This was taught to me by a developmental therapist and I used this technique with one of my foster sons that had sensory issues. I never thought to do it for help with recognition for shapes, letters, and numbers. Duh! But I finally made the connection last month when I had the daunting task of coming up with activities for my children during a 6 hour car ride. You will see what I am talking about in a second.
The only things you will need for this activity are sandpaper, crayons (I used oil pastels since they are softer), and yarn. Yep, that’s it.
Draw any shape, letter, number, pretty much anything onto a piece of sandpaper.
This is especially helpful for me because our school system uses D’nealian handwriting techniques and you cannot find that as easily as traditional font activities.
Now give your child a piece of yarn (about 12 inches) and let them “trace” the shape or letter with the yarn.
*Please be careful, long strands of yarn can be dangerous for small children. This activity can easily use two pieces of yarn for a shape if needed. Only you know what your child is ready for.
Even though my son is past letter recognition, he had to join in because my daughter was having too much fun.
A neat benefit to this activity is that the sandpaper grips the yarn. So the yarn will stay in place as your child manipulates it along the paper. This is what makes it so awesome for travel, too. The yarn will stay where you put it. Now if your child waves the paper wildly declaring, “I did it!” the yarn will move a bit. As you can see.
Are you going to use shapes, letters, numbers, or do you have another idea? Please share.
Kim is a contributing writer for No Time For Flash Cards, a mom to a toddler, a preschooler, and a foster parent, too. She juggles her day by trying out fun activities and crafts with the kids. After all, she is just a big kid herself. See what she has been up to over at Mom Tried It