5 Fun Outdoor Toys That Strengthen Fine Motor Planning, Social Skills, Sensory Processing, and More

pediatric occupational therapist who works with younger children have the in-depth knowledge and understanding of the type of skills children need to interact with their daily environment. Children need to be able to negotiate their school, home and outdoor play. Playing with outdoor toys is a great way to help children with sensory processing and other challenges improve their cognitive, social, physical and emotional development.

Being able to physically interact with outdoor toys encourages a continuum of:

  • Grasping toys
  • Swatting at toys
  • Manipulating toys
  • Reaching for toys

Five outdoor toys your child will have fun playing with that can also help strengthen their fine motor skills and more include the following.

For those children constantly thriving movement, the Swurfer swing is the ideal choice. It helps provide sensory input and improves skills like:

1. Swurfer Swing

  • Coordination
  • Motor planning
  • Organization

The swing also helps increase trunk control and strength.

2. Play Barrel

Children push, roll and climb through and over the outdoor play barrel. It encourages gross motor development, motor planning and socialization.

3. Big Bubble Maker

Children love bubbles and the larger the bubbles, the more engaged they are. The big bubble maker helps work on motor planning, bilateral coordination and organizational skills. It's a great way to work on the improvement of regulation and modulation since children have to be focused and slow while they make bubbles.

4. Jungle Jumparoo

The Jungle Jumparoo is a three-in-one toy designed for kids two years old or older. It's a bouncing, climbing and swinging toy that helps improve overall body endurance and strength. It also encourages social and language skills while offering a lot of sensory input since children can do it with siblings or friends.

5. Rockin Roll Top

With the Rockin Roll Top, children can climb all over the giant, colorful cap which helps develop socialization, balance and gross motor skills. The cap is like a climbing surface and rocker boards. You can pull the stem out to act as a seat or bolster roll. It's a great all-ages sensory tool.

Remember, children should be playing with age-appropriate toys (whether in the home or out), and they should also be supervised when playing with these and other toys.

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