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Dr. Anne Zachry

occupational therapist & child development specialist

Fun DIY lacing cards for fine motor skills!

These DIY lacing cards are a fun way for a child to work on fine motors skills, bilateral integration (using two hands together), and motor planning! Making them in a variety of shapes and colors will help a child learn to distinguish the differences. You can also use a sharpie to write letters or numbers next to each lacing hole to work on letter and number recognition. Use your imagination to come up with other fun variations!

ITEMS NEEDED:

Scissors, single-hole punch, Colorations Foam Door Hangers, shoe laces, string, or ribbon

INSTRUCTIONS:

Use this shape sheet as a pattern. (The sizes may need to be adjusted.) Trace each shape onto a different piece of foam, and use the scissors to cut them out, and use the hole punch to punch out the lacing holes. (Save the scraps of foam to use with another DIY project that I will be posting about soon.) 

If you are using string or ribbon, wrap a piece of tape around each end. Now it’s time to start lacing! 

Gravitational Insecurity

Children who present with sensory issues can be classified as having sensory defensiveness, registration problems, modulation issues, and sensory integration problems. One type of sensory defensiveness is called gravitational insecurity. A child with gravitational insecurity typically responds to movement activities with exaggerated emotional responses. This is because their vestibular system is not functioning properly.

Gravitationally insecure children prefer to stay low to the ground. You will typically find them lying down or seated, trying to prevent any possibility of movement. Children with this type of defensiveness avoid most active physical tasks and may get upset when movement is required of them. To get a gravitationally insecure child moving, it may be helpful to physically guide them during play activities such as climbing, sliding and swinging. I’ve gone down a slide with a child in my lap, and sometimes, this provides that extra security needed to tolerate the vestibular input. Also, role-playing can also be beneficial, tell your child, “watch me to this, or do it just it the way I do,” then provide demonstration. Always introduce new movement activities gradually and in small doses, and ALWAYS stop if your child appears to be frightened or overstimulated. If your child has extreme responses to movement activities, I would recommend that you look into occupational or physical therapy services.

Photo Credit: imagerymajestic@freeDigialPhotos.net

             

Fun Fine Motor Tong Activity!

Kids love this fun fine motor tong activity! The great thing about this activity is that it helps develop those fine motor skills that are important for writing, typing, using scissors, and fastening fasteners on clothing. Tong activities are also great for developing manipulation skills on the thumb, index, and middle finger side of the hand while working on stability on the pinkie and ring fingers.
     For this activity, you will need the following:
Non-Slip Children’s Bathtub Appliques with Suction Cups
Mini-Tongs
Various Sizes of Pom Pom Balls

Have the child use the tongs to grasp pom poms and place them in the suction cups.

Watch the video below of this child carrying out the activity! What a nice grasp and great control!

This activity is also a wonderful way to work on counting and matching and naming colors. Have fun!

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