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Children learn through play. As an occupational therapist who works with children and youth, I use games and toys almost every day to help develop important cognitive, visual perceptual, motor, sensory, social, play and leisure skills. While many different types of activities can be used in therapy, this blog focuses on off-the-shelf games and toys that are accessible to most. Whether you are a therapist, parent, teacher, or a game lover like me, I hope you discover something useful while you are here. Learn a different way to play a game you already own or discover a new game for your next family game night. Either way, just go play. It's good for you!

The OT Magazine named The Playful Otter one of the Top 5 Pediatric OT Blogs.


Friday, January 30, 2015

Mini Chimalong



Work on visual discrimination, visual memory, spatial relations, figure ground, sequencing, manual dexterity, leisure and play exploration and participation, tripod grasp

In the box: Set of chimes, song book, one mallet. 

This set is much smaller than I expected, only about 5 inches wide.  You can slide the tubes up and down, but the gray pieces are attached to the book so the tubes stay above the appropriate colors.  The flipbook songbook is sturdy and stands up well.  There is only 1 mallet, and it is small and lightweight. Some of the chimes are slightly muffled and don't have a resounding tone.  I was rather disappointed as I have the larger Chimalong set and I LOVE them!  However, the kids still like this set, and those who can match the colors or numbers from the songbook to the base do fine.  Songs include Oh Susannah!, Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star (ABC song), Lullaby, London Bridge, Tinga Layo, The Mulberry Bush, Row, Row, Row Your Boat, Mary Had a Little Lamb, Jingle Bells, Three Blind Mice, Old MacDonald Had a Farm, and Over the River and Through the Woods.  If I was going to only buy one set, I would consider the big Chimalong set the best investment. See it here - Woodstock Percussion Chimalong

Try this:
  • Color code the songs on index cards for those who cannot use the songbook.  I add anywhere between one and four lines per card, depending on how far I have to break it down.   
  • Ask the child to look up and remember two notes (colors or numbers) at a time, then three. Look down and play. 
  • Color code new songs to add to the songbook.
  • Point to the appropriate note in the book as the individual plays to help them keep track of where they are.
  • Point to each chime the child must play if he cannot read the book.   
If you are interested in purchasing this item or in just learning more about it, click on the image below to go to Amazon.com.     

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