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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.


Saturday, February 28, 2015

Skip-Bo Dice


In the can: 12 dice (3 each of 4 different colors), 16 cards
 
Work on arch strength, sequencing, in-hand manipulation, finger dexterity, visual discrimination, visual closure, sequencing, manual dexterity

Doesn't really play like the Skip-Bo card game, but fun nonetheless. And it contains pattern cards and dice - double win! Each player takes 3 dice of one color.  Lay one card in a position where everyone can see it.  Everyone throws their dice at the same time to see who can come up with the sequence on the card first.  If you get one or two correct, set them aside and throw for the other number(s). The first one to get the sequence wins the card. Turn over another card and go again. The one with the most cards when all have been played, is the winner. The combinations on the cards are 123, 234, 345, 456, 135, 246, all dice even, all dice odd, all dice same. The lid comes off on its own so I have to keep a rubber band around it.
 
Try this:
  • Shape the palm before shaking the dice by putting a small ball or round object in the individual's hand and forming the hand around it. Model the cupping position and how to shake the dice before starting to play - fingers squeezed together, making a rounded cup in the palm. Often the child will just squeeze the dice tight in the hand and shake the hand, thinking the dice are moving around when they are not. I constantly monitor this.
  • Set out one card. Put one, two, or three dice in the player's palm. Ask him to bring the dice, one at a time, to the fingertips and rotate so that he can match a number on the card. Set it on the card. Do again with each additional die. 
  • Set out one card. Put all three dice on the table but with the correct numbers on the bottom of the dice. Ask the individual to pick them up, one at a time, and rotate in the fingertips to find the correct number. Don't use a support surface such as the table or the body. Lay it on the card. Do all three.
  • Choose a word card, i.e. all dice even. Have the individual cup the hands, one on top of the other, and shake all the dice and throw. Pick out all the even dice. Pick up the remainder, cup the hand, shake and throw again. Keep doing this until all dice are even. Keep the hand in the cupped position longer by counting to 10 or reciting a short rhyme.
If you are interested in purchasing this game or just want more information, click on the image below to go to Amazon.com.

 

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