I am continuously amazed at X’s fine motor capabilities. I try to come up with new activities to challenge him and he masters them quickly. That being said, he loves them. Even a mastered skill will hold his attention for quite a while. So I keep making them, and he keeps loving them. This one was a little different for him. This not only involved hand control, but arm and wrist control. Montessori presents a variety of transferring activities, and this is modeled after those. In typical Montessori fashion I present this activity on a tray. Aside from the the actual challenge of the activity, this created a new challenge for X. He’s learning to carry a tray with multiple items on it, breakable items at that! He’s very careful when moving this tray on and off of the the shelf. When he returns it to the shelf if the bowls have tipped over or aren’t correctly placed he fixes them. I love the new sense of order he’s developing.
To put together this activity I grabbed two small rice bowls (I used Asian rice bowls because they’re a nice size and colorful), five bouncy balls, child sized tongs and a wooden tray. The goal is to transfer the bouncy balls from the left bowl the the right bowl with the tongs. Activities moving from left to right helps establish skills for reading in the future. I started off by placing one bouncy ball in the bowl at a time. This was a little easier to pick up. Once he became more comfortable with the activity I put all of the balls in at once, creating a little bit more of a challenge. Using bouncy balls also creates a challenge in and of itself. If they drop the ball into the bowl, it will bounce out. If your little one doesn’t need the extra challenge you could use pom poms. Changing the style of tongs can also be an added challenge. X has two different kinds of tongs so far that we use. I’m always keeping an eye out for different tongs to try with this activity.
X loves this activity. It has been on his shelves for quite a while and he still uses it daily.