This simple DIY advent calendar is a great way to work on fine motor skills with kids and can encourage cognitive skills and language skills too!
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If you live or work with kids, one of the most fun things about the holiday season is finding creative ways to count down to the big day! As therapists, we wanted to make a DIY advent calendar that would target a whole range of developmental skills.
When we came up with this one, we were initially thinking of it as a hand strengthening and fine motor activity, but as soon as we tried it with our kiddos at The Treehouse, we realized that there were so many other skills we could incorporate with this simple activity! When you’re done making your DIY advent calendar, try these awesome melted crayons Christmas ornaments!
Fine Motor DIY Advent Calendar
What you’ll need:
-Small toys, trinkets, or treats (see below for ideas)
-Colored crepe paper
What to do:
Choose 25 small toys and wrap each one up in a ball using the crepe paper. For more of a challenge, make larger balls with more layers of crepe paper. For younger kids or kids with fine motor challenges, use less.
Place the balls in a designated area where they’ll stay until Christmas. Each day, have kids choose one ball and unwrap the layers of crepe paper to get to the toy!
How to change it up:
Each time a child opens one of the balls, have them pause first to talk about what might be inside. Ask questions and have kids describe what they feel and talk about what their guesses are:
-Is it light or heavy?
-Does it make a sound when you shake it?
-What do you want it to be?
-What’s your guess?
Have older kids help create the DIY advent calendar by wrapping the toys up into balls using the crepe paper. This is another great bilateral coordination and fine motor activity!
Skill Areas Addressed:
Other Things to Try: