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.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Dwarves and Dice

Work on figure ground, visual discrimination, visual scanning, eye-hand coordination, visual memory, auditory memory, sustained attention, sequence memory, critical thinking, manual dexterity, in-hand manipulation, precision translation and rotation, bilateral integration, palmar arches, social skills, play and leisure exploration and participation 
In the box: 56 cards, 3 dice
A figure ground game with a fun kid's theme and three color dice. On each card, a dwarf is pictured wearing 3 colored pieces of clothing - hat, shirt, pants.  After the three colored dice are thrown, the goal is to be the first to spot the child wearing that color combination. To set up the game, line the cards face-up in a grid format on the table so you can see all the pictures. Then in turn, each player will throw the three dice. All players then look for the dwarf that is wearing the outfit that matches that three color combination. There will only be one dwarf picture for each color combination and each color combination has one dwarf picture, so don't lose any of the cards. The first person to spot the correct dwarf grabs the card. If it is correct, he keeps that cards and the next player goes. Play until someone has collected a predetermined number of cards for the win. Fifty-six cards is a lot of cards to look over. Starting with fewer cards will make an easier game, although you will not have every possible color combination that may come up on the die.
Try this:
  • Practice cupping the hand and squeezing the fingers together to keep the dice inside the hand. If the individual has difficulty cupping the hand, place a small ball in the hand and ask him to curl his fingers. Ask him to hold that position and remove the ball. Shake the dice 10 times or for 10 seconds to watch them "dance" before throwing.
  • Play with just one other person and ask him to be the "shaker". Let him shake the dice for you too for more opportunities to cup the hand.  
  • Pick out one dwarf card.  Throw the dice until you come up with the combination that matches that card. Each time you throw a correct die, move it aside and keep throwing until you have them all.
  • Lay all the cards on the table. Pick the cards up in categories, such as pick up all the dwarves with pink pants, then pick up all the dwarves wearing green hats, etc. until you have collected them all.  Take turns and see who ends up with the most cards.
  • Choose 1 dwarf card.  Look at it and memorize the colors. Turn the picture over and throw the dice until you think you have the correct color combination. Turn your card over and check.
  • Choose one dwarf card. Pick up a die and turn it in-hand to match one of the colors on the card. Repeat with the remaining two dice.
  • Choose one dwarf card. Place a die in the player's hand and ask him to bring it to the fingertips, using only that hand, and rotate to find one of the colors. Place it on the table and repeat for the other two dice.
  • Practice color recognition by throwing the three dice and asking the individual to name the colors. Do this until you are sure the individual can identify the colors correctly. Then play the game.
  • Play an easier game by throwing one die and asking the individual to find a card with that one color. Then throw two dice and ask him to find a picture with both colors. Work your way up to three. Fewer cards can be used for this game.
  • Forget the dice. Verbally tell the players three different colors and ask them to remember the colors and look. Start with two colors if three is too difficult.
  • Throw the dice and then ask the players to look at the dice with the intent to remember the colors. Hide the dice and see if the players can remember the color combination. Start with two colors if three is too difficult.
  • Ask the player to hold a small stack of the card sin the non-dominant hand. Set the game up by pushing each card off the top with the thumb and taking with the dominant hand for placement.
If you are interested in purchasing this game or just want more information, click on the image below to go to Amazon.com

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for taking the time to comment.