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.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Mrs. Riley's Picture Cards

If you need a fast, inexpensive, easy way to create and print visual picture cards, and you have not met Mrs. Riley yet, today is your lucky day! The minute I stumbled onto this site I knew my life would be different, I knew my therapy sessions would be different, I knew the lives of my families would be different.  That is quite a grand statement, but it's true!

The website www.mrsriley.com was created so that anyone - parents, therapists, teachers - could create and print picture cards from any online computer for a multitude of purposes. So user friendly, here are some of the things I have done with materials I have created at this site:
  • Teach a new self-help skill
  • Make a visual schedule to establish a daily routine
  • Make a visual schedule to aid in transitions
  • Illustrate a social story
  • Make a communication notebook
  • Make a picture card strip for therapy sessions   

You have the option of uploading your own pictures, choosing pictures from Mrs. Riley's database, using pictures other users have shared with the database, or finding pictures on the web.  Drag and drop pictures into premade templates to make photo cards, symbol cards, and text cards. Templates come in many sizes and orientations, from 1 card to a page, to 20 cards to a page. Type text under the picture, or leave it blank. Print easily from any online computer.

Access to Mrs. Riley's requires a membership: $5 for one month, $15 for 4 months, $45 for a year. I renew my membership sporadically. Before renewing, I have all my pictures taken and my plans for what I want to make.  Then I renew just long enough to make my materials, often for just one month at a time. There is a free 1 day membership so you can check it out. No credit card info, just an email address. Check that out here. https://mrsriley.com/subscribe  And you can now even launch the Page Builder preview without any commitment. See it in action and search the database for images. You just won't be able to save or print. No risk or personal information exchanged, and you can check it out to see if it will be right for your needs before committing to a membership.  Click on Launch Page Builder on step 1. https://mrsriley.com/subscribe  It's an awesome tool!

If you haven't checked out the site yet, head on over. Who knows, it might just change your life too!  http://mrsriley.com/

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