Pediatric Occupational Therapy

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Lurie Children’s offers a comprehensive, state-of-the-art occupational therapy with a vibrant developmental approach. Our skilled and versatile occupational therapy team specializes in the evaluation and treatment of children from premature babies to teenagers with health challenges in the following areas: 

  • Fine motor skills involving small muscle movements, use of fingers, and coordination with the eyes and hand movement together.
  • Visual perceptual motor skills involving the coordination of the two sides of the body, hearing, seeing, feeling and moving to perform novel functional and motor tasks. 
  • Integrating previously experienced information with new learning.
  • Sensorimotor skills involve incorporating information received from body senses and the environment to carry out appropriate movement skills required for functional living skills, following directions and social skills.
  • Social interactions and play skills relating to the use of fine motor, perceptual motor and sensory motor skills while at home and in the community.
  • Upper extremity ability involving the use of shoulders, arms, hands and shoulder girdle for age-appropriate skills and activities.

Our goal is to help your child be able to participate in the occupational skills of infancy, childhood and adolescence ― whether it’s helping your baby interact with you, assisting your child so they have the skills to interact with peers, or being able to dress themselves in the morning. We will help maximize your child’s potential for success and independence by coordinating their thinking, speaking, hearing, seeing, feeling, smelling and eating with helpful and developmentally appropriate body movements and behaviors.

Desired Outcomes for Our Patients

We strive to help our patients achieve the best outcomes possible, including:

  • Increased:
    • Participation in self-care activities
    • Skilled use of the upper body, including arms, hands and fingers
    • Tolerance of sensory inputs, including tastes, smells, textures, movement, and sounds
  • Improved: 
    • Interactions and engagement with parents, family members, and caregivers
    • Interactions and engagement in learning activities at home
    • Ability to play independently and with peers
    • Rehabilitation of the arms, hands and fingers after disability, injury, accident and/or surgery.
    • Coordination of age-appropriate behavior and social interactions with fine-motor, sensorimotor and perceptual motor skills

Areas of Expertise

Some of our areas of expertise include:

  • Movement needs: For a child who is sensitive to movement, needs to move more, is poorly coordinated, needs to be calm or needs help focusing on fine motor activities
  • Therapeutic listening: For a child who is over or under-sensitive to sounds and other sensory input, including children with attention and focus concerns and those on the autistic spectrum.
  • Sensory feeding and diet techniques: For a child who has limited food choices due to difficulty tolerating different food textures, colors and tastes; or smells.
  • Perceptual-motor exercises: For the child who is having difficulty with writing, learning letters, manipulation of objects or putting puzzles together. 
  • Post-surgical trauma
  • Post-concussion syndrome

Our Specialists

Our occupational therapists help each child become more independent and successful in everyday life. We are skilled at determining the right combination of strategies, including exercises, games, equipment, tools and modalities to accomplish each child’s unique therapeutic goals, partnering with the family to develop the best home activities.

Our occupational therapy team also supports ongoing research and inquiry. This helps our therapists apply the latest science and evidence-based strategies to their work.

Our Programs

Our occupational therapists support many multidisciplinary programs to help children achieve their developmental goals.

Conditions We Treat

We treat children with various conditions that can lead to developmental delays.

See a List

Make an Appointment

We offer easy online scheduling for your child's occupational therapy needs. 

Occupational Therapy Capstone Experience

The Occupational Therapy Capstone Experience at Lurie Children’s offers a challenging and exciting opportunity to complete your pediatric capstone experience. The ideal candidate will be highly motivated, a strong team player and have a strong desire for a career as a pediatric occupational therapist.

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Your support is vital in helping us continue to make a difference in the lives of patients and families. Lurie Children's relies on philanthropic funding to enhance its programs, services and research for children. To learn more, please e-mail the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago Foundation at or call 312.227.7500