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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Manipulating buckles

I love the Melissa and Doug Basic Skills board with fasteners. It teaches functional manipulation skills that are carried out in other areas of the child's daily life- like opening/closing buckles on belts and helmets.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Basket Ball

I am soooo lucky. While taking a walk on beautiful Saturday I came across a yard sale, mentioned my hippotherapy work and learned that the seller has a 15 year old daughter who owns 2 horses and a son who has autism and loves to ride. She gave me this old basketball stand and a few balls. The basket that I knit  last year out of supermarket trash bags is a perfect fit.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Birthday Party Memories
Reading Stephanie Ingersoll's article critiquing birthday parties brought back memories of our only child's desire to be invited and the extravaganzas we provided. As a child with social and sensory challenges we were thrilled when any child invited him to any event even if it was because the entire class was invited. We knew that chucky cheese type venues were overwhelming so we were always at his side providing support. These were not always pleasant events but our own parties were memorable, big on planning, preparation and creativity and low on cost.
One year we had a space theme where the children crawled through play tunnels into an empty shed. The floor was covered with a large metal sheet and children were provided with "space boots' made out of detergent bottles with magnets taped to the bottom so that they could experience space walking on a heavier planet.
The small plastic pool was filled with plastic stars cut out of food container lids with paper clips attached so that they could fish for them with sticks and magnets.
Unrelated to the space theme but very fun for 5 and 6 year olds back in the mid 90's was throwing water balloons at the Barney towel hung on the side of the shed. For some reason they decided that they were old enough to be done with Barney and he deserved to be soaked.
The grand finale involved the two buckets balanced on the ceiling. One needed to be weighted with tossed bean bags to get tipped over and out came packages consisting of a battery, wire with battery holder and a buzzer (all from radio shack) . Then the kids made the connections to create buzzers. These were their goody bag prizes.
We told each child to say their thank you upon leaving, no need for spending on postage....  somehow we earned a reputation for throwing great parties and this contributed to my struggling child's self-esteem.


Saturday, September 17, 2011

Recycling OT's Husband Recycles his Childhood Bed

My husband's father built the house he grew up in and much of the furniture. He and his 3 brothers slept in this 3/4 size bed (my husband was the youngest of 7). We slept in it until giving it to my son who used it until buying a full size bed last year. Here is my husband's childhood bed as it transitioned from bed to bedboard for our queen sized bed.  

Monday, September 12, 2011