Our Team

Director of Operations/Owner

Lizette Alexander OT Reg. (Ont) is a registered Occupational Therapistwho has been working in community paediatrics since she graduated from theUniversity of Toronto in 1997.   Her scope of practice includes assessment and treatment of children with learning disabilities, attention deficit disorders, autism, developmental delays and physical disabilities. Prior experience includes consultation within schools and community based therapy with children ages 0 to 2 years. She has completed the Level 1 certification course for the Handwriting Without Tears (HWT) program and trained in the Pre-K through Grade 5 curriculum and Print Tool ™ assessment.  She is also certified in Therapeutic Listening.  Lizette is also trained in the Orton Gilligham Approach to reading, writing, and spelling and has successfully adapted the program to support children with special needs in basic reading skills (SK – Grade 2).  She is currently on staff at the Child Development Center at the Michael Garron Hospital.

Occupational Therapy Team

Hand Skills for Children includes our Pediatric Occupational Therapists who are independently contracted. They are members in good standing and registered with the College of Occupational Therapist of Ontario. They share Hand Skills for Children’s vision, mission, and philosophy. Our Occupational Therapists are known for their professionalism, energy and ability to teach new skills in a fun and creative manner. Each Occupational Therapist is provided with training and support through Hand Skills for Children. In addition, our Occupational Therapists participate in on-going education in order to better serve their community and remain informed on recent research and techniques.

Alexi Edelstein MSc. OT Reg. Ont

Alexi Edelstein is passionate about Occupational Therapy!  She completed her Master’s degree in Occupational Therapy at Queen’s University after completing her Honours Bachelor of Science in Psychology at the University of Toronto.   Alexi currently practices at Hand Skills for Children and at Aquilla Occupational Therapy Services with children in a variety of clinical, home, and community settings.  She has a particular interest in sensory integration and has completed several courses in this area, including the level 1 Intensive Mentorship Program with the Sensory Processing Disorder Foundation led by Dr. Lucy Jane Miller. She has also consulted in the past at MukiBaum Children’s Treatment Program (currently Aptus) in Toronto in which she worked with children and adolescents with complex developmental conditions combined with emotional or psychiatric disorders.  Alexi brings her passion and creativity to her work with children.  She can spot the hidden talents in children!

Hailie Peters MSc. OT Reg. (Ont)

Halie Peters, OT Reg. (Ont.) is a registered Occupational Therapist who received her Master’s of Science in Occupational Therapy from the University of Toronto. Halie also holds a Honours Bachelor of Arts in Child Studies from York University. Her scope of practice include assessment, treatment and consultation with children and their families regarding areas such as: sensory, self-regulation, fine motor, gross motor and social skills. Halie has experience working with children with a variety of diagnoses including: Autism Spectrum Disorder, Developmental Delay, Down syndrome, Attention Deficit Disorders, Learning Disability, and Sensory Processing Disorder. She thrives to continue to build her knowledge and expertise through ongoing education. Most recently, Haliehas completed courses in Neuro-Developmental Treatment, Social Thinking, and self-regulation (including the Zones of Regulation).

Jordana Caruso, MSc. OT Reg. (Ont) Clinical Director

Jordana is a registered Occupational Therapist who has worked at Hand Skills for Children since 2011. Jordana completed her Master of Science in Occupational Therapy degree at Queen’s University in 2010. She previously has worked in the community as a consulting therapist in schools and currently is on staff at The Scarborough Hospital working in the Child Development Program, Neonatal Follow-up Clinic and Paediatrics department.

Karen Don MSc. OT Reg. Ont

Karen is a registered Occupational Therapist who has worked at Hand Skills for Children since 2013. Karen earned her Master of Science in Occupational Therapy from Queen’s University in 2009. She has worked in a variety of settings with children, including clinics, schools and in the community.  She works with children with learning disabilities, autism, developmental delays, sensory processing disorder and physical disabilities.  She has completed the level 1 certification course for the Handwriting Without Tears Program and trained in the Pre-K to Grade 5 curriculum, Therapeutic Listening course and the Sequential Oral Sensory (SOS) feeding certification. She is currently on staff at The Scarborough Rouge Hospital working in the Neonatal Follow-up Clinic and Child Development Clinic.

