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STANDING IN AN ACADEMIC SETTING


easystand bantam sit to stand stander
EasyStand Bantam Sit to Stand Pediatric Stander

The Sarah Gilbert Story


Name: Sarah Gilbert
Primary Diagnosis: Cerebral Palsy
Stander:

EasyStand Bantam

Health Benefits: Improved range of motion
Improved visual tracking
Better sitting posture
More mobile
Cognitive Benefits: More alert
Better attention
Enhanced communication
Standing Activities: Use communication devices
Participation during music class
Mobility and dancing
Create art projects
Standing Program: Stands two hours daily during school
Uses as a desk remainder of day

During a recent three month study in a Public School in Maryland, the staff utilized an EasyStand Bantam sitting/standing device for Sarah, a four year old child with cerebral palsy. Gradually she was able to stand intermittently for two hours out of a five hour school day. The staff was able to modify her seating (angle of seat), and standing position to build up her tolerance for standing. Sarah's position was easily changed to adapt to her fatigue level. Teachers, therapists and staff noted improvement in visual tracking, as well as the speed and accuracy of her upper extremity movement to utilize her voice output device (VOD). She appeared less fatigued and was more attentive during class time. One case study does not prove the benefits of standing for children with cerebral palsy, and additional studies are needed. However, it parallels with what other therapists have been noticing in school settings.


PATRICIA SKELLY
Preschool Special Education Teacher
"I teach kids ages 3-5 years old with multiple disabilities. Sarah is a child with Cerebral Palsy and other disabilities that keep her from being able to sit up well. She started using the EasyStand in November of 2009, since then she has been able to sit and stand up well. Plus we don't have to worry about her getting sore or that her positioning is having any negative effect on her body." Challenge:
Improve Sarah's sitting posture.
SHARON POHL
Physical Therapist
"One of the problems we had last year was finding a seating system that worked for Sarah in the classroom. We would always have to adapt it by adding straps, pads or harnesses to get her to sit right. The other problem was finding the time and space in the classroom to use a stander. We had to bring in the chair then remove it to bring in the stander. Then the staff would lift her from the wheelchair to the stander. Since using the EasyStand, Sarah is sitting much better and has opportunities throughout the day to sit and stand as appropriate during different activities. That is really wonderful! It's convenient that we can wheel her between classrooms, have her sit if she gets tired and adjust positions as needed during each activity. I've also noticed that since standing, Sarah is sitting better on the mat and has better mat mobility. She is doing active rolling and pivoting, trying to push herself around, and holding her head up higher. More standing time has really helped her with her walking as well. Sarah is alert and really eager to participate in a full school day. It is great to see all the Positive changes in her!" Challenge:
Easily change positions for various activities.
SUSAN LUBORSKY
Occupational Therapist
"I've been working with Sarah since she arrived here last spring. She is really comfortable and supported in her new EasyStand stander. It is really convenient for staff to get her situated from another piece of equipment into the stander because we only have to move her one time! Standing helps keep her head up for longer periods of time and get her hands in a nice position with support in her forearms to do work that's in front of her. A lot of times she would be working on something and have a big excursion to bring her arm around to the front. We are always looking to shorten the time from when she visually finds a target on her augmentative device, to when she can get her hand to actually press the correct cell. Using a standing frame helps her visually focus, making the time it takes for her hand to reach the cell quicker. That is a great benefit!” Challenge:
Reduce time it takes staff to change equipment.
SHARON FRITTS
Music Therapist & Teacher
"I really love the sit-to-stand design of the EasyStand! It allows access to the curriculum and transition options that weren't available before. As a music teacher, I want children to be able to play different instruments. Having the tray in front of them in both the standing and seated position allows use of instruments like a xylophone. Standing helps students like Sarah be more involved and often have better attention. That being said, we know that many children can't have a lot of time standing because of endurance issues and being able to sit is also an important factor. In the past that has meant taking ten minutes for staff to physically lift them out of one piece of equipment and put them into a different piece of equipment. The sit-to-stand allows us to transition in moments! For Sarah, communication is essential and is enhanced by allowing her to access communication devices in different positions.” Challenge:
Give child access to instruments in sitting and standing positions.
TONYA WILLIAMS-WALKER
Speech Pathologist & AT Consultant
"I am a part of a team that helps students like Sarah access communication. I have to say, using the EasyStand has really made that access much easier for her. She uses three different kinds of communication systems in her classroom, the DynaVox 3100, and low tech systems including the Tech Speak 32 and the Go Talk 20. I noticed that she has much better trunk support in the EasyStand, which makes it easier for her to lift her arms to make better targets. She is a little bit more accurate now than she was prior to using the EasyStand. Standing has benefited her and I hope this is something we continue to explore, not just with Sarah but with other students who have similar issues!” Challenge:
Make access to communication devices easier.
TINA SHREWSBURY
Principal
"Our school is a center for students with very special needs, most with cognitive and physical disabilities. We do a lot of fundraising for equipment, go to the Knights of Columbus or get local grants to make sure that students have every access to their education. The EasyStand Bantam has given Sarah the opportunity to participate in the classroom and her teacher the opportunity to teach! To transition Sarah in other pieces of equipment took so long and reduced education time for her and other students in the classroom. Now that Sarah can sit, stand up and move with her ambulatory peers, the educational part happens much faster and easier. Whether she is in art class or music class, she is able to participate and be included. Our goal is to get her fully into an inclusion setting, with her typical peers, which will be exciting for her down the road. We hope that she continues along that path!” Challenge:
Increase Sarah's education time, participation and inclusion.