Make a Puzzle

Hand the child a xeroxed page of a holiday design (with multiple items to color) or draw a picture on the paper/construction paper.

Use the ruler to draw horizontal and vertical lines for the child to cut (number of pieces depends on the child’s age and skills).

You can also draw curved or wiggly lines depending on your child’s cutting abilities.

Have the child follow directions based on skill level.

Start with simple directions and progress to harder instructions if appropriate.

Once all items are colored, have the child cut across the lines.

Once cut, the child should reassemble the puzzle.

Place the pieces in a ziplock bag to take home if desired.

Stereognosis Shape Finder

Shape Finder

Setup the Game

This activity is a game that you can play with the child, or have two children play together.

For this activity, you will need to use a shoebox with a lid.

Using scissors, cut open a circle on the side of the shoe box.

Make sure the hole you cut is wide enough for a child to put a hand through easily.

Insert different shaped blocks (i.e. triangle, circle, square, etc.) into the box, and tape down the lid to close the box.

Cut the construction paper to 8-10 squares, and draw shapes on them. The shapes should match the shapes of the blocks you put in the box. If you don’t have construction paper available, you can use any white piece of paper.

How To Play the Game

To play the game, pile the cards and place them in front of the child, facing down.

Let the child go first and flip a card. Then, instruct the child to put his hand in the box and find the block that has the shape that is shown on the card.

If the child pulls out the right block shape, he can keep the block and have another turn. If he pulls out a different shape, it’s your turn.

Grading

To grade the activity you can use a timer or a sand clock and have the child find the matching block shape in the allotted time.

Hand Strengthening Artwork

Instruct the child to turn the cup upside down and dip the rim into the paint. Fingers should spread across the bottom of the cup for a firm grasp.

Place the paint covered rim firmly on the paper to make the ring. Repeat desired amount of times with each color chosen. The cup should be re-dipped for each new ring.

Be sure to instruct the child to keep the cups on the designated color plate so the colors do not run and blend. (E.g. blue cup with blue paint, red with red, etc.)

Benefits of this activity:

1. Holding the cup with the fingers all spread apart strengthen the thumb muscles and deep muscles in the hand that play a key role in the dexterity required for moving a pencil for writing and drawing.
2. A motor sequence occurs as the child dips, places the cup on the paper and repeats this.
3. Eye-hand motor coordination occurs as the child plans where to place the cup. The dramatic colors draw the child’s eyes to the paper.
4. Matching colors-correct plate for the paint covered cup
5. Planning a design may occur.

Note: For children with tactile sensitivities, be sure to have a towel or source for washing hands nearby.

Easter Eggs Match

Cut the construction paper or regular piece of white paper into 6 or more rectangles/cards.

On each card, draw an oval (egg shape) with a line in the middle, to represent the top part of the egg and the bottom part.

Using crayons and marker that match the color of the Easter eggs you are using, color the eggs on the cards, using one color at the top part and a different color at the bottom part.

Present the cards and the “cracked” easter eggs to the child and instruct the child to put the eggs together by matching the colors as shown on the cards.

If using an egg carton, you can ask the child to arrange the matched eggs in the same order the cards are laid on the table.

Hang Up a Pattern

Hang Up a Pattern

On an index card or a piece of paper, draw a pattern of colors, letters, or numbers (you can also mix the symbols).

Draw the matching symbols on the bottom part of the clothespins.

Place the index card and the clothespins in front of the child. Ask the child to hold the top part of the hanger with his non-dominant hand.

Review the pattern with the child first, then ask the child to use the dominant hand to find the clothespin that has the first symbol in the raw.

Instruct the child to place the clothespin he found on the hanger, reinforcing him to use pincer grasp to open the clothespin, and crossing his mid-line by placing the clothespin on the opposite side of the hanger (i.e. if the child is right hand dominant, he will start placing the clothespins on the left side of the hanger).

Have the child continue following the pattern, placing all the matching clothespins on the hanger.

Tactile Cards

Preparation for activity: creating the tactile cards

    • Step 1 – Create the tactile cards by writing letters or sight words on each card.
    • Step 2 – Create a matching set of cards
    • Step 3 – Go over each letter or word with puffy paint or glitter glue. Let dry overnight. This creates raised letters on the cards.

You can have the child help you with the preparation part by either writing the letters/words or by tracing them (after you write them)with the puffy paint or glitter glue.

Activity:

    • Step 1 – Mix up the cards and place them face down on the table so that the child can not see the letters.
    • Step 2 – Each player takes a turn by turning over two cards attempting to match the letters or words.
    • Step 3 – If the player matches a letter or a word, the player should trace over the raised letter or word using his finger while saying the letter or word aloud.
      If the player is unable to find a match, it is the next player’s turn.
    • Step 4 – Continue play until all the matches are found.

Modifications:

    • Play on carpeted area and instruct the child to play while on all fours instead of sitting at a table. This position provides proprioceptive input.
    • Place a card on the table with the letter or word facing up. Place a piece of paper over the card. The child can then rub the crayon over the letter or word to reveal what letter/word it is.

Spelling Push Ups

Use the construction paper, the pen and the scissors to cut out letters of the alpha-bet. You will need more than 1 of each letter. You can also use pre-cut letters.

Spread the letters on the floor or a mat in a random order. Help the child lay prone on the therapy ball. The child should be able to touch the floor. Instruct the child to use his hands and reach out to grab one letter at a time, then to walk back and place the letter in front of them. After the child gets all the letters he needed, he can spell the word.

You can also use magnetic letters and a magnetic board, or use math equations where the child has to walk out and grab the correct answer.

Lunch Box

Let the child pick a color of construction paper (paper size should be A4).

Draw a line in the middle of the construction paper and ask the child to fold the paper accurately on the line. This works on his fine manual control skills.

On a separate construction paper, draw 2 handle shapes and ask the child to cut it along the lines. These handle shapes will be used as the lunch box handles.

Ask the child to glue the handles to the top ends of the folded paper (the child should be able to open/close the folded paper as a lunch bag).

Have the child draw what they had or brought for lunch on the inside of the folded construction paper or have the child cut and glue pictures of food items from newspapers/magazines.

Allow the child to decorate the outside “lunch box” using the crayons, markers, and colored pencils.

Shape and Grasp

Draw a simple shape (e.g. house, boat, tree) using the markers on the paper.

Ask the child to lay prone on the floor resting on his elbows.

Ask the child to use the tweezers to pick up the beads or pom-poms and place them on the shape you drew on the paper.

Tic Tac Write

Make a tic-tac-toe board using the markers, crayons, or pen.

Let the child choose a letter (focus on the letters that are difficult for the child to form).

Play the tic-tac-toe game, taking turns, writing the letters the child chose and making sure the child forms the letters correctly and places them inside the lines you drew.

For grading, make the tic-tac-toe board boxes in smaller or bigger size.