Two months into isolation, and many parents are running out of things in their toolbox to support their children. Therapies are on hold or being done virtually, schools are closed, and parents are their sole support system.

On Tuesday May 19th at 10:00am, join the conversation with occupational therapists Heather Hodgins-Chan and Debra Kennedy as they help you find ways to support your sensory challenged children during this time.

How do sensory processing challenges lead to meltdowns and refusal to do work or activities at home? What is co-regulation and why is it important?Do we really have 8 senses? These and other questions will be answered by Heather and Debra in our Ask the OT Panel.

Debra Kennedy – Occupational Therapist

Debra Kennedy profile picture

Debra Kennedy has been privileged to work as an occupational therapist with children and youth with autism, and their families for over 30 years.  Additionally, she has 10 years of experience as a master instructor with the Crisis Prevention Institute. She is an instructor in the Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy at the University of Toronto and a tutor in the Occupational Therapy Program at McMaster University.  Debra has received several awards acknowledging her work, including the 2018 Gerry Bloomfield Award from Autism Ontario.  

She has represented occupational therapists on a variety of provincial committees and currently is a member of the Implementation Working Group for the Ontario Autism Program.  Prior to retirement, Debra was the Chief of Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy at the York District Region School Board and Simcoe-York Children’s Treatment Network Liaison. 

Heather Hodgins-Chan- Occupational Therapist

Heather Hodgins-Chan profile picture

Heather Hodgins-Chan is a pediatric occupational therapist in Ottawa, Ontario.  She has been an OT for 21 years and has worked in Saskatchewan, Alberta, and Ontario, taking various roles on several pediatric teams.  She is passionate about working with children of all abilities, particularly those who have Autism and difficulties with sensory processing.  Having completed a degree in Anatomy and Cell Biology at McGill University prior to her second degree, Heather has a special interest in physiology, neuroscience, and how this affects behaviour and relationship development. 

She co-owns “On the Ball Pediatric Physio and Occupational Therapy” in Kanata.  She has travelled internationally to further her pediatric education, focussing on courses related to Sensory Integration Therapy, Floortime approach, developmental trauma, and neuro-regulation.  Heather has a page on Facebook dedicated to educating families and caregivers about OT; she posts about therapeutic home activities regularly (On the Ball OT Ideas).  


Thanks you for your interest. Registration is now closed, and a recording of this session will be made available here shortly.

Here is the Pyramid of Learning that was mentioned in the session.

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2 thoughts on “Ask the OT – May 19 2020”
  1. Any chance of getting this talk online Matthew? I would love to share the OT one and tune in to the other ones you recorded. Sherri friended me the other night and told me about her talk. Would love to hear it. Thanks so much. Heather

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