07 Jun 2022

Occupational Therapy Activities Your Child can try at Home

Xavier has supported children and young people living with disability in Brisbane for over 70 years. Our multidisciplinary approach includes Occupational Therapy which helps children build their independence and confidence in everyday activities.

Xavier’s Occupational Therapists are university qualified and personally dedicated to help improve your child’s quality of life. But therapy doesn’t stop when your child’s session ends. Here are just a few activities you can do with your child at home to support their Occupational Therapy.

  1. Keep them moving

Many children who live with disability face challenges with their physicality or mobility. It’s important to keep them active within their ability and comfort zone. Simple exercises include going for a walk (especially with a pet), stretching, reaching, dancing and so on.

Play is a great way to get any child to exercise without them realising! Playdough and other tactile toys help with sensory regulation and fine motor skills. For a greater challenge, build an obstacle course out of toys and furniture which your child can jump, climb, and crawl through, but make sure it’s tailored to their needs.

  1. Cooking and cleaning together

Simply getting your child to participate in household tasks makes them feel more grown up and independent. You’ll love hearing them say “I helped!”.

Cooking is fun and teaches a great life skill. Physically, the simple act of stirring helps develop fine motor skills. For children with dietary needs it helps them understand the kinds of food they can eat and be open to more options if they helped make it.

Cleaning up together when you’re done helps too, but don’t limit this to just after meals. Include your child in cleaning windows, walls, cars, whatever you need to do. This too will help grow their small muscles, holding ability, and feelings of self-sufficiency.

  1. Make daily tasks fun

Many children dislike bathing. It’s necessary for cleanliness and when it comes to Occupational Therapy it also helps children learn to wash themselves. Make it fun by adding bath toys, colours, or bubbles, so long as your child feels comfortable with these things. Next make a game out of cleaning themselves, for example use soap or colours to show them visually which areas have yet to be washed.

After bath time, bedtime is often a child’s next least favourite time of day. Getting your child ready for bed means helping them wind down and learn emotional regulation, so if they feel comfortable, include plush toys or something similar to help them relax and calm. Reading a book together is great at all times of day, as a wind down activity it not only helps tucker them out but it also builds concentration as well as literacy and learning skills.

  1. Getting creative

Engage your child with activities they probably already love. Let them get artistic by using pencils, crayons, pains, chalks, or even apps on tablets. This helps their fine motor skills, ability to hold and use objects, and also aids their hand-eye coordination. If possible, encourage your child to do activity on a vertical surface such as an easel as this helps develop posture and balance.

For More Information on Occupational Therapy

We provide OT to children and young people with physical and multiple disability throughout Brisbane and the greater Brisbane area, including Logan. Ipswich, Redcliffe and Morton Bay.  For more information on Xavier or our Occupational Therapy services, give us a call on 1800 XAVIER or email us at