The Best Toys and Games For Occupational Therapy
Did you know that at Cutting Edge, one of the most popular rooms we have is the supply room?
The kids love it because they get to come in here with their clinician and pick out a lot of their activities. Today I’d like to tell you a little bit about the things we have in our supply room.
Under 3 Years Old
We have one whole area of our supply room dedicated to occupational therapy, divided up into age groups. For the youngest kids, we have all kinds of manipulatives, stacking items, large LEGOs, sorters, musical or interactive toys, the kinds of things we call cause and effect toys, all kind of things like that. Cause and effect means that if I push the button on a toy, it does something for me. My favorite cause and effect toy here is the jack in the box! I turn the knob, and Curious George pops out!
3 to 5 Years Old
In our 3-5-year-old section, we have a lot of games. We have Cat in the Hat, I Spy, Candy Land, Disney games—all kinds of games. These games are great reinforcement tools. One of my all-time favorites is Hi Ho! Cherry-O. That’s been around since I was little! We also have Simon and a lot of interactive games here, as well as some of the younger sequencing games.
6 to 8 Years Old
Our 6-8-year-olds are just beginning to get into more traditional games. For them, we have Twister, Pictionary, and one of our favorites, Bounce Off! We have four difference Bounce Off games, and probably 10 different Uno games here! We have a Design & Drill game, which is a nice one for manipulatives. We also have games like Jenga, a marble run, more sorters, a sequencing game that has you make a sandwich, and more types of cause and effect activities.
9 Years and Older
Our next age range is 9+. Here we’re looking at games that kids would normally be playing at home or with friends. These are games like Monopoly, Apples to Apples, Imagine. Mancala is a really great fine motor skills game. We just got this new one called Stick Stack and it’s hard! We also have Bananagrams. I love Bananagrams, which is a game that has the kids make words. We have our many, many 3D, interactive puzzles in here as well.
When we get to the 9+ age range, the focus of the activity becomes a little different. We’re working on higher-level thinking, but we’re also working on socialization. Turn-taking. How do I handle losing? Am I a polite winner? We get heavily into social components with these games, where with the younger kids it’s more about very basic social components, but also heavily about how to follow instructions.
You can get many of these toys to use at your own home. If you’re not sure which things would be best for your kids, or what modifications you might have to make, talk to your therapist. Your therapist knows exactly what your kids like and what types of activities work best for them. Your therapists can even tell you what stores to go to to buy toys like this. They love to buy toys! They even bring their own toys in here!