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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, January 30, 2016

Face to Face - Teen Edition

In the box: 96 cards, each with a scenario and a question
Ages 13 to adult (box specifies teen edition)

"Building character one conversation at a time", according to the box lid. A tool to help initiate conversations with teens about real-life issues of today. The cards are evenly divided into four categories: Parent, Spouse, Teen, and Work & Life. I have to say I am disappointed with this product. I work with several high functioning older teens and I felt as the "teen edition" this would be an appropriate product. However, I feel that many of the spouse and parent scenarios on these cards are too complex or multi-faceted for teens with limited life experiences. I understand that sometimes we ask people to put themselves in someone else's shoes and try to see a situation from their point of view, but I feel that many of these scenarios require a greater maturity than would typically be found in a teen. Here are four examples, one from each category:
  • Teen - Your older sister is becoming more and more disrespectful to your parents. What would you do?
  • Work & Life - While at a party at your neighbor's apartment, you see someone whom you do not know passing around a "joint". What would you do?
  • Parent - You realize a few weeks into summer that your teenage son's girlfriend is coming over every afternoon to hang out with him alone in your house while you are at work. What would you do?
  • Spouse - You recently remarried, and your spouse is struggling to connect with your children. What would you do?
I feel that only about half of these cards are usable for what I bought them for. UPDATE - I returned this product.

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