Some exercises for visual development do not require any equipment. The finger tracking exercise is one of them and can be performed almost anywhere, including while riding in the car. This exercise is for children who have week visual tracking abilities. Usually these children will skip lines when they read or read better by using their finger to keep track of where they are while they read.
Step by Step Instructions: Finger Tracking.
1. Have the participant face forward. The participant can be sitting, standing on a balance board, standing on two feet or standing on one foot.
2. Instruct the participant to extend their arm at their side and have one finger pointing upward. The arm should make a 90 degree angle with the person's body.
3. The participant is to continue to face forward and move that finger from their side to in front of their face (always keeping the elbow locked). The eyes are to track the finger as it moves through space. The participant is not to move her/his head.
4. The finger is moved back and forth about six times at speed that is comfortable for the individual to track.
5. Next do the same thing with the other arm and finger. Repeat steps 2 to 4.
6. Switch arms and repeat steps 2 - 5 a few more times.
7. Mastery is when the participant can easily track their finger several times without losing focus of the finger while the finger is moving through space at a relatively fast speed. The participant does not move their head.
Time: about 2 or 3 minutes.
Recommended Frequency: Two or three times per day, five or six days per week.
Materials Needed: none (balance board optional).
Pretest Assessment: the participant has trouble with tracking. They compensate by using their finger when they read. They may move their head while they read.
Mastery: is when the participant can easily follow their finger for about two minutes without moving their head and the finger is moving at a fairly fast speed and they can do it at a slow speed.
Additional comments: This is a great exercise to do at times that there is down time. The participant can do it during commercials while watching television. They can do it at the dinner table while waiting for the table to be set.
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