Pediatrics

Best Easter toys for child development

Best Easter basket toys for development

4/6/2022

It wouldn’t be Easter without chocolate eggs and jellybeans. But, should the Easter bunny want to include healthy Easter basket options, occupational therapist Christine Machan shared her to-go sensory toys and how they help in pediatric development.

Here is Machan’s list:

Clay: Modeling clay like Play-doh or kinetic sand is a fun way to develop body awareness and fine motor skills through tactile stimulation. Clay builds fine motor skills such as:

  • Grasp
  • Arch development and hand strength
  • Separation of the sides of the hand
  • Wrist stability and extension
  • Tool use

Pop tubes: There are so many ways that these fine motor tools build skills in kids. Pop tubes can build coordination skills. However, these bendable tubes can also be used to help kids develop body awareness through tactile stimulation and fine motor skills through auditory feedback. Benefits include:

  • Grasp
  • Arch development and hand strength
  • Separation of the sides of the hand
  • Eye-hand coordination
  • Bilateral coordination
  • Awareness of hand posture and movements

Building blocks: Whether you include Legos or alternative brands, kids will love to use their imagination to build mini forts, towers, cities and more. And these interlocking blocks not only help with fine motor strength and pincer grasp skills, there are also so many visual motor benefits such as:

  • Visual motor integration
  • Eye-hand coordination
  • Precision
  • Wrist stability and extension
  • Separation of the sides of the hand
  • In-hand manipulation
  • Open thumb web-space

Tweezer games: With these activities and games, children use tweezers or tongs to manipulate toy pieces. Many of these toys promote colors, counting, matching and other learning skills. Therapists like them because they help with:

  • Pincer and tripod grasp development
  • Hand strength
  • Arch development
  • Separation of the sides of the hand
  • Wrist stability and extension
  • Eye-hand coordination
  • Motor control

Lacing toys: From lacing cards to stringing beads, these are all fine motor activities that not only address fine motor skill acquisition, but they also develop visual motor coordination, patterns and bilateral hand skills. Here’s why these are great:

  • In-hand manipulation
  • Pincer grasp
  • Separation of the sides of the hand
  • Open thumb web-space
  • Dexterity
  • Precision
  • Wrist stability
  • Eye-hand coordination

Nuvance Health pediatric occupational therapists address fine motor, visual-perceptual, sensory and organizational skills. They help children maximize their performance for daily activities such as play, self-care and school activities. To learn more including related locations, visit Pediatric Therapy.