Hello! I’m Hannah, founder of Purposeful Play. I work as a pediatric occupational therapist with an academic background in child developmental and social work. My passion for this career started when I was working with young children in a development center. I realized that I really enjoyed watching young children learn to explore their environment through movement and play. I was always so amazed at how the brain worked and how you could see these kids problem solving to reach for the toy they wanted or move their bodies to get to where they wanted to go. Trial and error; over and over and over again. As my career progressed I became curious about what happens when progression of typical development doesn’t go according to typical standards. Enter: occupational therapy.
I have found working with young children and families who are overcoming and living with challenges on a daily basis and being witness to their success fills me with joy and gratitude. I approach each client and family with a holistic mindset taking into account all aspects of a child's life, family and cultural expectations, and school demands with the overarching goal to facilitate a child who is able to function in life as effectively, efficiently, and independently as possible.
I have worked in a variety of setting and with clients who have a wide spectrum of diagnoses. In all my interactions, I’m always looking to establish and enhance parent-child communication, bonding, and positive interactions. My understanding is that I’m here to highlight and teach children and families the innate skills and resilience they already contain; holding space to learn and grow as a unit to establish harmonious and loving foundational practices that support successful life skills.
I approach each session by looking at the whole person, the whole picture, and the whole family unit to find and provide the just right challenges and facilitate successful and empowering interactions between child, family, and their respective environments.
Academic and Education Experience
I graduated from the University of Oregon in 2006 with a Bachelor’s of Education in Family and Human Services. After several years working in early childhood education, I returned to school and completed my Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy from SUNY Downstate in 2011. I have worked in outpatient clinics, as a home health therapist, at inpatient acute care hospitals, and in a critical care cardiac ICU setting, all with pediatric patients.
I believe in being a continuous student in life and have attended continuing education classes throughout my career as an OT in various areas including: clinical neuroplasticity and reflex integration, vision, myofacial release, handwriting and school readiness, whole brain living, sensory integration, feeding, and yoga teacher training.