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insights is a helpful blog brought to you by Child & Family Development

Child & Family Development is a multi-disciplinary pediatric clinic serving the needs of Charlotte area children and their families.



  • 4012 Park Road, Suite 200
  • Charlotte, NC
  • 704.332.4834
  • 10516 Park Road
  • Charlotte, NC
  • 704.541.9080

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The information contained in this website is intended to provide general educational information and client education on certain topics only and is not intended to offer healthcare/medical advice. This information should not be considered complete and should not be used in place of a visit, consultation, or advice from a licensed healthcare professional. Child and Family Development is not liable or responsible for any advice, course of treatment, diagnosis or any other information or services you obtain through this website. If you have, or suspect you have, a health problem you should never disregard medical advice or delay seeking medical attention because of something you have read on this website. Never rely on information on this website in place of seeking professional medical advice. If you have questions about a medical condition or seek advice, see your healthcare professional immediately.

Links from our website to other websites are provided as a service to help users find appropriate information. Absolutely no responsibility is taken by Child and Family Development or its employees for the accuracy of the information you may receive from any of the referred links. If you have questions about a medical condition or seek medical advice, contact your healthcare professional.

Pediatric Myofascial Release

Friday, Nov 28, 2014 by Child & Family Development


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Pediatric Speech and Language Evaluations

Wednesday, Nov 26, 2014 by Child & Family Development

A speech-language evaluation measures a child’s communication skills.  It is completed by a Speech-Language Pathologist (or Speech Therapist).   

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Topics: Allison Parker

Clumsy or Dyspraxia?

Monday, Nov 24, 2014 by Child & Family Development


Many moms and dads who contact Child & Family Development report that their child is “a little clumsy”.  In many instances, it can be difficult to recognize if this is simply part of development and adjusting to a growing body or an area to be explored more specifically. The explanation may be developmental dyspraxia. The Physical Therapy team provides this explanation. 

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Topics: Amy Sturkey, Jessica Sapel, Lisa Gigliotti, Leslie Cordero, Erin Harkins, Gail Fennimore

Physical Therapist, Lisa Gigliotti, completes NDT and Myofascial Release course

Sunday, Nov 23, 2014 by Child & Family Development

Recently Lisa Gigliotti, physical therapist, completed a continuing education course called “Nero-Developmental Treatment and Myofascial Release for Children with Neurological Disabilities.” 

The course focused on two specific handling techniques.  Sometimes, as therapists, when we want a muscle to move a certain way, we try to stretch it or force it there.  This course taught about two different types of techniques that will activate muscles and create movement by instead using light tough and facilitation.

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Topics: Lisa Gigliotti

Learning Disabilities and Early Development

Friday, Nov 21, 2014 by Child & Family Development


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Topics: Mary Froneberger, Marie Pacini, Jessica DeLing

How Does My Engine Run?- The Alert Program

Thursday, Nov 20, 2014 by Child & Family Development

An occupational therapist often refers to a child’s activity level like a car engine. Each child’s engine runs differently and can change arousal speeds throughout the day. These changes can be a result of what is going on during their lives or the activities they partake in each day.

The Williams and Shellenberger Engine Program describes 3 different engine speeds: High, “Just Right” and Low. The way a child modulates, or takes in and regulates the multiple inputs and stimuli, has a huge impact on his or her engine level.


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Topics: Abbey Wash

C&FD therapists use Total Motion Release (TMR)

Wednesday, Nov 19, 2014 by Child & Family Development

Over the last few years, 3 members of our pediatric therapy team have completed training in Total Motion Release® (TMR).

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Topics: Marion Wilm, Leslie Cordero, Erin Harkins

Balance Basics

Tuesday, Nov 18, 2014 by Child & Family Development

Our Physical Therapists share the basics of balance. 




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Topics: Amy Sturkey, Jessica Sapel, Lisa Gigliotti, Erin Harkins, Gail Fennimore

Cogmed at Child and Family Development

Monday, Nov 17, 2014 by Child & Family Development

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Topics: Joy Granetz

The Value of Comprehensive Evaluations

Monday, Nov 17, 2014 by Child & Family Development

As an Educational Specialist at Child and Family Development in Charlotte, I consult with parents about their child’s difficulties in the classroom setting.  However, academic struggles do not always occur in isolation.  In fact, as I review children’s background information, I frequently find that the parents have concerns in other developmental areas.  Some have even pursued answers in the form of previous evaluations, but they still have lingering questions…

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Topics: Mary Froneberger, Marie Pacini, Jessica DeLing

Looking for pediatric therapy services near Lancaster, South Carolina?

Sunday, Nov 16, 2014 by Child & Family Development


 Our Pineville office is less than 5 miles from the border and easily accessible from I-77 and the 485 loop.

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What's the problem, sensory processing or behavior?

Friday, Nov 14, 2014 by Child & Family Development

Is it a behavior issue or sensory processing difficulties? Melissa Petcu, Occupational Therapist knows it can be challenging to decide. 


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Topics: Melissa Petcu

Occupational Therapist says cursive handwriting is still important

Wednesday, Nov 12, 2014 by Child & Family Development


The debate rages on over whether cursive handwriting is still needed in this age of technology.   

The reality is that most states no longer require that cursive handwriting be taught as part of a school's core curriculum.  Thus, many schools have chosen to eliminate that instruction from their 3rd grade requirements.  Marion Wilm,Occupational Therapist at Child and Family Development, is astonished that many parents do not even realize that their children no longer learn cursive handwriting.   They assume that their child is learning this skill in school. 

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Topics: Marion Wilm

Child and Family Development welcomes Brandyn Street, PhD, clinical psychologist

Tuesday, Nov 11, 2014 by Child & Family Development

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Topics: Brandyn Street

Kinesiotape, recommended by a pediatric Occupational Therapist

Monday, Nov 10, 2014 by Child & Family Development

Kinesiology taping can be a great way to enhance your child’s progress in therapy. Taping has been around for 40 years and has grown to have many different brands and styles of taping. You’ve probably seen the tape before if you’ve watched the Olympics or looked in a sports magazine. It comes in many different colors and is placed on skin – almost any where on the body. Kinesiology taping is used to promote healing after an injury, reduce swelling, elicit a muscle response, and inhibit a muscle response. Kinesology tape works by allowing tendons and fascia to glide with more ease, providing a bio-feedback response to encourage correct posture or muscle use, and reduces pain. With all of these different uses for tape, you can find taping on a wide range of people: athletes, children with hemiplegia, adults with over-use injuries and many more.

Have you seen kinesiology tape before? Does it sound like something that might help your child benefit from therapy? Let’s talk!

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Topics: Melissa Petcu

Jessica Hoffarth, occupational therapist and mom: How to make a "ball pit" with household items!

Saturday, Nov 8, 2014 by Child & Family Development

Jessica Hoffarth OTR/L, occupational therapist and mom, blends those roles both at work and home.  Here is a short video showing how she made a "ball pit" with household items.  

This activity is suitable for all kids, including those with sensory processing difficulties. 

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Topics: Jessica Hoffarth

Melissa Petcu, Occupational Therapist: Don't Take Our Word For I

Tuesday, Nov 4, 2014 by Child & Family Development

Some kind words from a parent about Melissa Petcu, OTR/L:

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Topics: Melissa Petcu

Health Day News article summarizes dramatic outcomes in hand prostheses research

Monday, Nov 3, 2014 by Child & Family Development

Jessica Hoffarth, M.S., OTR/L and the other occupational therapists at Child and Family Development were fascinated by this Health Day News article published in early October.

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Topics: Jessica Hoffarth

Developmental Milestones for a 5-Year-Old

Sunday, Nov 2, 2014 by Child & Family Development

The developmental chart on the Child and Family Development website contains information about milestones for children ages 0-6 years. Here is an excerpt: 

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October is Bullying Awareness Month: Cyber bullying

Friday, Oct 31, 2014 by Child & Family Development

“Be on the lookout for bullying, and if you see something, say something, do something.”

–U.S. Department of Homeland Security

It makes sense that bullying occurs in environments where children are surrounded by other children. Nowadays though, that does not just mean at school; it also means through the variety of social media outlets that children are consistently exposed to.

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Topics: Aleksandra Liss, Marie Pacini