Start rethinking those boring old occupational and physical therapy supplies! We’ve got 25 fun things to add to your therapy bag this year!
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It’s the beginning of a new school year and you open your therapy bag to get organized and inspired by taking a peek at your old trusty therapy materials…only when you open that faded, dusty old bag, you feel anything but inspired.
That same old ball, that sticky container of putty, those same worn out games. They’re almost enough to make you dread going back to the school year grind.
But don’t worry, dear therapists because friends don’t let friends use old, boring therapy materials. And we’re here to help!
Now don’t get us wrong. We’re suckers for finding fun and creative ways to play with old therapy standbys like scooters, therapy wedges, and balance beams. But we think a new school year calls for a few fun, new supplies. Here are some of our favorites:
2 || HyperDash – HyperDash is a game of speed and agility where kids race against the clock. You can set it up anywhere and it’s easy to throw in your bag and go!
3 || BIG Trouble – Return back to your childhood days with the big bubble in Big Trouble. This electronic game includes lights and sounds and is sure to get the action rolling. Kids LOVE popping the bubble to roll the dice and, the best part, you can use that dice to encourage any movement activity you want (roll a 6, do 6 jumping jacks, etc).
4 || Ants in the Pants Game – Use those super fine motor skills to flip your ants into the dog’s pants. If you get all of yours there first, you win!
5 || Lucky Ducks Game – This game is sure to make a splash as kids try to match the ducks for colors and shapes as they “swim” around the motorized pond. Kids will learn color and shape recognition as they play along to the duck sounds. Change it up by putting numbers or movement activities on the bottom of each duck.
6 || Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Piggy Bank – With 10 colorful coins to drop into the Piggy Bank’s slot, and an open door for put-and-take play, it’s a toy with lots of exploration. Press piggy’s nose to hear musical responses and sing-along songs that teach colors, animal names and counting skills.
7 || Rocket Balloon – A bilateral coordination challenge with the ultimate reward. Use the included pump to blow up the balloon then let it fly! You can even try chasing it down to catch it if you dare!
8 || Barnyard Answer Buzzers – Silly sounds of “cock-a-doodle-doo,” “moo,” “neigh,” and “bark” get little ones giggling, just press to listen. Place these at the top of a flight of stairs or wheelbarrow walk to them. Tons of fun!
9 || Stomp Rocket – Run, jump and STOMP on the launch pad to shoot your rocket up to 100 feet in the air!
11 || Pig Popper – A fun and hilarious way to work on hand strengthening! Kids will love squeezing the popper to shoot out the little balls!
12 || Pool Noodles – There are a million fun ways to put these to use! Use them as giant drumsticks, have a kiddo hold onto one end while you pull her around on a scooter…get creative!
13 || Hobby Horse/Rocking Horse – Okay, so maybe you can’t fit this guy into your therapy bag. Still, this is such a great way to work on balance in a fun and different way!
14 || Balance Foam Pad – Another great balance challenge! Check out our favorite ways to play with this simple piece of equipment.
16 || Rubber Ducks – Kids can bend or squat to pick them up from the floor, knock them off a table by throwing beanbags at them, or go digging for them in a sensory bin or water table!
Cards & Books
18 || Fun Decks – Work on cognitive skills, reasoning, and language as you incorporate these cards into gross motor activities like relay races and more!
19 || Core Pilates for Kids – A great way to introduce kids to Pilates exercises that are great for all over strengthening. Kids will love following along with the colorful photographs.
20 || Fit Deck Exercise Cards – Use these cards to create fun exercise sequences, or just have kids choose one at a time for strengthening, coordination, and balance challenges.
21 || Yogarilla – The colorful illustrations in this fun yoga deck are motivating and fun for all kids. With over 110 activities, these cards are perfect for the classroom, therapy sessions, or even for using at home.
22 || The Kids’ Yoga Deck – This deck is full of fun yoga poses that can help kids build strength, flexibility, balance, and focus. Again, the cards are perfect for using in the classroom, in the therapy room, or at home!
23 || Yoga for the Special Child – This is an awesome resource that includes a step-by-step system of yoga poses that is designed to promote cognitive and motor skills in children with disabilities.
24 || Kid Yoga Stories Books – If you don’t know our good friend Giselle Shardlow and her awesome yoga books for kids…it’s time to get acquainted! These books take kids on all kinds of adventures as they follow along and do various yoga poses to represent animals and other things in the story.
25 || ABCs of Movement – And last, but obviously not least, these awesome activity cards from Laurie Gombash (the creator of our Creative Pediatric Treatment Strategies webinar) are the perfect way to get kids moving while they learn the letters of the alphabet! Use them during circle time, one-on-one treatment sessions, or in small groups!
Want to learn tons of fun and creative ways to use all of these materials in therapy? Check out our webinar, Creative Pediatric Treatment Strategies Based on the Evidence!