HELGA UYS EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGIST
Before scheduling any sessions for your child, a parent consultation is scheduled. This gives us the opportunity to talk about current issues and discover your child’s developmental history. A questionnaire will also be given to you.
Please note that test batteries are to be administered and finalized according to each client’s specific referring concern during the intake interview.
Therapy & assessments are offered in English and Afrikaans.
School Readiness Assessments
A school readiness assessment explores whether a child is ready to benefit from formal education. The following are aspects of development that are considered to be indicators of the children’s degree of school readiness:
- Physical, sensory and motor development
- Cognitive development (which includes intellectual, perceptual, language and numerical development, reasoning ability, memory, and general knowledge)
- Emotional and social development
A psycho-educational assessment involves a standardised assessment of a child’s intellectual and academic abilities. It is administered by a psychologist and combined with clinical interviews, observations, and historical records to help understand how your child learns, and to identify if they are struggling. It measures general aptitude and academic achievement around core skills, reading, writing, and mathematics. It involves some techniques, including pencil and paper activities, verbal response, and the assessment of motor skills. The assessment varies depending on a child’s age.
The results can help to understand your child’s potential (i.e. if they are gifted or have a learning disability) and provide strategies to support them. During these assessments, other concerns are also evaluated, such as anxiety, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and recommendations for your child are based on a combination of standardized test results and the evaluation of psychosocial and/or mental health issues.
(Award in Literacy and Dyslexia)
I am qualified to diagnose Learning Disorders, for example, Dyslexia.
The importance of early detection of learning disabilities like dyslexia is so important. Dyslexia can profoundly impact a student’s ability to read and write. Without these invaluable language skills, students with dyslexia can experience avoidable and lifelong educational, social, and economic problems.
Study Methods and -techniques
An effective study method is any way of learning that helps children memorise and practise their skills in preparation for exams or class tests. Everyone is different when it comes to preferred learning styles, so every child needs to find a study method that works for them. Good study skills can increase your confidence, competence, and self-esteem. They can also reduce anxiety about tests and deadlines. By developing effective study skills, you may be able to cut down on the number of hours spent studying, leaving more time for other activities in your life.
Individual therapy gives you a safe space to explore your thoughts, feelings, and concerns. Individual therapy focuses solely on you. This allows for a deeper understanding of the issues and developing coping strategies to help you handle difficult situations.
The goal of individual therapy is to inspire change and improve the quality of life through self-awareness and self-exploration.
Being in therapy can also:
- help improve communication skills
- help you feel empowered
- empower you to develop fresh insights about your life
- teach you to make healthier choices
- help develop coping strategies to manage distress
Play therapy is a form of therapy used primarily for children. That’s because children may not be able to process their own emotions or articulate problems to parents or other adults. While it may look like an ordinary playtime, play therapy can be much more than that. A trained therapist can use playtime to observe and gain insights into a child’s problems. The therapist can then help the child explore emotions and deal with unresolved trauma. Children can learn new coping mechanisms and how to redirect inappropriate behaviors, through play.
Some of the potential benefits of play therapy are:
• taking more responsibility for certain behaviors
• learning coping mechanisms and innovative problem-solving techniques
• developing self-respect
• empathy and respect for others
• reducing anxiety
• learning to fully experience and express emotions
• developing stronger social skills
• building stronger family relationships
Depending on age and stage of development, children simply don’t have the language skills of adults. They may feel something, but in many cases, they either can’t express it to an adult or don’t have a trusted adult to express it to. Children learn to understand the world and their place in it, through play. It’s where they’re free to act out their inner feelings and deepest emotions. Toys can act as symbols and take on greater meaning — if you know what to look for. Much can be revealed in how a child interacts with different types of toys and how their behavior changes from session to session. They may use play to act out fears and anxieties, as a soothing mechanism, or to heal and problem-solve.
Sessions typically last 30 minutes to an hour and are held once a week or so. How well the child responds to this kind of therapy will determine how many sessions are required.
The therapist may use techniques that involve:
• creative visualisation
• toy phones
• puppets, stuffed animals, and masks
• dolls, action figures
• arts and crafts
• water and sand play
• blocks and construction toys
By empowering parents with the necessary skills, many problems are resolved at an early stage. The main goal is to equip parents with skills like:
- listening and affirming
- boundary setting,
- understanding family personalities and communication
- relationship building during the different developmental stages
- to provide information on what children are realistically capable of during the different developmental stages.
Parental guidance is a process whereby I support and guide parents to be more effective, but in addition, help them to understand their behavior towards certain situations and why this may or may not encourage or discourage certain behavioral and/or emotional difficulties in children and adolescents.
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