Thursday, October 31, 2013

Roll A Monster

Most of my students love dice games and I've found many "Roll A..." games online.  It gets even the most reluctant pencil user to draw.  Since it's Halloween season, in some individual and group OT sessions, we've been playing "Roll A Monster".  

The students roll a die, then call out the number represented by the number of dots on the die.  This ability is called "subitizing" (to perceive at a glance the number of items presented) and is a wonderful math skill!  Then student then finds the intersection of their number and the part they are working on.  

Together, we focus on the detail in the drawings, the proportion of the pieces, and the orientation and location of the body parts.  We are also working on pencil pressure and drawing lightly enough to fully erase our lines.  The students love seeing the goofy monsters they come up with!  I've included some of the monsters I've rolled (as models) so you can see a few of the possibilities.

Monday, October 28, 2013


In individual OT sessions, some students have been working on weaving spider webs and creating spiders to live inside!  First, we used pipe cleaners, yarn, and pony beads to make our spiders.

Then the students cut out the center of a paper plate and used a hole punch to make one hole for each number written on the plate.  After they had 16 holes, they needed to lace the black yarn through each hole, creating their spiderweb.

It took a lot of yarn!

Then the students attached their spiders by threading the spider's yarn through a hole and tying a knot (or using tape, for the younger students).

Some wanted their spiders arranged in their new homes, while others wanted them to hang down and scare someone!
A scary entrance to the OT room at NDS!

Thursday, October 24, 2013


The preschoolers made some very scary ghosts this week!
First, they looked for two eyes
in the pile of pieces
 scattered on the rug.
Then they looked for a mouth!

I have my eyes and mouth glued on!
How about some arms?

Now we need the spooky strips! 
Gluing down the arms

How does it look?

Very scary!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Pumpkin Lacing

In OT group this week, we used yarn, paper plates, and paper to make pumpkins.  Two mini paper plates were taped together with 6 to 8 holes pre-punched (depending on the age of the child).  They worked so hard to lace the orange yarn through BOTH paper plates!  We used a blanket stitch, meaning the yarn was always going down, instead of a typical "up and down" lacing pattern.  

Then we needed to make our pumpkins orange!  The 3-year-olds used colored printer paper to practice ripping, while the 4-year-olds used orange construction paper.  We practiced "one to you and one to me!" as a reminder to move their hands in opposite directions to rip front to back, rather than trying to rip side to side.  After ripping the paper, they then glued the pieces on both sides of the pumpkin.  Some children decided they weren't orange enough and elected to work on them again next week :)

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Paper Pumpkins

Today, we "colored" pumpkins with paper.  The kids used their "alligator fingers" (first two fingers and thumb, with the last two fingers curled into the palm) to rip orange paper and glue it to a pumpkin template.

We danced along with some music as well!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Spider Webs!

Today, we made spider webs from paper plates and yarn!  Each student received a paper plate with numbers 1-6 on it.  They used a single hole punch to add the holes next to the numbers.  The kids were so excited when they were able to make the hole on their own!  In this activity, we only laced down into the paper plate, following each number in order.  When they got to number 6, they were given a small spider to add into the web.


Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Color by Number

We worked on our coloring skills by completing a color by number.  Each student received a paper with their name on it and followed the group direction to find a single crayon and identify the number to color. 

While some students struggled with the concept in the beginning, they all had the hang of it by the end of the group.  Many of the students laid on their stomachs while coloring to help strengthen upper body muscles.

 They did a wonderful job staying in the lines!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Relaxation Bottles

Today, the preschoolers made relaxation bottles!   They were presented to the kids as bottles to use when they are angry or upset.  They should shake the bottle until they are no longer angry, then set it down and watch the glitter fall - it should be a calming visual tool (try it!).  When the glitter has settled to the bottom of the bottle, it is time to rejoin the activity/group/etc (approximately 3 minutes).  There is one available in the preschool room, but the children wanted one to take home!

First, they peeled the labels off their bottles.  They then picked what color they wanted their bottle to be.  Using both hands, they squeezed the glittery water into their bottles.

Then they used their fingers to "pinch and sprinkle" some additional (and different colored!) glitter into their bottles.  There was as much glitter on us as in the bottles!

Great job!