Thursday, April 25, 2013

The Power of the Potato!

Who doesn't love Mr. Potato Head?! You can dress him up as you please, over and over again!
But, did you know, that what seems like play, is really a lot of work for a child?
Mr. Potato Head fosters imagination, ideation for putting parts to whole and even body awareness and a sense of self?

Mr. Potato Head is a timeless toy that has many therapeutic benefits!
The child must have an idea of where the body parts go in relation to the other parts.

The choice of different body parts allow for individuality, which may lead to improved self-esteem.

Accessorizing fosters creativity and also may help contribute to self-identity and self-esteem.

And, don't forget about the fine motor and visual motor coordination that it takes to assemble all of the parts into the holes!

We often use self-portraits in therapy, to gauge a child's body awareness and cognitive skills. Today, we started with a "before" portrait as shown below. We then spent about ten minutes with therapeutic interventions that provided the child with proprioceptive input, followed by playing with Mr. Potato Head.  The child was then asked to draw a picture of herself.  What a difference!
The child was asked to draw a picture of herself.

After therapeutic intervention and play, including Mr. Potato Head, this was her self-portrait. 

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