Category: Finger Exerciser


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Zippering is an activity designed for children with upper mobility, grasping difficulties, or cognitive or learning disabilities to help them learn and practice skills need to zipper using a wide ribbon and bread ties. The act of zippering requires bilateral coordination, finger isolation, open thumb web space, separation of the two sides of the hand (on both hands), motor planning, pinch strength, eye-hand coordination, pincer grasp, and tripod grasp (most often of the non-dominant hand). This do it yourself activity helps build those skills.

Technical Specifications: 

Step One: Gather materials.

  • A wide ribbon
  • Bread ties

Step Two: Pinch the ribbon and slide the bread ties onto the ribbon.

Step Three: Use the ribbon to practice this skill by holding the ribbon down straight and taunt and pinching a bread tie between the thumb and pointer finger. The child can hold the ribbon tightly in a couple of ways: either pin the ribbon to the child's shirt, or have them hold the end of the ribbon under their chin. The latter method allows them to look down while they are completing the coordinated movements, much like zippering requires.

Step Four: Use the other hand to pull the zipper ties all the way up and all the way down the length of the ribbon.


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The OT Toolbox

The OT Toolbox is a website with ideas and tools for teachers, therapists, and parents.