The Wall book

The Wall Model®

The Wall Model® is a framework and an approach to help occupational therapy students get to grips with the children they are encountering during their clinical placements.

Many students feel overwhelmed by the field of learning difficulties. During the undergraduate course they are exposed to various different aspects of the field: assessment, treatment and the children themselves. It can be likened to them having been given a whole pile of puzzle pieces with no picture on. They are able to fit some of them together because of their shape but the rest lie scattered in a confusing pile on the table. The Wall® book hopes to give the picture that will enable students to put their puzzle together.  The model has also become know as The Wall Model of Occupational Performance.

The History of The Wall Model®

The Wall emerged out of the numerous teacher workshops run by the author in the 1990's. It started one line at a time as she attempted to show teachers how the different modalities inter-related. The Wall grew from a schematic diagram following which the bricks were added. There have been some changes to The Wall along the way but the basic framework that it provides has remained constant.

The Wall Model is designed as a framework for clinical reasoning to establish the underlying causes of a child who is presenting difficulties.

The Wall Model was designed by Bunty McDougall to be customised for each child you see.  Each child will have different presenting concerns which are placed at the top of The Wall.  The foundations remain the same but the bricks may also be customised for each child.

Following assessment the results are highlighted on The Wall and arrows show how the foundations and bricks are impacting on the presenting difficulties you have recorded at the top of The Wall.

Other versions of The Wall are mere customisations of the original Wall; exactly what it was designed and intended to do.

The Wall History Bunty McDougall

The Wall Model® of Occupational Performance Book

The Wall Part 1 takes the occupational therapy student carefully and systematically through the process and approach they need to follow to assess a child and identify how the results of their assessments explain the child who is presenting difficulties.

There is a brief focus on treatment but this will be covered in depth in The Wall® Part 2.

Get your copy today

The Wall® (Part 1) eBook version, ISBN: 978-1-990966-22-4 is available to purchase with immediate download.


Hi Bunty. I picked up your book again this week and was browsing through it in preparation for a job shadowing student. You are amazing - it is so cleverly and logically put together and I can only imagine what an amazing resource it is for students let alone us therapists. Well done! I know it has been around for a few years but I thought I would share my admiration!

Celina Quintal-Steytler, Occupational Therapist, Cape Town

Bunty laid the foundations clearly and precisely in her book - Part I of The Wall!
The jump from student to practice can be a daunting one. We are expected to assess, plan and treat with confidence and scientific evidence. Bunty's Wall Model and book was an amazing tool for me as it is easy to read and understand and answered so many questions in the simplest way!
I continuously used her book throughout my Sensory Integration journey, both for clarity and referencing especially during my protocol- it really helped! Although I've now completed my SI, my learning journey has not finished... it has just begun! I can't wait for Part 2, I will definitely need it!
I would recommend this book to both students and qualified OT's. The Wall Model is an exceptional assessment and planning tool which both therapist and parent can understand.

Jassmine Anderson, Occupational Therapist (UDW)

I must say that as a final year student from University of Kwa-Zulu-Natal, learning from your material really has increasingly helped us to develop such necessary skills during our Paediatrics blocks, therefore, naturally, I opted to get the book to assist me with a lifetime of learning! And yes, will be saving up for Part 2 as well...
I deeply commend you for contributing so greatly to the repertoire of our profession.

Athishaya Bhikshu, Final Year Occupational Therapy Student (UKZN)

About The Author of The Wall Model®

Bunty McDougall, the sole originator and developer of The Wall, is an occupational therapist who has worked in the field of learning difficulties for over 30 years. She graduated from the University of Cape Town (UCT) and subsequently became qualified in Ayres Sensory Integration (ASI) and Neuro-developmental Therapy (NDT).

In her early years as an OT, she worked at the Red Cross Children's Hospital and Vista Nova School.  From there she moved to working in Private Practice, focusing on children with motor and learning difficulties.

At the end of 2010 she took a break from active individual treatment to focus on the development of further resources for fine motor and handwriting skills which are published under The Happy Handwriter® name. She continued to run classroom based fine motor groups across the spectrum of schools, including previously disadvantaged schools until they grew to the point where she focused on empowering others to do so.

Bunty is well known for her dynamic and practical parent and teacher workshops on various topics related to learning difficulties.

It was as a result of her teacher workshops that she began to develop The Wall Model.  She was a part-time lecturer at UCT for 20 years and has also lectured for the South African Institute for Sensory Integration treatment courses for occupational therapists, the Institute of Private Practitioners courses for pre-school teachers, and presented at international Sensory Integration and Neuro-developmental therapy congresses. She has worked on the development of pre-school programmes to facilitate school readiness skills and assist in limiting the need for specialist intervention.

In addition, Bunty has studied the Education of the Gifted Child through UNISA and has worked on the establishment of programmes for gifted and talented children in schools.

She is registered with the Health Professionals Council of South Africa (HPCSA); the Occupational Therapy Association of South Africa (OTASA); and the South African Institute of Sensory Integration (SAISI).

Bunty is married to Mike, has two children, and is from Cape Town.

The Happy Handwriter

The Happy Handwriter®, is a pre-handwriting and handwriting programme, for children aged 4 to 10 years. It helps its learners "the right way the first time!®"

The Wall Model® Trademarks