Feed Me

In this activity, imagination and creativity are key components.

Begin by drawing the face of a child, a character (clown, robot, princess, etc.), or an animal that the child likes on the shoe box’s cover. Then, cut out the mouth of your figure so that it looks like the figure is opening its mouth. Make sure the opening is big enough so that the child is able to place the small objects through the opening.

Place the cotton balls (see additional ideas for objects below) on the table in front of the child or in a shallow bowl.

Give the tongs to the child and instruct her to hold it with her thumb, pointer, and middle fingers only, while tucking the pinkie and ring fingers into the palm of her hand. Then, ask the child to use the tongs to pick up one object at a time and feed the figure by placing the object into the figure’s open mouth.

This is where creativity comes into play as you can use the child’s imagination to decide what kind of food the cotton balls represent.

If you chose to draw an animal, you can have the cotton balls be the type of food this specific animal eats (i.e. monkey = bananas, dog = bones, bunny = carrots, etc.)

Based on the child’s developmental skills, you can have her draw the figure (can be a very simple figure) and cut the mouth opening independently.

Additional ideas for small objects (depending on the child’s age and abilities): pasta, beads (large and small), beans, cotton swabs, marbles, and Lego

Clothespins Butterfly

ClothespinsButterfly-front

Body Shape

Take one of your clothespins and paint it with colors. This will be the butterfly body.

Wings

To make the wings, take some colored construction paper and fold it in half.

Draw a pair of wings on the folded side of the paper, and cut around them using the scissors.

Unfold the wings and you will have two sets that are exactly the same.

Draw colorful lines and patterns over the wings.

Assemble Everything Together

Pinch open the clothes peg and glue the wings onto the top prong.

It is best to clip the clothes peg onto something so that it doesn’t get glued shut.

Decorate the body of the butterfly with your buttons and beads, and stick the googly eyes onto the top of the peg.

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.

Balance on the Web

Using the masking tape, create a large spider web shape on the floor or carpet. Place the container in the center of the web.

Place different objects to be picked up inside the spider web. Ping-pong balls and bean bags work well for this purpose.

Ask the child to walk and stay on the web lines while picking up all the objects along the way and putting the objects in the container. As the child picks up the object, encourage him to squat down, reach for the object while staying on the line, pick up the object, and return to a standing position.

For grading, ask the child to throw the objects into the container and use a point system where the child gets a point for scoring and loses a point if he falls off the spider web line.

You can also work on pincer grasp by using small objects, such as plastic bugs, and have the child use tongs or tweezers to pick up the items.

Fun Jar

Use a large, empty, and clean jar for this activity.

Provide the child with pipe cleaners and/or straws and instruct him to insert the items through the holes on the jar’s lid.

You can ask the child to sort the items by color or size before placing them in the jar.

If using a jar that has holes and a small opening on the lid, you can use additional items to place through the opening, such as pom-poms, buttons, large beads, coins, etc.

The child can use tongs or tweezers to catch the items before dropping them through the large opening.

If you cannot find a spice jar, you can use a regular container and poke holes in the lid, using a hole-puncher or cut holes with scissors.

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.

Strengthening Clothespins

For this activity, you will need colored clothespins in 4 different colors or if you have wooden clothespins you can color them or mark them with 4 colors.

The colors should match the color of the construction paper.

Cover the containers with construction paper. Let the child choose a color and then roll the dice.

The child is then asked to place the clothespins on the edge of the matching colored container.

If the dice rolled 1, have the child place 1 clothespin on the edge of the container. If the dice rolled 2, use 2 clothespins. Etc.

This activity can also be done in a group as part of a game where each child has 1 container and is playing to get as many clothespins on his container in an allotted time.

Sorting Buttons

For this activity, you will need a number of small containers, depending on the sorting criteria you chose, and an assortment of buttons (i.e. size, color, number of holes on the button).

Place the buttons on a plate or in a larger container. place the small containers in front of the child as well. Allow the child to sort the buttons by size, color, number of holes, etc.

As the child picks up each button, encourage him to use his thumb and pointer fingers to help with developing pincer grasp.

To work on thumb opposition, ask the child to pick up each button with his thumb and middle finger, thumb and ring finger or thumb, and pinkie.