Background: John is very angry with his mom about a big decision that was upsetting to him.
Mother reports: “John asked me into his room, shut the door, sat me down at his Lego table and told me he had to “let me go”. He handed me an envelope with some peppermints and bandaids. Compensation, I believe. This week he gave me and Shane (ed note: father) some progress charts. He said we could skip the meetings.”
Notice the chart that shows levels of behavior:
One of my power words of the year is SELF-ADVOCACY. Teaching children to ask for what they want and need to make their lives easier. Of course, when dealing with the awesomeness of children, it doesn’t always quite work as we expect. 🙂 One of my Facebook friends posted this about her child and I laughed hysterically. I screen-shot the status.
So my middle was annoying me and I kissed the top of his head, admittedly to encourage him to be on his merry way and stop blocking my Facebook, but instead he told me he needed another kiss. So I gladly kissed his curly head again and off he went. So I called after him, “I like it when you tell me what you needddddd…” To which he smiled and replied, “I need a rocket launcher and a car and a bazooka and machine gun and a rope…” That wasn’t what I meant.
1. Take dinosaur post-it or other random animal paper. Child cuts across animal.
2. Child is veterinarian and fixes animal. (Skim over the fact we were directly responsible for its hurt, cough).
3. Give child a band-aid.
4. Child puts animal pieces together in right orientation, secures band-aid.
See below about grading the activity, skills worked on, and extra notes, while I figure out how to add in a “read more” link 🙂
TO GRADE ACTIVITY (change difficulty level) depending on child’s strengths/weaknesses:
Harder: Multiple lines, thinner lines, curvy or wiggled lines, lower contrast lines, more directions, having child make own lines first and cut out own.
Easier: One thick line, high contrast, fewer directions, no line at all, thicker paper (like a manila folder, construction paper, index card), modified scissors
Harder:Child gets out band-aid and performs rest of task independently or with minimal assistance, no prompting for sequencing
Easier: Open the band-aid or help the process (start it until manageable by child, such as peeling the bandaid pieces a tiny bit apart and child takes over). Help hold the papers down so child can apply bandaid.
Harder: Do not give the child a sample, fewer prompts, encourage playing pretend
Easier: Role model playing pretend yourself only, give child sample
SKILLS worked on with animal band-aid activity:
- Fine motor manipulation (opening and placing bandaid)
- Visuospatial organization (placing pieces back together)
- Imagination/creativity/flexibility (understanding concept via drama/pretend/silliness)
- Life skill (manipulating band-aid)
- Cognition/Problem-solving (figuring out how to use the band-aid and put it all together)
1. Be silly/dramatic. Children with mental rigidity can handle this sort of task as it’s concrete enough to make sense, but the imaginative creative piece is helped by silliness. “Oh nooooo our poor dinosaur!! I hope we can fix him!!!”
2. KIDS LOVE BANDAIDS. I didn’t have any cool ones, but that would help even more. If you have more than one type, let them choose. Even children resistant to cutting/directions may complete this task if they see a band-aid is involved!