Occupational therapy focuses on fine motor control. Areas addressed include reaching, grabbing, picking up objects, holding a utensil, holding a crayon/pencil, stacking blocks, writing and drawing, using scissors, dressing, buttoning, and zipping. Occupational Therapy can also include sensory integration for children with sensory disorders, such as many children with autism. Occupational Therapy can help facilitate use of alternative communication devices and can also deal with the use of wheelchairs and other adaptive equipment.

Occupational therapy evaluations are completed by a registered Occupational Therapist. Therapy is conducted by an Occupational Therapist or a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant under the supervision of an Occupational Therapist.

The following is a developmental checklist. It is a guideline of the average age when children acquire certain skills. Each child develops at his or her own pace, but if you have concerns about a child’s development, please call us. We can schedule an evaluation with a licensed professional in the area of concern, and we can determine whether the child is delayed or developing on schedule.

By 6 months your child should be able to:

  • Pass a toy from one hand to the other
  • Hold and shake a rattle
  • Pick up a small toy with only one hand
  • Try to pick up a Cheerio by using thumb and fingers in a raking motion

By 12 months your child should be able to:

  • Clap hands or wave
  • Pick up a Cheerio with only the thumb and one finger
  • Drink from an open cup independently
  • Throw a ball in front of him
  • Help turn pages in a book

By 18 months your child should be able to:

  • Stack 3-4 blocks on top of each other
  • Make a mark on paper with the tip of a crayon
  • Use a spoon without spilling food off of the spoon
  • Scribble back and forth on paper

By 2 years your child should be able to:

  • Build tower of 7 blocks
  • String 1-4 large beads or pasta onto a string
  • Twist hand to try to open doorknobs or twist tops
  • Can draw a line across a paper
  • Pretend an item is something else, like using a cup as a phone
  • Eat with a fork

By 3 years your child should be able to:

  • Cut with scissors
  • Draw a circle on paper
  • Imitate drawing a + on paper
  • Draw a person with a head
  • Put on a coat, jacket, or shirt by herself
  • Take turns with another person

By 4 years your child should be able to:

  • Put together a 5-7 piece, interlocking puzzle
  • Unbutton one or more buttons
  • Color mostly within the lines in a coloring book
  • Dress and undress without help
  • Wash hands with soap and water and dry with a paper towel without help

By 5 years your child should be able to:

  • Cut on a straight line with scissors
  • Draw a cross, square, and triangle without copying
  • Button and unbutton medium-sized buttons
  • Can use a zipper
  • Uses the toilet by herself, including wiping and flushing

Each child develops at his or her own pace, but if you have concerns about a child’s development, please call us. We can schedule an evaluation with a licensed professional in the area of concern, and we can determine whether the child is delayed or developing on schedule.

This information is compiled from the following source: Ages and Stages Questionnares- 3, Brooks Publishing Co.