I am often approached by teachers who have a student that just can't stop moving. Falling out of their chair, legs all over at the carpet, in peers personal space.... I'm sure you have seen it. There are plenty of reasons why kids are fidgety. Sometimes it's a sensory things and the kid is trying to figure out his body in space. Sometimes it's a core strength thing and the kid is all over the place because he doesn't have the strength to hold a position for more than a few minutes at a time. Regardless, it's frustrating for the teacher, distracting to the other students and probably exhausting for the kid. Anyway, I went to a conference a few years ago (given by Kim Wiggins, who is an awesome presenter and an amazing OT) that suggested using a large cardboard box (like a Xerox paper board) as a kid's "work ship". What a genius idea. You can't get anymore definitive of a "personal space" than a box. The sides give great trunk support AND nice firm pressure for those kids who need a little sensory input. I couldn't get over how simple, yet fantastic of an idea it was. But in my experience, suggesting that a teacher put a kid "in a box" hasn't gone over well. I mean, I know the rationale behind it and totally think it an appropriate classroom modification. But I also get that sitting a kid in a cardboard box seems ridiculous. With this in mind, I was trying to think of some sitting arrangement that served the same purpose, but I guess was a little more "professional" than a cardboard box. Low and behold, someone on Pinterest already had the perfect solution. Check it out. Tupperware boxes like this are $8 at Walmart, come in all sorts of colors and could totally be used as a work center in the classroom. And you can't tell me that the kid wouldn't absolutely love it. Hats off to you, Pinterest chick!
Amanda Atkinson MS; OTR/L
Just your average Type-A mom & overzealous Occupational Therapist