Monday, July 15, 2013

7 Day Work Task Challenge - Day 1: Developing Functional Fine Motor Skills

Recently, I received a book entitled Visual Support for Children with Autism SpectrumDisorders: Materials for Visual Learners by Vera Bernard-Opitz and AnneHaubler.   As I skimmed through the book, I quickly realized it was time for me to create some new work tasks. So with the book as my inspiration, I am taking on a "7 Day Work Task Challenge".

For the next seven days, I will create and share a new task.  The stipulations are: think cheap, use household materials, and keep it compact enough to fit in this storage system. 

Task Box Organization

As you may have learned from earlier posts, I store my tasks in plastic shoe box containers. In an effort to save room, I store as many tasks as possible in each box.   Then, I label each box with what it contains and the purpose of the tasks in the box like fine motor, math, literacy, social, etc.   I also work to make each task represent a variety of levels so that it can be used by several students to work on multiple concepts and skills.

Task Box Labeling

Without further ado, here's my first task of my 7 Day Work Task Challenge!!  My inspiration is on page 60 of the Visual Support book captioned "7. Opening and closing shampoo bottles". The image shows four shampoo bottles placed inside holes cut into the lid of small box.  I modified the task to include a few more trials by using smaller lids from travel-size containers.

My son and I basically raided our kitchen and bathrooms for random lids, everything from ketchup bottles, lotions, shampoos, and dried out acrylic paints.  I hot glued the lids we collected to the top of a box.  Next, I used a thin screw driver to poke holes through the box under each lid opening. I also placed a small cup on one side of the box to store dowels in.  Finally, I cut up a thin dowel to add a "put in" or "take out" element to the task.  

The task is simple yet it contains two skill levels.   In the more basic skill level,  the student removes the dowels from each lid, place it in the cup, and close each lid.

The more advanced skill requires the student to open each lid and place a dowel inside it. 

For both skill levels, the student knows when he/she is finished because either all the dowels are either in the cup or in the lids. This task is a great way to work on the functional fine motor skill of opening and closing containers.

It's amazing how one small image can inspire an entire task box!!  I would love to see and hear how you make this task or what it inspires for you.

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