Ahhhh…the nap mat! How I would love to have a mandatory nap time. Perhaps I’ll carry this around with me and when I get tired whip it out and take a nap. Wouldn’t that be awesome!!
This is something I picked up two years ago at the beginning of the school year for Andrew to use during nap time. This year, they had quiet time but not nap time so the nap mat stayed home. As I was setting up a My Obstacle Course and was looking through my closet to see what sort of fun physical, OT- like stuff I could incorporate, I decided that the nap mat would work perfectly!
At the time he was somersaulting everywhere, in fact his preferred mode of transportation in his classroom was by flipping and somersaulting. Having taught for 9 years, I must say I was stumped by that conversation I had to have with his teacher!! Anyways, I decided that his body must be needing this sort of input and incorporated this by using the nap mat as a station, allowing him to somersault his way from one station to the next. He was thrilled and even snuck in a few additional rolls.
As with most things, he eventually moved beyond the somersaulting and on to loving just being upside down. We’d find him hanging like a bat on shelves, something I don’t recall reading about when I read, “What To Expect When You’re Expecting” but then again, most things I’ve encountered with him weren’t in there . I incorporated this as well by using the mat to help him do head stands,
hand stands and wall climbs (He places his hands down on the mat and walks his legs up the wall/door until he is doing a handstand. I’d suggest a door to a closet or something that can be cleaned easily with a Clorox wipe or something similar unless you’d like feet marks up and down your walls :). Speaking from experience here!).
It folds up nicely for storage in our closet and requires only about 1 second of set up time. Gotta love that!!
Engage, Encourage, Empower!