Pediatric Occupational Therapist

Coach ill or disabled kids on daily tasks like dressing or going to school.

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$49,000 – $103,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Pediatric Occupational Therapists do?

Children have it easy. They don’t have to pay bills, run a household, or go to work. Instead, their only job is to transform into independent adults.

When a child is injured or has a birth defect, however, that occupation becomes incredibly difficult. A Pediatric Occupational Therapist can help by providing exercises and coaching. They can also work with parents and Teachers to make the child’s work environment less challenging.

Children come to see Pediatric Occupational Therapists on the advice of their Doctors. When you’re a Pediatric Occupational Therapist, you start a consultation by looking over the notes of the Doctor to determine how the child is impaired, and how that impairment began. In addition, you interview the parents to find out how the impairment is impacting the child at home.

After this background work is complete, you assess the child. If they have a physical disability, you ask them to perform certain physical tests so you can gauge how significant that disability is. Children with mental issues sometimes take memory or matching tests so you can gauge the severity of the problem.

When your testing is complete, you pull together a series of games and exercises to help the child improve. In each session, the child performs the exercises, and you track their progress.

Traveling to the child’s school is helpful, as it lets you see whether they can maneuver around the area with ease and listen to the Teacher properly. Sometimes, you make modifications to the child’s desk, or you ask to move them to a different part of the classroom. In other words, you look for ways to reduce distractions and help the child learn.

Should I be a Pediatric Occupational Therapist?

You should have a master's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.

  • How to Become a
    Pediatric Occupational Therapist

    Most Pediatric Occupational Therapists have a Master's degree. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaag9g&chl=|||bachelor%27s+%289%25%29|master%27s+%2883%25%29|doctorate+%289%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,83
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