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Psychological services for internationally adopted children
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Q: What should I tell my child to prepare him/her for psychological assessment?

A: Children sometimes think that visits to a doctor will involve shots. It is important to reassure your child that no shots or painful procedures will be involved in the visit to the psychologist. For school age children, it is appropriate to describe testing as being like in school. You can tell your child that he/she will be doing many different activities. Some activities involve listening and talking, while other activities involve looking at pictures, building things, and drawing. Parents are not typically allowed to be present during testing. Let your child know that you will be close by while he/she works with the psychologist. Reassure your child that she/he can have breaks to use the bathroom and to eat lunch. For preschool children, you can describe psychological assessment as playing games involving listening, talking, and remembering. Let the child know that the psychologist will have toys like blocks and puzzles that he/she will get to use. Your preschool child may wish to bring a toy along to the appointment. Try to choose an object that will not be too distracting for the child (e.g. a small stuffed animal as opposed to an action figure or toy with many small parts). You can help your child get ready for the assessment by making sure that he/she gets a good night sleep prior to testing. Make sure that your child has eaten so that he/she will not be hungry during testing. Make the assessment day a special day for your child by leaving brothers and/or sisters at home.



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Last update on May 8, 2018