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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.


Sunday, February 8, 2015

Block Puzzle - Ravensburger


In the box: 9 blocks, 6 pictures, carrying case

Work on spatial relations, visual closure, visual discrimination, visual form constancy, figure ground, visual scanning, sustained attention, manual dexterity, in-hand manipulation, coordinated use of both hands, leisure and play exploration and participation

A little different than the typical Ravensburger puzzle, I like this one because it requires manipulating cubes.  The blocks are approximately 2 x 2 x 2 inches, just right to hold and manipulate in the hand, and have pictures on all six sides. Just finding the correct side may be the first hurdle. The blocks are plastic and washable.  They are printed, not stickers, so there is nothing to peel off.  The pictures are whimsical and colorful, and just the right size to build on with the blocks. This puzzle comes in several themes.

Try this:
  • Place the pieces on the table in random order and with the correct side up, if you are working with a beginner.
  • Lay the puzzle picture on the table and have the child build the puzzle beside it, not on top of it.
  • Place the picture at the top and above the picture so that the child will have to look up, remember what he saw, and return to the puzzle.
  • Show the child a picture, talk about the particulars of the picture, such as theme, colors, and specific details. Turn the picture over and see if he can remember and can build it.
  • Require the child to manipulate each block in one or two hands, instead of using the table top for assist.

If you are interested in purchasing this puzzle or just want more information, click on the image below to go to Amazon.com

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