Marlene Morse BSc. OT Reg. (Ont)

Marlene  is a registered Occupational Therapist who has been working in community since 1997. She graduated from the University of Western Ontario in 1997 with a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy and also holds a Bachelor of Physical Education from the University of Manitoba. Her scope of practice includes assessment and treatment of children with learning disabilities, attention deficit disorders, autism, developmental delays and physical disabilities. Prior experience includes working with pediatric clientele in homes and schools along with medical legal work. She has completed the Handwriting Without Tears (HWT) training in the Pre-K through Grade 5 curriculum and the Children and Youth with Acquired Brain Injury Certificate Training Program at Brock University.

Pamela Robertson MSc. OT Reg. Ont

Pamela Robertson OT Reg. (Ont.) is a registered Occupational Therapist (OT) in good standing with the College of Occupational Therapists of Ontario and a member of the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists.  Prior to becoming an OT, Pam worked in the United Kingdom as an OT Assistant in the community and hospital settings.  She graduated from the University of Toronto in 2012 with a Masters in Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy and also holds a Bachelor of Health Sciences from the University of Ottawa.  Since graduating, Pam has focused primarily on paediatrics and has experience assessing and treating children with autism, developmental delay, attention deficit disorders, and learning disabilities, among others. Pam obtained the Level 1 Handwriting Without Tears Certification, which includes the Pre-K through Grade 5 curriculum. Pam is enthusiastic and passionate about her work and is committed to helping children and their families achieve their goals.

Robin Pedlar MSc. OT Reg. Ont Marketing Director

Robin is a registered Occupational Therapist with experience providing therapy to children in the home and clinic environments. She has experience working with children on printing, cursive, reading, fine and gross motor skills, self-regulation, and sensory processing. Robin graduated from Queen’s University in 2013 with a Masters in Occupational Therapy and also holds a Bachelor of Psychology. She has maintained ongoing professional development in the areas of motor skills, visual perception, primitive reflexes, the Orton Gillingham approach to reading, and sensory integration. Robin is also certified in the Wilbarger Therapeutic Brushing protocol to address tactile defensiveness.

Stephanie Chow MSc. OT, OT Reg. (Ont)

Stephanie is a registered occupational therapist with good standing and registered with the College of Occupational Therapist of Ontario. She completed her Masters of Occupational Therapy at the University of Western Ontario in 2011. To follow her passion to enable children to reach their optimal potential, she has traveled abroad to gain more experience in working with children with various sensory and motor issues. She has also completed various courses/workshops to widen the breadth of tools she can use to support children and their families, (e.g. M.O.R.E, Blomberg Rhythmic Movement Training, Brain Gym 101, Therapeutic Listening, Handwriting Without Tears, Introduction to Neuro-Developmental Treatment, The SOS Approach to Feeding, Wilbarger Therapeutic Brushing Protocol, and more). She hopes to continue to motivate children and support parents to ensure children have the optimal learning environment to develop skills needed for daily living.

Vithurry Sivaloganathan MSc. OT, OT Reg. (Ont)

Vithurry  is a registered Occupational Therapist who received her Master’s of Science in Occupational Therapy from the University of Toronto. Vithurry also holds a Honours Bachelor in Health Sciences from the University of Ottawa.  She has experience working with children with a variety of diagnoses including: Autism Spectrum Disorder, Developmental Delay, Down syndrome, Attention Deficit Disorders, Learning Disability, Brain Injuries, and Sensory Processing Disorder. She has completed the Handwriting Without Tears (HWT) training in the Pre-K through Grade 5 curriculum. Vithurry is continuing to build her knowledge and expertise through ongoing education in the areas of mental health, sensory integration, and motor skills.

Gillian Chow MSc. OT, OT Reg. (Ont)

Gillian Chow is a registered Occupational Therapist who completed her Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. Through her work with Autism Ontario Kids Camp, Giant Steps Toronto, and The Possibilities Clinic, she has gained diverse experience working with young children with ASD, ADHD, and sensory issues in the home, clinic, and group settings. Additionally, she has worked with young children in an international setting during her final clinical placement in Hong Kong. Gillian is trained in the Handwriting Without Tears program (Pre-K through Grade 5 Writing curriculum and The Print Tool), is a certified facilitator of the Mindfulness Ambassador Program through Mindfulness Without Borders, and has received training in the areas of sensory tools and social improv. Gillian has an interest in children’s mental health and her passion for working with children and families motivates her to continue to seek out learning opportunities to add to her therapeutic skill set.

Alison Schwartz MSc. OT, OT Reg. (Ont)

Alison is a registered Occupational Therapist who received her Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy from the University of Toronto. Alison has experience working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, Down syndrome, and Developmental Delay. She had the opportunity to work with young children in an international setting during her clinical placement in Trinidad at a school for children with special needs.

