Tara Delaney (Co-Owner)

About Tara

Tara Delaney, M.S., O.T.R.

Tara is a pediatric occupational therapist who has worked with children for over twenty-five years. She founded Baby Steps in 1998 to provide consultative, evaluative and direct treatment services in schools and private settings. Tara is a nationally known child development expert who specializes in sensory integration and sensory processing, autistic disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, learning disabilities and social/behavior issues. She develops educational programs that incorporate the developmental needs of children with their educational goals.

Tara regularly conducts seminars through her trademarked Making Sense-ory® series of lectures addressing children with autistic disorder and sensory processing disorders. Tara holds joint Bachelor of Science Degrees from the University of Texas and the University of Texas Health Science Center in Biology and Occupational Therapy, respectively. Tara interned in pediatrics at the Waisman Center in Madison, Wisconsin, gaining experience at the Cerebral Palsy Clinic, the Autism Clinic, the Genetics Clinic and in the local public schools. It was there that she first saw the benefits of working collaboratively with speech-language pathologists, early educators, physical therapists, psychologists and physicians. As a result, she conducted research at the Harry Harlow Primate Lab while obtaining a Master of Science Degree in Therapeutic Science at University of Wisconsin, Madison. She was also part of a leadership training program sponsored by the Waisman Center’s Mother and Child Welfare Grant.

Tara has advanced training and education in sensory integration, therapeutic listening, visual-perception, visual-vestibular integration, Brain Gym®, handwriting, and autistic disorder. Tara is a member of the American Occupational Therapy Association, California Occupational Therapy Association, Sensory Integration International, and an International Adoption Family Network Organization.

Tara’s Books

Building Social Skills for Autism, Sensory Processing Disorder and Learning Disabilities: Over 105 Strategies, Activities and Sensory tools for children and adolescents, 2015
Nationally recognized experts Tara Delaney, OTR/L and Mary Hamrick, CCC-SLP have designed this revolutionary workbook to help professionals use the sensory system to teach complex social skills and build self-awareness in children with autistic disorder, sensory processing disorder and learning disabilities. This new framework for developing a dynamic social skills program using the sensory system is a way to explore why kids react that way they do socially. With this framework in mind, professionals can build on children's self-awareness and social acumen.

Social Sense®: Building Social Skills in Children with Autism, Sensory Processing Disorder and Learning Disabilities, 2014
The Social Sense® Program combines the viewpoints and experiences of an occupational therapist and speech-language pathologist team. During the last decade, Tara Delaney, OTR/L and Mary Hamrick, CCC-SLP have created and implemented lesson plans that utilize sensory based activities for teaching complex social skills. This step-by-step program can be used when working with social groups or performing therapy sessions in both the school and clinical setting. This practical book addresses social communication and pragmatic language goals, as well as adaptations for sessions with students from kindergarten through high school.

101 Games and Activities for Children with Autism, Asperger’s, and Sensory Processing Disorders
McGraw-Hill Trade Publishing, 2009

Play is one of the most dynamic ways children learn. For those with autism, Asperger’s and sensory processing disorders, play provides a non-stressful medium through which children can learn specific skills for future social and academic success. Tara presents activities of varying levels of difficulty that stimulate both the brain and body. These interactive games are quick to learn and provide hours of fun and learning for your child. Many of the games are for indoor or outdoor play so your child can enjoy them at home, outside or anywhere.

The Sensory Processing Disorder Answer Book
Practical Questions to the Top 250 Questions Parents Ask Most Sourcebooks, 2008

It is estimated that more than ten percent of children deal with some form of sensory processing disorder (a neurological disorder characterized by the misinterpretation of everyday sensory information such as touch, sound and movement). For many children, sensory processing disorder can lead to academic struggles, behavior problems, difficulties with coordination and other issues. This book is a reassuring, authoritative reference providing sound advice and immediate answers to the most pressing questions parents ask. It helps them fully understand sensory processing disorder, conquer their fears and seek help for their child when necessary.

Making Sense-ory

With Tara Delaney, MS, OTR/L, Child Development Expert and Author
The Making Sense-ory® seminar series explores the powerful connection between sensory processing and topics such as autistic disorder, behavior and learning. Created and led by respected child development expert Tara Delaney, each seminar delivers innovative, groundbreaking strategies that provide the necessary framework for helping children and adults reach their highest potential.

The most popular and requested topics include:

  • Making Sense-ory of Autism Spectrum Disorders
    Discover the underlying impact of sensory processing difficulties for children and adults with autistic disorder and learn ways to use sensory strategies to increase academic and social success.
  • Making Sense-ory of Behavior
    Learn about the link between sensory processing and behavior. Discover the tools that can help differentiate behaviors that have a sensory component from those that are learned. Find out how to create simple behavior support plans and how to implement strategies—both in the classroom and at home—that enable children to overcome roadblocks to success.
  • Making Sense-ory of Learning
    Discover how sensory processing impacts the learning process and how to use sensory strategies to aide children academically. Learn the subtle variances between the ways male versus female-differentiated brains process information. Gain insight into how the left and right brain contribute to how children learn. Having a basic understanding of brain development and “brain differences” will aide in helping children in the classroom and at home.
  • Making Sense-ory of Social Intelligence
    Discover how sensory processing and communication set the stage for social intelligence. Recognize the early signs of children who struggle. Gain knowledge of how to use sensory strategies to aid children for increased success academically and socially, as well as ways to promote the development of social intelligence.

Other Making Sense-ory seminars include:
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, bonding, classroom strategies, handwriting, international adoption, language and play.

Available in half day, full day or two-day formats:
Seminars are geared toward groups of 30 to 100 attendees, including professionals working in private practice or school settings, as well as parents and other caregivers.

All Seminars are approved for Continuing Education Credits
• Teachers • Administrators • Counselors • Social Workers • Family Therapists • Psychologists
• Speech-Language Pathologists • Occupational Therapists • Physical Therapists
• Other Behavioral Health and Medical Professionals

Go to PESI.COM to check out the latest continuing education courses Tara is teaching.

NEW: Making Sense out of Dyslexia: Dyslexia: Building NEW Neuropathways to Master Visual and Auditory Memory, Visual Perceptual Skills, Visual Motor Skill Development & More!