Tips and Tricks Tuesdays/ Toy Talk- Lap Tray

This isn’t really a specific post about a trick or a toy, but kind of relates to both.   One of my patients where I treat in their home had one of these lap trays in their family room for their kids to play with.  I have loved this item since I saw it, just haven’t gotten around to buying one for my own treatments, but I will now that I finally looked up where to get them.   Most of the lap trays are about 8 inches high, which is a great height for infants and toddlers to work with in sitting or kneeling.  DO NOT try standing on it, from my patient’s experience, it WILL break 🙂

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The Tips and Tricks part– In my clinic we have various low tables that are similar to this, so I use those in the clinic, but with my home patients, this lap table can come in handy.

  • I use this with infants who are learning how to sit on their own.  I expect most infants without developmental delays to at least sit on their own for a few seconds by the time they are 6 months old.   Some of my patients are on the smaller side, and can’t quite reach the floor with their arms to maintain their balance.
  • I use this lap tray to help out these kiddos with decreased balance or who can’t quite reach the floor.  The lap table essentially brings the floor higher up, so now the infant can rest their hands on the table and lean into it a little to help them work on their sitting balance.
  • This allows a child to work on their sitting balance and trunk strength by having to sit more erectly rather than slumping towards the floor as the reach for toys.
  • It can also be useful for infants to begin to play more with toys with both hands, even though they may not be  quite ready to sit by themselves.
  • I also kneel patients at these tables to practice putting weight on their hands and knees without having them be fully face down in the typical crawling position, which can be helpful for infants who aren’t strong enough to hold that position yet.

The Toy Talk part-

  • Once your child can sit independently, this lap tray becomes their very own little desk and workstation!
  • You now have another option other than standing at a table and playing
  • You can also make this a family activity by decorating this table and personalizing it with your child or make it a great take home project for your patients

Various activities you can do at a lap tray:

  • you can work on flipping pages in a book
  • playing with a puzzle
  • stacking blocks
  • playing with different textures like whipped cream or pasta shells, since it’s easy to clean
  • play with iphone/ipad/tablet
  • eating a snack
  • and anything else you want to do!
  • I also love the pockets on the side, which you can use to practice taking out/putting in objects, and my favorite, practicing cleaning up after an activity!

Here’s a link to Amazon’s search results for a “lap tray”

Here’s a link to the one featured above

Here’s an example of a project you can do decorating your lap tray like I discussed above.- Picture below

I have also been told they have these at Michael’s the craft store as well



Categories: Tips and Tricks Tuesdays, Toy Talk

Tags: , , , , ,

5 replies

  1. I’ve also seen these at Michael’s. =)

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  2. I also love to use these for those kids who frequently w-sit!

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  3. I’m an O.T. and I love this idea for sensory , fine motor and crossing midline tasks, you could make roads across the top and use cars or dinosaurs to stomp from one pocket to the other(plow “snow” salt or sugar , smash play dough balls , )

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