backyard therapy: catch, count, sort the fishies

Catch, Count, Sort the Fishies 


  • Multicolored foam fishy shapes
  • Laminated solid colored paper (I should have used blue for water) or a solid colored tray.  It is important for Trevor (who is ADHD hence extraordinarily distractable) for the "pond" to be a solid (read: not busy) color.  This helps him stay focused on the task at hand rather than asking "i(short i)sss" (what's this) for every single thing. 
  • Chopstix - fishing pole 
  • String - attach to pole as your fishing line
  • Small magnet - tie this onto the end of the pole as your Fishie bait 
  • Stapler - I found I needed to add at least four staples per Fishie to help Trevy catch them
  • Sibling (if available. if not try bribing a friend's :) - to help with all the assembly.  This is a two-fold benefit.  Less work for me.  And Heart Shaping for them. 
  • A quiet place and a peer model to demonstrate.  I just so happen to have given birth to a couple peer models for Trevy.  They come in very handy for just this sort of thing too.   

  • Fine Motor development
  • Color Reconition
  • Counting Skills 
  • Sorting 
  • Receptive & Expressive Language development.  "Catch the green Fishy" - promotes receptive speech.  "What color Fishy did you catch?" - promotes expressive speech
Trevy FYI:
  • We have introduced the concept of colors but he doesn't seem to understand yet.  Abstract ideas will come more slowly for him. 
  • We have also introduced the idea of counting.  Again...he doesn't quite get it.  When I ask him to count such n' such he will say "twwwo".  So the idea is in there....

      We started by having Bristel demonstrate how to catch a Fishy.

      Trevy then had his turn; however, it is impossible to snap pictures without an extra set of hands.
      Mine are busy Hand Over Handing with him. 

       I originally had just one staple per Fishy.
      It worked for the peer model.  In fact, she was a Fishy catching shark.

      Trevy...not so much.  

      I quickly realized it was too challenging for his current fine motor skills (20-24 months).  So I immediately improvised and added four staples to each fish. 

      I think this would have given him more success.  And more success would have prompted a longer (than 60 seconds) attention span.  However, between the failed first attempt and the time it took to improvise...

      Trevy ghosted outta the room onto Daddy's (Sunday napping) lap.  Where he flashed me cheeky grins without budging every time I asked him to come try again.    

      Oh well...

      maybe you'll have more luck?! 

      I'm participating in love2learn2day's blog hop


      Sophie's Story by Elaine said...

      I wish we were neighbors...so I could borrow your backyard therapy tools. Or better yet, just send Sophie over ;)

      By the way, Sophie has ZERO attention span when it comes to working her fine motor skills. But I think Bri would be HUGE motivation for her. Any houses for sale in your neighborhood?

      happy's mommy said...

      I would take her at least one day a week! But you'd have to keep Tobes and Bri. ;)

      I think the attention span is directly linked to ability and/or amount of effort needed. The harder it is for him...the less he's interested.

      And btw...there are SEVERAL houses for sale in my 'hood...