Music teacher Kathleen Rooney moves her practice for children with developmental disabilities to Kildare House on Chapel St.

Hundreds of children in the Sandy Hill area know Kathleen Rooney as the “Music Teacher” from Bettye Hyde Cooperative Nursery School. Kathleen has made her home and career as an entrepreneur in the Sandy Hill area since 1994. Educator, therapist, parent coach, educational consultant and musician are just some of the many hats Kathleen wears.

Photos by: John Cockburn

Over the past 20 years, she has provided many thousands of hours of one-on-one private educational experiences for children with developmental disabilities and their parents and has presented workshops to hundreds of parents and teachers in preschools, the OCDSB and the OCSB on the topics of sensory integration, classroom body breaks, fine motor skills, and understanding/advocating for children with developmental disabilities and autism spectrum disorder.

At Bettye Hyde, Kathleen developed a Music and Sensory Circle which provides an opportunity for young children to practice language and listening, social, gross and fine motor skills, as well as work on individual sensory processing issues in a fun, motivating and stimulating circle time.

Kathleen has run Private Therapeutic Education sessions out of various studios, first at 400 Stewart Street, then at All Saints Church. Beginning in April she will now be working from the beautiful Kildare House located at 323 Chapel Street.

As Kathleen’s students have grown, she has been developing programs to suit the needs of teenagers and young adults with disabilities. Her Family Contribution/ Family Pride program teaches the life skills needed for disabled youth to become contributing members of their families and which can lead to life-long work skills in the community.

Kathleen Rooney

Some of the many services Kathleen provides are:

Private Therapeutic Education Sessions, with a focus on sensory processing issues

In-home Sensory/Motor Consultations

In-home Family Contribution Consultations

In addition, Kathleen is running the following programs:

Spring Music and Dancing in Strathcona Park

Crash Course in Guitar via Children’s Songs, 6 sessions

Upcoming teacher and parent workshops:

Classroom Body Breaks for Everyone

Building a Structure for Fine Motor Development

Family Contribution/Family Pride

Helping Children Cope in a Large Group Setting

For more information about any of the above services and workshops please visit Kathleen’s website: