Wednesday, February 17, 2010
Share your therapy-play tips, win a $50 CVS/pharmacy gift card
Ever felt like you could be a professional therapist? Uh-huh. After seven years of sitting through speech, physical and occupational therapy sessions with Max, I've picked up a lot of tricks of the trade. Not that I've got the experts' skills or training, of course, and not that the insurance company would pay me $100 bucks an hour.
Since Max was a baby, I've come up with my own, fun ways to help him with his challenges; there's nothing like Silly Mommy Therapy. Lately, we've been doing the "Blow out the birthday candles" game. Max hasn't yet gotten the hang of blowing and controlling his breathing; once he does, sounds and speech should come more easily. So I hold up 10 fingers and ask Max to blow out each "candle," putting my fingers down as he blows and humming the Happy Birthday song. Sometimes Max snorts through his nose, sometimes he lets out a little trickle of air through his mouth, but he's trying and he thinks that game is a laugh riot.
We also like to play "The mommy and the boy in the mirror." (Max has always been fascinated by mirrors; there he is above at nine months admiring his cuteness.) We sit in front of a mirror, both of us staring into it. I say a word and then Max has to repeat the word as we look at each other in the reflection.
What kind of games and play activities have you concocted to help your kids with their challenges? Share your favorites in a comment! I'll randomly pick 10 commenters by midnight on Friday, February 26, and CVS will send each one a $50 CVS/pharmacy gift card (good for online, too). Priceless: all the stuff we can learn from each other.
You know how much I enjoy cruising the aisles of CVS, but I appreciate that place even more since I found out about CVS Caremark All Kids Can. It's a five-year program that's dedicated $25 million dollars to one goal: making life easier for children with disabilities. It supports nonprofits that help kids learn, play and succeed in life, and raises awareness about inclusion. (CVS has other grants programs too.)
All Kids Can regularly partners with major organizations like Easter Seals; this Saturday, Houston's first fully inclusive playground is opening at Eastwood Park thanks to Boundless Playgrounds and funding from All Kids Can. If you're in the area, the grand opening is from 10:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and there will be free face painting, a wheelchair basketball game and free health screenings. I wish there were an inclusive playground near us; do any of you have them?
OK, go ahead, share your bright ideas, therapist mommies! And please leave your e-mail if yours is not on your blog.