Hey there! I’m Cait the COTA, a school-based COTA from the Mitten state (MI). I am mama to two sweet littles who can usually be found drinking iced coffee. I love finding good deals, creating for my Teachers Pay Teachers store, and organizing ALLLL the things. My favorite part of OT is the relationships I build with my students. I feel like I get to play all day while helping my students reach their goals! I love the look of pride and accomplishment on their faces when a skill “clicks”. I have my dream job and am thankful every day for the opportunity to do what I do.
Cait the COTA Challenge Items
- Use to improve arm and shoulder strength by pulling in various directions.
- Lay it flat on the floor and walk heel to toe trying to stay on the band.
- Lay it flat on the floor and hop over with only foot and with both feet.
- Lay it flat on the floor and bear walk sideways keeping hands on the band and knees off the floor.
2. Wikki Stix
- Use them to form letters, numbers, or shapes.
- Use them as a boundary when writing if a student has a problem with letter sizing or placement.
- Create “roads” for students to draw within. Make easier by increasing the width of the road, or more challenging by decreasing the width.
- String beads onto them and shape them into “inchworms”. Try copying patterns.
- Feed them to the tennis ball mouth.
- Hide them in putty.
- Play tic tac toe as heads vs. tails instead of X vs. O.
- Arrange them on a table, put a piece of paper over, and rub a crayon over to reveal the pennies.
- Start with all pennies face up, flip face down, and then back up- make it a race!
- Lay pennies out on a table. Pick them up one at a time using only one hand until all are picked up. Then lay them back down one at a time.
- Tuck a penny under ring finger/pinky when writing to promote a tripod grasp.
4. Push Pins
- Create letters, numbers, or shapes.
- Make push pin art by poking holes in a pattern on a piece of paper.
- Draw 2 trails of circles on a piece of paper, roll a dice and put in that number of push pins into a trail. The first person to the finish line wins!
- String rubber bands between push pins
- Don’t have foam or cork to push into? Use a cardboard box. Write & draw…obviously! 🙂
- Draw a crazy line on a piece of paper to make an “obstacle course”. Trace the line with a pencil or crayon.
- Draw shapes or letters and then trace with a pencil or crayon.
- Make several dots or stars all over a piece of paper. Pick up beads with a clothespin and place them on the marks.
- Pick up beads, broken crayons, or crumpled pieces of paper and put them into a container.
- Try squeezing the clothespin with your thumb and pointer finger, thumb and middle finger, thumb and ring finger, and thumb and pinky finger.
- Start with pieces laying face down on the table, flip them over and then put them together.
- Try completing the puzzle while laying on your belly.
- Hide pieces (or maybe just the final piece!) around the room and then put them together.
- Put paper clips on a few pieces and place them on the floor. Use the finger wind up to pick them up.
8. Finger wind-up (PVC pipe + string + hook magnet)
- Pick up puzzle pieces (see above!)
- Write words or sentences on pieces of paper. Fold up the paper, attach a paper clip, and scatter the papers on the floor. Use the wind up to pick a piece of paper and copy what is written on it.
- Draw pictures of fish and cut them out. Attach a paper clip to each fish and scatter them on the floor. Then go “fishing” with the wind-up.
- Use the wind up while standing on an uneven surface.
- Write a letter/word on each side of the cube, roll the cube and write the letter/word it lands on.
- Write a number on each side of the cube and use it to determine number of reps for an exercise.
- Write an exercise on each side of the cube, roll the cube, and complete the exercise it lands on.
- Write an animal walk or movement on each side of the cube, roll the cube prior to a transition and move from one place to the next using the walk/movement that was rolled.
10. Tennis ball mouth
- Feed him beads, crumpled up pieces of paper, coins, cereal, etc. by squeezing the mouth open with one hand and using the other hand to pick up the small objects.
- For an added challenge, use a clothespin to pick up the small objects and put them into the tennis ball mouth.
- Hide beads in putty. Once found, hide them back in again.
- Roll putty into a long snake. Use scissors to cut into pieces. Pick up pieces using only one hand and squish them into one big ball.
- Straighten paper clips and put them into the putty to create a turkey. Decorate the “feathers” by putting beads onto the paper clips.
- Flatten like a pancake, then roll like a burrito.
12. Paper clips
- Attach to puzzle pieces to use with the finger wind up.
- Straighten and put into putty as turkey feathers.
- While in original shape, fill with beads.
- Straighten and bend to form shapes or letters.
- Use as a writing utensil in putty.
- Feed to the tennis ball mouth.
- Hide in putty.
- Make patterns on paper clips.
- Pick up with a clothespin.
- Use as a spacer when writing sentences.
14. Spot It!
- Play one of the versions listed on the instructions. – Use pennies to cover matches- Vary the distance and direction of the cards when looking for matches to promote oculomotor skills. – Tape up 2 cards. Identify matches by placing left finger on right card, and right finger on left card. – After a match has been identified, clip them together with a clothespin
15. Yoga ball
- Use as alternative seating option.
- Sit and bounce.
- Lay on your belly and walk your hands out as far as you can, then walk them back in all while keeping your feet off the ground.
- Roll along an imaginary road on the wall. Roll high above your head, low towards the ground, and side to side.
- Stand back to back with a partner and pass the ball back and forth by twisting side to side.
- “Steamroller”- an adult firmly but carefully rolls the ball up and down a child’s back and legs while he or she is laying in prone.
Thank you, Cait the COTA, for bringing your heart and creativity to this OT Kit Challenge 🙂