Identifying Individual Facial Features on a Mr. Potato Head Toy

Excerpted from Everyday Activities to Promote Visual Efficiency: A Handbook for Working with Young Children with Visual Impairments by Ellen Trief and Rona Shaw

A Fun Activity for Children 12 to 18 Months Old Who Are Blind or Low Vision

Goal: The child will look at or point to specific facial features on a Mr. Potato Head toy.

Materials: Mr. Potato Head toy

In the Child’s Environment: This activity can be done anywhere and anytime the child is ready to play and learn. To make practical relevant to the real world, ask the child to point to facial features of a parent or caregiver.

Procedure: Seat the child upright at a table with a tray in front of your child.

  1. Introduce the child to a Mr. Potato Head toy with all the features on the head.
  2. Consider placement of Mr. Potato Head, position it in the child’s optimal field of vision.
  3. Show the child where all of the features are located by pointing to them as you identify them. Include verbal language by saying, “Here are the eyes,” “Here is the nose,” and so forth.
  4. Ask the child to point to one facial feature at a time, as you identify them by name.
  5. If the child points to the wrong feature or does not respond to the prompt, use hand-under-hand instruction to direct the child’s index finger to the correct facial feature.
  6. Finally, Repeat this process until the child points to all of the facial features independently.