Monday, 9 May 2011

Why choose MM for School Age learning?

Staff that "GETS IT"
At MM our staff believe that children thrive when individualization and creativity work together. Our teachers and therapists are skilled at eliciting student confidence, while capitalizing on student's personal interests, as a motivational factor in achievement. We work hard to pair students with other class mates with whom social development is possible; by pairing like-minded children, we increase their overall ability to establish common ground.

With a sophisticated system for checks and balances, we ensure that teachers are constantly working to achieve professional development, and always striving to surpass your needs.
Individualized Curriculum Application
In our school-age class, you can expect to see the "standard" Ministry mandated curriculum goals, kicked up a notch with a bit of behavioural know-how and a lot of flexibility to adapt to our learners. With choice as a central component of the school-age program, our learners develop academic, life and social skills to carry forward into larger school settings.

The Family Component
At MM we spend a lot of time getting to know our students; and we spend the rest of our time getting to know the parents. By understanding each family, we are able to provide a high standard of service for all of our families. We understand that it takes an entire family to raise a child; we support sibling integration in social skill programs and summer camp! We support at home play dates between siblings, and foster development of relationships and social skills.

We work with our families to create consistency across all learning environments, and give parents the tools to make the post out of every learning opportunity, be it speech pathology, occupational therapy, play skill building or extra curricular activity.

The "Family Involvement Starts Here" (FISH) program is an integral part of facilitating discussion between parents and teachers; though the kitsch-ey name itself was borrowed from an online educational website, the idea of a communication journal that travels with the student is something that has stood the test of time. All parents want to know what their child achieved at school that day. The FISH book allows teachers and one to one therapists to communicate anecdotes, moods, and/or other relevant information to parents and/or caregivers. School-age students take special care in bringing the FISH books back and forth from home to school; often as a first step towards independence, students delight in the idea of responsibility.

Understanding Anxiety, ADD and Autism

Understanding the variables that impact learning, means understanding each diagnosis for its ability to enhance the learning process. With a behavioural perspective, we support the development of functional coping strategies, which our students carry-forward for the rest of their lives. With a solid understanding of each child in his or her variables, we are skilled at eliciting academic success and most importantly, are skilled at increasing confidence and decreasing frustration.

A Hands-On Learning Environment
All activities and assignments are designed with our children's interests in mind. We take fixation, and turn it into functional learning learning; we take obsession, and turn it into an opportunity for growth and development. 

We plan activities with all 5 senses in mind, keeping in mind that many of our students are visual learners. By scheduling daily academic rotations, based on monthly units, all of our learners get the 1:1 support needed for academic tasks. Using visual schedules, interactive learning (fill in the blanks and intraverbals) we teach lessons using errorless learning; skills targeting during group learning include answering as a group, sharing physical space, and following group learning conventions (like raising your hand to speak and sitting "criss cross apple sauce").

We believe that every child has to potential to flourish when he or she is met at his or her own level. We believe that children with additional needs will thrive, when all of the variables are accounted for and we are looking forward to supporting your journey towards meaningful change!

As always all images are courtesy of

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