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.
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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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We've all seen the news articles that state children entering Kindergarten are coming with minimal fine motor skills. Many teachers and Occupational Therapists are noticing this trend not just in Kindergarten, but all age groups and grades.
It's important as parents, educators, and therapists to realize what skills are age-appropriate and what a child really needs to be able to do when getting to school age. These fine motor skills checklists were created to help you do just that.
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…
I often see questions surrounding the topic of hand dominance. How does it develop and when should we expect children to choose which hand they will write or use scissors with? When should we be concerned about children switching hands…
Spring is in the air! You are looking for some fun, spring-themed activities to add to your day or therapy sessions? Today, I'm sharing a spring-themed pre-writing activity printable. This printable packet is designed for preschool through kindergarten-age children. What…
Writing trays are a great way to encourage handwriting practice for reluctant writers or beginning writers. I've put together 26 themed writing tray ideas, one for each week of the school year. Because of copyright, I am not able to…
April is Occupational Therapy Awareness month! To celebrate, I created an Occupational Therapy month school-based i-spy printable that you can use in-person or virtually with a Google slide option. Benefits of I-Spy Pages There are some great benefits to using…
My daughter is in second grade now and has 12 spelling words per unit in our language arts curriculum. Even though she is older, she still benefits from hands-on ways to practice spelling words, not just route oral or written…
In the last post, we looked at the basic idea behind what a sensory diet is, who can create one and who they are helpful for. Today I wanted to share some resources for creating sensory diets for therapists, parents,…