Fastening New Skills with the Interactive Metronome - George’s Story.
George is a 78-year-old man, receiving Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy to address functional movement problems as a result of his moderate to severe Parkinson’s disease.
As an OT new to the IM program I was interested to see whether the program would help to alleviate the tremor in both of his hands as he tried in vain to manage his fasteners, buttons and zippers when dressing. I knew from experience that helping clients in this area with traditional therapy techniques (repetition/adaptation/compensation) was often arduous, frustrating and time-consuming.
Undaunted, I looked to the fact that the IM program had helped with many of my clients who had motor problems and set out enthusiastically to help George to “fine tune” his fine motor skills.
I’ve been an OT for 20 years now and have seen many patients with the diagnosis of Developmental Delay. As these children age, some of them do “catch up” but others tend to develop at their own pace. Sometimes other syndromes or conditions or influences are impacting these children as well. One day a mother was talking to me after our OT session and she stated – “He is just marching to the beat of his own drummer!” and that has stuck with me for the past 15 or so years. Well, that statement in itself has a rhythmical reference to it, so I thought why not try IM with some of my patients who had Developmental Delays and see if it would be helpful.
A 12-year-old boy was my first prospect. I had known him and worked with him since he was 18 months old. I reviewed with mom what I had learned, and let her know that I thought this might be a good option for her son who was struggling in school and was very slow and awkward in general. She agreed, knowing that at the very least it would be a good workout for him and that he would have to do some good motor planning during the tasks. She committed to coming in 2x/week before school...
There has been more than one occasion when behavioral issues really impact the outcome of our IM sessions and the changes that can take place. Sometimes honestly the kids just aren’t interested in what you want them to do, and they want to do it their own way. Sometimes there are behavioral issues that have become intertwined in their environment, and they need a fresh start. This can definitely have an impact on the effectiveness of your IM sessions, and what progress you see both in the clinic, and in their other environments.
When we at Interactive Metronome announced that we were going to do Beta testing for IM-Home, we had a ton of IM therapists beating down our doors to be a part of it. The call was for IM Providers and they were supposed to pick their own patients for the test, but a mom of a child with PDD heard about our product and inquired about it for her son. I wasn't expecting that a patient would approach us for the testing, but I thought- "why not?" So I set her up with one of our virtual therapists, April Christopherson, OTR/L. The family lived in California and April was based on Colorado, so they never saw each other in-person, but they did use Skype and communicated via e-mail and phone. "James" made some great gains over the testing period and she was excited to share her story with us. This was the first time that we realized a completely virtual model could work. We could not extend our reach and not expect clients to come to the client 3-4 times a week! See the mom tell you her experience below
While no one is 100% fluent, stuttering is defined as three SLDs per 100 words. Thanks to IM therapy, William is no longer clinically categorized as a stutterer. IM therapy not only made William a more fluent individual, it gave him the confidence that he needed to engage new people and participate in conversations. Check out his story here.
It seemed like the end of the road for this near-drowning victim. Adam suffered from a plethora of impairments due to his accident. IM was introduced as part of Adam’s therapy plan to help with his attention and focus. Before IM, Adam could not sit unsupported or feed himself… and now he has received the Chair Scholar Scholarship, a prepaid four-year college tuition for students with significant disabilities seeking a regular diploma. Find out how IM helped him succeed.
When Emily began IM she struggled in all academic area areas although she did enjoy the social aspects of school. And after only 15 sessions, she is she can solve mental math calculations that she was not able to do before. Emily spends more time thinking and working through things mentally. She is also able to maintain and match the rhythm of the horse during her riding lessons. These improvements over the course of the year can be attributed to the integration of IM in her therapy sessions. Read the full story below.
IM is not only for those with a disorder. Did you know that among other sports teams we have worked with Notre Dame? IM works on timing and precision speed which are critical for an athlete. Check out this media clip
Lily had many difficulties ranging from attention problems to sensitivity to certain clothing fabrics. After receiving traditional OT sessions, Lily started doing IM therapy; it was there where improvements started to appear. Because of Lily's sensitivity to headphones, and an issue with sweaty palm, her training was difficult but after minor adaptations, she got to enjoy certain exercises. She completed 17 sessions and not only her family, but her teachers and friends noticed the change. At school, she was attending better during classroom activities and completing her work on time. At girl scouts she was now earning badges which required memorization and direction following. Her mother noted that at a party she was able to participate in the party games, and even won a game! All of these things added up to a much more self confident little girl. Lily began asking to have friends over more often, and struggled less to complete homework every night.
How many of you have a child that has problems in reading or math? Well you aren’t alone. According to the US Department of Education, as many as 1 out of every 5 children have a learning disability and what’s even more alarming are the statics that these children are likely to suffer from:
75% - 80%of special education students identified as LD have their basic deficits in language and reading; Source: National Institutes of Health
35% of students identified with learning disabilities drop out of high school. This is twice the rate of their non-disabled peers. (This does not include the students who are not identified and drop out); Source: National Longitudinal Transition Study (Wagner )
50% of all students in special education in the public schools have learning disabilities -- 2.25 million children; Source: U.S. Dept. of Education
60%of adults with severe literacy problems have undetected or untreated learning disabilities; Source: National Adult Literacy and Learning Disabilities Center
50%of juvenile delinquents tested were found to have undetected learning disabilities; Source: National Center for State Courts and the Educational Testing Service
Up to 60%of adolescents in treatment for substance abuse have learning disabilities: Source: Hazelton Foundation, Minnesota
62%of learning disabled students were unemployed one year after graduation; Source: National Longitudinal Transition Study (Wagner)
50%of females with learning disabilities will be mothers (many of them single) within 3-5 years...