Saturday, June 29, 2013

Lap Boards

Since I am doing alternative seating this year, I will only have table space for about 12 out of 20 kids.  *GASP!* Where will the other sit to do their work?!  Why the floor of course!

I took it upon myself to take a little trip to Home Depot last week to see what I could find to make my own lap boards (since I will not be buying anything fancy).  I asked an employee where I might find shower board, since I knew that that is what they used to make our white boards at school.

Here it is called "Thrifty White Panel Board.  Thrifty indeed!
I found the stuff, and at $13.65 for a board the size of one of our big white boards at school it was pretty cheap.

I explained to the employee that I needed these to make lap boards for school because I am a teacher (magic words, you'll find) and he was more than happy to cut them to whatever size I needed. Happy day!

He cut them 12 x 18 inches.  Even an adult could use these! :)

I got a solid 15 boards that were exactly 12x18, then an extra 5 more that were like a fraction of an inch off, then an extra little guy that I don't know what his dimensions are.  I'll be keeping 8 of them, and giving the rest to another teacher in my school.  Oh, and I'm sure this goes without saying, but they can be used as dry erase boards too.

Another thing worth mentioning...

At the Daily 5 conference that I attended last month, The Sisters said that having kids lie on the floor using a lap board to write works wonders for kids with underdeveloped fine motor skills.  These are typically the kids that have great gross motor skills (typically highly active boys) that try to use the larger arm muscles to make up for their little hand muscles.  The result is very sloppy handwriting and fleeting stamina.  Here is what they said to do:

Have the child use a lap board and lay them on their stomach with their paper and lap board out in front of them.  Have them prop themselves up on their elbows, and let them write like that.  This way, their elbow acts as an anchor, forcing them to rely on the smaller hand muscles that they clearly need to develop.

The sisters say that it may take a week or two, but they will progress so much faster than if they were sitting at a desk doing drill after handwriting drill.  Sounds good to me!

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