Education Resources Blog


ERI Faculty Melissa Gerber

Melissa Gerber OTD, OTR/L

Melissa K. Gerber, OTD, OTR/L is a seasoned and respected clinician with extensive experience in pediatrics.

She began her career in inpatient/outpatient rehabilitation and acute care. Currently, she has been working for the Great Neck Public Schools for the past 19 years.

She is president of 4MYKIDSOT, a private practice where she provides therapy and evaluations. Dr. Gerber has presented at Education Resources, Therapies in the Schools on Visual Processing: Treat, Remediate, Refer. She is enthusiastic to share her experiences and provide strategies that can be incorporated immediately. She completed her masters and doctorate degrees from Quinnipiac University while working full time in the schools.

We were honored to have Melissa speak at our annual Therapies in the School conference for the last two years and am more than pleased to welcome her as a permanent faculty member.

Welcome Melissa!

Her new course will be offered on multiple occasions through 2018:
Visual Processing, Visual Perception and Visual-Motor Skills
March 23-24, 2018 – Hamden, CT
May 4-5, 2018 – Pearland, TX
October 5-6, 2018 – Philadelphia, PA
November 3-4, 2018 – Bridgeville, PA
December 8-9, 2018 – Robbinsdale, MN

This workshop will help the therapist determine when they are able to address visual issues within their setting, (including schools, acute care, rehab and LTC facilities) and when they need to refer for further medical attention. It will arm therapists with intervention tools and strategies to optimize function. It will focus on the visual system and how various diagnoses can present with different visual difficulties in both children and adults. We will discuss how to assess for visual processing and visual deficits as well as determining treatment and/or remediation. Case studies will emphasize clinical problem solving and decision making for visual processing, visual perception and visual-motor skills.

To download a brochure and to register

We also offer Melissa’s Online Course:
Visual Processing/Visual Deficits Treat, Remediate, Compensate, Refer?
This session will highlight visual processing skills and how they impact the student in the classroom. It will discuss when its appropriate to treat, remediate or compensate and when its time to refer the student for further testing.

And watch for her new online sessions  – available in early 2018!

Posted in Therapy in The News | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Another Successful School Conference – Planning has Begun for Future Conferences

Another Successful Conference for the School Based Therapist

Wow….what an amazing few days we had. 
Thank you to ALL for helping to make this year’s conference such an outstanding success, one of the best yet! Thank you for your passion and enthusiasm. 
We as a team always enjoy reconnecting with returning therapists, and enjoyed meeting those joining us for the first time. 

Therapies in the SchoolThank you to our AMAZING speakers, presenting sessions that were invigorating and energizing. We all so appreciate the time you invest to share your passion and knowledge.

Thank you for the many glowing comments. 
“As therapists we often lose our “fire” and become slightly “burnt out” and redundant…. thank you to ALL the speakers for presenting relevant and current material to help me rejuvenate and get my “fire” back! I am excited to get back and provide my students with some amazing therapy and provide my teachers and staff with some new tools ….”

We do hope that everyone was “fired up” to get back to school on Monday and implement the new tools and strategies you learned.Therapies in the school

Planning has already begun for our 2018 conference, and as always we welcome your input for speakers and topics, but we also want to plan a  conference that will meet your needs and will be convenient for all to attend.


Looking forward to seeing you all next year!

Team from Education Resources

Part of the Education Resources Team


Please visit our Facebook discussion group specifically created for school therapists to use  as a venue to discuss challenges in your practice, share thoughts, treatment practices, and success stories. 

Therapies in the school Discussion Group

Please share this group with your colleagues

Posted in School Based Therapists | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

OT’s – We Invite you to Take this Survey

We are extremely happy to pass on this invitation to take part in a survey from ERI faculty member Christina Finn MS OTR/L:

The survey examines the knowledge and confidence levels of occupational therapists regarding the assessment and treatment of patients with persistent post concussive symptoms.

