Yo ho, A Pirate’s Life For Me!

Get on board for our weekly therapeutic activity, featuring PIRATES!!! Yep, we’re creating out own pirate ships using some unlikely equipment. Medical supplies. It’s amazing how creative you can be with some simple tools that at first glance only appear to serve one purpose. Think again! As many child life specialists know, syringes make great water guns, toothettes double as awesome paint brushes, and tongue depressors create a wonderful foundation for a picture frame.

So, what else can you create with medical supplies? Hopefully as this blog continues we will explore the different creative things we can make. As for today, our creation might get a little… large. After seeing a post on Pinterest regarding using medical supplies to create a mini hospital, I tried out the activity with some kiddos. While I presented the idea as “Make your own hospital”, the kids got really creative and made doctors out of the medical supplies. They all turned out so innovative and fun! So I got to thinking, what else can we create? Well, here’s the results of my first round of brainstorming:

Pirate Ship Medical Art

I decided to try and make a pirate ship! Unfortunately the picture doesn’t do the ship justice, because I made this a few months ago and only finally got a chance to snap a picture. So the poor little sailors got a bit deflated. My favorite thing about the ship though was I poked holes through the sides and inserted syringes for the “cannons”. Someone noticed that not only are they cannon-like, but fill them up with water and they shoot like cannons too!

If you guys try this activity out, I do want to note some things. I found that regular markers didn’t work too well on the pink basins, but if I used permanent markers, they didn’t come off. Also regular elmers glue wasn’t the best for sticking things on, especially if the object was heavy. Tacky glue worked much better, but I did notice that after a few weeks the tacky glue came unstuck as well. Next time I try the activity, I’ll be testing out how a glue gun will handle it.

Let me know how this activity works for you guys! I’d love to see your creations! Try it out!

Pirate Ship Activity Notes

Ages: 4 and up (younger children will need assistance)

Materials: any medical supplies, tacky glue (or hot glue gun), permanent markers, tape, and any other loose parts to decorate

Therapeutic Value:
Creativity
Expression
Normalization
Medical Play/Exploration
Legacy Building

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