For this post on #29DaysofAwareness, I want to share a few activities that we like to do with Gelli here at home to reinforce some of the skills she is working on with her therapists and in school.
I like my kids to serve themselves mainly for one reason.
I want them to learn to take only as much food as they can finish.
Growing up, we were always told that we had to finish what was on our plate.
I used to use the “Clean Plate Club,” for Gia as an incentive when she was four years old. Then I read somewhere that you shouldn’t force the kids to finish everything on their plate if YOU are the one serving them. Instead, you should teach them to take only as much food as they can finish.
This way, your child develops a better understanding of how much she can eat and doesn’t force herself to OVER eat.
- Using tongs (and eventually chopsticks) prepares and strengthens the fingers for using scissors, and holding a pencil later on.
Just so you know, I LOVE BUBBLES.
Even before Nino and I had children, when we owned a speed shop in Long Island, I had bubbles in the back garage. If it was slow, and the weather was nice, I would sit out back and blow bubbles. There was something therapeutic about it for me.
Bubbles, Sidewalk Chalk, and Hula Hoops are always the first toys that would come out when spring would come in New York. We would sit on the driveway after afternoon naps or even after getting off the school bus. Kids would draw.
I would blow bubbles for them, and then they would blow bubbles for themselves.
What makes bubbles more fun?
- when they are edible
- when they are fruity smelling
- when they are home made
- when they are BIG
- when they are stackable
These bubbles that Gellibean and I are playing with are STACKABLE! I found them at a cute little shop in Cebu called Bao Bao Babies! The bubble blower is made of corn, and the solution is made from vegetable and root extracts. PLUS when the bubbles turn white you can stack them! I also love it that it’s so easy to order from Shirly from Bao Bao Babies. They can ship me more bubbles when I need a refill. That easy. That safe. WHY BUBBLES?
- reinforces and strengths in those little fingers
- reinforces and strengthens oral motor skills (so it’s also good for speech)
- reinforces gross motor skills (if momma is blowing and Gelli is chasing bubbles)
Check out this post from Mama OT for more benefits to playing with bubbles. FINGER PAINTING
Finger painting is a good sensory activity for #gellibean to make a mess & learn in the process. While I’m still catching up on my posts for #29DaysofAwareness we are all set for the #HappyWalk2016 that takes place tomorrow! Bear with me folks, it’s been a busy month! Good Morning! A photo posted by Michelle Aventajado (@mommanmanila) on
Ok. Funny story about when Gia was learning to self feed.
Nino and I had very different ideas of how our first baby would eat. He grew up with yayas (nannies) and household staff that helped with most simple tasks when he was a young boy. His experience with babies and eating was very much a “spoon-fed” experience.
I remember when I first gave Gia Penne ala Vodka. Gia ate her food on her high chair tray. When she was learning to self feed, there was no need to use plates or even utensils. I know how much learning goes on when kids are eating. It’s tactile. It’s sensory. It’s fantastic. So, I put all this cut up penne on her tray and by the time she was done eating, it looked like she was finger painting. (And I think Nino made reference to that as well.)
Of course he didn’t like this type of feeding. He felt that I should spoon feed Gia so she wouldn’t get messy. I disagreed. I knew that eventually, we would have another baby. Gia would have to feed herself. Imagine his horror when his daughter was covered in sauce and playing with it on her tray.
I had to explain to him how children are tactile learners. THIS IS WHY THEY TOUCH EVERYTHING. I had to explain to him that everything she is doing is for the first time, and that eating by herself is a huge learning experience. Besides, we both agreed that we wanted our children to be independent, tie their own shoes, and eat their meals at the table, by themselves.
Ok…so finger painting? COMPLETELY tactile. It’s even better that we live in a tropical country because I can let Gelli go outside and paint in the lanai and hose it (and her) down afterwards. No fretting over messes when we can do it outdoors!
WHY FINGERPAINTING? (From FUN WITH MAMA)
- It is an excellent tactile experience.
- It stimulates your childs senses. (Touch/feel, sight, smell, edible finger paint= taste)
- The mixing of colors teaches your child about their colors and how to create new colors
- It allows them to use their imagination and create
- It is emotionally soothing (in most cases).
- It strengthens the hand and fingers which helps with fine motor skills.
- Most importantly, it is FUN!
Check out this post by FUN WITH MAMA for some great homemade finger paint recipes
So, lots of times, (like during our Foodie Playdate) Gelli is working on her goals for therapy, and she doesn’t even realize it. I love it when playtime is not only fun but functional for my little girl.
What are some of the activities that you like to do with your preschooler? I bet we can figure out some therapy goals for them 🙂