Spacing observations for the whole page: Is the child’s name placed in the appropriate space? If no: Is the child too young to know where their name is to be placed? Are there inconsistencies with where the name is to be placed on the various pages used in the class? Does the child have the concept of “upper left hand corner”? Corner is not a word used a lot in our society. It may need to be taught along with left and right. Do the words hug the left hand margin of the paper? This has been discussed in recent blogs. Is there excess space between words or do the words run together? Children who do either of these, may have visual perceptual weaknesses. It […]
One of my favorite books to take with me to parent/teacher seminars is this excellent book by Barbara A. Smith, MS, OTR/L! Its eight chapters are filled with must have developmental information, activities, toys to make, songs to sing to encourage development from birth to age five. For instance the chapter on two year olds (my favorite age now as my grandson is 2!) includes separate divisions on Developing Body Awareness, Communication, Social Interactions, Encouraging Visual Motor Perception, Encouraging Sensorimotor Skills, Encouraging Large Motor Development, Encouraging Hand Skills, Encouraging Early Drawing and Pre Writing Skills, and What’s Next?. The Visual Motor Development Scale at the end of the book is a nice quick reference for anyone looking for what is appropriate at a certain age […]
For those who need to practice buttoning with their children this was a great idea from D. Park on Pinterest. A child strings the shapes by placing the button through the button slits on each shape. I added the following to her idea: Two different sized buttons: one large and one medium. Shapes: one shape for each size button though both shapes could be used for the smaller button. The button holes are not clearlly marked but rather cut so the child has to use his sense of touch to “feel” them. Materials: Different colors of STIFF felt not the soft kind Two buttons of different sizes Scissors Cording : I unraveled the ends to place through the holes in the button and tie to secure the […]
The Preschool Teachers Adventure Conference will be hosted at Houston ‘s Woodwind Presbyterian Church’s Preschool on January 26! This is a great conference to earn CEU credits as well as catch up on the latest in preschool topics! Besides its just FUN!!!! I will be speaking about “Red Flags in Motor Development of Preschool Children” ” Teaching the Alphabet Through Practical Play” “Sensory Motor Issues in the Classroom” Come join me! Hope to see you there!
As we regroup from the holidays, it’s time to ponder several different scenarios: 1. Your child continues to struggle in certain or all subjects: It may be time to have him evaluated by a professional either in school or privately. It is very important to know your child’s strengths and weaknesses as well as his learning style to enable him to learn in the most efficient and hopefully fun way. Who to contact for an evaluation: Developmental / Academic /Behavioral Delays } Developmental Pediatrician } Psychologist Specific Motor Weakness } Occupational Therapist } Physical Therapist Sensorimotor Problem } Occupational Therapist Visual } Pediatric Optometrist or Ophthalmologist
The development of hand skills in the little ones leads to a solid foundation for hand skills needed in school for writing, cutting with scissors, tying shoes and even using Mom’s IPhone for games!!! My 4 month old grandson demonstrated coming to midline with both hands and now an ability to grab hold of hair and his own pacifier if near his mouth. Using those two hands together will be refined until he is able to use them together for so many activities! Just look at that eye to hand coordination! Spoken like a true grandmother!!!!
For older children, puzzles with multiple interlocking pieces offer more advanced concepts. Spatial concept of “corner”: As the child puts sides pieces together with top or bottom pieces, this concept is learned. Interesting we don’t use the word “corner” much anymore in our conversations! Attention to details: “Part to whole”: Details/ parts can come together to make a picture. Visual memory: This is encouraged as the child looks at the picture on the box, remembers a part of it, and goes to find pieces. Figure Ground: The child is able to find one piece among many pieces. Interlocking multi piece puzzles Writing Concepts of corners Names are written in the left upper corner of the paper Attention to details on the pieces Attention to details that […]
Last blog post, we looked at simple inset puzzles. Before moving on let’s take these skills we discussed and see how they apply to writing: PUZZLES WRITING Inset puzzle Visual discrimination: Shape of the puzzle piece and the space it goes in are the same or can be different A letter needs to fit on or between lines. A half circle and a long stick may or may not be the same letter (d,b) Visualization: A puzzle piece must be turned over or rotated in the child’s mind and in his hand A letter may be turned over or rotated to form a new letter (b,p,n,u) Child must visualize (remember) the shape and where it goes as he removes the pieces from the board A […]
Puzzles and writing? What could be the connection?! We just explored how concepts are developed with block play. A child learns to make a square out of blocks before they are able to draw one from memory. Puzzles offer many opportunities to develop concepts of space just like blocks do (vertical, horizontal, diagonal, around, over etc.). There are two types of puzzles we will consider: the inset puzzle and the multiple piece interlocking puzzles that make a picture. For younger children the inset puzzle introduces: Visual discrimination: shapes of objects and matching spaces. A shape and space can be the same or they can be different. Visualizing as they move a piece to place in the hole: A shape can be turned to make it fit into a like space. […]
Is your child having trouble drawing a square? Can he make a square out of blocks? As a child develops concepts of up, down, around, left ,right, etc. with his body, he is also playing with these concepts in toy play. Seeing a five-year old child who cannot draw a square, I may ask him to make a square with blocks. Often they cannot which means we need to begin with the three D concept of a square before teaching the drawing strokes of a square. Let’s look at what concepts must develop to eventually draw that square: Vertical: up and down: Near one year of age, a child begins to stack toys. Playing with the concept of vertical, a child at this age may […]