Scooping ice cream is a fun activity that promotes ADL skills. In this activity, we combine finger strength with the development of cutting skills, as the child makes his own ice cream in a cone.
Use brown, yellow, or white construction paper. Draw a 1/4 of a circle with a six-inch radius, and ask the child to cut the shape out. If needed, make the line bolder to increase accuracy. If using white paper, you can let the child color/paint it in any color he wishes to.
Assist the child as needed to fold the 1/4 circle into a cone shape. Secure with tape.
Provide the child with tissue paper sheets that are at least 5″ x 7″ in size. Instruct the child to crumble each sheet into a ball (scoop), and place it in the container.
Have the child hold the ice cream scoop in his dominant hand and the cone in his other hand. Instruct the child to scoop the paper balls one at a time, using the ice cream scoop, and put it into the cone.
Using strips of construction paper in different colors, ask the child to tear small pieces to use as sprinkles. Promote pincer grasp by having the child pick up one piece at a time to sprinkle on his ice cream.
To grade the activity, use different ice cream scoops (i.e. with the thumb lever, spring-loaded handle, etc.) or other materials for ice cream, such as pom-poms or play-doh.