Due to the current pandemic, online therapy sessions will be offered for the foreseeable future.
Disclaimer: The online video conferencing platform used is usually Zoom. We cannot guarantee that there will be no issues in relation to outside parties gaining access to sessions, as this is outside of our control. We comply with GDPR as far as is within our control, and rely on Zoom’s privacy policies for online sessions. Please be aware of this and let Carolyn know if you would like to discuss this further.
What do I need for teletherapy?
You will ideally need a laptop, tablet or other device with a large enough screen. (Smartphone screens are not big enough). Desktops can work for older children who are able to sit and pay attention. Sometimes sessions may involve mostly talking to you about strategies to try with your child, so desktops can work well in this situation also.
If you have a headphone set with microphone attached (such as the ‘gaming’ headsets), this can be really useful. Make sure that the microphone is not in front of your child’s mouth, so that his / her mouth can clearly be seen.
You will need sufficient bandwidth to allow for a clear audiovisual signal.
What happens during direct therapy sessions with my child?
Some of the tasks may involve playing with toys or games that your child already has at home – this will be discussed with you before hand so you can gather a selection of toys or games beforehand.
Some of the tasks may involve Carolyn sharing her screen with your child and playing or chatting about what’s on the screen. This may involve pictures, YouTube clips of stories or other fun learning opportunities and interactive games.
What is my role during my child’s therapy session?
You will need to act as helper with the technology. You will need to watch your child closely at all times and sit near your child and the screen. Before and during the session you will need to make sure that:
- your child keeps to the task by encouraging them, pointing, saying ‘oh, look!’ and other tactics!
- make sure there is no background noise (no tv, radio etc.)
- make sure other children and family pets are kept elsewhere so they can’t interrupt
- make sure you check the positioning of the screen to give the best picture, and ideally set it up in a suitable place so that faces will be clearly visible, and toys can be seen by the camera if possible
- check that there is sufficient lighting and that the sound is working properly for your child and Carolyn to hear
- observe the tasks and make sure you understand any homework or strategies given to you. If you don’t understand, please ask!
At the end of the session
Towards the end of the session, your child may be asked to go and play in another part of the room or house, while Carolyn gives you some feedback, and talks through any homework or strategies that you can do during the week.
Assessing via Teletherapy
Occasionally, it may be necessary to carry out a more in depth formal assessment. If this is the case, you may need to set up the workspace a little differently, and use your smartphone as a camera aimed at your laptop, so that Carolyn can see what your child is pointing to on the screen. Don’t worry – This will be discussed with you and explained fully if needed.
What if we have technical issues?
As with all technology, things can go wrong! If there is a problem, Carolyn will call you on the ‘phone or (if you agree) via Whatsapp. You can then talk through a plan of action together. If the technical issues get in the way of being able to carry out the session you will not be charged and the session will be re-arranged for another day, or we can look at the possibility of a face to face session when the situation allows.