Occupational Therapy Team

Janine Petito OTR/L

Janine Petito is the Director of Occupational Therapy at Watch Me Shine SLP. She attended Seton Hall University, where she received her BA in Social and Behavioral Science with a minor in Psychology and her Master’s degree in Occupational Therapy. She has over 7 years of experience in pediatrics, working with children from birth through 17 years old. She is experienced working in a school setting, sensory gym and the home environment. She has continued education in Autism Spectrum Disorder, sensory integration, anxiety and reflex integration. She is proficient in programs such as Orten Gillingham, Handwriting Without Tears, and Size Matters. Janine creates treatment plans which include sensory processing, fine motor skills, motor coordination activities and visual motor integration for a holistic, individualized approach for each child.

MariaElena DiStefano OTR/L

MariaElena is an Occupational Therapist at Watch Me Shine. She received her Master’s Degree in Occupational Therapy from Sacred Heart University. Her graduate school clinical experiences included pediatric populations in early childhood and preschool settings, as well as adults in an outpatient hospital setting. Since graduating from Sacred Heart University, MariaElena has been working for the New York City Board of Education. She has been servicing early childhood, preschool, and school-age children in both school and outpatient settings. MariaElena has experience working with children with a variety of diagnoses including, but not limited to: ASD, ADHD, sensory processing delays, Down Syndrome, emotional and behavioral challenges, and learning difficulties. She is passionate about providing child-centered intervention that includes play-based activities in naturalistic settings to increase engagement and generalization of skills.

Rachel Drabczyk OTR/L

Rachel received a Masters in Occupational Therapy from Touro University in 2022. Rachel has been working for the New York City Department of Education since 2023. In her role, Rachel has had the privilege of working with early childhood, preschool, and elementary-aged children in both school and outpatient settings. With over two years of experience in pediatrics, she has developed a deep understanding of the diverse needs of children with various diagnoses, including developmental delays, ASD, ADHD, Dyslexia, Sensory Processing Disorder, and more. Rachel is passionate about making a difference in the lives of children and their families. She believes in a collaborative approach, working closely with other professionals and families to provide the most comprehensive and individualized care possible. Rachel takes pride in creating therapy sessions that are engaging, effective, and tailored to each child’s unique strengths and challenges.

 Jennifer Palase OTR/L

Jennifer Palase received a Masters in Occupational Therapy from Baypath University in 2018. Jennifer has been working for the New York City Department of Education since 2022. She has worked with early intervention, preschool, and school aged children in both preschool and elementary school settings. Jennifer has experience working with various diagnoses, such as Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADD, ADHD, Down Syndrome, Sensory Processing Disorder, Global developmental delay, and emotional and behavioral limitations.


This ensures that the entire script block is properly closed, avoiding any potential issues due to unclosed function scopes.