An Examination of Occupational Therapists’ Perceived Levels of Confidence and Practice Trends in the Management of Post-Concussion Syndrome

The purposes of this study are: 

  1. to examine occupational therapists’ perceived confidence and knowledge level in the treatment and assessment of patients with post- concussion syndrome

  2. to examine the different types of assessments and treatments being utilized by occupational therapists for post-concussion syndrome

  3. to examine the frequency and types of of referrals to occupational therapy for patients with post-concussion syndrome.

Please Click here to take part in this short survey.
This self-administered survey will take approximately 15 minutes to complete.  

Thank you in advance for your participation in this research study.  


Christina Finn MS OTR/L cfinn02@nyit.ed

Post Concussion Syndrome Online Series: Assessment and Treatment

This online series provides a collaborative approach to support clients/patients diagnosed with post concussion syndrome and addresses many issues that each discipline has to deal with collaboratively.


Post Concussion Syndrome – Therapeutic Strategies

A venue for therapists to discuss any clinical challenges or tips with other colleagues.
We have received overwhelming feedback asking for a place to pose clinical questions, receive advice from other therapists and discuss the latest advancements related to post concussion syndrome.
We are creating a forum to serve these needs.


Posted in News | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

ERI Holiday Discount Coupon

From Education Resources

Wishing our Community of Therapists
Peace, Happiness and Joy for the upcoming year
We would like to offer a $50 discount towards a course registration fee.

Register now through December 29th 2017 – EXTENDED TO JANUARY 3rd 2018
Apply code: HOLIDAYS2017

Let ERI help you fulfill your professional development and continuing education requirements with our comprehensive selection of dynamic courses in 2018. Improve outcomes – by improving patient care.

Including many NEW courses and distinguished faculty members 

Not to be used in combination with other discounts or course credits. Non-Transferable. Only one discount may be used per conference. Must be applied at time of registration, not for conferences previously registered for. Not for online courses, or one day courses. Exclusions may apply. (cannot be applied toward registration  for “When Children Won’t Eat: Picky Eaters vs. Problem Feeders. Assessment and Treatment Using the SOS Approach to Feeding”)

You can register online, call the office or fax in your registration.
Just mention the code! 

Please call, email or visit our website with any questions 

Please click here for our full listing of courses

Thank you
 Mandy 508-359-6533 ● 800-487-6530

Please Click Here to Join Our Mailing List

Posted in News, Professional Development | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Winners Announced in Inaugural Award for Excellence in Creative School Based Therapy

Vreative School Based Therapy Award ERI

Award Winning Therapy Team from Silver Lake Preschool and Kingston Elementary School

We were thrilled to launch this award to recognize an individual/team who has demonstrated an extraordinary commitment and has made outstanding contributions to the practice of school based therapy by enriching the lives of students through creative solutions.

Our awardee team has been described as meeting the most challenging of student needs in  unconventional and unique ways that engage teachers, staff and families collaboratively. 

The inaugural award goes to the therapy team of Leesa Bleicken, Eileen Beaulieu, Sandy Doogue and Kellie Theobald for their creative multidisciplinary approach to servicing their growing medically complex population at the Silver Lake Integrated Preschool and Kingston Elementary School, Massachusetts. They stood out among so many wonderful nominees.

In their nomination papers, the team was cited for several creative service delivery programs including their co-treatment paradigm that incorporated weekly take home sheets outlining the sessions using visuals, motor learning considerations, sensory exploration, music, vocabulary words, sign language, total communication methods and parent resources. Parent engagement and communication grew quickly.

We were honored to meet  such a wonderful passionate group of therapists and present them with the award at ERI’s Annual Therapies in the School Conference November 16-17, 2017 – Framingham, MA.


Thank you to all of you who submitted nominations. There were so many worthy candidates.

Posted in School Based Therapists | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Celebration of Neonatal Therapists

We were excited to join our professional partners, the National Association of Neonatal Therapists (NANT) in celebrating neonatal therapists everywhere during International Neonatal Therapist Week

Members of NANT were offered entry into a drawing to win a 2 day ERI course of their choice.