Alison is passionate about dance and has many years of experience teaching dance to children of all ages. She is currently using her creativity and innovative approach to create a therapeutic dance program for children of all abilities.

Alison is eager to increase her knowledge and has completed a Pediatric Occupational Therapy Workshop, focusing on sensory integration, as well as an Introduction to the CO-OP Approach Workshop.

Danielle Brown MSc. OT Reg. (Ont)

Danielle Brown is a registered Occupational Therapist, with passion and expertise working with children of all ages. She received her Master’s of Science in Occupational Therapy from the University of Toronto. Danielle has diverse experience assessing and treating children with autism, attention deficit disorders, cerebral palsy, developmental delays, and sensory processing disorders.  She is trained in the Handwriting Without Tears curriculum (K-5), and is continuing to build expertise through ongoing professional development in sensory integration and paediatric mental health. Danielle strives to empower children and families to reach their greatest potential using creative, strengths-oriented and client-centred approaches.

Cassie Smith MSc. OT Reg. (Ont)

Cassie is a registered Occupational Therapist who has a passion for working in community paediatrics! She graduated from the University of Toronto with a Master of Science in Occupational Therapy, and also holds a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology from Simon Fraser University in BC.  Before pursuing Occupational Therapy, Cassie worked as a Behavioural Interventionist providing treatment to children with ASD and ADHD. Since then, she has gained experience working with children with a variety of diagnoses where she uses a strengths-based, client-centred approach to improve occupational performance and increase independence. Dedicated to professional development, Cassie has completed further training in the Handwriting Without Tears Certification for K-5 Curriculum and in the Cooperative Orientation to daily Occupational Performance (CO-OP) technique.

Megan Yang MSc. OT Reg. (Ont)

Megan is a registered Occupational Therapist who completed her Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy at the University of Toronto. Megan also holds a Honours Bachelor of Rehabilitation Sciences from Western University. Megan is passionate about working with children of all abilities and building on their strengths and interests. She has experience working with children on fine motor skills, reading, printing and cursive, gross motor skills and sensory processing. Megan has completed the Handwriting Without Tears (Pre-K through Grade 5 curriculum) training and is continuing to expand her knowledge through ongoing education.

Pam Jung MSc. OT Reg. (Ont.)

Pam Jung is a registered occupational therapist who received her Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy from the University of Toronto. She also holds a Bachelor of Human Kinetics from the University of British Columbia. Pam started her occupational therapy career in Calgary, Alberta, working with children in their school environment. Pam’s scope of practice includes providing assessment and treatment in the areas of fine motor skills, executive functioning, social skills, sensory processing and feeding. As an Assistive Devices Program (ADP) Individual Authorizer for communication aids, Pam also supports children in accessing augmentative and alternative communication as well as writing aids. Pam has completed training in Handwriting Without Tears (Kindergarten to 5thGrade), the Sequential Oral Sensory (SOS) Approach to Feeding, Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) Level 1 as well as several other pediatric courses.

Maggie Taggart MSc. OT Reg. (Ont.)

Maggie Taggart is a registered Occupational Therapist who has been supporting children, adolescents and young adults to engage in meaningful daily occupations for over 6 years. Maggie uses a family-centred approach to work with children with or at risk of developing developmental delays, attention deficit disorders, autism and physical disabilities. Maggie previously spent 5 years working as a school-based Occupational Therapist for an international school, with a focus on fine motor skills, sensory motor development as well as social and emotional regulation. Maggie has pursued continued professional development in areas including Handwriting Without Tears (HWT), Social Thinking, DIR Floortime as well as sensory processing and self-regulation training.

Our History

Hand Skills for Children was founded by Lizette Alexander and Paula Cappadocia in 2000. Both Occupational Therapists had been working in the community and identified the need for dedicated support services for children with writing and fine motor difficulties. Paula has since moved from Toronto with her family. Lizette continues to work with Hand Skills for Children and their friendship remains.

2011-2013 Lizette has had the privilege to work closely with Stacy Kramer OT Reg. (Ont).  Stacy held the position of Clinical Director and provided clinical training and support to all of our Occupational Therapists.  She was  originally trained in the US and she is certified in sensory integration and has received extensive training in the use of sensory processing as a framework when working with children. It is with Stacy’s support that Hand Skills for Children expanded their service to address sensory concerns.  Stacy returned to Florida to continue with her career as an Occupational Therapist, however, she has left a significant mark with her contribution to Hand Skills.

2009 to Present Hand Skills for Children continues to provide services addressing fine motor, printing, gross motor, and sensory processing skills.