The Early Intervention game is changing.

I’m the coach, and I want to see you play.

And read a book with your child. 

And have a snack with your child. 

And anything else you want to go more smoothly, whether it’s dressing, buckling into the car seat, or the bedtime routine.

As much as I love coming into your living room, taking your child out of your arms, stretching his limbs, and singing him songs, I’ll be gone in less than an hour and I doubt the remaining 167 hours of the week generally consist of carrying on with the singing/stretching/living room routine. 

I’m fairly certain you spend time other places doing other things - more varied, interesting, functional, and necessary things. 

While I enjoy teaching your child to move about in and interact with the world around her, infants are notoriously bad at independently carrying out home programs.

Intervention is becoming less of me coming into your home with my expert knowledge of child development and more of me coming into your home and seeking your expert knowledge on how mealtime, bath time, bedtime, and play time have been going since I saw you last. 

It is less of me deciding what you need help with and more of me listening to you to find out what you need help with. 

There is less of me telling you how I would approach a situation and more of us figuring out a solution together. 

There is less taking time out of your day to “do therapy” and more identifying body parts while getting dressed, more making choices at mealtime, and more intentional positioning during play. 

There is less of me walking in with a bag of toys and an agenda and more of being open to the unpredictability of your real life. 

There is less of you telling me and more of you showing me.

You and your child are the team, the dyad, a wonderful two-for-one deal I get when your child qualifies for services. 

You are together for the daily ups and downs, and we need to work together to maximize the ups and minimize the downs. 

While I’m visiting as a coach we are a triad, and everyone is engaged in this process with continual feedback. 

therapy for children with special needs

As you show me how you look at a book together, and as you show me how your child sits, you set the course for the session. 

You take your expert knowledge about your child and build on it as I ask questions and provide suggestions based on my experience. 

You get to incorporate the new skill and share success with your child in the here-and-now, with inherent benefits to competence and confidence for both of you. 

That sounds like a win-win situation.


Daily, Joshua A., and Benjamin J. Landis. "The Journey to Becoming an Adult Learner: From Dependent to Self-Directed Learning." Journal of the American College of Cardiology 64.19 (2014): 2066-2068.

Salisbury, Christine L., and Lisa S. Cushing. "Comparison of triadic and provider-led intervention practices in early intervention home visits." Infants & Young Children 26.1 (2013): 28-41.

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