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.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Hot Hoops

A basketball game that kids at different levels can play together.

Work on eye-hand coordination, finger isolation, manual dexterity,executive functioning skills, visual tracking, grading pressure, play and leisure exploration and participation

In the box: 1 plastic basketball game (2 sides, one piece), 4 balls

It is always my intention, no matter the limitations, to find activities that appeal to each individual and that they will engage in willingly. This is much harder for some people than others, but this is one of those games that I have used successfully with individuals across a spectrum of abilities. It is a tabletop basketball game. There are two separate sides across from each other. You place the ball on the blue lever, aim for the basket, and pull down on the lever. When you take your finger off the lever, the basketball will fly into the air. It typically stays within the confines of the orange borders, unless you pull all the way down and pull your finger off really quick. So there is some grading necessary to get it right to the basket. If it sinks into the basket, it will roll out onto the other players side. So as players make baskets, the balls are fed back and forth so that you can keep playing. If the ball does not go into the basket, it will roll back toward you so you can try again. The "floor" on each side is slanted downward so that the balls automatically roll back to the player.  

The blue lever that the ball is sitting on in the image above does move back and forth a little so that you can aim. The basketballs are lightweight and hollow and there is a compartment on the bottom of the game to store them in.  Both sides of the game fold up and you can carry it by the blue handle on the top without the box. It's a fun game and does not take a lot of talent to play. Siblings at different cognitive levels have enjoyed playing this together and it does not involve much social interaction, as each player is playing on his own side.

If you are interested in purchasing this item or just want more information, click on the image below.


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