Last year we brought you the widely popular top ten gifts for occupational therapy practitioners and students post. This year, we went back to that list and found the most popular gifts and added quite a few new gifts to bring you the 2012 Top Five Gifts for OT!

Gift 1: APPS, APPS, and MORE APPS
Ok, apps are huge right now. In addition to being the most popular on the 2011 gift list, throughout 2012 the most popular posts on this blog have been about apps. If you want to give an amazing gift to the OT in your life, buy them a gift card to the Google Play Store (if they have an Android phone or tablet) or an iTunes gift card (if they have an iPhone or iPad). When they open their present, send them to AOTA’s new-in-2012 Apps Database with hundreds of apps for OT separated by practice areas. You will have one happy OT on your hands.

Gift 2: The Gift of Not-Worrying-About-Finishing-Their-2012-CE-Requirements
AOTA just launched the brand new AOTA Learn, which is our professional learning portal that gives you instant access to continuing education (CE) online! If the OT in your life still has a few more CE hours to finish before year’s end, they need not worry. This is the one-stop shop to get CE products from AOTA instantly (even on the iPad or tablet) and a certificate is immediately available after passing the exam and completing a survey. Browse AOTA’s store for CE products or, even better, buy your OT a gift certificate to the AOTA store and they can pick their own CE product.

Gift 3: The Gift of a Movie Night
Prefer to give your OT some R&R time for the holidays? Check out one of these movies that we think occupational therapy practitioners and students would love!

  • Weight of the Nation: This important HBO documentary addresses the issue of obesity in the U.S. and launches a far-reaching public health campaign on the epidemic.
  • Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close: Starring big names Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock, this film tells the story of a child ‘somewhere on the autism spectrum’ who tries to make sense of a post-9/11 world after losing his father who was in one of the twin towers.
  • Hell and Back Again: A story close to every occupational therapy practitioner and student, this film explores the difficulties our service members have when they return home from combat and have to reintegrate into their communities.
  • 127 Hours: We are really excited to announce that Aron Ralston, the man whose story inspired this movie, is the keynote speaker at AOTA’s Annual Conference & Expo (see Gift 5!). Prepare your OT for his keynote address on how occupational therapy helped his recovery by watching the movie.

Gift 4: Occupational Therapy Swag
I’m sure you know the question. In fact, at some point, you probably asked it yourself. Every OT practitioner and student has been asked, “what is occupational therapy?” Help the OT in your life answer that question with ease by buying a 25-pack of AOTA’s What Is OT Brochure. This new brochure, developed in 2012, answers the six Q’s about OT—who, what, where, when, why, and how. With those brochures in hand, your OT will always be prepared to answer questions! You can also buy an OT car magnet, and perhaps your OT will get the “What is OT?” question in the grocery store parking lot. (You can show your support too, and put a magnet on your car as well – hint: you also may want a few of those brochures on hand!)

Gift 5: The Two OT Gifts That Keeps Giving (And Giving)
The ultimate gifts for your OT? (1) Renewing their American Occupational Therapy Association membership (or, if they aren’t members yet, signing them up!). This gift will show the OT in your life that not only do you want them to grow and develop professionally, but also that you support their profession and want to see it flourish! (2) Registering them for AOTA’s Annual Conference & Expo in San Diego on April 25 to 28. Registration just opened, and your OT can be one of the first to register for the ultimate OT event of the year. This gift keeps giving because the professional development, networking, and excitement will propel them through 2013 and beyond!

Want a few more ideas? Check out our 2011 Top Ten Gifts for Occupational Therapy Practitioners here.

Which of these gifts is top on your list? Tell us in the comments.

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