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Early Intervention Services provided to children birth to three

Helping children achieve Developmental Milestones

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When young children need help walking, talking or sleeping, there is a team of skilled early childhood professionals available to help through Rainbows United, Inc. Early intervention therapists with a passion for helping families with young children listen carefully and faithfully walk alongside families to help children learn and achieve developmental milestones.

Rainbows serves nearly 2,000 children birth to age three annually through Infant/Toddler Services in Butler, Sedgwick and Sumner Counties.

Services begin with a free developmental evaluation, if a child qualifies for any of the mandated services they are provided in the family home at no cost to the family. Services depend on specific needs and can include:

• Assistive Technology
• Audiology (hearing) Services
• Family Service Coordination
• Family Training, Counseling (Home Visits)
• Health Services
• Medical Services (for diagnosis and/or evaluation)
• Nursing Services
• Nutrition
• Occupational Therapy
• Physical Therapy
• Psychological Services
• Sign Language and Cued Speech
• Social Work Services
• Special Instruction
• Speech/Language Services
• Transportation and Related Costs
• Vision Services

Wellington resident Polly Ybarra was referred to Rainbows’ services when her daughter was not crawling or sitting up during her first year. She brought up her concerns to her pediatrician who connected her to Rainbows.

“It was a huge relief,” said Polly. “I was glad to have some advice getting Elena to crawl and be more mobile.” A Rainbows’ early intervention professional came to her home and did an evaluation. “The therapist was so friendly and put me at ease right away,” said Polly. “I was impressed with how she interacted with Elena as well as my other children who were home that day. Staff are so friendly and really know what they are doing. I trust them.”

Rebecca Borg, Early Childhood Special Education Teacher with Rainbows, visits Elena at home twice a month. She works with Elena on crawling and provides ideas for Polly to work with her daughter daily. “The suggestions Rebecca gave me really work. My daughter is catching up, she’s crawling and I’m sure will be walking soon.”

To encourage Elena’s motor development, Allison Bruntz, an occupational therapist and early interventionist with Rainbows, joined Rebecca on one of her visits with the family. Allison suggested several exercises to help Elena become accustomed to various positions in order to get her crawling, sitting up correctly and using her hands to play while in the kneeling position.

The ideas Rebecca and Allison gave Polly helped her use the toys and resources in the family home to get Elena motivated to learn to crawl. “By placing her in the crawling position and putting her favorite toys out in front of her, she learned to scoot forward then army crawl,” said Rebecca. “Polly and the older kids are such great encouragers.” By coaching parents on strategies for improvement, children make quick progress because their biggest fans are always there, helping them grow.

“My daughter made quick success once we knew what she needed,” said Polly. “I’m so glad we got help from Rainbows.”

How a child plays, learns, speaks, acts, and moves offers important clues about his or her development. Developmental Milestones set by CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) can help families gauge how their child is meeting developmental milestones for their age. When there is a concern, it’s time to connect with early intervention.

Developmental Milestones
At 3 months, Does Your Child: Turn head towards bright colors and lights, follow moving object with eyes, recognize bottle or breast, respond to loud sounds, grasp rattles or hair, wiggle and kick with legs and arms, lift head and chest while on stomach, smile, make cooing sounds?

At 6 months, Does Your Child: Turn towards source of normal sound, reach for toys and pick them up, roll over (both ways), move toys from one hand to the other, play with toes, help hold bottle during feeding, know familiar faces, babble, sit with minimum support?

At 12 months, Does Your Child: Pull self to a standing position, crawl on hands and knees, drink from cup, enjoy peek-a-boo and patty cake, wave bye-bye, put toys into containers, say 1-2 words, walk around furniture?

At 18 months, Does Your Child: Like to pull, push, and dump things, follow simple directions, pull off shoes, socks, and mittens, like to look at pictures, feed self some, use 8-10 words that are understood, walk without help, step off low objects and keep balance, stack 2-3 blocks, turn 2 or 3 pages at a time?

At 2 years, Does Your Child: Use 2-3 word sentences, say names of toys, recognize familiar pictures, feed self with spoon, play alone and independently, turn one page at a time, like to imitate parents, identify hair, eyes, ears, and nose by pointing, build a tower of 6 blocks, show affection, run well?

At 3 years, Does Your Child: Walk up steps alternating feet, ride a tricycle, dress with supervision, open door, play with other children, repeat simple rhymes, use 3-5 word sentences, name at least one color correctly, use toilet, take turns, hop on one foot, feed self with some spilling, wash and dry hands, throw a ball over head, avoid some dangers such as hot, follow one-step directions, identify big and small, verbalize toilet needs, know first and last name?

At 4 years, Does Your Child: Serve self food, brush teeth with help, put on simple clothes, copy lines, circles, and draw face, catch a bounced ball, swing unaided, point and name objects in books, move around immediate neighborhood, follow two- and three- step familiar directions, sort by shape and color, enjoy playing dress-up, share toys while playing with others, combine two or more sentences, ask “wh” questions, tell simple stories, know age and gender, point to 6 basic colors, know last name?

At 5 years, Does Your Child: Use fork and knife well, wash and dry face and brush teeth unaided, dress and undress unaided, draw simple figures, catch a tossed ball, jump over low objects, know simple songs or stories, cross the street safely, follow three- step unfamiliar instructions, name colors and numbers, engage in complex pretend play, initiate play and play with others, resolve conflicts with peers, can be understood by strangers, use past and future tense in complex sentences, answer “wh” questions, enjoy riddles and jokes, know phone number and address, walk backward heel-toe, run on tiptoe, print a few capital letters, recognize own printed name, lace shoes.

Parents or caregivers with a concern about their child’s development should reach out for a FREE evaluation. A doctor’s referral to request services is not necessary.

To connect with Rainbows’ Infant/Toddler Services:
Butler County: 316.320.1342
Sedgwick County: 316.945.7117
Sumner County: 316.295.7855