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November 17, 1957 - Image 9

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Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1957-11-17
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TI

ILY MAGAZINU

Sunday, November 17, 1957

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CPR: Help for Youth

(Continued from Page 10)
extent their disorder interferes
with the learning process. In some
cases, a psychological disorder has
no effect on the child's ability to
learn, in other cases the reverse
may be true. "How else can you
explain it when a kid wilth an IQ
of 120 isn't able to read?" says the
school's principal, Nick Long.
ACCORDINGto Long, most of
the children who find it diffi-
cult to learn also have found it
difficult to adjust to society and
its demands, or they have painted
pictures of teachers as authori-
tarian symbols whom they are in-
clined to resist, or they learn only
with difficulty due to their own
conceptions of themselves as
learners.
The main problem in all three
blocks to learning is that the pa-
tient has no motivation to learn,
according to Long. What Long
and his staff try to do is to give
the child this motivation through
what he referred to as "project
learning."
This is a theory of education in
which the learner is made to be a
part of the learning experience.
"If the class is studying wheat,
then we try to arrange a trip to
Battle Creek to see how wheat is
grown." Thus the student is made
a part of the educational experi-
ence; he is immersed in it.
Another stumbling block to

learning is the tendency of some
students to imagine the teacher
as an authoritative figure exist-
ing only to torment the learner.
In the hospital's school this no-
tion is dispelled, primarily as a
result of the teacher's training in
the instruction of psychologically
disturbed children. She is not
completely devoid of authority,
since, if this were the case, she
could not demand and expect to
hold the respect of her pupils.
WHAT happens when the child
rebels against the authority
of teacher or against nurses,
aides, and other hospital person-
iel?
According 'to Long, in many
cases disciplinary action must be
taken, but it is very lenient. If for
some reason, the child should be-
come rebellious, he is, removed
from the situation which initiated
the trouble. He is told why his
behavior is not acceptable, why
It is out of context with the pre-
cepts of an orderly society. And
in some cases some of the child's
privileges are suspended until he
learns to control himself 'better,
a thing which he will have to do
in the adult society.
Occupational therapy, as de-
fined by the hospital's occupa-
tional and recreational therapist,
Phyllis A. Doyle, is an activity
prescribed for a patient and car-
ried out by a therapist. The pur-

TIME TO READ-An important part of individual adjustment is participation in group activity under
the guidance of a CPH staff member.

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pose of this activity depends upon
the condition of the child.
Miss Doyle adds that there are
many uses to which occupational
therapy can be adapted. It may
be used to observe the child so
as to gain further information as
to his problem or it may be a
means for satisfying the child.
PSYCHOLOGISTS say that
there is a relationship between
how a child expresses himself in
play and real situations. The way
a child reacts to a doll house or
a doll may be an indication of
how he feels toward his home life
or some feminine figure in his life.
This is one of the primary values
of occupational therapy. Not only
does it prompt social relations but
it also is a means by which the
psychiatrist better understands
his patient's problem, thanks to
the observations of the occupa-
tional therapist and her aides.
For instance, a patient in one
of the hospital's handicraft class-
es made a hand-tooled aluminum
dish for his mother. He had
planned to make a second dish
to match the first. Then some-
thing went wrong between the
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child and his mother. He didn't
make the second dish.
When he does start to make the
second dish, the therapist will
know that the situation at home
has been mended, and the child,
therefore, will feel. much better.
This information is gained with-
out verbal communication be-
tween the patient and his psychi-
atrist._
In the occupational therapy
work groups, children have a
number of means to express
themselves artistically,.'They may
make wood, leather, paper, cloth
or metal objects; a wide variety
of tools andmaterials is at their
disposal._
In making such articles, it is
not the concern of the therapist
that the patient attain perfection
unless this is what satisfies him.
His satisfaction is-of primary im-
portance; this is a major goal of
the hospital's occupational thera-
py program.
The hospital's second means of
caring for the physical well-being
of its patients is through recrea-
tional therapy. This program does
not differ essentially from the oc-
cupational therapy program.
ACCORDING to Miss Doyle,-
"Recreational and occupation-
al therapy are alike in that they
are-divergent means to a common
end" - the satisfaction of the
child.
This end- is attained in part
through such group activities as
team ,games. In the spacious CPH
gymnasium there are facilities for
skating, basketball, shuffleboard,
wrestling and a, host of other
sports. Then too, the hospital has
a 26-foot indoor swimming pool
designed for patient use.

In all sporting events, individu-
al competition is as limited as
possible. The reason behind this?
Dr. Elenon explains, "There are
children who aren't ready for in-
dividual competition. Of course,
it is a thing which is needed
through life, but if it is pushed on
someone who isn't ready for it, it
may result in things we don't
want."
Therefore, in those activities
where there is apt to be competi-
tion on an individual level, the
events are so designed that groups
or teams are the competing units.
In such an arrangement no one
child can proclaim himself win-
ner nor any one blame himself as
a loser. The group' is the entity
which will win or lose.
IN ADDITION to sports, other
activities are designed for the
children's recreation. In the sum-
mer months there are picnics and
field trips which help to bring
the group together into an inter-
dependent social unit, where the
child depends on others to afford
himself the most complete measure
of happiness. Additional recreation
includes trips to local movie thea-
ters and points of interest and
playground activities.
The Childrens' Psychiatric Hos-
pital is a society promoting mean-
ingful associations between adults
and youngsters as a first step in
the adaptation- of a disturbed
child to his social environment. It
is a society= which encourages
priceless relations " between chil-
dren in work and play. These are
its accomplishments; these + are
the things which all individuals
must possess to live a normal life
in, society.

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