I have seen this activity in several places, and decided to try it. It is a tennis ball with a mouth cut into it. You squeeze the ball to open the mouth, and feed objects into the mouth.
First, you take a new, clean tennis ball and make a slit in it using an exacto knife. This part of the activity must obviously be done by the therapist (it is hard to cut through the tennis ball).
Then you can draw a face on the ball, or you can have the client draw a face. The mouth needs to be drawn around the slit.
The mouth balls that were done by these kids turned into vampires. They will need interesting things to feed into their mouths.
When the ball is squeezed, the mouth opens, and objects can be put in its mouth. It takes strength to squeeze the ball enough for the mouth to open, and bimanual hand use to put objects in at the same time.
They had a lot of fun making these balls, and the vampire thing was completely the kids’ idea.
- Tennis ball
- Exacto knife
- Small objects to put in the mouth
- Hand strength
- Fine motor skills
- Bimanual hand use
- Perceptual motor
- Motor planning
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