At Cheshire Fitness Zone (CFZ), our goal is to help children and adolescents of all ages feel confident in growing their abilities through therapeutic programs that strengthen and teach new skills for use in everyday life.
Our monthly “Employee Spotlight Series” offers a chance to meet members of the team and learn about their experience working with children.
Meet Lia Pankake, SLP
Can you describe a typical day at Cheshire Fitness Zone?
A typical day working at Cheshire Fitness Zone is both fun and challenging. You never really know what to expect and you have to think on your feet based on how the day goes.
How did you know you wanted to work with kids?
I have pretty much always known I wanted to work with kids. I had younger siblings growing up and I have always enjoyed playing and having fun.
What is your favorite part about your job?
My favorite part about my job is helping kids to learn to communicate in various ways; whether the kid is verbal or nonverbal, I just like the challenge of figuring out how to make commination better for them.
What are three words to describe you and why?
The first word I would use to describe myself is personable. I really value the relationship I have with the clients and their families and I think that that helps them achieve their therapy goals. The second word would be observant. I think I am good at reading the behaviors of kids and changing up the session based on how engaged or not they are. The third word to describe me would be dedicated. I am pretty much always thinking about my clients, even when I am not in the clinic. When I go shopping and I see a toy or a game. I am always thinking about how I can use it to address a goal.
What is something you wish to achieve over the next ten years?
Over the next ten years, I would really like to educate myself more on inclusion and how more kids with significant needs can be included in the classroom and involved in the same activities as their peers. I hope to use my background in speech and language to help do that. I also have a three-year-old son with Down Syndrome, so I do think about it often and I think I could provide some insight to it.