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For children

Early Learning & Therapy

Supporting your child’s development.

Early Learning and Therapy

 

Finding the right support for your child can be confusing. Making sure you access the right allied health supports and therapy for your child’s developmental needs is important.

Early Learning and Therapy at VMCH offers specialist early childhood intervention therapy and allied health services for babies and children with a disability or development delays. We have therapists based in Kew, Melbourne and Wangaratta in Regional Victoria.

For starters, here’s an introduction of some of the terms you might not be familiar with and how we can help.

What is a developmental delay?

This is when a child is not achieving new skills within the expected age range milestones.

What is a disability?

This is a physical, sensory, intellectual, communication or range of behavioural traits which affect development.

What we do

  • Evidence-based, early interventions therapy and services delivered by a team of allied health therapists and education professionals
  • Speech pathology, occupational therapy, psychology, physiotherapy, music therapy and specialist education for children up to 12 years old
  • Short-term goal focused groups
  • Developmental assessment clinic
  • Peer support for parents and carers.

How it works

Key Workers do home visits to help build your child’s daily living skills. They give you the information, resources and support that you need to help your child learn, develop and reach their goals.

Key Workers can also visit in a chosen community location or at Primary School, child care, preschool, kindergarten and before or after school care.

Therapy and allied health services

Melbourne and Wangaratta

Music Therapy

Music Therapy is a research-based allied health practice used to actively support children, teenagers and adults to improve their health and wellbeing including speech and communication, body movement and coordination, memory, and attention.

Our Registered Music Therapists (RMT) based in Kew, Melbourne are committed to tailoring music therapy sessions around your child’s needs and goals. Music therapy sessions are developed in consultation with you and parents are carers are encouraged to attend sessions with your child to learn strategies to use at home.

Sessions include:

  • Singing, moving to music, instrument exploration
  • Sharing new and well-known songs. This may include improvisation to follow the child’s movement, singing or playing or creating new songs for specific purposes to encourage brushing teeth, or toilet training etc.
  • Music therapy generally starts based on your child’s interests and responds to their increase motivation, participation, communication, and engagement
  • Activities to improve your child’s verbal and nonverbal communication (including imitation, social interactions, and positive new ways to deal with situations).

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapists aim to enhance your child’s ability to participate in everyday tasks. They consider physical, sensory and thinking skills for independent living.

They can also help your child with:

  • Fine motor skills for handling small objects or handwriting
  • Widening the range of meaningful activities your child is able to engage in
  • Greater social participation and play skills
  • Greater independence in more complex activities such as homework planning or money management (for older children)
  • Building tolerance to sensory stimulating activities such as washing hair, cutting fingernails, eating a variety of food textures, tolerating loud or background noises.

 

Occupational therapy can improve access to various educational settings, local community and family life.

Speech Pathology

When it comes to communication, like expressing thoughts, ideas and feelings, it’s the job of the speech pathologist to help. They also help with any feeding difficulties such as delayed texture progressions.

More broadly, speech pathologists can also help your child with:

  • Producing clear speech sounds
  • Listening, understanding, and following instructions
  • Using age appropriate words and sentences to express their meaning
  • Social communication appropriate to the person and context (e.g. use of gestures, eye contact, intonation, facial expression and conversation skills).

 

Speech pathologists also assist children with specific diagnoses, such as Autism Spectrum Disorder, Global Development Delay, Intellectual Disability, Down syndrome or Cerebral Palsy.

While outcomes vary depending on each child, speech pathology can also help improve speech so your child can be understood by others, develop problem-solving and social skills, improve feeding safety, and skills for school transition.

Speech pathology is available in Kew, Melbourne as well as in Wangaratta and surrounding areas.

Physiotherapy

Physiotherapists help with your child’s movement. They aim to develop movement skills to achieve an overall improvement in mobility. They work with your child and assist with things like excessive flexibility, poor coordination and delayed motor skills.

More broadly, physiotherapists can also help your child with:

  • Flat heads, clicky hips, stiff necks or turned-in feet
  • Poor coordination
  • Rolling in bed
  • Standing up from sitting
  • Walking, running, hopping and climbing
  • Swimming
  • Ball skills.

 

While outcomes vary depending on each child, physiotherapy can also help increase strength and endurance, manage muscle tightness, joint stiffness, contracture and deformity.

Psychology

Our registered psychologists work with you and your child to address challenging behaviours sometimes associated with developmental delays. Our focus is development of your child’s communications, social interactions and language skills.

We’ll work with you and your child to put in place behaviour supports to help your child participate in family and community life.

Education

We have a team of qualified early childhood educators who work with your child and their teachers at preschool, kindergarten or primary school to support their transition into preschool or school.

Through this partnership we work with the educators and staff at your preschool or school to support them to understand your child’s needs and abilities.

Contact us today

400 High Street

Kew, 3101
T: 1300 698 624
E: earlychildhood@vmch.com.au

Registered NDIS Provider

As a registered NDIS provider, we ensure that our services meet the NDIS Practice Standards and Code of Conduct, offering you piece of mind and quality supports.

Connect with VMCH

Contact us

Our customer service team is happy to help with any questions or requests. Call us on 1300 698 624 or send us a message with the form below.

If you are looking for a job please head to careers.vmch.com.au

Opps! Looks like you’re outside Australia. If you’d like to enquire about support for someone in Australia please call our customer service team on 1300 698 624. If you’re looking a for job, please head to careers.vmch.com.au