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Holiday Gift Ideas

Holiday Gift Ideas

With the holidays fast approaching, many parents are looking for developmentally appropriate toys to give their children.  There are many excellent products on the  market now that are not only fun, but also help children explore, learn, and master a variety of skills.  Here are a few suggestions, broken down by area of development.  Keep in mind that many toys work on a variety of areas at once.  For example, playing a game of “Memory” naturally is working on a child’s memory.  But, it is also helpful in developing social skills (waiting your turn, winning/losing responses), in-hand manipulation skills (flipping the cards over), and visual discrimination and matching (knowing which cards go together).

Fine motor skills:

  • Don’t Spill the Beans
  • Don’t Break the Ice
  • Othello
  • Battleship
  • Bed Bugs
  • Mancala
  • Pop-up Pirates
  • Jenga
  • Playdoh
  • Marbleworks
  • Colorforms

Sensorimotor and Coordination skills:

  • Twister
  • Wii Fit
  • Elefun
  • Hulaballo
  • Jake and the Neverland Pirates adventure game
  • Play tents and tunnels
  • Trampoline (with handle for younger kids)
  • Scooter, bicycle, tricycle
  • Jump ropes, Hoola hoops, Pogo stick
  • Sit & Spin

Eye-hand coordination:

  • Craft kits
  • Coloring books
  • Bean bag games
  • Design & Drill
  • Lincoln Logs
  • Velcro Mitts and ball
  • Remote control vehicles

Visual Perceptual skills:

  • Rush Hour and Rush Hour, Jr.
  • Guess Who
  • Doodle Dice
  • Memory
  • Silly Faces
  • Connect Four
  • MasterMind
  • Perfection
  • Rummikub
  • I Spy Bingo
  • Ants in the Pants
  • MouseTrap
  • Spot It Games

Here is a links to another great toy idea list:

Play is a child’s main “occupation” and one of the primary ways that they learn.   Active exploration of toys and games should be encouraged for all ages.  While academics are important, please do not forget to let your child have ample time for free play, creative play, and toys/games.  Your child’s Occupational Therapist can provide you with more specific suggestions, based on your child’s age and areas of interest and need.  Enjoy the season!



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