Does Working on a Vertical Surface Influence the Quality of Tracing or Copying?

Researchers recently carried out a study to determine if the quality or performance level was affected when you go from working on a horizontal to a vertical surface.

As pediatric therapists, we often recommend that students work on vertical surfaces such as a wall, easel or slant board to encourage an increase in wrist extension, elbow and shoulder stability, and upright posture.  By modifying the environment by moving tracing, copying, drawing, writing or play to vertical surfaces, you change the muscles that are […]

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Use Play Dough to Increase Hand Strength

Use play dough to increase hand strength

Play dough is an amazing, simple tool to help children increase muscle strength in the fingers and hands, expand creativity and encourage imagination.  Below are 10 ways to use play dough to increase hand strength. Why Use Play Dough to Increase Hand Strength? When children squish, squeeze and pinch play dough, they are working on strengthening all […]

Super Easy Play Ideas on a Vertical Surface

Do you know the benefits of working on a vertical surface?  When children work on a vertical surface they increase wrist extension, elbow and shoulder stability, and upright posture.  When you modify the environment with this one change (moving play to a vertical surface), you change the muscles that are activated in the body.  Here […]

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10 Simple Activities to Improve Grip Strength in Children

10 Simple Activities to Improve Grip Strength in Children

10 Simple Activities to Improve Grip Strength in Children Developing grip strength in children is super important for everyday functional skills.  Kids need to have adequate muscle strength to use the monkey bars, hold a writing utensil, use school supplies and get dressed.  Young children can work on improving grip strength through play and everyday […]

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Strength and Fitness in Homeschool Children

Strength and Fitness in Homeschool Children:  Pediatric Exercise Science published research on 75 homeschooled children ages 8-11 years old comparing them to public school children with regards to muscular strength and cardiorespiratory fitness.  Each participant completed the curl-up, 90° push-up, and Progressive Aerobic Capacity Endurance Run (PACER) portions of the FitnessGram® to assess abdominal and upper body […]

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Fun Ideas for Hand Strengthening Activities for Kids

Looking for some easy, fun ideas for hand strengthening activities for kids that require little to no equipment and no, extensive preparation?  Check out these free sample pages from The Hand Strengthening Handbook.  Who knew you could do so many fun games and activities with donkey kicks?  How about using rubber bands in some creative […]

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10 Fun Activities for Kids to Work on Shoulder Strengthening

Stability at the shoulder muscles is an essential component for coordination, postural control and fine motor skill development.  Shoulder stability and strength are necessary for skills such as handwriting, playing catch, reaching, picking up small objects and more.  Basically anytime you move your hand and fingers you need your shoulder to either stabilize or actively […]

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Towel Activities from The Core Strengthening Handbook

Here is a sample page of 7 core strengthening activities to do with children using a towel.  You can download it here http://www.yourtherapysource.com/corestrengtheningfreebie.html  The activities are from the electronic book The Core Strengthening Handbook by Lauren Drobnjak, PT and Claire Heffron, OT. The Core Strengthening Handbook –  This download includes 50+ activities including: Quick and Easy Core Strengthening […]

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Norms for Core Strength in Children

Norms for Core Strength in Children

I frequently get asked where you can find norms to measure core strength in children.  As pediatric therapists, we sometimes use supine flexion, prone extension, modified sit ups and push ups as measures of core strength.  I don’t usually refer to the norms for core strength in children but more look at the quality of […]

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Postural Painting

Here is a fun twist on painting that will also encourage strengthening of the core muscles.  Hang up some paper on the wall.  We hung it up on some cardboard in case the kids paint off the paper. Put some paint on a tray.  The child can lay of the floor on his/her back. To […]