club.Podcast listeners get 10% off their first order at Harkla with the discount code "sensory". Head to Harkla.co/sensory to start shopping now.Key Points From This Episode:How we decide on the goals we want to achieve and how they drive our sessions.Why it is important for your child to master underlying skills related to the specific task you are working on.Some underlying skills as it relates to a “buttoning” example, such as bilateral integration, coordination, strength, and fine motor skills.How empathy plays into these sessions; why you need to know what the child is dealing with.Defining the underlying skills and what they entail.The ones we often forget: postural control and proximal stability.What it means when we say “proximal stability before distal control.”Primitive reflex integration; without integration, you’ll have trouble using your arms and hands. Practicing buttoning: the child needs confidence in their ability to button in all environments.Other examples of how you can address different skills that are required for different tasks.Cup drinking: bilateral integration (Zoom ball), catching and throwing, mid-range control (Jenga), and convergence (Zoom ball).Sequencing letters in handwriting: visual perception and spatial relations (draw a person, Where is Waldo), sensory using different tactile mediums, and memory.Brushing your teeth: proximal stability, grasp (rope pulling/ monkey bars), sequencing (visual schedules), and oral motor skills (blowing, sucking, spitting).  Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:All Things Sensory on InstagramAll Things Sensory on FacebookHarklaHarkla Sensory ClubZoom Ball
Welcome to All Things Sensory by Harkla! This trailer is a great place to start if you're new to the show! We cover:Who we (Rachel & Jessica) areWhat our background is as Certified Occupational TherapistsWhat are our most popular episodesWho Harkla isIf you're looking to go deeper on any of the shows, we always include show notes and transcripts as Harkla.co/Podcast.If you want to connect with us more, make sure to follow up on Instagram!Podcast Listeners Save at Harkla.co:All Things Sensory listeners get 10% off their first purchase at Harkla.co.Save on sensory swings, weighted blankets, digital courses, and much more!Head to Harkla.co/Sensory, and use the discount code "Sensory" when checking out for 10% off your entire order!
In our early stages of development, we all have a template in our brains that guides how we move. And the movements we make based on that guide are called innate rhythmic movements. This set of movements helps us go from being defenseless babies to developing skills like walking, speaking, and even coping with stress. Today’s guest is Sonia Story, an expert in innate rhythmic movements and the creator of the Brain and Sensory Foundations course, and she joins us to help us learn more about these fundamental movements and the role they play in proper development. We kick things off by hearing about how Sonia started learning about innate rhythmic movements in the first place, realized how important they are, and decided to start teaching others about them. She talks about how, due mostly to parents lacking knowledge (through no fault of their own!), many children are not allowed the proper space to move in these ways and, therefore, suffer developmentally. We get into the different areas of development that depend on innate rhythmic movements such as language, relaxation, and memory. Sonia also shares how she integrates different pieces of her training in the philosophy of play, psychology, and movement into her coaching methods. For an important exchange about the value of movement for development and how not just kids but adults can benefit too, be sure to tune in today!Podcast Listeners Save at Harkla.co:All Things Sensory listeners get 10% off their first purchase at Harkla.co.Save on sensory swings, weighted blankets, digital courses, and much more!Head to Harkla.co/Sensory, and use the discount code "Sensory" when checking out for 10% off your entire order! Key Points From This Episode:●      Five secret questions with Sonia; how she relaxes, her sensory quirk, and more.●      How Sonia learned about the power of movement and began to teach it too.●      What innate rhythmic movements are and why they are important.●      The role of innate rhythmic movements in the development of reflexes.●      The need to allow babies to move according to this system.●      Case studies about the benefits of innate rhythmic movements.●      Sonia’s process of implementing these exercises in her family.●      Why the vast majority of children would benefit from doing innate rhythmic movements.●      The different techniques Sonia has integrated to build her rhythmic movement training.●      Details about Sonia’s course and where to find it online.●      Advice for parents who want to start implementing these exercises with their kids. Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode: Sonia StoryBrain and Sensory FoundationsThe Gospel of ThomasSmart Moves: Why Learning Is Not All in Your HeadPlaying by Heart: The Vision and Practice of BelongingHarkla
We've got BIG NEWS to announce to everyone during this podcast episode!We're joining the Harkla Team as in-house content creators, experts, and podcast hosts! This means we're changing the name of the podcast to All Things Sensory by Harkla!Like we mention in the episode, to celebrate we're having a big sale on all of our Harkla products:One month free to the Harkla Sensory Club (which was The Sensory Project Club)25% off all of our digital courses15% off Harkla Therapy Products and SupplementsClick the link here to go to the sale.We'll be back on Wednesday with our usual content! 
We are often asked about how to deal with fighting between siblings and how to help them get along better. First off, it’s always useful to remember that fighting is a natural and inevitable part of life between children, and it’s just a matter of making sure that the difficulties that do arise are within a reasonable limit and are not dangerous. When a child has sensory challenges, these kinds of conflicts can be exacerbated and in some cases may be harder to deal with; sensory processing and verbal communication challenges can lead to outbursts and aggressive behavior. It’s vital to start understanding the messages that your child is sending you - many of these might be in their body language and patterns of behavior, so if you’re able to identify these you can begin to implement healthy boundaries and changes! This means identifying the trigger points, finding the why for a difficult dynamic, and responding to these accordingly. We all need to allow our kiddos to develop healthy and expected play skills, and this comes down to how you are able to preempt and respond to the situation and their patterns. For all this and a whole lot more, listen in with us! Key Points From This Episode: Setting consistent boundaries to manage the inevitable fighting that occurs between siblings.Identifying the trigger points for aggression between siblings.Overstimulation, struggles with play, troubles with communication, and more!Measures to take in the case of a fight or the breaking of a boundary. The education that is needed for better play skills and sharing. Modeling good and expected behavior and allowing children to practice this.Responses to aggressive behavior; better and worse ways to deal with acting out. The vital importance of consistency, follow-through, and clear boundaries.Clarifying where the actual problem lies and addressing it head-on.A reminder to understand the causes of aggressive behavior in order to target improvement. Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode: HarklaParenting with Love and LogicEpisode 16 Disciplining a Sensory KiddoThe Sensory Project Show PodcastThe Sensory Project on FacebookThe Sensory Project on Instagram Highlights: “I have an older brother, and we grew up fighting and wrestling and just getting after each other non-stop. I grew up with it, so I have kind of a personal take on the situation, as well as a professional take.” — Rachel Harrington [0:01:39] “All siblings fight, bicker, wrestle, whatever. I think it's just the natural part of being a family.” — Jessica Hill [0:01:53] “Maybe your child is becoming overstimulated by too much noise. As your children are playing together, it's getting loud and maybe it's just too much auditory input.” — Jessica Hill [0:03:35] “All of these factors can lead to aggression, so being able to figure out the why. This is why my child is becoming aggressive. They aren't just an aggressive child. They aren't just hitting to hit. There's typically a reason.” — Rachel Harrington [0:04:46]
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Comments (3)

Alexa Garza

My first child is a sensory kiddo and this podcast along a few books I've discovered have been lifesavers. I've been so lost, confused, stressed and everything else you could think of. these ladies are amazing at explaining all the things.

Jul 13th
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Becky

Love this podcast

Aug 29th
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Rachel Walker

I love that I found this podcast!! I’m currently attending school for pediatric occupational therapist assistant.

Jul 11th
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