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Research Article  |   May 2008
Reported Experiences From Occupational Therapists Interacting With Teachers in Inclusive Early Childhood Classrooms
Author Affiliations
  • Pia Bose, PhD, OT, is Occupational Therapist, Public School System, Rockaway Township, NJ 07866; pialiisa@yahoo.com
  • Jim Hinojosa, PhD, OT, FAOTA, is Professor, Department of Occupational Therapy, New York University, New York
Article Information
School-Based Practice / Children and Youth
Research Article   |   May 2008
Reported Experiences From Occupational Therapists Interacting With Teachers in Inclusive Early Childhood Classrooms
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May/June 2008, Vol. 62, 289-297. doi:10.5014/ajot.62.3.289
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May/June 2008, Vol. 62, 289-297. doi:10.5014/ajot.62.3.289
Abstract

This grounded theory study described the perspectives of school-based occupational therapists working in inclusive early childhood classrooms emphasizing interactions with teaching staff. Six therapists were interviewed multiple times over several months. The participants viewed their interactions with teaching staff as challenging but potentially rewarding experiences. Viewing collaboration as valuable, their descriptions nonetheless generally omitted many collaborative features, with therapists often assigned the role of “expert.” Data analysis revealed four major themes: (1) “It’s Not Like I Don’t Value Collaboration” (the benefits of collaboration); (2) “Collaboration—I Can’t Do It Alone” (the challenges of interactions); (3) “My Opinion, Please Ask for It” (attachment to the expert status), and (4) “Is This Collaboration?” (interactions in practice). The results of this study suggest that current recommendations for collaboration for inclusion in school-based occupational therapy are not optimally implemented in all practice settings.