Grand Boxes

My Grandmother and Gum Wrapper Goblets

Some of my favorite childhood memories are about my grandmother using common things she combined with a little imagination to create moments I can't forget!  I can tell you about hundreds of little moments she used to connect with me and share perspective as I grew up. I outgrew my toys but the everyday objects she used are often daily reminders of her love and encouragement. Even though she passed away 27 years ago, those connections and perspectives have helped me overcome loneliness, confusion, and doubts that come along with being an adult. 

Although I only share most of these with my own kids, it is this same imagination and connectedness that fuels Grand boxes for grandparents, foster parents, and aunts and uncles to use with the kids they love! The idea is that these items remain boxed up (in a 6x9x4 inch box) and put away until an anticipated visit. On the day prior to arrival, the adult can select one or some activities to use while the child is there.  These activities are chosen to have maximum get-to-know you power in a minimal timeframe, with minimal space, and all while adults are seated!

Relationally, the concepts use memory associations tying joy filled moments to common items you both are likely to see throughout life. As distance and time separate, seeing that item will cause you to think of time with each other and shared values and beliefs  (i.e. God loves you and so do Iā€).  For this reason, an optional Scripture card is included. The key to memory association is repetition of such phrases or pondering during play with that item!  These allow the adult to privately ponder God during play or discuss with the child when feeling lead.  

Functionally they build problem solving skills which help both child and adult to use available items to create solutions.  The more ways you and your child imagine to use the items in this box, the more you will enhance neural pathways and strengthen perseverance, creativity, and contentment. 

Both GRAND Box 1 & 2 are available year round!  They each contain over 20 activities. You select and play only one activity at a time often with only one item from the box each time. Seven individual PLA cards list the Items Needed, Key developmental Targets in cognition and /or communication, and the Steps for PLA. The back of the cards offer Extended PLA Options to lengthen the activity, simpler alternative  options for younger kids, or to initiate conversation with older tweens &teens.  

Keep the items boxed together to play during repeat visits to build traditions and see how your child has grown.  

Grand Box 1 -for use with children 9 months-11 years

This box utilizes household items like a ticking timer, hand towel, ball, magnets, and dice to connect memories to laughter and love! There are over 30 options included in this box.  Night-time anxiety, excess energy and memory are addressed with some of the activities.  The optional Scripture Cards focus on the character of God.

Grand Box 2- for use with children 10-adulthood

This box moves deeper into memory, strengthening both the aging cognition of the Grandparent and developing cognitions of Grandchildren. There are activities for the adults to do alone for memory efficiency and maintenance even when family is not visiting.  A strong memory is a gift to younger generations and exercising it often helps to do just this! Individual favorites and life stories are elicited to deepen relational connections and there are activities  to do with older teens via phone or text. Antique toys and modern toys are utilized and shared as generations learn from one another through using this box. The optional Scripture Cards focus on one generation sharing the goodness of God with another generation.

PLA Well generation to generation!