What is it? Using movements of appropriate force, speed, or extent when interacting with task objects (AOTA, 2014, p. S25).

Why is it important? Calibration is a skill necessary for occupations across the lifetime such as: 

  • Bathing/showering (squeezing soap bottles enough to release an appropriate amount of soap, not scrubbing body too hard, etc.) 
  • Toileting 
  • Eating (chewing with an appropriate amount of force) 
  • Feeding (appropriate amount of force to successfully bring food to mouth) 
  • Grooming 
  • Academic performance (writing, cutting, typing) 
  • Driving (not applying too much force to pedals, turning the wheel with appropriate speed and force) 
  • Home management 
  • Opening doors, drawers, and containers (enough force to open/close without slamming) 
  • Play and leisure activities (golf, soccer, basketball, etc.) 
  • Job performance  

5 activities to try at home:

  Dr Laura Mraz and Callibration

1. Jump and land like a feather.  Tip: Tell the child to pretend they are landing gently like a feather or snowflake.

  Dr Laura Mraz and Callibration

2. Heavy work activities.  Tips: Push a piece of furniture from point A to point B; Pull a wagon with objects in it; Help with vacuuming around the house!

  Dr Laura Mraz and Callibration

3. Picking up a glass full of water and carrying it from point A to point B without spilling.  Tip: Use a glass that will not break!

  Dr Laura Mraz and Callibration

4. Egg obstacle course.  Tip: Have the child carry an uncooked egg through an outdoor obstacle course without letting it crack or break!

 Dr Laura Mraz and Callibration

5. Rainbow scratch art.  Tip: Try using aluminum foil to indent art into if you do not have scratch art paper.

References  American Occupational Therapy Association. (2014). Occupational therapy practice framework: Domain and process (3rd ed.). American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 68(Suppl. 1), S1-S48.

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