Activity: Designing A Responsive Intervention for Juana

Activity: Designing A Responsive Intervention for Juana

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Given the case study scenario of Juana, her family, her Head Start experience, and the defined concern:

  1. What could be the intervention goals for Juana?
  2. What could be strategies in the intervention plan?
  3. What cultural and linguistic considerations and challenges would be part of the intervention plan and the strategies?
  4. How might the traditional healer, or curando, and traditional health practices be incorporated into the intervention plan?

1. The intervention goals for Juana could be: To increase verbalization and social skills in the classroom environment; increase Juana’s initiation and participation in the classroom routine and activities; and rule out a hearing problem.

2. Strategies in the intervention plan could be:

  • Allow the child to use any mode of communication possible (but always reinforcing higher levels): picture board, gesturing, pointing, whispering, drawing etc.
  • Encourage speech by applying words to any non-verbal communications, (Eg., If Juana is looking at the puzzle on the table, say, "You see the puzzle. Would you like to play with the puzzle?")
  • Use Spanish, to support the home language whenever possible
  • Increase and support social interactions in the classroom and at home, without pushing the child to participate
  • Avoid pressuring Juana to speak, drawing too much attention to her efforts to speak, teasing from peers
  • Have Juana tested for any hearing problems to address response to loud noises
  • Have parents continue treatment with the curandero as they deem appropriate
  • Re-evaluate in one month for progress

3. Cultural and linguistic considerations and challenges could include: Language differences; the beliefs about what will help with Juana’s behavior; the family’s own social isolation; the family’s experience (positive or negative) with getting support and services for their son Rodrigo; the use of the curando and herbs.

4. The involvement of the curando could be incorporated based on the parent’s knowledge, experience, and preferences. It would be important for the parents to share information about the curandero with staff; including their own values, beliefs, and practices, as well as the curando's interaction and intervention with Juana and anything the staff might notice or need to observe while at Head Start.

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This product was developed [in part] under grant number 1H79SM082070-01 from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The views, policies and opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of SAMHSA or HHS.