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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, April 24, 2015

Tossing Game Center

Finally! A portable target game with big pockets that doesn't tip easily.

Work on eye-hand coordination, visual discrimination, spatial relations, figure ground, palmar arch development, shoulder strength and stability, wrist extension, manual dexterity, vestibular and proprioceptive perception, motor planning, attention, concentration, social participation and interaction, play and leisure exploration and participation
 
In the box: 1 standalone target, 6 balls without velcro, 2 balls with Velcro

This is the first portable target game that I have actually liked, and I have tried a few. The problem with these kinds of games is that the ball pockets are not usually large or deep enough to catch the balls, or the balls/bean bags are too heavy and knock it over or it is too flimsy to stand. This one has had none of those problems. It is very lightweight and the balls are the smaller "ball pit" balls.  The netted pockets are deep and will actually hold up to 3 balls. It doesn't come with very many balls, but if you have some of the smaller pit balls, just add to it. The front has nine pockets to toss into and the back has a bulls-eye target. Throw the balls with Velcro and they will stick to the target on the back.
 
Try this:
  • Stand close to get used to throwing into the pockets. Back up a little at a time as you get better to increase the difficulty.
  • Assign points to the three different colored rings on the back (white, black, red). Play several rounds and add up your points. Highest score wins.
  • Toss small bean bags if you have them. This worked for me.
  • Try throwing a colored ball into the hole with the matching color background. Assign points and give full points to a matching throw and half points if it is thrown in the wrong color.
  • Call the background color to aim for before the player throws each ball.
If you are interested in purchasing this item or just want more information, click on the image below.

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