James is so great at fine motor activities. We knew he was good, but the other day Jeremy gave him a bolt to hold that had a nut on it and within seconds he had the nut off and was putting it back on. So I busted out some plastic bolts from his tool set (I didn't want real bolts rolling around the floor since Nana eats anything in sight) that I had put away until he was "older" and he has loved playing with them this week.
This is some letter tiles that James got for Christmas. I pulled out about 10 of these on different days and had him take the letter out, mix them up and put the letters back in. It was pretty difficult because the letter themselves act as a puzzle piece which are hard to put back in and plus once the letter is removed then you can only see the outline to try and put it back in. He loved this.
This is a game that my mom found at a thrift store. I hadn't got to play it with them yet so I just made the pieces a tub this week. Each animal has a particular spot where it can fit and if you get it in then it makes a fun sound or sings a song. They enjoyed this. Not really a high thinking tub, but fun none the less.
We use this container a lot, but this week it had toothpicks in it. Both boys can do this.
This is our new sensory tub. They hadn't used rice yet so this one has rice and plastic insects hidden under it. Plus I hid the three letters to spell bug and they have to find them and match them up with a paper and put the insects they find on the paper. It's been fun!
This has been James' favorite this week (only because he loves the containers). It's just old overhead projector pieces I had from teaching and I put about 7-10 circles and 7-10 squares in a bowl and they have to sort them by shape.
This tub was for Remi. It's just getting him use to filling each spot with a counter. I started doing this with James many months ago and it gets them use to some language that I want them to know for future tubs: one in each heart, empty it, fill it up, seperate these, etc. Easy but necessary. Remi will start doing more of these soon so he needed practice getting one counter into each spot. It's actually hard to grasp at first, but they eventually start to understand.
This is also Remi's tub. He's up to sorting 3 colors now and does it perfectly so I'll be switching it up for him next week. He just has to get the right colored pom pom in the same colored bowl. Don't feel frustrated if it takes you child a while to be able to do this. It's normal for them to just want to put them all in the same bowl or for it to be totally random which bowl the balls go in. They'll get it.
One thing I remember from teaching is that any time you introduce a new manipulative, toy, tub whatever let the child just explore it on the first day. Then the next time they play it's not so new and exciting and you can get them to listen a little better to what you want them to do. Plus, you might be amazed at what they can do without you telling them how to do it. Also, there's a lot of vocabulary involved in doing tubs and you'll be amazed at what simple instructions are hard to follow only because they don't understand the vocabulary--be patient, sometimes the easiest tubs can be the most frustrating at first.