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 29, 2015

Suzy Seasons Bear

Work on dressing for seasons, fine motor precision, manual dexterity, coordinated use of both hands, eye-hand coordination, visual discrimination, motor planning, leisure and play exploration and participation.
In the bag: 4 mini board books, 1 plush bear, 4 outfits
A fun way to combine working on fine motor skills with learning how to dress for the seasons. One plush bear (soft, short fur) and four outfits are included, one for each of the four seasons. Fasteners on the clothes include two ties on the swimsuit top and Velcro behind the buttons on the dress and coat. No actual buttoning. The headband is elastic and the bloomers and swimsuit bottom have elastic waists. The zippered plastic carrying bag is shaped like a square and there is one board book enclosed in a plastic pocket on each side, one for each of the seasons. The stories are simple and include simple pictures of the bear dressed in appropriate clothing for each season. The clothes the bear is wearing in the books are the same clothes that are in the bag. The clothes included in the bag are:
  • Spring - rain coat and rain hat
  • Summer - two piece swimsuit and headband with bow
  • Fall - dress, bloomers, fall hat
  • Winter - knitted scarf and hat 
Here is Suzy in her summer outfit, and a look at the matching summer book.

I really like this set except for one thing: Suzy has a coat for spring, a warm looking dress and bloomers for fall, but for winter, a season where you need to wear more clothes, there is only a hat and scarf. Where is the coat? The book shows her with a sleeveless jacket, but it is not included in the bag.  Sleeveless jacket? Where does Suzy live? The Phoenix area, like me. LOL. It doesn't typically get cold during the day, but even we sometimes don a long sleeved coat in the morning or evening.  
Try this:
  • Show the individual all the clothes and ask him to dress the bear as one of the seasons, then read the book and see it the outfit matches.
  • While reading the book, ask the individual to dress the bear in the matching outfit.
  • Dress the bear from the pictures in the book before reading. Let the child play with the bear while reading the book.
  • Use the child's own clothing. Assemble an outfit for the season you are reading about. Discuss why you chose those clothes, bringing in discussion about the weather.
  • Present the child with several pieces of his own clothing. Ask him to assemble an outfit for the particular season you are reading about.
  • Follow with a session of working on fasteners.
  • Let the child zip and unzip the bag. You will not have to connect the two side of the zipper to zip, but you will have to turn the bag at each corner to keep going.
 If you are interested in purchasing this item, or just want more information, click on the image below.

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