Sunday, April 18, 2010

Toddler Activity - Finger Grasping

I can't take credit for this activity, one of our OT's does this during our gym play group, but the boys LOVE it and it's so easy.

Go to the grocery store and take two 1 quart soup containers (preferably clear or translucent plastic) from the soup display counter and matching plastic lids. Cut a star (*) into the center of the lid making sure to cue off any sharp corners. Pull out the play puff balls from your arts & crafts kit, or any short wooden dowels or even crayons, poker chips or bingo chips. Place one or two on top and show them kids how to poke the item (puff ball, wooden dowel, bingo chip) into the container through the star you cut on the lid. The different sized and different textured items you can find the better as this will encourage the different kinds of finger grasps needed to play. You can do several different sized containers and you can do sorting by size, shape and color. Set them down at the table before dinner to keep them busy for 5 to 10minutes while you get things ready. If your kids are more advanced you can buy smaller toys and even a bag of googly eyes to use as the item to stuff in the containers.

Here's some pics of the set I made, I'm still looking for bingo chips but can't find a store that sells them.

Please feel free to pass the idea on. And share your ideas, I'd love to hear them!


Trish said...

Robbie still has trouble isolating his fingers, so his oT has us putting small things (cheerios, puffs, whatever) into an ice cube tray. That way he had to dig them out with his fingers.

jwg said...

1. Try poker chips. The dollar store near me has them.
2. It's hard to avoid the sharp edges this way. You can also cut different sized holes and slits and put cloth tape or masking tape over the edges.
3. When they are a little older mix up a batch of home-made silly putty and put it in a container. Bury things like little plastic animals in it and let them hunt for them.