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.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Disney Princess Enchanted Cupcake Party

Work on visual discrimination, figure ground, visual closure, spatial relations, visual form constancy, visual memory, visual scanning, in-hand manipulation, manual dexterity, fine motor precision, coordinated use of both hands, concentration, sequencing, timed motor response, social skills, play and leisure exploration and participation

In the box: 30 recipes cards, 40 cupcake parts, 10 tiles, 1 sand timer (about 50 seconds)
Ages 3+, 1 or more players

Help the Disney Princesses assemble cupcakes for the big party. Each cupcake consists of four parts: a bottom cupcake wrapper, cake, icing, and a small decoration on top.
Cupcake pieces.

The goal is to build 3D cupcakes by following 2D pattern cards. To set up the game, place all 40 cupcake pieces in a pile within reach of all players. Stack the 30 recipe cards in a pile, face down next to the cupcake pieces. Turn all 10 tiles face-down on the table. Two of the tile cards say Mix, two say Bake, and two say Decorate. The remaining four tiles fit together to make a picture of a clock. To start, players take turns turning over one tile at a time. Once a Mix, Bake, and Decorate tile have all been turned over, the game can begin. If all four pieces of the clock are turned over before the Mix, Bake, and Decorate cards, the game is over and players count the completed cupcakes. If this happens on the first turn, of course no one will have any cupcakes assembled yet and you will have to do it again. Or skip this step on the very first round. The game starts by turning over the timer. This is a cooperative game, meaning that all players work to make cupcakes while the timer runs. 
Recipe card

Once a cupcake is made, set it aside and turn over the next card. Keep building cupcakes from recipe cards until the timer runs out. Total the cupcakes that were made. Play again and try to make more. There are 30 recipes cards which consist of 3 sets of 10. The sets have borders so you can easily sort them. A sets of 10 cards with a single color border will use all 40 cupcake pieces to make 10 complete cupcakes and will not require you to take any of the cupcakes apart to assemble others. Turned out to be a fun activity. The plastic pieces are a little pliable, not a solid, hard plastic.

In the box.
Try this:
  • Use the cards to assemble the cupcakes without playing the game for practice following a 2D pattern and sequencing.
  • Sort the cupcake pieces into groups of wrappers, cakes, icings, and toppers for a little faster game.
  • Make sure some of the pieces in the pile of parts are upside down, sideways, etc. for practice identifying pieces from different angles.
  • Play without the timer and cooperatively assemble a set of 10 cupcakes if speed is not desired.
If you are interested in purchasing this game or just want more information, click on the image below.

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