Yesterday I taught a Happiest Baby on the Block class, and one mother was adamant that she would not swaddle her 3-week-old daughter. She thought it would be too restrictive for her. Although I taught the correct safety principles, how it mimics life in the womb, and the effective techniques for a good swaddle, this…… Continue reading How To Calm Crying If You Don’t Swaddle
Month: May 2015
Safer With a Swaddle Blanket or Swaddle Garment? Research Says You are Asking the Wrong Question
As a certified Happiest Baby on the Block educator, I am often asked which choice new parents should make. Swaddling with a blanket is cheaper (babies don’t grow too large for most blankets for months) and blankets can be repurposed after swaddling is finished. Garments are easier to master; not everyone is willing to learn…… Continue reading Safer With a Swaddle Blanket or Swaddle Garment? Research Says You are Asking the Wrong Question
Teach Toddlers Not to Hit Without Saying A Word
Toddlers hit. Some toddlers hit out of anger, some out of frustration, and some to get your attention. I never allow an out-of-control toddler to intentionally try to injure me and not say something. But some toddlers hit me and I don’t say a word…but I immediately DO something. Adults can make it very clear…… Continue reading Teach Toddlers Not to Hit Without Saying A Word
Preschool Handwriting Activity: The Tally Sheet
Preschoolers love to play games. Take a few sheets of scrap paper and a crayon, and turn a game of chance into their first lesson in handwriting. This activity is also very effective for older children with motor or sensory processing issues that need the extra practice on grasp, pencil control, bilateral hand use, ocular…… Continue reading Preschool Handwriting Activity: The Tally Sheet
LEGO Duplo My First Car Creations: Putting Together Cars, Building Hand Coordination
UPDATE: LEGO has changed a few things, including the name of this toy. It used to be “Combine and Create”. The new version is really great as well. They have added some fun pieces with more graphics. The piece that could morph from dump truck to tanker trunk is gone, and the dump truck piece…… Continue reading LEGO Duplo My First Car Creations: Putting Together Cars, Building Hand Coordination
Teach Capital Letters First With Your Preschooler And Watch Writing Take Off
Teaching your preschooler to recognize and then write uppercase or capital letters is a key to early handwriting success. Many, if not most of the commercially-available workbooks (and preschool teacher handouts) teach them at the same time. Zaner-Bloser is a common style of handwriting instruction that uses this approach. If your child has been identified…… Continue reading Teach Capital Letters First With Your Preschooler And Watch Writing Take Off
The Best Toddler Paintbrush Is…..A Travel Foundation Brush
Painting is so much fun for toddlers and preschoolers. Finding the right brush that fits their little hands and also encourages a developing crayon grip isn’t as much fun. Stores are full of all sizes and shapes, some with collars so that paint doesn’t run down their arms, some with ridged handles, some so tiny…… Continue reading The Best Toddler Paintbrush Is…..A Travel Foundation Brush
What Makes A Child’s Handwriting Legible?
For most parents, the answer to whether their child’s writing is legible is like the Supreme Court justice’s comment on pornography: “I can’t define it, but I know it when I see it”. For occupational therapists, it is relatively easy to identify whether a child’s handwriting is legible or not. Does legibility still matter? The…… Continue reading What Makes A Child’s Handwriting Legible?
Massage With Your Special Needs Child
When parents hear that I am a licensed massage therapist as well as an OTR, they often ask how massage can help their child. They seem to assume that I would recommend massage only to calm a child on the spectrum, or help a child sleep. Actually, massage can be great preparation for getting a…… Continue reading Massage With Your Special Needs Child
Does It Matter How Your Child Holds A Pencil?
The simple answer is: maybe. The standard tripod or quadrupod grip that every occupational therapist teaches will give your child a solid, controlled hold on a pencil for handwriting. Most children can learn this grip by 4 years of age. Some children watch adults and seem to copy it effortlessly. What happens to the rest…… Continue reading Does It Matter How Your Child Holds A Pencil?