Schedules. Sometimes we yearn for them to make the day seem normal. Sometimes we despise them and long for freedom. Families are busy and children are expected to follow “the schedule.” But for all kids, this is not that simple. Every day as early intervention therapists, we are asked questions just like this one, “How can I help my child transition between activities more easily?”
It’s questions like this, that encouraged us to create 1-2-3 Just Play With Me. This product, a card set is a unique product as it combines milestones associated and each stage and in each developmental domain with simple, fun, and interactive play strategies that match each milestone. As mothers, my business partner and I feel it is unique as it it is a quick, all in one easy reference that allows a parent to enjoy each stage and not feel overwhelmed. We were unable to find such a reference that gave milestones AND activities in a simple format when our children were infants and toddlers. As therapists, we believe in the idea that developmental and interactive play is crucial for child development. We also feel the product helps to supplement developmental screens at regular pediatrician check up visits.
|Here it is! Perfect gift for yourself or others!|
So today, we are blogging to show you just how this card set can work practically in your day. If you had the same question listed above for your own child, the card set would help you understand WHEN difficulty with transitions is actually typical with children and WHAT are some SIMPLE WAYS to work through the stage and make day more enjoyable for your family.
Our cards are in order from birth to three and each color represents a different developmental domain (gross and fine motor, social-emotional, speech and language, and cognitive skills). For the challenge of transition troubles a parent could pull out card number 56 (a blue card representing social emotional development) and read that transition trouble (along with other skills) are typical at this age. Flipping the card around will reveal a pairing of play ideas and education to coordinate with this stage.
Here’s some practical ideas that are shared on the back of card 56. Tactile or visual representations of the day can be helpful in a child understanding what comes next. Toddlers usually don’t understand units of time, but they can learn to understand what is first, next, and last. These are easy ways to reinforce a schedule.
THE START FINISH BIN: Place items representing the child’s day (plastic food, toothbrush, car, small blanket) in the start bin and the beginning of each day. When an activity has been completed, let the child move the item representing that activity (block for play time) in the finish bin.
|START FINISH BIN|
|BEGINNING OF THE DAY – LOTS TO DO!|
|BANANAS! BREAKFAST IS OVER!|
|TIME TO GO BYE-BYE!|
If you child likes books, a simple photo album with pictures of your child doing daily activities. You can “read” the story of the day to prepare your child for what lies ahead.
This simple Velcro schedule (made on a piece of card board from the recycling bin) allows you to change the order of your day as your routines change.
Another option to accommodate changing schedules is using a simple plastic pocket sheet. This one was purchased at an office supply store as an insert meant to hold business cards in a binder. Printed pictures were placed in each pocket and placed on the side of the refrigerator to mark the main activities of the day.
A fun way to get your child engaged in their daily routine is to let them move a picture of themselves from activity to activity. How cute is that?!
Whether you use these ideas or your own, remember that empowering your child with knowledge of what to expect in their day helps them to become more effective at regulating their emotions and preparing himself for changes which equate to a more peaceful day for you!!
Like these suggestions? 1-2-3 Just Play With Me is filled with 75 cards that will educate you on what’s happening with your child and encourage you to jump in and play with relevant, simple, and creative ideas just like these. Order three years worth of knowledge and ideas today at milestonesandmiracles.com (click shop and play). Our website also has a pdf example of one of our cards. Want more information? Feel free to contact us on Face book (Milestones & Miracles) or email us today: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We believe that the better you understand your child at each stage, the more you can enjoy and cherish each moment of those precious early years! They sure pass quickly! Enjoy!