Mr. Potato Head for Language and learning body parts

The Skinny: Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head are great open-ended activities prompting language, learning about body parts, and practicing pretend play skills.  What it is: Mr./Mrs. Potato Head  (any version)  What it’s used for: Language – teaching requesting,”more”, body parts, and colors, following directions  Ways to use it: Language: Withhold Potato Heads parts momentarily to prompt your kid to…

Mr. Potato Head for Language and learning body parts was originally published on KidConnectionZ

Shout Out Shirt for Language Development and Spelling

The Skinny: Okay, I think this is one of the simplest, yet coolest products out there!  It’s very simple in the sense that your kid can wear a different message every day.  But, the best part about it is it allows your child to enjoy playing with language.  See some of the pictures I took just playing…

Shout Out Shirt for Language Development and Spelling was originally published on KidConnectionZ

Djubi for Motor Planning and Hand-Eye Coordination

djubi for motor planningThe Skinny: I came across this very clever toy that is great for motor planning and hand-eye coordination, as well as it is really fun to play!  It is called Djubi (pronounced Joo-bee).  As you can see from the picture, it’s a net with a hook on it.  You simply shoot the ball (similar to a sling shot, but easier) to your friend and they catch it with their net.  The ball is soft, so it doesn’t hurt if it hits you, and you can do it very softly to build confidence.

What it is: Djubi (Joo-bee)

What it’s used for: Motor Planning and Hand-Eye coordination

Ways to use it:

  • Motor Planning:
    • As you can see from the photo on the lower right, it takes a bit of motor planning to launch a Djubi.  And with this game, I would build up to it in two steps:
      • Just throw the ball to your friend, and let them catch it.  Start with the simple piece of underhand and then progress to “step-and-throw” overhand.
      • After they have that figured out, then move to the sling-shot action.  On the top of each of the nets is a little hook.  This hook is used for hooking the rubber band from the ball on.  Then, pull back and let go!  It’s pretty simple, but can be a bit tricky if you have some challenges.  Keep going until you get it!
  • Hand-Eye Coordination:
    • This is the other side of the game.  Catching the ball.
      • Start off slow, just underhand it to your kid to have them watch the ball into the net at slower speeds.
      • Increase the distance until they can catch it from across the yard.  Many kids have a difficult time with items coming directly at them.  Teach them to catch it off to the side, to alleviate some of these challenges.
      • Once they have the underhand in control, then move to sling-shotting the ball to them.  It will be farther distances and faster speeds, so it’s important to progress up to this level.

And don’t forget to HAVE FUN!!!

djubi for motor planningWhere to find it: Find Djubi on Amazon.

The Source: Found it in a toy store in South Bend.

Djubi for Motor Planning and Hand-Eye Coordination was originally published on KidConnectionZ

Screwball Scramble for Motor Planning and Language

Screwball Scramble for motor planning and languageThe Skinny: This is a fun Rube Goldberg type game that really works on your motor planning.  It’s a cross between a marble run game and the board game Mousetrap.  There are 7 obstacles to move your ball through.  Each one has its own joystick or button to maneuver the ball with.  The goal is to move the ball through the course.

What it is: Screwball Scramble

What it’s used for: Motor Planning and Language

Ways to use it:

  • Motor Planning:
    • I would start with just successfully doing one task, then move up from there, one at a time.
    • I would progress to setting up sequences to solve, to encourage their constant accomplishments
    • Lastly, once they have solved the entire board.  I would pull out the timer.  For some kids, competing against their own time or that of a friend, is a great motivator.  The goal with having your child do this task faster and faster is that they are working from muscle memory, versus thinking through every step.  Similar to breathing, you don’t realize that you are doing it, but you are.  You don’t think about it, you just do it.  Like walking.  We want the fingers and the brain to work simultaneously.
  • Screwball Scramble for motor planning and languageLanguage:
    • For language, I would be constantly describing all the different segments with unique descriptive words: Lever boards, rails, tubes, ringing bell, etc.  There are several different areas to describe that you can build multiple new words into your child’s vocabulary.
    • Then, if your child is ready for it, and the game motivates them, you can have them name pieces of the game with the new words you have just taught them.  “Label 3 items to the get the next ball to play with” It’s a bit ABA, but it does get the repetitive practice in.

Where to find it: With 4+ stars on Amazon here!

The Source: Found it at a toy store in South Bend

Screwball Scramble for Motor Planning and Language was originally published on KidConnectionZ