This book was a Christmas gift from my in-laws (along with Downton Abbey boxset and Clarins skin products – spoiled I know). As I'm sure you all know, there are so many books out there and some of them very very expensive. You're never sure if it is worth buying it or not. So when I posted a picture of this book, several people came back asking if it was worth buying – here's my opinion…….
First of all I loved the fact that the book was dedicated to three families “for teaching me how much love and persistence can change a child's life”; this immediately made me warm to the author. Persistence is the key to all our children's successes.
The book is split into 9 sections/chapters.
- Sensory development
- Gross Motor skills
- Fine motor skills
- Social Sense
- School Ready
- Home Activities
- Outdoor Activities
- Adapting Brand-name Games
In the introduction, Tara explains about the “brain library” and how the experiences that we engage in help to refine the skills we need to access throughout life. This introduction made me understand so much more than many other professionals, books, websites etc ever have.
There is then a chapter on “how to” engage your child with the activities, this also includes advice on including peers/siblings.
Each sector has a number of activities and each one of these has the following info:
- Indoor/Outdoor activity
- How to
So for example, Peek a Boo (within communication section) suggests
- equipment – towel
- how – well we all know how to play peek a boo
- purpose – to learn about object permanence, joint attention and social interaction
- why – research has indicated that the concept of object permanence is necessary for first words to emerge.
There are (as advertised) 101 activities but within some activities, there are suggestions for a few variations or extensions of the activity.
Would I recommend?
My son struggles with outdoor activities (would prefer to stay indoors all day at home), he also struggles with home activities (home is for his ipad and xbox) and social sense.
Having looked through these chapters more carefully, I am full of ideas and am actually planning a timetable to introduce some of the activities to him. The outdoor activities start with two activities about outdoors (as an introduction for the child) but I love one of them and that will be our first activity.
What I also love is that this book gives you ideas – how often do you want to try to achieve a goal but don't know where to start? The outdoor activity that I like the idea of is so easily adapted and after an introduction to the game indoors, I have already thought about how I can adapt that to entice him outdoors – knowing my son and what motivates him. I wouldn't have come up with the game myself so this book is really good at getting those creative juices flowing again!
So yes, if you have run out of ideas and need some pointers, this is definitely one to go for.