We received a tremendous response and would like to congratulate Angela, an OT from Cleveland OH, as the winner of our randomized drawing. 

Celebrating 30 years of life-changing learning, ERI provides evidence-based, clinically relevant CEU courses for neonatal  occupational therapists, physical therapists and speech language pathologists, Dieticians and Nurses working in the NICU, and beyond. Learn skills you’ll use right away, through hands-on learning. It’s about improving outcomes by improving patient care. Our cutting edge courses are taught by distinguished internationally renowned faculty who are leaders in their field.

Please click here to check out our CEU courses for the neonatal therapist and to learn more about NANT 

Posted in NICU | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment


Nechama Karmen

We are thrilled to announce multiple opportunities to hear our new faculty member Nechama Karman speak:

If you Can’t Breathe, You Can’t Function – Introductory Course Plus TWO days of Intensive LAB
December 1-3, 2017 – Wilkes Barre Township, PA
June 22-24, 2018 – San Antonio, TX
September 14-16, 2018 – Alexandria, VA

Annual Therapies in the School
November 16-17, 2017 – Framingham, MA

Nechama Karman, received her MSPT from Columbia University in 1994, her Advanced MS in orthopedic PT from Touro College in 1998, and she has completed all coursework toward a PhD in Health Sciences at Seton Hall University. She has held academic appointments at Hunter College and NYIT. Nechama is chief clinical educator at Mobility Research, providing pediatric and adult trainings, introductory and advanced seminars, webinars, and clinical support for LiteGait in the USA and internationally. She is a primary instructor in LiteGait’s “train the trainer” program. she treats patients with complex neurological conditions and/or complex pelvic conditions.

Nechama had served as a teaching assistant for each of Mary Massery’s courses for over a decade before starting a 2-year faculty apprenticeship in 2014. She became Mary’s first certified faculty member in June of 2016! One of Nechama’s proudest “Mary Massery” moments occurred when she treated a man suffering from prostatectomy-related incontinence using Mary’s approach. She taught him to transfer without incontinence for the first time in 9 months – all in under 15 minutes! She is passionate about helping other therapists learn these important concepts.

Nechama works closely with Mary Massery at Massery PT

What other are saying: 

“This course (If you Can’t Breathe, You Can’t Function – Introductory Course Plus TWO days of Intensive LAB) exceeded my expectations. Everyone should take this course! Many treatment ideas that can be applied easily.” – L. Vanselow, SLP

“Nechama is a very relevant speaker and her presentation of Mary Massery’s information is excellent.” – L Jorns, PT

“Nechama is very knowledgeable and easy to listen to. Great info on anatomy and physiology in relation to postural control. Definitely new outlook on things! The course booklet is very thorough. References are amazing! Slides and case study photos extremely helpful.”

Posted in News | Leave a comment

To Intervene or Not? PT or no PT? Motor Issues in Autism


Here’s something I struggle with every year. That ambulatory, fast, strong child with autism. Gross motor delays? Absolutely. Typical movement patterns? No way.

Do I keep this child on program? Do we want to be making him stronger and faster? What should I recommend?

I remember one year going round and round with a parent who wanted her child to receive PT so he could play ball. We would spend session after session attempting to play ball. After several years, we were finally up to 4 repetitions. Was it because he had no interest? Was it because the frequency of 1 x 30 minutes per week? Was it because the motor planning and attention required was too far beyond his current skill level? Did I give up too early?

One of my biggest struggles in working with a severely autistic child is how to make my extrinsic goals intrinsic to the child. My random, extrinsic-based goals (skipping, ball play, etc) often have little value in the child’s world, and are therefore unmotivating. Without the support of a conditioned-response (ABA) type program, applying value becomes difficult.

Understanding why a child with autism has movement disorder is key in decision making, as is using evidence-based strategies. Goal-setting becomes critical in ensuring that goals are motivating to both the student and the therapist.

