Acorn Stamper

Acorn Stamp

Draw an acorn on the construction paper (see images for example) or you can let the child trace an acorn stencil to promote fine motor control and visual-motor skills.

Let the child cut the acorn shape using scissors.

Using a piece of small sponge instruct the child to pinch it and dip it into the paint then stamp and paint the bottom part of the acorn cut out. You can also use q-tips or cotton balls to paint.

Encourage the child to fill in the entire bottom part of the acorn.

Have the child spread glue on the top part of the acorn.

Provide the child with a few dry leaves. Instruct the child to crumble the leaves inside the palm of his hand and then spread them on the glue. This will promote finger strength and finger translation.

You may also use beans to cover the top area of the acorn.

Bean Mosaic

On a sheet of construction paper, sketch a simple picture, or allow the child to draw a picture/shape.

Using the glue, instruct the child to trace the outline of the picture.

Once the picture is outlined with glue, ask the child to pick up one bean or button at a time, and glue it along the outline of the picture.

If you wish to promote translation skills (finger to palm and palm to finger), ask the child to pick up 2 or more beans, transferring them one at a time into the palm of their hand, then transfer them out, one at a time, to be glued on the outline.

Let the child continue pasting the reminder of the beans on the picture, putting the beans close to each other.

To grade the activity up, provide the child with tweezers to pick up the beans.

Use larger buttons or pom-poms to grade the activity down.

Beads for All

Provide the child with different size beads and encourage him to use only his thumb and index finger to pick up one bead at a time.

The child strings the beads using his dominant hand to manipulate the lace and his non-dominant hand to hold the bead.

You want to make sure the child does not stabilize his arms on the table or push his elbows into the sides of his body for stabilization.

Remember that stabilization should occur at the shoulders and make sure the elbows are a couple of inches away from the trunk.

Feed the Ball

Cut a 3-inch horizontal line across the tennis ball (so when you squeeze the ball, it looks like the tennis ball is opening a mouth). Put the coins (beans or beads can be used as well with older kids) on the table, in front of the child.

First, show the child how to squeeze the ball so it opens its mouth using only one hand (preferably the dominant hand). Then have the child pick up the coins, one coin at a time, using a pincer grasp and “feed” the ball by squeezing it with the other hand and opening its mouth.

To work on finger translation, ask the child to pick up 2-3 coins at one time and “feed” the tennis ball one coin at a time.

Mac and Shake

Poke a hole in the container’s lid.

The hole should provide enough resistance to make it challenging for the child to insert the macaroni inside.

Have the child insert large macaroni one at a time through the hole in lid into the container.

To work on finger translation, ask the child to collect two macaroni pieces at a time and store one in his/her palm while inserting the other into the container.

The child should use one hand to hold the container and the other one to insert the items.

Children enjoy listening to the sound the container makes when they shake it.

This activity can be done using other items such as coins, beans, or smaller macaroni.