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Lessons from
Your Everyday
Research notes that when learning activities are completed during your regular routines and
activities, the skills learned are functional and meaningful for everyone involved (Kashinath,
Woods, & Goldstein, 2006). There are many opportunities to embed adaptive {self-help},
cognitive {pre-academic/academic}, language {listening and speaking}, motor {large
muscles, small muscles, mouth muscles}, and social/emotional {relationships, feelings,
regulation} skills in tasks that you complete every day such as bath time, changing diapers,
and meals! Life gets busy and we all don’t necessarily have time to sit and play with our
child every day; yet, there are plenty of opportunities to “work” with our children during the
tasks that we have to get done. Below are some ideas. Have fun!
Adaptive {SelfHelp Skills}:
“What Happened?”
In order to start preparing for potty training, verbally identify what occurred
in the diaper.
Practice Body Parts:
[1] Name body parts and encourage your child to point to them on his/her
own body or your body.
[2] Point to a body part on your child or yourself and ask him/her to name
the body part (i.e., “What is this?”)
[3] Name a function of a body part (“What do you see with?”) and have your
child point to or name the correct body part.
Play the Imitation Game:
Model oral motor movements (e.g., smacking lips, pucker lips, stick out
tongue, making sounds) and encourage your child to do the same.
Complete Simple Exercises:
Since your child is most likely lying on his/her back, prompt them to pull his/
her knees to the chest, do sit-ups, or imitate large body movements that you
do (e.g., moving arms up and down, kicking feet).
By Caryn Martin, Developmentalist