ABC’s of OT: how to simulate KITCHEN TASKS when you don’t have access to a kitchen

I work in a relatively small building, which means our gym is relatively small. I’m definitely not complaining, but sometimes it can be challenging to simulate daily occupations when we have limited space. So we’ve learned to become resourceful when it comes to more complex IADL tasks.

Recently, we had some overhead cabinets and kitchen-level counter tops installed in our therapy gym. Which has been amazing at adding storage and opportunity. But we still don’t have things like a sink or an oven. So here’s what we’ve done:

We’ve always had a Keurig (which we now store on our fancy new counter top), but now we keep coffee mugs, K-cups, and sugars and creamers in the overhead cabinets to maximize functional reach. We have a few drawer units under the counter tops in which we store silverware and a few small pots and pans.

To wash dishes that we use, we grab a wash basin full of warm water.

Then to cook, we use a microwave to make simple meals like oatmeal, Easy Mac, and my personal favorite, Cookie in a Cup. And coming soon: a small hot plate to assist with the makings of grilled cheese, spaghetti sauce, and scrambled eggs.

It may not be much, but any one at any time can use what they have to create some amazing OT sessions. You have that power in you. All it takes is some classic activity analysis and a little creativity.

What are some ways that you have simulated ADL or IADL tasks with little to no resources?

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