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About Tishanne

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  1. I have not tried ceramics, but one of my ladies does buy ceramic figurines and paints them in her room. She loves it! The men who volunteer are ministers at local churches. I have typed out the "rules" for them to explain the the resident men and am sending it to them a week prior so they can go over them. (We are all learning how to do this together.) The ministers are getting two for one: while they visit residents, they can be a part of the men's activity too! I find it difficult to get volunteers on a regular weekly basis, but when I do something that's a one-time thing, they are more likely to show up. Find out where some of your residents are members at...churches, clubs, etc. If they know your residents personally, the volunteers may be more inclined to assist. When they come in for one activity and see how positive it is, they may come back for more! Always ask them for ideas -- especially ministers who probably go to lots of long term care facilities. They may get other calendars and/or newsletters and be able to give you some great ideas. Good luck! Tishanne
  2. Unless you have a contract for scheduled performances, I would just not call them anymore. If they call the AD wanting to come back, they would open the door for a confrontation. If you belong to a chapter of Activity Directors, maybe you can bring the issue up at your next meeting and see if others have had the same problem. Perhaps your chapter president can speak to the "entertainer" on behalf of the whole chapter rather than one...it may give the allegations and concerns more muscle if more people were experiencing the same thing. In our small town, a bad "professional" is rumor-whipped without ever being faced by their "victims." Good luck, Tishanne
  3. Your September activities sound great! I have talked to our Therapy Department about doing something with the residents to celebrate National Rehab Week (21-26). They decided to host an extra Bingo game on the 26th. We are looking for some rehab-type prizes (stress balls, etc.) and they are going to have some extra bonus prizes for those who can answer some rehab trivia questions between Bingo rounds. We are also having a "Fantasy Football Draft Day" for our men's activity. Each male resident will choose three NFL teams to "own" for the season. We will add up game scores at the end of each week and the resident whose team has the highest cumulative score (regardless of win or loss) wins a prize for the week. I have two local men who are going to explain the game to the men. We will serve ice cream and watch football bloopers after the draft picks. Grandparents Day will be celebrated with a Cookie Social that afternoon. Your residents will really enjoy their outing! We go out several times a month. I have the residents sign up for each outing to decide who gets to go. Our van is limited for wheelchairs (non-transfers), so it is always "first come, first serve." Everyone is good with this set up. Have a great September! Tishanne
  4. Usually you need to complete the Activity Director's course for certification. Depending what state you live in, there may be more to it than that. In Texas, we get our certification, then have to keep up 8 hours CEUs annually to keep our certification. I know there are some states/areas that require more from Activity Directors, but you need to contact another Activity Director in your state/city to find out what those requirements are. Also, the nearest college may be able to tell you when the next classes are available. If you find a facility that will hire you without certification and tell them that you want to become certified, some administrators will fund your tuition and let you work too! Good luck, sounds like you can offer a lot of entertainment to some lucky residents.
  5. I swap working weekends with my assistant. We try to use this time for our shopping trips since there are not usually any doctors' appointments and the van is freed up to use. Of course, if you are not there to take residents out, then it's time to incorporate some volunteer workers to come help out. They can have a mini-Bingo game, put on a movie or music, pop popcorn, hold a small group discussion, lead an exercise group, etc. The resident volunteers could take a leadership challenge and do some of these things as well. They just need you to organize whatever activity they will be in charge of and some general instructions.
  6. Doctor's Day is coming up at the end of March. We are planning on having the residents host the doctors for a brunch after their monthly, morning meeting. Any suggestions for gifts and/or foods to serve and give away? We don't want to be cheesy, but want them to remember our facility did something nice for them. Thanks for sharing anything you can! Tishanne (Texas)
  7. :-? I am the Activity Director for a health care facility that has been in a small town for almost 40 years. For most of those years we were the ONLY nursing home. Now there is another one and Corporate wants us to step up marketing to our small community (less than 5,000). Most of the townspeople had their parents, grandparents, etc. here and are well aware of our facility. I am now part of the "marketing team" and would like some ideas for use in our town (and some small surrounding towns.) At present, I have invited the Senior Citizens for a Bingo Bonanza (next Thursday), met with area preachers, left colored newsletters in area businesses/hospitals/clinics, and visit hospital patients. The local Senior Citizens business was very negative about me calling their Bingo, but have accepted Bingo prizes and Birthday gifts from our facility. Next year, we want to hold a city-wide "health fair" with free flu shots, games, pet therapy demonstrations, etc. We are not prepared for that big of a show yet, but look forward to getting it organized for next year. Thank you in advance for any advice!
  8. Tishanne

    New Position

    Congratulation, Jennifer! I am in Texas and am not familiar with Arkansas regs, so you really need to talk to your Administrator and get the specific information from her/him. You didn't say if you are certified, just no prior experience. You can call your community college and ask if they offer an Activity Director's course there. This class will help give you ideas of things to do with your residents and you will be surrounded by like-minded people as well as an experienced Activity Director (hopefully!) Just starting out...be open to ideas and suggestions by staff and residents. Look at past activity calendars by previous AD's. Ask your Resident Council President about some of the things they have really shown an interest in and pursue some of those -- that will at least get you in their good graces from the get-go! :-) Ask to see previous Resident Council minutes from meetings (either from your Administrator or Ombudsman.) Get to know your Ombudsman and get a feel of what he/she feels the residents particular needs are at your assisted living facility. Get to know some of the families and make all care plan meetings where you can get a better feel of the residents individually. Read care plan notes written from AD's of the past as you attend the meetings. You will do a great job...have fun!! Tishanne
  9. One of the newest games at our facility is called "Domino Bingo." I am sure it is not "new" to everyone, but it is for us. Set up card tables and try to have four residents per table (if one or two only have three players, it can work, too.) Each table gets a set of dominoes. The caller (you) has her/his own set at a different place to the side. Everyone (including caller) shuffles dominoes and each player gets seven dominoes. It seems easier to just lay down the dominoes in front of the players so that more cognitive residents at the table can assist the others (instead of set up as in dominoes or 42.) The caller pulls one domino and calls it out (i.e. "double six".) Whoever has that domino among the players (each table will have one) throws that domino to the middle of the table. The caller continues to call dominoes until a player is out of dominoes and yells "BINGO!" We give quarters to winners - a quarter per win. For the tables of three, the extra seven dominoes are just pushed to the side. If you are short sets of dominoes, wal-mart has them for about $4 per set, or you could ask the residents, families, and/or volunteers if they have any that you could borrow for the game. My residents really like this one since so many enjoy straight dominoes, 42 or 88 and recognize the called dominoes easily. It is also a good way to have them mingle with one another. Explain the game and its objective to some of those residents who can help the others earlier in the day, so that they can be sure to attend since they now have a "job"! Good luck! ...Tishanne :-D
  10. I find that our residents are the best PR that I have for the morning exercise! They talk over dominoes and meals about how they have read in one magazine or another about the "best way to fight arthritis" (or whatever ailment of the day...) is to keep moving and exercise. They talk amongst themselves and bring their friends with them to the program! I like the idea of themed exercise programs and using tools but our best exercise time is the one that is routine and they are all familiar with how it goes (following a taped recording.) We have another tape that we call "Advanced Exercise" where we use cut PVC pipe about 30 inches long to stretch overhead and side to side. The residents seem to enjoy following along a tape rather than me making up routines to music. The whole thing only lasts 15 minutes, which is also a plus!
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