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, July 6, 2016

Keva Brain Builders

Work on manual dexterity, coordinated use of both hands, graded grasp and release, visual discrimination, spatial relations, visualization, visual closure, visual form constancy, figure ground, balance, motor planning, critical and analytical thinking, creative thinking, planning, play and leisure exploration and participation 

In the bag: 20 precision-engineered pine KEVA planks, 30 puzzle cards with 3 level of difficulty.
Ages 7+, 1 player

Let me start off by saying this activity is much smaller than I anticipated. Because of that, I took a picture of me "holding the bag" so you will have the correct impression. With the new emphasis on STEM activities, I suppose there will be more of these types of games coming out.  Looking at the picture above will tell you much of what you need to know. Using the planks, translate 2D information into a 3D object. The planks are all the same size, approximately 4 1/2" X 7/8". The pattern cards have three views on the front - front, side, top - and the solution on the back. 

Top right on the front of the card you will find the skill level - beginner, intermediate, or expert. The front of the cards are also color-coded so that you know what view you are looking at for each plank - flat view, side view, end view, angled view. Looking at only the front of the card, build the object. When it is complete, look at the solution and compare the finished object to your object.

For more of this type of activity, see my post on What's in Your Therapy Box? Pattern Block Edition.

Try this:
  • Talk through the first card or two as you build together. Compare each side and view to the puzzle card so that the individual can learn to "see" the object from different angles.
  • Go through the pile of cards and look only at the front of each card. Can you guess what the finished object will be? Turn the card over to check your answer.
  • Look at only the front of the cards. Can you count correctly how many planks will be needed to build each object?
  • Build from looking only at the solution side of the card.
If you are interested in purchasing this item or just want more information, click on the image below.

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