Wellness Center

Free Developmental Consultation

Each child’s development unfolds at a different pace. Some children might walk early; others might talk a bit later when they are more ready. We truly understand that your child’s growth and development are your priorities and that the “wait and see” suggestion you have received from others may not be the best plan you want to follow. Please visit us and talk to our developmental therapist about any topics of your concern or interest every Friday at no charge. At that time, the therapist can administer assessment tools to see what your child is capable of and where their strengths or needs may lie. The therapist will brainstorm with you to find the strategies you can easily try at home to address the issues of the visit and promote your child’s development. The common topics of consultation include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Creating an effective sleep routine
  • Promoting feeding at different stages of development
  • Consoling young children who are easily irritated
  • Exploring sensory integration
  • Using evidence-based and emotionally-responsive behavior management strategies
  • Strengthening emotional regulation and mental health
  • Using play and everyday routine to promote growth and development
  • Enhancing development and strengthening relationship through DIR/Floortime
  • Learning about neurobehavioral-informed parenting
  • Reading and responding positively to young children’s behavioral cues, body language, and other communication
  • Enriching nonverbal and verbal communication
  • Promoting safe touch and learning about the benefits of touch and infant massage
  • Using music and movement in everyday routine to foster development
  • Assessing overall fine and gross motor skills and function

Developmental assessments are free and are scheduled every Friday. Please call or email for appointment scheduling at 773-687-9241 or info@cptwc.com

Building Blocks, Building Brain Playgroup

Why Choose CPTWC’s Building Blocks, Building Brain Playgroup?
Our therapists design the Building Blocks, Building Brain Playgroup with three goals in mind – one for you as caregivers and lifelong learners, one for your children as early learners, and one for the entire group as a community. This play philosophy makes our playgroup different from traditional playgroups. The purpose and passion of our playgroups are:
1. To promote young children’s engagement, independence, and social communication while stimulating their development in cognition, language, movement, and socio-emotion.

  • We respect children’s natural interests and foster their curiosity by supporting children’s discovery in every activity. The activities will be diverse, ranging from arts and sensory games to puzzles and blocks so that children interact with one another and play together.
  • We work side by side with you to facilitate children’s play with toys and materials. We look in these experiences to find teaching moments in which we build on the skills that children have already mastered and then support children to reach the next level in their developmental growth.

2. To promote caregivers’ understanding of their children’s needs, problem-solving skills, reflective capacities, and intentional parenting.

  • Not only do we see you as equal partners who are knowledgeable about your children, but we also think of you as brain engineers who strengthen and grow your children’s brain each day. You will learn about child development, play strategies, and healthy brain development throughout the course of our Playgroup. Through modeling, coaching, and discussion, you will become more aware and attuned to your children’s developmental needs.
  • We will provide handouts that will give you some strategies and activities that you might want to try at home so that the learning and fun continue.

3. To promote a sense of community whereby children of all abilities and backgrounds bring their strengths into the group and learn from one another. Similarly, parents come together to support one another and nurture their children’s potential in a group setting.
Come play with us while building a strong foundation of child development and growing a healthy, integrated brain together.

For more information, questions or to sign up for our next sessions, reach our professional players at classes@cptwc.com or call us at 773-687-9241

Infant Massage Class

CPTWC’s infant massage class is a combination of the ancient arts of heart and hands and the modern neurobehavioral science of infant development. This is a learning platform where the needs of babies are honored as the therapist and parents work side by side to understand what the babies are telling us through their body languages. Parents and caregivers alike will learn how to adapt the massage strokes to the babies’ unique needs and levels of stimulation. At the same time, the babies will become intimately acquainted with the sound of your lullaby, the smell of your skin, the sight of your smile, and the touch of warm oil in your hands. The deep emotional connection that you and your baby form during the massage is one way your baby learns to enjoy the comfort provided by you and the security of loving and being loved.

In addition to individualizing the massage strokes to each baby, the therapist will facilitate a group discussion on such topics as consoling a fussy baby and understanding and responding to a baby’s unique body language. Not only will parents learn about the current research findings on parenting and child development, but they will also support one another as they share their parenting stories.

You will also benefit from our unique collaborative intake session prior to the actual class. The therapist spends time with you and your baby to observe your baby’s strengths, capacities, and communication styles through his/her behaviors. Then, the therapist gathers more information from you, the expert on your baby, in order to create a behavioral profile that captures your baby’s individuality. This intake session allows our therapist to get to know both you and your baby, your personalities, and your strengths. The therapist can then adapt the massage instructions to best suit your needs.

Who should attend?
Caregivers and infants who are one to seven months old. Infants of all abilities, degrees of sensitivity to touch, and birth conditions are welcome. Should you have any medical priority for your child, please do not hesitate to reach our therapist at… in order to collaborate and determine different ways to individualize the massage strokes and make them safe yet beneficial for you and your child. Our previous participants include mothers, fathers, grandparents, term infants, preterm infants, and infants who have colic, touch defensiveness, low tone, and developmental differences.

What will you learn?

  • Your baby’s individual behavioral profile and communication styles (body language and other cues) and how you can respond positively and contingently to those behaviors;
  • Massage strokes to relieve gas, colic, constipation, excess mucus, and muscular tension;
  • Massage strokes to relax your baby and stimulate her growth and development;
  • Different kinds of gentle, loving touch for when your baby is irritable and crying
  • Different strategies to sooth your crying baby while respecting her own abilities to calm herself down as well;
  • Relaxation techniques for yourself to strengthen your presence when you enjoy each other’s company.

Class information and structure

Our six-week course consists of the first class in which our therapist, you, and your baby get to know one another, form a team, and build a behavioral profile of your baby. We will use the Newborn Behavioral Observation (NBO) which is a tool developed by renowned faculty members at the Brazelton Institute, Harvard Medical School, to guide the discussion about your baby’s strengths and rich capacities. Additionally, the therapist will orient you to infant massage and ensure that you are comfortable and ready for the following five weeks, which will involve massage strokes of different body parts and discussion topics around infant development and parenting. The duration of each class is one hour.

We will be providing light snacks for adult participants, a mid-course check-in to ensure that you are getting the most out of the course, a final written report, a graduation party and certification. Additionally, we will bring in guest speakers, such as a lactation consultant or a yoga instructor, to speak to the class at no additional costs.

Please contact the Chicago Pediatric Therapy & Wellness Center at 773-687-9241 or email us at classes@cptwc.com to sign up for this class or if you have any questions regarding this class or would interested in alternate times or scheduling private lessons.

About the Therapist Instructor

Nat is both a credential developmental therapist and a Certified Educator of Infant Massage through the International Association of Infant Massage. She has over five years experience working with infants and young children of all abilities and developmental trajectories with families in both Thailand and the U.S.A. She integrates her specialties in infant mental health, developmental therapy, and infant massage together to create a supportive learning environment for her infant massage participants. Nat loves seeing the growth of both babies and their caregivers unfold together. She wholeheartedly believes in the benefits of loving touch and its positive impact on the parent-child relationship.