How Do I Get Children Involved in Fine Motor Play?

Several people have asked me, “How do you get children involved in fine motor activities?” Fine motor activities are important since they assist with developing skills needed for reading and writing.  We do know that most boys tend to prefer large motor play over fine motor play.  To encourage getting the children involved in fine motor development, I suggest to teachers to use a variety of different mediums such as paint, finger paints, markers, chalk, and crayons for children to use.  Also there are “cool” and fun markers and crayons (ones that can create 3D images-Crayola Crayon makes some).   Continue reading

Getting Hands Ready for Work and Play

Child Waving Hands Above His Head

Child Waving Hands Above His Head

Some children are not sure ‘where” their hands may be. This will cause difficulty for the child when they use their hands in play and teacher selected activities. For all children, typical or children with special needs, it is a good idea to get their hands ready to engage in activities!

The following bullets may give you some simple ideas on how to get hands ready. Continue reading

Crossing the Midline: Brain Exercise for Children

Child Crossing the Midline

Child Crossing the Midline

During play and activities a child may need to reach for an item that requires them to cross their midline. Crossing the midline may involve the arm or leg crossing their body from one side to the other, such as reaching with the right hand for an item on the left side. This is a diagonal pattern of movement and not a linear pattern. Individuals who do not cross their midline tend to reach with the hand that is on the same side as the object and then transfer it to the hand that will use it or they may turn at their waist, avoiding crossing their midline. When observing the latter, it initially appears to look as if the child is crossing, but upon closer observation, you can see that the arm does not draw a diagonal line.For example, when performing paper pencil activities, you may sometimes notice that the child may pick up the pencil with their left hand, but transfer it to the right hand as soon as the hand is at midline. They then continue with the activity on the right side of the paper. Continue reading

Hand Dominance During Fine Motor Activities

The question that is most often asked by teachers/parents is, “At what age do children demonstrate a dominant hand?” Children have until the age of eight to demonstrate hand dominance. Young children tend to use both hands equally as often, but by the time the child reaches between the ages of 3 to 4, one hand is typically used more often to perform most activities. The hand that is predominantly used is the hand that is able to perform the activities at a quicker pace and with smoother coordination. Continue reading

Cuttables Activity Books

Randy and I were asked if we would write an activity guide that could be used with our Cuttables and Traceables products. We decided to draw upon the advice and assistance of a wonderful teacher, Lori Berry, who has her Master’s Degree in Education, specializing in Early Childhood Special Education with Validation in Early Education of the Handicapped. We wrote the books with her assistance. The books speak about the development of cutting and tracing, how to use the books, and then they list activities based on different themes. The guide also lists books for each theme, integrating literacy and the activities. Finally, we looked at the content standards across the states and identified areas we believed the activities covered.
You can click on the link or picture below and go to our website at www.CreateableLearningConcepts.com and read about this product or any of our other products.

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Create-a-Picture!

Working as a therapist in a school setting I have noticed that some children, whether they are special needs or not, look perplexed when asked “let’s draw a picture” or “would you like to draw a picture?”.  They look back with a smile and gesture and/or say with a smile, “Yes,” but then state they do not know what to draw, or they draw the picture of the potato head person.  Teachers and parents have also verbalized that they have observed the same.  It seems that today children are provided with items/activities that they do not know how to use to stimulate their imagination.  Our products have been designed not only to assist with fine and visual motor skills but to assist with developing creativity. Continue reading

Cuttables – Assistive Cutting Devices Help Blind Children

Blind children have unique and complex needs for obvious reasons. If you add the difficulties of being a special needs child, the challenges are even more complex. For instance, not only does a blind child with special needs need to learn how to cope with their disabilities, but the psychological impact of the disabilities can leave the child in a state of frustration, feeling that efforts are only regarded with failure and every endeavor can only be accomplished with the assistance of someone else. These obstacles could also confront an adult with similar problems, but a child has neither the experience nor the understanding to find ways to maintain their self-esteem while intelligently seeking avenues of success in their endeavors. The child can easily and understandably become withdrawn, afraid to keep trying because of the high probability of failure. Continue reading

Blog for Special Needs Kids’ Tools, Toys and Games

Welcome to Createable Learning Concepts’ blog to discuss the tools, toys and games for special needs children, autistic children, and anyone who needs rehabilitation or therapy to develop or restore their fine motor skills. Createable Learning Concepts has developed tools, which kids see as toys, to specifically assist in the development of fine motor skills through drawing, tracing and cutting.