301-846-GROW (4769)
[email protected]

9093 Ridgefield Drive | Suite 102
Frederick, Maryland 21701

Frequently Asked Questions

What Do We Do for Kids?

We offer a full range of therapeutic services. including evaluation, treatment, and consultation. Our pediatric occupational therapists (OT) and speech language pathologists (SLP) use purposeful play activities that are specifically designed to help the child build needed skills. Therapists use combinations of activities to strengthen muscles, increase coordination, restore function, improve neurological integration and build specific skills.

OT : 

Occupational therapy focuses on enhancing and facilitating development of fine motor, visual-motor integration, and visual perceptual skills, as well as addressing sensory processing disorder. OT's help kids learn to be more independent with activities of daily living, such as tying shoes and using utensils as well as assisting them to develop better self-regulation skills. This helps with behavioral challenges such as rigidity or excessive tantrums.

Occupational therapists use play as a tool to build skills that enhance development. By adapting tasks and the environment, OT’s prevent disability, maximize independent function, and manage behaviors.


SLPs focus on effective production of speech sounds, acquisition of receptive and expressive language skills, eating and swallowing, and pragmatics of language. This means helping kids understand practical aspects of communication such as how close to stand, when to shift topics and how to take turns. In addition to individual treatment our speech therapists run social skills groups for children ages 5-12.

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What kids are saying...

Thank you for helping me. I'm calm and happy. Keep helping kids.
H.P. age 8

I love coming to Way to Grow. I wish I could live here!
J.R. age 6

Thanks for helping me with my handwriting. Everything is so much easier now!
J.S. age 10

M.T. age 9
What parents are saying...

You have accomplished unimaginable success with both our boys. I don't know what we would have done without you. Your wisdom and guidance have been gifts to me that I will always cherish. 

E.M. parent

"My son was having major difficulties with his handwriting in first grade. He was tested and it was determined that he was behind in his abilities. At the start of second grade, we knew immediately that he could not keep up with the class, he became very frustrated and emotional.

I did not know where to turn. A tutoring service told us that his issues were not instructional and suggested occupational therapy at Way to Grow. He was tested and results showed that the issues went beyond just handwriting. He needed help with motor coordination, strengthening his upper body, his vision and eye muscles.

These issues are complex, but WTG was incredible with helping us understand our child. Now we are trying many things at home and at school to help him. It is a process that will take time but we have started at a young age and that is critical. We are forever grateful to WTG for their compassion, understanding and unending support!"

Paul Spangler

My daughter displayed symptoms of sensory integration dysfunction for at least three years before we found our way to Way to Grow. Her behavior was negatively impacted to the point that we were focused so intently on her misbehavior that we lost sight of her sensory issues and their relationship to her behavior. We have found an unfortunate lack of awareness or understanding of sensory integration differences at most of the schools she has attended, and among the medical professionals we have consulted.

From the first week that she began therapy at Way to Grow we noticed improvements in her frustration tolerance. As the weeks have gone by, we’ve seen tremendous breakthroughs in her ability to stay on task with activities that are less interesting to her, and in her ability to transition from pleasurable activities to those less preferred. Her hypersensitivity to smells and sounds has diminished, increasing her willingness to try many new foods and experiences. The most significant change has been in her ability to regulate her emotions. Her teacher has noticed her increased maturity and greater ability to recover from setbacks when something does upset her, and that she seems more engaged in what is going on in class.

The therapy she has received at Way to Grow and the additional advice Barbara has been able to offer us to help support her sensory needs have been invaluable. We’ve gone from being concerned about her future, to being thrilled with the progress she has made. We are very optimistic that as her education progresses, she will be well-equipped to deal with whatever challenges she may face, and that her behavior will be much less challenging for her educators to understand and work with.


Thanks for your excellent and professional services! Way to Grow provides a safe, nurturing environment - tailored to my son's needs to help him overcome the obstacles of his disability. Ms. Cheryl is awesome - she is kind, caring and has great speech therapy skills - which are truly helping my son.

BG, parent

"Where would my daughter be without Way to Grow? My 18-month-old daughter, Felicity, was diagnosed with PDD and I immediately sought out Way to Grow. She made great progress in an incredibly short time. Within 2 months her speech soared to levels I could only have dreamed about. Her balance, muscle strength and coordination were noticeably improved. The work Barbara did to improve her brain functioning and processing made Felicity a very different little girl.

Today, at 2 years, no one would ever guess that she was diagnosed with PDD. She will approach you, smile, look into your eyes, and charm you with a song. What more could a mother ask for? Way to Grow, thank you from the bottom of my heart!"

What Are Our Goals for You?

  • We want your child to succeed and to have confidence in his or her skills.

  • We want to find out what is interfering with your child's development and success and then help minimize the impact of it.

