Saturday, August 13, 2016
This buttoning board was made out of a book stand with holes drilled into it. You can use any strong plastic or wooden surface to make something similar. I pushed elastic hair ties through two holes and then knotted each to attach plastic circles that function as buttons.
Some individuals are at a level where they can remove and insert them into an open container or a container with a slot to push into. Some of them have the motor planning skills to attach the fabric pieces and some of them are able to match colors. I love finding ways to combine working on dexterity and using a cognitive skill such as matching that they already they have already mastered and enjoy.
Some of my clients really enjoyed the fact that the buttons could be pulled and snap back on the elastic. This gave them a fun sensory experience and because you can pull it away from the board, enabling them to attach several of the fabric pieces.
Pulling, pushing and squeezing all provide proprioceptive sensory stimulation to muscles, joints and tendons that can help with body awareness and motor planning. This buttoning board adaptation provides this stimulation as they pull the buttons. You can read about many other types of sensory adaptations in my new book: From Flapping to Function: A Parent's Guide to Autism and Hand Skills.