Match-Making, Swinging, AND Decorating
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Preschool Playtime’s Valentine’s Day Session

NOTE: The Next Session of Preschool Playtime begins Wednesday, February 15th! Please check out this Preschool Playtime Video OR The YouTube Version of The Video OR call 508-898-2688 for more information.

Preschool Playtime

Large, Fine and Sensory Play Packaged Up as Fun!

 

Today we celebrated Valentine’s Day!

At circle time, we played matching and counting games using the Valentine’s theme. The children found their names on hearts I prepared for them. The children then found separate cut out letters in their name and placed them on top of each letter on their heart. We counted the letters of our name and found that some children had more and less letters in their names then others. Looking at each of our friends names we also noticed that some names looked longer and shorter.

We also learned that Valentine’s Day is a day to tell people we care about that we love them. We talked about many ways to do this including by making cards, giving gifts or candy!

As we sang “Oh Valentine”, we passed around a Valentine Day card, from friend to friend. Next, each child was given a different colored heart with numbers on them. They lined the hearts up in order 1-10, and then matched the colors of the hearts!

We transitioned into the Sensory Motor room by using our eyes to search for a match to our circle time heart. Some hearts were placed high, some low. Some hearts were under objects and some were over objects.

With our matching hearts, we moved onto the swings. Swinging provides vestibular input to our nervous system, telling us where our head is in space. Some children choose to lie on their stomachs, while others sat upright. Those on their stomachs used their arms to reach for different animal bean bags and threw them into a crate. This exercise worked on hand-eye coordination and strengthening their back and neck muscles.

To regulate everyone’s arousal level, we moved from the swings to some heavy work involving searching through a tent for weighted balls and placing them in a rolling cart. By going in and out of the tent, the children used body awareness to figure out how to position their bodies through tunnel and doorway entrances. Once all the balls were in the cart, the children took turns riding and pushing each other down the hall in the cart.

We moved onto fine motor work by decorating Valentine’s Day cards. The children used balloons that they could easily grasp onto with their hands to paint. They also used a rolling pin wrapped in bubble wrap to make neat imprints on the paint. We added decorations to our cards with large and small foam hearts and glitter. Using our fingers, we glued the objects on and laced a piece of yarn in and out of holes in the card.

To celebrate all our hard work, we decorated a cookie! We used a plastic knife and practiced spreading the frosting on the cookie. The children had to isolate their fingers to pinch and pick up raisin, cinnamon drops and tiny snowflakes. As we placed each item on our cookie, we practiced counting.

With a Valentine’s Day card and a cookie in hand, the children left prepared to celebrate Valentine’s Day and make Valentines for their friends for when the holiday approaches! From an Occupational Therapist’s perspective, the children have also made their bodies stronger, their spatial awareness more alert, and their fine motor has had lots of practice!

NOTE: The Next Session of Preschool Playtime begins Wednesday, February 15th! Please check out this Preschool Playtime Video OR The YouTube Version of The Video OR call 508-898-2688 for more information.

 

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