I have been using munchy balls for many years during therapy. I first saw one made out of a tennis ball with a face drawn on it. I called my own version "Hungry Harry" and asked my pediatric clients to squeeze the ball so that the mouth slot opened wide enough to feed him little plastic bugs.
I have recently begun using the Munchy Ball made by Therapy fun Zone and I love it.
It glows a pretty green shade and feels great inside the palm. It is easier to open the mouth on the vinyl ball than on the tennis ball so children will be less frustrated as they work on strengthening their hands by squeezing and feeding the Munchy ball. This is a great way to develop bilateral hand use with children and actually adults, too who have developmental disabilities and fine-motor delays.
As long as the person doesn't put small objects in his or her mouth, use the Munchy ball to feed not only bugs but insert other small manipulatives. I asked one client to pull small clothespins from a box to insert into the ball-so he needed to sequence the 2 motor tasks.
The client shown in this photo has an obsessive compulsive disorder and he finds that inserting pennies into the container decreases anxiety. He not only learned quickly how to insert the pennies into the ball instead, he enjoys spending time using the ball as a fidget tool, squeezing it in one hand while using his other hand for other tasks such as pegboards and puzzles.
I like how the Therapy fun Zone Munchy balls can be purchased in variety of ways to match your budget and therapy needs:
If you go to the therapy Fun Zone blog you can read up on other ways to use either a home made or purchased Munchy ball to develop a variety of cognitive and motor skills... http://therapyfunzone.net/blog/category/product-review/games-toy-review/munchy-ball/