Friday, April 20, 2012

Pincer Grasp App - Chalk Walk

There was a new app released this week for the iPad titled Chalk Walk ($3.99).  It states that it helps children develop the pincer grasp.  After testing out this app, it does encourage the use of a pincer grasp in children.  It goes through various levels of visual motor patterns for a child to follow.  You have to bring the blue and yellow circles together using the thumb and index finger in order to move along the path.  The child collects various puzzle pieces to spell a word.

The 6 year old child I observed using it did use a pincer grasp while following the path rather than a typical touch with the index finger.  It was a little hard at times but in general she could do it maintaining the pincer grasp.  If you do not maintain it you can not follow along the path.   She preferred to watch the object go along the path and then trace.  It is a hard to immediately follow the path because if you are right handed your hand blocks the path.  The child enjoyed the video play back feature where you can watch what you just drew.

If the child has longer fingernails or bigger fingers it was hard to maintain the pincer grasp and the older children had to use the index and middle fingers to follow the path.

Overall, a nice alternative for younger children to the typical tracing apps since it does require a pincer grasp.

More information on Chalk Walk.  


Nan Jay Barchowsky said...

Sounds like a neat app, driven no doubt by the way we use enlargements and reductions on adult apps.

Because we aim for a relaxed hand, I dislike the words, "pincer"and "grasp." How about pen hold, pencil hold, or even writing instrument hold?

Nan Barchowsky

Anonymous said...

So Smart, love this idea!

Your Therapy Source Inc said...

Yes it is similar to reducing images on the iPad screen except you have to keep your fingers together in order for it to work. I see your point about the word grasp insinuating force. But when referring to pincer grasp it does not only refer to holding a pencil. It refers to holding (grasping) any object with the thumb and index finger. It helps to distinguish how an individual grasps an item. Thanks for your comment.

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