Sample Activities

Wiping a table:
  • Keep what you will need on a low shelf: small flannel cloths and a basket or other place to put the dirty cloths after wiping.
  • Use as little language as possible. When you talk she watches your mouth, but you want her to watch your hands.
  • Find a dirty table and lower yourself to her level.
  • Show how to use a cloth to slowly wipe from left to right.
  • If she stops watching, draw her attention back by showing her how dirty the cloth is after wiping the dusty surface.
  • She won’t be able to watch for too long, so hand over the cloth as soon as her attention begins to wane.
  • Put the dirty cloth in the basket.
  • Invite her to try wiping the table.
  • Stay with her. Do not interrupt, comment, or correct. Let her work for as long as she likes at her own pace.

Once you have been successful with one activity, you can create a sequence for others. If your child can sit well in a child-sized chair, give her a small bowl with a small amount of water, a potato, and a clean nailbrush. Show her how to scrub the potato with the nailbrush, and then go back to cooking while keeping an eye on her progress. If your child ‘finishes’ with that potato, you can change it out for a new one.

You can also show her how to:
  • Wash strawberries in a bowl of water
  • Shell peas
  • Tear lettuce leaves into bite-size pieces
  • Peel and slice a banana using a small spreader knife
  • Peel a tangerine
  • Scramble the eggs using a whisk just her size while you use a large whisk
Every step of the laundry routine invites your child to get involved:
  • She could carry the dirty clothes basket to the washing machine
  • Carry the clean clothes to the bedrooms
  • Place the clean laundry on her low bed
  • Both of you could put the clothes away
If you have clothes that you dry on a rack or clothesline, you can show her:
  • How to use clothes pegs
  • How to help hang wet clothes on a line strung at child height
  • How to feel if they are dry
  • How to unpeg and put them in a clothes basket