To continue this discussion, plan on attending Jennifer Colebourn and Julie Goff’s session, Using Evidence to Help Guide Decisions on Goals, Dosage, Frequency, Priorities, and Interventions for Motor Issues in Autism at the
Eighteenth Annual Therapies in the School Conference – November 16-17, 2017 – Framingham, MA

~Kathryn Biel, PT, DPT

Posted in School Based Therapists | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Speaker Spotlight – Holly Schifsky, OTR/L, CNT, NTMTC, CBIS

Holly Schifsky OTR/L, CNT, NTMTC, CBIS

We are honored to welcome Holly Schifsky to our faculty and thrilled that she will be presenting her course: Baby Beats and Breaths: Therapeutic Interventions for the Premature Infant with Cardiopulmonary Compromise in 2018. 

Having first met her at the 2017 NANT conference, we know that she will be so well received by our community of therapists.

Holly is an Occupational Therapist who has worked in pediatrics for the past 20 years with the past 15 years in a level 4 NICU.  She is a Certified Neonatal Therapist, Certified Neonatal Touch and Massage Therapist, Certified Brain Injury therapist, an active member of National Association of Neonatal Therapists, and has completed 6-month mentorship in infant/child NDT.  She has worked within the NICU and NICU follow-up clinic to maximize patient and family outcomes for the most complex premature and medically-fragile term infants.  Holly received her bachelors degree in Occupational therapy from the University of North Dakota in 1997.  She has dedicated her career to clinical care and advancing developmental care practice patterns for all multidisciplinary team members.  She has presented at many regional and national conferences including NANT, Audrey Harris Vision NICU conference, and the University of Minnesota NICU conference.  

Baby Beats and Breaths: Therapeutic Interventions for the Premature Infant with Cardiopulmonary Compromise
This course will focus on the cardiopulmonary implications for the premature or medically-complex infant as related to physiological stability, evolving motor control, sensory stability, and transition to oral motor skills that support feeding. It will focus on advancing the critical reasoning skills of the neonatal therapist to support the infant’s ability to obtain foundational motor and sensory skills. These skills include the ability of the infant to cough, produce audible phonation, oral motor skills, swallow skills, trunk facilitation, gestational age appropriate positioning/handling to support the emergence of gross motor skills for postural stability. You will learn movement analysis skills (via lab time and video presentations) to assess breathing patterns, facilitation techniques to support trunk development, positioning strategies to support chest wall development, and feeding techniques to maximize postural control. 

January 19-20, 2018 – Akron, OH
March 2-3, 2018 – Washington, DC
September 29-30, 2018 – Houston, TX

to learn about course relevant to your field coming to your region.

Posted in Feeding, NICU, Pediatrics | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

NEW Course – Vision, Ocular-Motor and Movement Strategies for Integrated Learning

NEW Course Spotlight:

Vision, Ocular-Motor and Movement Strategies for Integrated Learning
from respected ERI faculty member June Smith

This course will focus on clinical decision-making for the use of vision, occulomotor and movement strategies to enhance outcomes. Emphasis will be on frameworks used with special populations and analysis of assessment data. Movement-based therapeutic strategies and ocular-motor assessment will be incorporated through case study review for effective and evidence-based treatment planning. Video case analysis will allow attendees to sharpen observational and assessment skills and integrate course material for more complex clinical data-based decision making in order to L.E.A.R.N.

  • Learn through integration
  • Engagement
  • Adjust expectations
  • Repeat predictable patterns
  • Notice shifts in system

Don’t miss this course, coming to these locations (check back for TBA venues):

October 13-14, 2017 – Cedar Knolls, NJ
November 10-11, 2017 – Portsmouth, NH
March 23-24, 2018 – TBA
April 27-28, 2018 – Aurora, IL
October 20-21, 2018 – Hartford, CT
November 9-10, 2018 – TBA

Click here for more course details, to download a brochure, for CEU information or to register.


Posted in Pediatrics, School Based Therapists | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment