Cool Find- Textured Rubbing Plates

My son HATES to color.  He doesn’t see the purpose in it, knows he’s not great at it (getting better since starting OT for fine motor skills) so he literally looks elsewhere while he is coloring.  That said, it is something that I have tried many different ways to make purposeful for him and haven’t been too successful.  While I was at the teacher store (Teacher Heaven), I came across these textured rubbing plates, which are basically plastic pieces the size of a sheet of paper with raised parts so when colored upon, they reveal different patterns and shapes.  I got one package with these three sheets of nature patterns to see if he would be into them but they also make sheets with animal prints.

Textured Rubbing Plates

We tried them out and it worked!  He colored for almost a whole minute, which for us is HUGE!!!

Checking it out- he's interested!! I showed him how to put the paper on top and how it worked by coloring back and forth.

He's coloring! He's not only looking at what he's doing, I think he's even got the right grasp!

Always curious. He has to see how this is working.

This is also something that you could do with other things such as leaves, place mats, coins, corrugated cardboard, etc. – basically anything that has a good texture to it.  If you are like me and like to have things contained, you could create a texture bin to store different textured items that you come across.  This would not only help you store materials for a station activity like this, it could also be part of a station activity where your child chooses 2 or 3 textured items to experiment with and color upon.

2 comments to Cool Find- Textured Rubbing Plates

  • klm

    That he would be interested in doing this makes sense to me.

    When you mention that he normally doesn’t like to color, do you mean just coloring in an outline (coloring in a coloring book), or do you mean he also doesn’t like to draw anything himself with crayons?

    The latter I can see a need to encourage (creating something) but the former I am skeptical as to its value: I don’t actually quite know why coloring (i.e., coloring in a picture) would be viewed as a useful thing to get kids to do–seems like there are more logical ways to develop fine motor skills than merely choosing a color to fill in a picture, and making your coloring stay within the lines. ??

    This exercise, on the other hand, is a lot more interesting than that—-because there is a point to it, using the crayon (or anything like pencil, charcoal) to discover some pattern or image.

  • Obstacle Course Mom

    He has difficulty with writing and has expressed frustration over not being able to “write little.” He needs practice grasping pencils, crayons, etc. along with applying pressure, which is why coloring is something we have tried to incorporate so he could practice both at the same time. I believe coloring in the lines has only to do with helping him get better at controlling the crayon and building his hand muscles. If coloring a picture is an activity I use with him (it rarely is), it would only be for that purpose combined with a little focus work :). I will show other strategies and activities I have come across to build those fine motor skills that don’t involve coloring (like my Thankful for Foil Pans post- using a turkey baster to build fine motor skills- who knew?!?!?!).

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