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.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Counting Money Puzzles

Work on coin identification, matching coins, counting change, matching coin to amount

Work on money skills, visual discrimination, manual dexterity, fine motor precision, spatial relations, in-hand manipulation, visual closure

In the box: 12 four piece puzzles

Work on coin identification, coin value, and counting change with this 12 puzzle set. Each puzzle consists of a larger piece with a picture of an item and its price, and three small pieces to match the value to the coins. The puzzle shows you the three coins to equal the price and the individual must match the amount to each of the coin, such as 1 cent equals a penny. Puzzles are self-correcting, meaning an incorrect piece will not fit snugly in the wrong place. I have used level one for years, and only recently found out there is also a level two and three, which advance in difficulty. You can purchase the levels separately or as a set.

Try this:
  • Place actual coins on top of the coin pictures.
  • Make sure that some of the actual coins are upside-down and flat on the tabletop. Ask the individual to pick up the coins one at a time and turn them in-hand to the correct side and orientation to match the coin on the puzzle before placing it on top of the picture.
  • Place the three coins needed for each puzzle in the individual's palm and ask him to bring them to the fingertips, one at a time, and orient them for placement without dropping any.
  • Ask the child to sort all of the coins into a money tray before starting. Then after assembling each puzzle, ask him to pick up the three coins needed, one at a time, and squirrel them in the palm without dropping any.
  • Place the puzzle pieces flat on the table and in different orientations. After picking up a piece, ask the individual to shift it in his fingertips to orient it for placement.

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