Playing hide and seek with toys - Post 1/5 of the "Get Your Kids Moving" Series
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Welcome back! I hope you all enjoyed OT 4 ME's first blog post: "5 Ways to Get Your Kids Moving." Today, I am going to dive into the first recommendation: Playing Hide and Seek with Toys. I enjoy this activity because you can do it inside or outside. You can also make it different depending on what your kid likes.
Why with toys instead of just "Hide and Seek"? This way, your child is moving instead of hiding in one spot. Young children also may have a hard time understanding the rules of the traditional game. In order to increase the fun and movement portion, I like to pair finding each toy with an "exercise". For example, one of my patients always brought his Pokemon cards to therapy. Instead of having him leave them out of the session, we chose to incorporate them. We hid them throughout the therapy room and he then had to find each of them. If he found a "water" card, he did 10 jumping jacks. If he found a "fire" card, he did 10 feet of bear walks (we have a large mat in the gym), if he found a "grass" cards, he did 5 sit-ups. The best part? He was SO motivated to do these, because it he considered it a game.
- You may want to write or draw the exercises on paper so that your child can remember them.
- Other exercises you can include are jumping up and down, scissor jumps, dance moves, or knee push-ups.
- Play with your child! In therapy sessions, my clients are always more motivated when we do the exercises with them. Take turns hiding the cards and do the movements together.
- Make sure to hide items in safe spaces (i.e not spaces that require kids to crawl on top of unstable furniture).
- Be close to your child when they do the exercises to ensure safety.
If you need some more personalized movement strategies, I'd be honored to work with you and your child. Email Samantha@theot4me.com or call or text 561-223-1620 to set up an initial occupational therapy evaluation.
Thank you for joining me in making healthy fun!
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OT 4 ME
PO Box 273965
Boca Raton, FL 33427