The following private therapists are available to assess learners, offer therapy or advise parents. These professional consultations work at the school during the school day. They form an integral part of our staff and are also part of our multidisciplinary team. As they consult in their private capacity, all assessments and therapies are for the parents’ own account.

 

Speech & Language Therapists
Tracy Gibbs dgibbs@telkomsa.net
Glynnis Bredekamp glynnis.bredekamp@gmail.com
Sarah Florence sarahflorenc@gmail.com

These therapists help to improve a child’s verbal and nonverbal communication skills. Depending on the area of deficit, speech therapy may focus on improving several different areas such as speech production, understanding and expressing language.

Your child might need speech and language therapy if:

  1. They have difficulty coordinating and planning oral motor movements (tongue, lips) to formulate sounds/syllables or have weak oral motor movements (i.e., weak jaw and/or tongue strength)
  2. They have articulation difficulties where their speech consists of substitutions ( i.e., “f” for “th”, “w” for “l”), distortions (i.e., the “s” sound may be a lisp or sounds messy), omissions (i.e., the word “cat” is produced “ca”)
  3. They have weaknesses in receptive language skills or the ability to understand language. These difficulties may include the following: following simple directions, identifying spatial and temporal concepts, understanding prepositions, identifying antonyms, synonyms, multiple meaning words, etc.
  4. They have weaknesses in expressive language skills or the ability to communicate through words, facial expressions, gestures, or other nonverbal forms. These difficulties may include the following: formulating grammatically correct sentences, expressing relationships between word meaning, vocabulary development/word finding, answering –wh questions, sequencing, etc.
 
Occupational Therapists
Hayley Norrie hayley@sense-ability.co.za
Romy-Lee Marsh rmarsh@oakleyhouse.co.za

The therapists use their expertise to help children prepare for and perform important learning and developmental activities. This typically includes muscle strengthening and a range of motion of the hands and body, work on bilateral coordination (using two hands together), motor planning, visual perception skills, and visual motor skills. It also includes direct practice of the task, often with adaptations or modifications of the fine motor and self care tasks (cutting, writing, tying shoes) that are difficult for the individual child.

Your child might need occupational therapy if:

  1. They seem to have weak hands and/or get tired easily while doing fine motor tasks.
  2. They have difficulty with learning gross motor tasks such as riding a bike, skipping, or hopping.
  3. They are overly sensitive or emotional to sensory stimulation including touch, textures, tastes, sound, and movement.
  4. They have trouble with writing including pushing too hard or not hard enough, not being able to develop and maintain a good grasp on the pencil, and having trouble with size and spacing of their letters.
  5. They have difficulty with coordinating the muscles that control their eyes for good vision.
 
Social Skills
Naomi Botha nbotha@oakleyhouse.co.za

Social Skills are a significant component of our Foundation Phase programme and are embedded into our Foundation Phase curriculum. Our counsellor, Naomi Botha, spends thirty minutes per week with each Foundation Phase class, and also with our Intermediate Phase Amended Learning Program class and our Grade 4's. Social communication is a “language” and children are born with differences in their ability to learn this language, just as they have other learning differences. But there is no question that, with practice and encouragement, effective communication can be taught.

During sessions, Naomi focuses on aspects such as friendship, positive communication, and emotional management skills. Having a healthy sense of self and mental well-being sets the foundation for our children, creates options and nourishes possibilities in each child’s future.

 
Remedial Therapists / Learning Support
Foundation Phase Jana Lathleiff jlathleiff@oakleyhouse.co.za
Intermediate Phase Lee-Anne Blanckensee lblanckensee@oakleyhouse.co.za

Our remedial therapists work during the school day with small groups, assisting with reading, mathematics and spelling difficulties. They are also involved in leading a daily Literacy Hour group which addresses the four main components of reading, namely phonological awareness, morphology, fluency and comprehension.