Comparisons: Looking for Differences in Nature

By: Linda Steed, PT

Bio: Linda received a B.S. degree and certification in Physical Therapy from the University of Oklahoma in 1974. She has been a licensed Physical Therapist since 1974 and at Little Light House since 1996. Linda was inspired to pursue a career in PT by her father, a polio survivor who faced many challenges and lived a successful life. Working with children with special needs in an orphanage in China in 1995 and a trip to Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan in 1996 where she worked with children with special needs and their families, motivated Linda to serve the students at LLH as a member of the transdisciplinary team and delivering physical therapy services. She was also a foundational leader in developing the LLH’s Global Impact program. She has led 18 trips to teach about working with children with special needs in 6 countries outside of the US. 

Teaching children to explore differences between two or more objects is an important skill for a child’s development. Some children come by it naturally, but most of us are taught beginning at an early age. Often our teachers do not even realize they are doing so. Labeling objects by their size, shape, and color helps us learn to notice the differences between objects. This also helps us to categorize objects by different traits—a skill we all use as we grow up without thinking about it. 

When you are engaging in this type of activity with a child, you can teach so many other important concepts. You can teach color, shapes, size, quantity, and quality. You can also include the physical developmental domains of fine motor, small muscle use in the hands, and large muscle use of the elbow, shoulder, and trunk, and legs. 

Below is a link to an activity that should be easy to do in most environments. Are They Alike? 

Are They Alike? Activity Instructions

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