Ready Bodies, Learning Minds for PreK: An Introduction

American education is increasingly focused on a substantial goal: higher performance at a younger age. As a result, very young students are anxious and fearful under the pressure of expectations that are perhaps beyond their ability. Our prekindergarten to elementary children struggle to sit ‘properly’ in classrooms and wield a pencil to demonstrate their intelligence. How do young children learn as whole human beings? This workshop will relate our contemporary understanding of child development with a look at our culture, our classroom strategies, and the use of an RBLM Motor Lab. This program will encompass the use of activities for typical and atypical children, and will address behavior as well.


  • Define the dynamic systems theory of development and its relationship to learning.
  • Outline early motor development and the concept of reflexes within the dynamic systems model.
  • Understand the difference between educational models and developmental models.
  • Explain performances such as handwriting, and even behavior within the dynamic systems/embodied cognition model.
  • Create a RBLM Motor Lab set up for classroom or lab.
  • Define the universal application of the program for children with diagnoses such as ASD and VI.

Your Instructor

Athena Oden, PT
Athena Oden, PT

Athena Oden, PT, graduated from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston and has spent the last 40 years in pediatrics, working in public and private school settings including schools for the blind and deaf and early childhood, residential facilities, and non-profit organizations for children. She has created and implemented successful motor programs for schools throughout the U.S., headed Assistive Technology teams, designed accessible playgrounds, and served on the founding Board of Directors for a private school. She presents both nationwide and internationally on childhood development and its importance in an academic setting.

Her newest book, Ready Bodies, Learning Minds: Cultivating the Complete Child, is written for therapists, teachers and parents, and gives insight into the sensory and motor systems necessary for learning and success for students of all ages and abilities, incorporating research and references while outlining the curriculum for school-based motor lab programs. As a companion tool, The Manual for Ready Bodies, Learning Minds Screening Report assists therapists in identifying specific intervention strategies.

Athena was privileged to participate in the creation of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) White paper for The Role of School-Based Physical Therapy: Successful Participation for All Students, and to serve for six years as the Regional Representative for the South Central US States for the School Based SIG of the APTA. As the owner of Ready Bodies, Learning Minds, LLC., Athena is known for practical, compassionate, and down-to-earth training. She and her husband David, raised their 3 children in the Texas Hill Country, where she loves to garden, feed the cows, and sit with a cup of hot tea and a musty, old classic book.

Continuing Education Credit

This course meets the criteria for 4.5 contact hours. It is recommended for PT, PTA, OT, COTA, SLP, Regular Ed and Special Ed Teachers, Counselors, Diagnosticians, Behavioral Specialists, Administrators, and Parents. All successfully completing the course will receive a certificate for 4.5 contact hours. No credit will be given for partial participation.

Upon successfully completing the course, you will receive a certificate of completion with contact hours that you can use to submit for approval with your respective state board and/or credentialing body. As we receive new formal approvals we will update this course description accordingly.

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish. Our expectation is that RBLM students will complete the course within one year of purchasing the class.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own. After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own as long as exists. It is the expectation that RBLM students will complete the course within one year of purchasing the class.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.

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