Child Development Tips, Tools, and Strategies
Encourage your child to reach their fullest potential through hands-on play and developmentally appropriate activities.
My mission is to provide developmental tips, tools, and strategies to help you grow hands-on kids. Whether you are a parent, educator, therapist, or other professional, this site is for you.
Get My Free Fine Motor Checklist for Ages 0-6!
Get my FREE Fine Motor Checklist for Ages 0-6 when you subscribe to Growing Hands-On Kids. Put your email in the box below to get yours now! You'll also get my weekly child development tips newsletter. Join 50,000 others and get these free weekly tips.
Free Sensory Systems Email Series
Discover how all 8 sensory systems are connected and are the building blocks of child development. Also, get an 8 Sensory Systems Handout with signs of sensitivities and activity suggestions.
Free Fine Motor Email Series
Not sure where to start with fine motor skills? This Fine Motor 101 email series is a great place to start. Get a Fine Motor Skills Checklist, plus activity suggestions for all ages and levels of ability.
Free Pre-Writing & Handwriting Series
Understand the importance of pre-writing lines and strokes, how pencil grasp develops, and ways to promote handwriting success through hands-on activities.
Why are pre-writing skills important for handwriting? In this brand new ebook, Heather takes a look at the research on why pre-writing skills are crucial for your child’s future handwriting.
You’ll discover the foundational skills needed for future handwriting like sensory processing, gross motor, fine motor, and visual-motor skills. Plus you will get specific hands-on activity ideas for each of these developmental areas, including ways to introduce pre-writing lines and shapes to your child.
This ebook is ideal for any person who has or works with a child ages 2-6.
Sensory Processing Explained was written by an Occupational Therapy Assistant and mom of seven children. They use their unique experiences as a parent of children with sensory processing disorder and working in the classroom setting with children of various sensory processing challenges.
This book is three books in one so that you will get exactly what sensory processing information is right for your situation. It was written with easy to understand terms and language so that you can feel confident in explaining your child or student’s sensory processing struggles with parents, family, friends, or co-workers.
“Basics of Fine Motor Skills is a comprehensive breakdown of the fine motor skills needed for development and function. Heather has provided a valuable resource that describes each underlying skill under the vast term, “fine motor skills”. This book is a great compliment to individualized goal areas for children. Therapists can use this resource for activity development and planning. Parents and educators will appreciate the clear and concise breakdown of skill areas and “red flags” that provide education in an easy to understand manner. The engaging activity lists are designed to target necessary skills while supporting the healthy development of children at all levels.” – Colleen Beck, OTR/L – The OT Toolbox.
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Digital download products to help you create hands-on and developmentally appropriate activities for your children and students.
get this free checklist
Find out exactly what is age-appropriate and developmentally appropriate for your child to do when it comes to fine motor activities. These fine motor skills checklists were created to help you do just that.
Perfect for therapists, educators, or parents to use as a quick reference guide.
Hi there, I'm Heather.
I’m Heather, a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA) turned homeschool mom of two. I believe that all children can reach their fullest possible potential through hands-on play and developmentally appropriate activities.
New on the blog…
It's time to get our scissor practice on! After hearing many teachers and therapists talk about how children struggle with scissor skills, I want to help you feel confident in setting up scissor practice activities for your children. As with…
Back-to-school time is the perfect time to talk about handwriting skills. As children head back to the classroom, handwriting issues are often brought up. But addressing handwriting struggles is not as simple as it might seem. Handwriting is a very…
Fall is in the air here in Ohio! It's a great time to get out your autumn-themed brain break or movement break cards and I've got a really cute set for you today. These cute fall/autumn brain break cards will…
Teaching emotional regulation skills is not something that you can just check off on a checklist one day and say you finished it. It's a process that takes time and will evolve as your child grows. Let's look at some ways…
Self-regulation is a very important skill for all of us to have. But children are not born with this skill. It is something that they must see modeled and something that they learn over time. So let's take a look…
Over the last month, I decided to do a short series on emotional regulation skills on Instagram. While researching this important topic, I came upon a term that I have not heard a lot about. That term is interoceptive awareness.…