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It’s Never Too Early to Make a Difference in a Child’s Life

Blog Specialized Skills Training and How Its Never Too Early to Make a Difference in a Child's Life

Brighton Center is a non-profit organization committed to providing the educational and developmental foundation that children ages 0 to 8 years old experiencing developmental delays or a disability in San Antonio and the surrounding area need. Our certified Early Intervention Specialists provide Specialized Skills Training (SST) which helps children meet their specific development goals.

As an Early Childhood Intervention (ECI) provider through the State of Texas, Brighton’s team of highly skilled and licensed therapy and early childhood developmental professionals provides a holistic and family-centered approach on development. Through Brighton’s Early Childhood Intervention Therapy Services Program, we help babies and toddlers (up to their 3rd birthday) get developmentally on track through Physical, Speech, Feeding Therapy and Occupational Therapies as well as our Specialized Skills Training. In short, you can rest assured that your child and entire family will receive the resources, support, and guidance they need to reach their full potential!

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), acting early on developmental concerns can make a big difference in the lives of families impacted by developmental delays and disabilities.

Early Intervention Specialists (EIS) are one of the professional disciplines on our Early Childhood Intervention team who serve families with children birth to three with developmental delays and disabilities. Furthermore, they are certified in the state of Texas as specialists in infant and toddler development and are the recognized provider for delivering Specialized Skills Training (SST). Additionally, EIS professionals are required to hold at least a bachelor’s degree with coursework related to early childhood intervention, successfully complete the EIS credentialing process within one year of being hired, and maintain 20 hours of continuing professional education (CPE) every 2 years and 3 hours of ethics training every two years.

Specialized Skills Training (SST)

Brighton Center Twins in Specialized Skills Training

Specialized Skills Training (SST) is a unique service provided only by an Early Intervention Specialist. Specifically, SST supports development across all domains with an emphasis on strengthening cognitive skills, positive behavior, and social interactions. These skills are critical to building upon the developmental goals a child’s therapist might be working with them on.

Early Intervention Specialists will schedule visits to join you during activities you request help with, either at home or in your community.  The skills you learn during SST will help your child meet their specific development goals.

Examples of activities that might happen during an SST visit are as follows:

Learning and using words

  • The EIS shows you how to set up your child’s play area to encourage him to use words to ask for his favorite toys.
  • The EIS shows you ways to use pictures of food to help your child make choices during snack time.

Behavior and reducing tantrums

  • The EIS suggests ways to help your child know when they need to stop one activity and move to the next. The EIS supports you as you practice these ideas and offers suggestions on other things to try.
  • The EIS meets you at the grocery store and teaches you ways to help your child stay calm so you can complete your shopping.

Rolling, sitting & walking

  • The EIS helps you use your baby’s toys to teach him to roll over, sit up, and eventually walk.

Quick Developmental Milestone Check-In

Every child is different and progresses and develops at their own pace, however, there are some common things to look for in determining whether or not your child will benefit from pediatric therapy and early childhood intervention therapy services.

ECI Early Childhood Education Checklist 3 - 6 Months 3 – 6 Months

  • Follow moving toys or faces with their eyes.
  • Startle at loud or new sounds.
  • Wiggle and kick with legs and arms.
  • Lift head and shoulders while on stomach.
  • Smile back at parents or other family members.
  • Make sounds, like gurgling, cooing or sucking sounds.
Infant receiving therapy 6 – 9 Months

  • Explore toys with hands and mouth.
  • Roll over front-to-back and back-to-front.
  • Squeal and babble different sounds.
  • Sit by leaning on their hands.
  • Turn their heads to voices and respond to their names.
  • Know family members and seek their attention.
  • Enjoy playing “peek-a-boo.”
Brighton Center Toddler Archer Rutledge Playing in Playground 9 – 12 Months

  • Copy hand movements like “patty cake,” or “bye-bye”
  • Pick up crumbs or other small things with their thumb and a finger.
  • Move toys from one hand to the other hand.
  • Crawl on hands and knees.
  • Sit without help.
  • Repeat sounds like “baba”, “dada,” and “mama.”
  • Cry when mother or father leaves.

If you are concerned that an infant or toddler may have a developmental delay or disability, contact Brighton Center for an evaluation. In fact, anyone can make a referral: a parent, family member, health care professional, social worker, caregiver, friend or neighbor. Additionally, a referral may be based on a professional judgment or a family’s concern. Please fill out this FORM for more information.

Early Intervention Specialists

At Brighton Center, we celebrate the work of our Early Intervention Specialists. They dedicate themselves tirelessly to ensure children and families are supported and empowered to achieve their goals. We currently employ 44 Early Intervention Specialists to work with the 3,000+ children that Brighton Center serves.

It’s never too early to make a difference in a child’s life.

Brighton Center Child and Parent Smiling

“Brighton offers families hope, caring, understanding, education and every bit of it is 100% from their hearts. Our daughter has benefited from ALL of the services that Brighton has to offer. They have become like another family to us and they will always be a part of our lives.“

MARY RUDY, Lulu's Mom