I was excited when I saw at that this month’s project was a set of Nesting Baskets. Like I’ve stated in the previous post, these are not an uncommon toy in my house hold. I’m going to do a little education and advocating for a minute.
I have two children; both boys. When my 6 year old was a little over 2 years old he was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder Level 1 High Functioning, Global Developmental Delay, Sensory Processing Disorder, and Speech Delay. Basically they told me that if I would have had a child 10 years ago and got this diagnosis it would have just been Asperger Syndrome. When my 5 year old was almost 3 he was also diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder Level 3 Low Functioning, Global Developmental Delay, Sensory Processing Disorder, and Speech Delay. He is still mostly non verbal.
1-59 children in the United States are diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder; with most being boys. Autism Spectrum Disorder is a neurological disease. There is no cure for it but there are early interventions to help cope and understand daily life. Autism, is a broad range of conditions characterized by challenges that we take advantage of every day as a “Neuro-Typical”- someone with no neurological disorder.
Some of those challenges can be social skills; skills used to communicate and interact with others, both verbally and non verbally, through gestures, body language and our personal appearance. Repetitive behaviors is another challenge. While some flap their hands or wiggle their fingers for no apparent reason, others with verbally use repetitive behaviors. Some even have ritualistic behaviors; almost like people with OCD.
The main challenge in almost all is speech and nonverbal communication. My 6 year old was delayed in his speech till he was 5. He was non verbal and only screamed or squealed till he was about 4. We slowly would get more and more out of him until one day BAM! he was talking to us in conversation. My 5 year old on the other hand is basically non verbal. He can get his needs met by simple 1-2 words, but he can not conversate with you. We still get a lot of mumbling and baby talk out of him.
Nesting Toys, like the baskets we made from last months’ Crochet Surprise Box, are such an amazing tool in so many ways with children in early development. You wouldn’t think such a simple stacking toy would make a impact on development but it does and here is how. Stacking Toys or Nesting Toys help develop fine motor skills and early language skills.
For young children, picking items up and putting them in place helps them learn the skill of intentional grasp and let go. It also helps to teach how to control and position their little fingers. I can remember one of the things that they tested both my boys on is if they can pick up small objects with a pincher grasp. That is fine motor.
Just about any toy will help with early language skills. Nesting/Stacking toys help with a lot of early language skills because you can work on teaching them size comparison (small, smaller, smallest), colors, top/bottom, and counting.
You can also do “Creative Play”. Let them play with the Nesting/Stacking toys how ever your child chooses to. Make sure to engage with them though. Let them make shapes with them, build stuff, stack them upside down, let them roll them on the floor. Again, make sure to engage in play with them. Talk about what they are doing. It gets their little brains moving and thinking. Helps with problem solving and creativity.
Now you can see why these are a very common toy in my household. At one point I think I had 10 different nesting/stacking cup toys. Now I have silent ones! Yay. Below are some FREE patterns to more nesting and stacking toys. I hope you’ll enjoy them and use them to help your little one develop their little brains.
All of these bowls stacked together make a pineapple. How cute is that?!?! Not only can you stack these together, the smallest bowl is actually a little bag/pouch. With my kids that is just a plus. These also have different textures based on the stitches and techniques used.
To make these you will need Red Heart Super Saver – Tea Leaf, Caron One Pound – Sunflower, Vanna’s Choice-Honey. You will also need your 3.75 mm crochet hook and of course the tapestry needle to weave in the ends. The bowls are crocheted in the round with no joining unless otherwise stated. You could probably just carry your colors so you don’t have to cut and weave in so many ends.
She also has a watermelon version of this. Just click the photo below for the Watermelon Nesting Bowls.
These remind me of the basic of basic nesting cup toys. Almost all nesting/stacking toys that you can purchase are in the ROYGBIV coloring. Its the easiest way for kids to learn their colors in my opinion. To this day, if my 6 year old is doing anything with colors, they are sorted or lined up in rainbow color; AND always has to start with red.
To make these 7 rainbow baskets you will need Special DK in red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, and violet. Or any yarn or shade close to rainbow. A crochet hook of your choice; most like to use suggested size by the yarn they are using, a stitch marker, and of course your tapestry needle. The bottom of the baskets are crocheted in the round, the sides will be joined at the end of each round.
I am so glad that I found another shaped nesting baskets. These hearts are adorable. Designer used hers as a candy dish display. She states, “The Large basket will hold two bags of small candies like Conversation Hears or M & M’s. The Medium baskets holds one bag, and the Small holds about half of a bag.”
To make these you will need 3 colors of a worsted weight yarn. Your 5 mm hook, 16-10 gauge craft wire (optional*), and of course your yarn needle. These are made using basic US crochet stitches. *Someone had messaged the designer stating that they used the reverse crab stitch for the last row. Says that it keeps the top sturdy.
I have featured this designer before in previous round up posts. We have the same taste in crochet designs. I’m so glad there is someone out there that has the same taste I do and can design because I haven’t braved that step of crochet yet. She used a fabric yarn that she made herself. She has posted a link on how to do that but also does say you can you use t-shirt yarn. I love the way that these actually do look like ripped up fabric. And the texture, oh man, I see these ones being a hit for early intervention therapies.
To make these you will need your t-shirt or fabric yarn. You will of course need your 9 mm crochet hook and tapestry needle to weave in ends. Baskets are crocheted in the round unless otherwise stated. Pattern uses basic US crochet stitching.
STAY TUNED FOR THE NEXT POST; SEPTEMBER 2019 – CROCHET SURPRISE BOX!