You know them; the child that never does any work in your class. The one who disrupts you every day. The one who never hands in their homework. When work is completed, you cannot read it. I know them too.

My kid is Brian. Brian is in seventh grade. He does not have OT services, yet every time I see him, I wonder why not. He fidgets and giggles inappropriately. Teachers are beyond frustrated with him.

Looking at old records, he had OT in the past. His IQ was average, and his Processing Speed and Working Memory scores were 83 and 80, respectively. Unfortunately, he does not have a 504 plan.

As an OT consultant, occasionally, I have the opportunity to provide direct services. I was doing just that. For example, one of the students I helped with the weekly staff support is required to pull out for 2 minutes before math class.

I arrived at the room knowing that Brian would also be there. So, as I interrupt her teacher, my eyes scan the room for Brian.

“Miss Cheri, did you see him? Isn’t he the bomb?” she giggles as we walk to her exercise room. She talks about him all the time.

“I winked at him as you were picking me up today. I think he blushed.”

“Tanisha let’s focus on your 2-minute core exercises. If you want to talk about boys, stop in my office during study hall. I have paperwork that needs to complete during that time.” I could use a distraction; I think to myself.

Tanisha has ten exercises to choose from every day just before math class. I asked her to wait for me so I could check in on how she was doing with her routine. She is monitored daily by either PT, PE, or OT, depending on who is available that day. 

She uses the app Women’s Home Fitness by Ruvix. It contains 12 core exercises. Each exercise is completed for 30 seconds. She does four each day. We have eliminated push-up rotation and side planks due to growth plate concerns. Instead, she chooses jumping jacks, wall sits, push-ups, abdominal crunches, chair step-ups, squats, triceps dips, regular planks, high knees, and lunges. She is aware that she must do each exercise at least 2x per week, leaving her ample opportunity for choices throughout the week.

Returning to math, I glance into the room at Brian again. He is making something under his desk. I also noticed that their teacher turned off the overhead fluorescent lights and turned on four standing floor lamps.

“Yes!” I shout inside my head, “he is finally trying to change the environment for his students.”


Is Brian lazy?

Why is Brian distracted?

Do you think that two minutes of core exercises will help Tanisha?

Put your answers in the comments below.?