  • We want your child's behaviors to be manageable.

  • We want you to understand your child's needs and have strategies to address those needs.

  • We want to help educate you - the parents - so that you understand how to best help your child at home and in the community.

  • We want your child to thrive – to be able to grow and develop to the fullest extent possible.

What is Occupational Therapy?

Occupational therapy uses a person's occupation as a tool for therapy-and this means occupation in the broadest sense of the word-how one likes to occupy his time. For children, their occupation is play. Thus, pediatric OTs use play as a therapeutic tool to facilitate skills. Our work is directed towards maximizing independent function, enhancing development and preventing disability.

OTs look closely at the demands of each task and try to find ways to adapt the task to match the child's abilities. OTs also work to modify and adjust the environment to support the child in executing tasks and activities. We work with kids on specific skills:

  • Fine motor skills (cutting, coloring/writing, etc.)

  • Self care skills (dressing, grooming, shoe tying, using utensils, etc.)

  • Visual-motor integration skills (copying shapes, writing letters, etc.)

  • Bilateral coordination (using the two sides of the body together effectively)

  • Sensory integration (the ability to take in information from all of the senses and sort it and respond to it appropriately)

We work with children, families, and school personnel, on developing compensatory strategies to help children cope with deficits.

We also work with families to develop activities to do at home to support the therapeutic process. We will help you find ways to incorporate these activities into your daily routine so they can be easily accomplished.

What is Sensory Integration?

The body has 7 senses: taste, touch, hearing, sight, smell, balance (vestibular), and position (proprioception). The vestibular and proprioceptive systems work together to give the brain information about our body's position in space and if we are moving, how we are moving. The ability of the brain to organize and use all these sensory messages at once is called sensory integration.

We are all integrating sensory information all the time – in order to eat, get dressed, play, write, learn – or even being able to relax for sleep. And many of us have specific areas of sensory integration that can present challenges. For the most part, we are able to cope with these issues by engaging in a variety of activities that help us remain calm and organized. Listening to classical music, going for a run, taking a warm bath, or even watching the fish in your fish tank can all be ways to calm and reorganize the nervous system. 

Difficulties with sensory integration can impact a child's development, causing poor coordination, inattention, fatigue, anxiety, behavioral outbursts, frustration, and academic problems. It can be treated and Way to Grow can help. The sooner problems are addressed the better-when children are young, their central nervous system is more adaptable and will more readily respond to treatment. So if you suspect there is a problem with sensory integration, do not put off learning more.

Occupational therapy treatment for sensory integration dysfunction is a specialty at Way to Grow. We use specialized play equipment to provide the structured and graded sensory input necessary to achieve re-organization of the central nervous system. Studies show that sensory integration treatment works.

To read a more in-depth article on this subject, click here.

What is Speech Language Therapy?

Speech therapy treats communication disorders, which can affect individuals of any age. We offer a full range of therapeutic services, including evaluation, treatment, and consultation. Our pediatric speech language pathologists (SLP) use purposeful play to improve a child's physical, developmental, and academic skills. 

SLPs focus on effective production of speech sounds, acquisition of receptive and expressive language skills, eating and swallowing, and pragmatics of language. In addition to individual treatment our speech therapists run curriculum based social skills groups for children ages 5-12.

Speech-language pathologists can help children with:

  • Speech and Language Delays and Disorders
  • Articulation
  • Fluency
  • Feeding
  • Swallowing
  • Oral-Motor Skills
  • Augmentative Communication
  • Stuttering

Our speech therapists work closely with parents to ensure that skills learned in therapy are carried over to home, school and community activities. they work in conjunction with our occupational therapists and co-treatment is available. 

Does My Child Need Way to Grow?

You may be wondering whether your child's problems are serious enough to warrant consulting with a professional. This questionnaire may help you decide.

My child:

  • has difficulty with the basics: dressing, bathing, eating, grooming, sleep

  • is more challenged than peers by fine motor skills, seems behind peers in development of speech/language

  • struggles with or avoids social interactions and can't seem to make or keep friends

  • is overly clumsy/ does not seem to know where her body is in space

  • has difficulty organizing belongings and assignments

  • struggles to sit still and focus in class

  • is hard to understand

  • displays rigid or inconsistent behavior

  • has trouble with dealing with unexpected changes in routine

  • understands tasks, but often states, "I can't"

If you said yes to two or more items, if these difficulties have continued for two months or longer, or if they are impacting the way your family functions, then it's probably time to investigate further.

Children with problems in more than one area or across different settings may especially benefit from developmental therapies like those we offer.
Proudly providing services in Frederick, Maryland.  Easily accessible to Montgomery County,
Howard County, Carroll County, Washington County and Charles Town, West Virginia.