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The Interconnected Nature of Trauma and Sensory Processing

Webinar Length (Hours):



Alexi Christensen, MA, OTR/L, and Marlee Olson, MA, OTR/L


The Interconnected Nature of Trauma and Sensory Processing

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) can negatively impact caregiver attachment, neurodevelopment, emotion regulation, and stress responses. In this 3-hour webinar, the trainers provide strategies on trauma-informed care related to sensory processing and modulation. Current best practices are discussed to support children on your caseload who have experienced ACEs. Participants will learn how sensory processing and sensory systems influence emotional regulation and are directly linked to trauma responses.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Identify the eight sensory systems and how they influence perception in a variety of environments.
  2. List the connection between sensory processing, emotions, and trauma.
  3. State how ACEs directly impact attachment, neurodevelopment, emotional regulation, and stress response.
  4. Identify the three pillars of trauma-informed care and how these principles can influence treatment as an occupational therapist.
  5. List three treatment intervention strategies occupational therapists can implement to improve sensory processing abilities in children with a history of ACEs.

Course Information

Continuing Education Units (CEUs)

AOTA-Approved Provider Program

Sensational Brain LLC is an AOTA Approved Provider of professional development (#8215). Course approval ID# 08087. This distance learning, independent format is offered at 0.1 CEUs, Introductory Level, OT Delivery Service. The assignment of AOTA CEUs does not imply endorsement of specific course content, products, or clinical procedures by AOTA or indicate AOTA approval of a certification or other professional recognition.

Sensational Brain speakers Alexi Christensen and Marlee Olson

Alexi Christensen, MA, OTR/L, and Marlee Olson, MA, OTR/L, met in graduate school at St. Catherine University, Minnesota, while pursuing their masters degrees in occupational therapy. They noticed they were passionate about working with children using a family-centered, holistic approach. Both MOTs have clinical experiences that span ages and environments, including public and charter schools, mental health facilities, autism clinics, outpatient services, teletherapy, inpatient hospitals, and acute care settings.

In November 2020, the duo combined their desires to help people in the community with their sensory processing and environmental modification expertise and started SENSE-ational Spaces. They use their occupational therapy lens to support parents, community organizations, and schools to foster development through education and creating sensory-friendly spaces. Their Minnesota business now extends to clients internationally.

Alexi and Marlee have presented nationally at various symposiums and conferences educating on environmental modification, sensory processing, and trauma-informed care, including ArizOTA, Minnesota School-based OT/PT Institute Symposium, Selective Mutism H.E.L.P. Summit, and other U.S. organizations and universities.


  • Financial: Alexi Christensen and Marlee Olson receive speaker fees from Sensational Brain. They are co-owners of SENSE-ational Spaces.
  • Nonfinancial: No relevant nonfinancial relationship exists.

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