Developing Hands-An Occupational Therapist’s Obsession

I once had the privilege of working at a private school for kids with autism. The emphasis at this facility was not only academic learning but functional skills. Some of the kids at this school had brilliant minds; however their bodies just were not cooperating. I think the cures and inventions of tomorrow lie in

Buttoning – A Skill I Have Taught For Ages

There are several activities I have used for years as part of my classroom routine.  One of these tasks is buttons.  Why buttons?  Buttoning and unbuttoning requires the child to use many higher level skills. The child has to use both hands at one time, doing opposite things.  The child has to use the ends

Chinese Jackstone – A Great Game to Build Skills

This is a great game. Easy to make. I’m going to try it in one of my higher level classes.  This is a great game to teach eye hand skills, speed, concentration and quickness. It is similar to American Jacks but has so many more steps.  I love games from other countries.  So Cool.

For younger kids (5 to 7 years) I am going to break it into the following steps.

  1. Start with parent tossing the black bag into the child’s open hands from about 5 foot away.  When a catch is made, the child can reach over and get one of the other bags
  2. Catch the black bag  with one hand and then get a 2nd bag
  3. Say “Go” and then the child has to get the 2nd bag while you are tossing the first
  4. Child has to toss the black bag up himself and catch it with the same hand. When a catch is made, the child can reach over and get one of the other bags
  5. Now the child should be ready for level one in Chinese Jackstone