The educational background of Occupational therapists includes extensive course work in anatomy, neurology and psychology. Their education also includes course work in activity analysis. This enables the therapist to analyze the components of a play or work activity with which a child might be struggling and choose tasks for sessions that will improve the child's skills most effectively - while still being fun of course!

Occupational therapists working with children strive to optimize a child's occupational performance. The main theme in all occupational therapy is FUNCTION. Occupational therapists are often said to be the catch-all therapy - and they are proud of this label! Parents will often start a sentence with "I'm not sure if this is OT-related or not, but can you work on...." With OT, the answer is almost always "of course!" Children span the age range of birth through adolescence. Just think about the variety of occupations you were engaged in during this period of time in your life! Consider how these occupations become increasingly complex during childhood and how they formed an important foundation for the roles you play as an adult today.

The primary occupations of children are considered to be:

* Play
* Activities of Daily Living (feeding, toileting, dressing, grooming, mobility)
* Learning and school performance

A core value of pediatric occupational therapy is providing family-centered care and service. The needs, desires, and values of the child and family drive the direction of OT assessments and intervention. The focus of occupational therapy intervention directly reflects the child's and/or family's priorities.