Cristen Sassi, M.Ed. OTR/L
Lead Consultant & Trainer
What I do at TAP:
My main role at TAP is to complete school consultations and trainings for staff, families, and professionals. School consultations meet the needs of students in whatever type of learning environment they're in - whether that is a self-contained classroom, integrated program, or private program. Our consultations have grown outside the scope of only meeting the needs of individuals on the autism spectrum to include students with other developmental disabilities and behavioral challenges, and who are working on social emotional learning. Some of my other roles at TAP include special projects and collaborations with outside agencies and companies, such as our collaboration with Hasbro toy company, Toybox Tools.
One fun fact about me is:
I enjoy being active and outdoors. While enjoying some time on a surf vacation with my family, I found myself surrounded by bobbing heads in the water…sea turtles! Sea turtles were surfing alongside with me and happy to share the wave with me.
My professional bio:
I earned my B.S. at Sacred Heart University then moved on to complete a Master's in Occupational Therapy from Springfield College. I have been a pediatric occupational therapist for 17 years and have been fortunate enough to have worked in a variety of pediatric settings such as Early Intervention, specialized pre-school programs for students with physical disabilities, sensory integration clinics, schools, and my own private practice.
My approach as an occupational therapist is to look at the individual as a whole person and build their skills from the foundational level up, with a developmental approach that utilizes sensory integration knowledge as a foundational base and child-adult relationships as a tool to foster development milestones and relationship-building. I have learned that as a therapist, you need a variety of skill sets, ideas, and an eclectic knowledge base to best support any child and family. I have been trained and certified in the SIPT (Sensory Integration Praxis Test), Interactive Metronome (IM), DIR/Floortime, Integrated Listening System (ILS), TEACCH Level 1, and Conscious Discipline Level 1.