« Yoo hoo, we're home! | Main | The work-craft balance »

14 April 2008

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Lucy Locket-Pocket

Oh poor Mark - I hope his thumb gets better quickly! That book looks good - my eldest always felt she couldn't cut out well although she seems to be more confident now - I wish I had seen that book a few years ago.

Simone

I haven't got any advice on fine motor skills. I just wanted to say that I hope your little boy has recovered from cutting his thumb. I have had a few accidents cutting vegetables in the past and can be a bit accident prone when it comes to knives! The book looks really good by the way.

capello

hey! we have that book too!

other things to do - sting beads on string, work on robot bits (google it, they are awesome), building with tiny legos, sort seed beads by color.

:-)

Kitty

My smallest small didn't develop hand-eye coordination as well or efficiently as his sister - it sounds really odd, but playing certain games on the PlayStation has really helped him with that. As have things like bouncing a small rubber ball, and trying to catch it when it's thrown to him. He doesn't like cutting, because he knows it's not 'neat' but it's always a handy thing to practice.

Good luck. x

nuttnbunny

Z adores the kumon books too. We also just cut up sheets of construction paper. :-)

Liane

In my long ago OT years, I did a lot of fine motor work. One thing a lot of kids love is cutting up straws. Sounds funny and it is a bit of a mess because the pieces fly everywhere but it's somehow satisfying to them. Play doh, clothespins and any activities you can think of with tongs can strengthen those muscles too.

That book looks like a good one!

June

Poor thing, bless his heart! I hope all is well with his thumb soon.

My daughter has cerebral palsy and had great difficulty with fine motor skills, too. When she was small like your son, her occupational therapist had her do projects like Capello suggested in her comment. I remember the therapist having us start with larger motor skills in each project and then slowly work on adding one fine motor skill at a time so as not to cause her muscles to spasm and end up frustrating her. For example, a planting project would be perfect for this time of year. Start with gathering a pot, dirt, tools, and seeds--simple large motor skills. The fine motor skills would kick in as the project moves along ending with the making of small holes in which to place the seeds (or even a bulb), covering them with dirt, and then a gentle sprinkling of water. This sort of project has all sorts of learning skills inherent that will also bring the joy and satisfaction of seeing new life emerge later. And tending it is a good thing, too.

I hope this helps and you see what I'm trying to say in my babbling kind of way.

Florence

Oh no, I hope his thumb is better soon. The SPD looks like a complicated thing to comprehend...I hope that you do find someone who can give you the support that you need.

The Kumon books look fantastic and I have added them to my Amazon wishlist.

I hope the washing pile has lessened. x

Elaine

Try this blog http://spiralmontessorimama.blogspot.com and look under the section practical life. The toothpick drop is a good one to try it keeps my 2 year old amused, I use an empty spice bottle with holes in top and he drops them in that. Also other activities on there like picking things up with tweezers and transferring them from one dish to another. Hope this gives you some ideas

Megan

Instead of banning you, they should give you a reserve seat...

Wish I had some advice, but I'm a terrible mother at that sort of thing. Too bungling and clumsy myself to be of much use.

Lesley

I hope that poorly thumb is better very soon.

It seems to me that you are doing a fantastic job in supporting Mark, although I'm sure some professional back-up would be much appreciated. I hope you find someone who can help you.

xxx

Lindy

have you tried those melting bead thingies? I don't know the name but Blair at wisecraft had a photo of it on her blog today. http://blairpeter.typepad.com/weblog/2008/04/laying-low.html
When I worked w/ disabled adults we used to have them working with them to help w/ fine motor skills. I've seen them in Hobby Craft here in the UK.

kirsten

oh no! poor buddy.

yeah, we have those issues, too. i keep meaning to get out the tweezers. tweezers and an ice cube tray or muffin tin is a good one - transfer cotton balls, beans, etc. from space to space. you can even number each space 1- 6 or 12 or however many you have and that's how many beans they have to put in with the tweezers.

Liz

I hope your son is on the mend soon! When I taught kindergarten I often filled the water table with scraps of paper and scissors so the kids could just cut. In the US sensory integration is getting more common. Do you brush him? My friend's son has sensory issues and they brush him and do joint compressions daily and it really seems to help. Also, he sleeps in a hammock and that seems to help too.

Stacie.Make.Do.

Oooh, the thumb! Owee! I have a scar on my thumb from scissors (happened in 4th grade). I was making pompoms. Dangerous crafting.

I second the idea of Montessori activities. Those have many fine motor practices that you can improvise with things from around the house. Let me know if you need a link to a catalog to get ideas. Can't think of the name off the top of my head. Commonly, small tongs are used to transfer objects from one place to another. Think sugar tongs if tweezers seem too small.

And the melty beads are called "Perler" beads here. My boys love them, but they are tiny and so might be frustrating. They also wreck easily if jostled before being ironed; more frustration potential there. But they provide good practice for time consuming concentration and pattern making.

Alice C

My son honed his fine motor skills and coordination on (1) any sport with ball (2) endless lego (3) Games Workshop figure painting (4) computer games.
Check out the Games Workshop - there are easy figures for starters and the people in the shops are very helpful to enthusiastic boys.

tracey petersen

a white board and marker are good for lots and lots of practice. easy to wipe away a mistake.

anna

wow- loads of fabulous helpful people out there aren't there? I used to make a lot of collages with dried beans (kidney, canellini etc.) One little chap in my class in particular found it hugely beneficial, as he got to draw a picture, get messy with glue and then choose certain 'colours' to go in certain areas. I just made sure I chose larger beans as opposed to dried lentils,etc. You could always draw a simple picture for Mark to start with, with big sections to fill, like a house or an umbrella etc. Those kumon books look fantastic as well!Hope the patient gets better soon x

monica

a friend of mine who has a son with very bad coordination (might have the same thing... she just doesn't talk about it) and his therapist used to make him jump on the trampoline a lot. A LOT. And try to do all sorts of things whilst jumping.

Of course not using scissors, but other things, the theory being that the brain is partly concentrated on the jumping bit and can't worry too much-go into overdrive-worry about doing something else...

alison

There are times when you just can't look.

Simmy

Poor Mark - hope the thumb heals quickly.

Have you thought about knitting to improve fine motor skills? Both my boys knit and have done so since they were seven. A great book to start with is 'A First Book of Knitting' by Bonnie Gosse(?. It's got great rhymes for casting on and knitting and you could both get some thick dowel and make the knitting needles (I put fimo on the ends). Good Luck.

Andrea Atkinson

I just wanted to post to say I know how you feel. My son (16 now) has dyspraxia and SPD. There were times when I thought he would kill himself, he jumped off a wall and landed on his head...or do serious damage, he got his thumb stuck between the chain and the wheel the chain goes round on a bike....or put into care, sometimes we were in casualty every other week. He survived and starts college in september.

The very best place for you to make contact with is your local physiotherapy department. They can help you with so many things. I don't know your story but if you can get your GP to refer your son there they should be able to help a lot.

One of the things my son loved was to be rolled up in one of those thin mats used in school gyms. They have them in the physio. We improvised by using two mattresses. It's to do with signals to the brain from as much of the body all at once.

I hope this helps. Please feel free to email if you want to.

Andrea

Helen

Poor Mark! Hope that thumb gets better soon. I don't know whether he'd be at all interested in them, but one thing that springs to mind for fine motor skills is those hama bead sets.

Hope you manage to avoid casualty in the future!

julie

I hope Mark's thumb is healing up nicely. The kumon book looks great and I hope that you are able to get some useful professional support for Mark's SPD soon.

Tiel

i loved reading all the suggestions ALi. sticky tape. we buy it both on and off the role and my kids use it all the time. the peeling cutting, sticking of things helps.

peeling boiled eggs.

I often paint silly faces on the shell and pop them in their lunch boxes.

As he gets older, origami could be good.

sewing with needle.

good luck. try not to let guilt get in the way. You are being a great mum and using your blog to think about it, get help, ideas is just showing you that you are super special to him.

val

When my kids were toddlers, I put them in the tub with a rack across the top between them. I don't even remember what kind of rack.....
On the rack, I put a large cookie sheet.
In the cookie sheet, we did blobs of CHEAP shave cream...like Barbasol.
Onto each blob, I put a drop (or more) of food coloring.
This really helped them learn colors AND to control how to mix it. When it started out, it was a WILD mess with lots of giggles, but as they aged, they got more serious and artistic. Even to the point of spelling words, telling me which colors to use, etc. We did this for years...even after they didn't "need it" Best part is that they loved it! Nothing stained either as the food coloring was diffused by the water.

val

When my kids were toddlers, I put them in the tub with a rack across the top between them. I don't even remember what kind of rack.....
On the rack, I put a large cookie sheet.
In the cookie sheet, we did blobs of CHEAP shave cream...like Barbasol.
Onto each blob, I put a drop (or more) of food coloring.
This really helped them learn colors AND to control how to mix it. When it started out, it was a WILD mess with lots of giggles, but as they aged, they got more serious and artistic. Even to the point of spelling words, telling me which colors to use, etc. We did this for years...even after they didn't "need it" Best part is that they loved it! Nothing stained either as the food coloring was diffused by the water.

miss chris

I had this post flagged to respond to and never did... Ouch. And those books! Wonderful. I wish you luck with this. :)

Calise

I feel really lame writing comments over a month after everyone else, but I thought I'd share :) When my mom taught me to sew she'd draw lines on paper and have me follow them with the threadless machine. We started with straight lines then went to squares, circles, squiggles and other abstract patterns. It was really fun and saved me from wasting tons of fabric.

The comments to this entry are closed.