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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.


Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Galt Pop-Up Toy


Work on finger isolation, manual dexterity, pushing, visual tracking, eye-hand coordination, coordinated use of both hands, catching, attention, motor planning, sequencing, visual discrimination, play exploration and participation

In the box: 1 wooden unit, 4 wooden removable characters

A pretty basic toy, push down on the head of one of the characters, move your hand away, and he will pop up and out of the base. I came across this toy this week and decided to try it with a young man that is learning to point. All pieces are wooden. The four characters are all the same height, about 3" tall. It does not take much energy to push, but the further you push it down, the higher it will fly when you let go - up to about 8" - 10" inches into the air.

Try this:
  • Push a character down and try to catch it as it flies out.
  • Sort the characters by color into their matching spots.
  • Make a point to watch the character as he flies out of the box, tracking him with the eyes.
  • Isolate different fingers to push the characters down.
  • Start with the pointer on the first character, middle finger on the second, and so on. Model going down the row. Replace and ask the individual to repeat in that order.
  • Call one color at a time and ask the individual to press down on that character. 
If you are interested in purchasing this item or just want more information, click on the image below.

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