Looking to update your school-based OT treatment planning game? While intervention planning can be one of the most fun parts of our job, it can also take up a huge amount of time! If you’re looking for new resources to get you out of a rut or just some of the most tried and true, here are some treatment planning resources that school-based OTs should consider.
Plan to Collaborate
Before we go over some of the best online resources for intervention activities, I should caveat this with the fact that your treatment planning ideally looks a little different in the schools compared to other pediatric settings. Ultimately, school-based OTs should be pushing into classrooms and upholding the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE). This means that you might not get as many opportunities to complete Pinterest-worthy crafts, and will instead be spending time modifying and accommodating classroom assignments that your student is already working on. Or, you’ll be trying to catch natural opportunities to work on life skills like clothing fasteners, self-feeding, and toileting. In any case, it can be especially helpful to have co-planning time with teachers so that you can ensure you are both working collaboratively towards your students’ goals.
But in any case, having some backup interventions available isn’t a bad idea. You may find yourself in a situation where you need to provide treatment plans to a sub OT, or you may find your regular push-in schedule disrupted. Some of these activities and resources are also a great fit for running centers or co-teaching a whole class lesson, which is also a valuable way to deliver push-in services or RtI.
So don’t hesitate to have some of these resources up your sleeve, just keep in mind that you should always be seeking to shift your practice to contextual services that uphold the LRE – and often that means that typical, craft-based treatment planning isn’t necessary in the schools.
School-Based OT Treatment Planning Resources for ADLs/Self-Help/Life Skills
School-Based OT Treatment Planning Resources for Fine and Visual Motor Skills
School-Based OT Treatment Planning Resources for Handwriting
School-Based OT Treatment Planning Resources for Gross Motor Skills
School-Based OT Treatment Planning Resources for Executive Function
School-Based OT Treatment Planning Resources for Transition Planning
School-Based OT Treatment Planning Resources for Sensory Processing
School-Based OT Treatment Planning Resources for Social-Emotional Regulation
School-Based OT Treatment Planning Resources for Assistive Technology and Universal Design
School-Based OT Treatment Planning Resources for Telehealth
I hope these treatment planning resources gave you some ideas for the next time you’re scratching your head, not sure where to go next with a student! Beyond the websites listed here, you may also find school-based OT intervention ideas on social media like Instagram, Pinterest, TikTok, and Facebook groups. Another thing I recommend doing is designating one digital place to save any intervention activities that were a hit. For example, I use Google Drive to create a folder full of treatment activities, handouts, printables, etc. that are all organized by the skill that they’re targeting. This makes it easy to quickly find what I need and print things on demand, rather than relying on an old, rusty file cabinet housed in a central office. Having one go-to spot that you can access digitally can be a real time-saver, especially when you’re covering multiple buildings.
One other thing worth mentioning while you’re improving your treatment planning skills: make sure to update or create formal intervention plans for your students, beyond their IEPs.
And if you’re looking for even more support with your school-based practice, be sure to check out The Dynamic School OT Course. There’s a huge module on intervention strategies as well as resources on evaluation, scheduling, and discharge planning. See you there soon!