Author Melissa Walker-Tate

There are many areas and important milestones to development, and the more you look into this online it can become confusing.

Through my practice and experience as an Occupational Therapist I use the Central Nervous System Pyramid of learning (William & Shellenberger, 1-4) model to support child development areas. This has helped me to know what to first focus on in therapy in order to achieve a family’s goals.

I wanted to share these areas and ideas through my private practice.

The areas of development includes;

  • Sensory Systems
  • Body movements
  • Visual Processing
  • Academic Learning and Daily self-care activities

Our sensory systems include our 8 body sensations, 5 external senses (touch, taste, smell, vision, hearing) and 3 internal sensations (proprioception, vestibular, interoception).

Body movements include posture, core strength, upper body strength, ability to use two hands, motor planning, reflexes and awareness of two sides of our body.  This developmental area includes all the sensory systems which help our young learners to retain what they have learnt and to perform the motor output with their bodies and muscles.

Visual Processing incorporates eye hand coordination, posture adjustments, ability to sit, visual perception skills (how far away is something), and the ability to focus.

Academic learning, then can come into play when these developmental areas are working together and the young learner can function. Including to brush teeth, get dressed and toileting, the need to break down a tasks step by step (sequencing), and problem solve how to use the bodies muscles to complete a task. This level also includes behaviour adjustments and social -emotional learning.

I hope to further break down these areas to support families with strategies to use daily for their child’s development.

If you have any concerns or questions, please do not hesitate to contact for more information and ideas on how to help your child in these developmental areas.

Melissa Walker-Tate
Occupational Therapist
Connecting Together