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Therapy putty activities

Therapy putty

Putty can be used to improve movement and strength of the hand, wrist and forearm. It can be formed into various shapes to complete exercises which will be tailored to you by your therapist. The putty must be used as shown. You will be provided with instructions about the number of times you need to complete each of the exercises. The putty is available in a range of colour-coded strengths which your therapists will explain to you. You will start with softer putty and work up to a stronger one, guided by your therapist.

Advice and precautions

  • Wash your hands before and after using the putty to keep it clean and maintain its strength.
  • Place the putty on a clean smooth surface when using.
  • When the putty is stretched too much, it can break down into small pieces. Care should be taken with these, as they can stick to carpets and clothing. To remove fine bits of putty from the surface you are using, dab the area with a large blob of putty.
  • If the putty becomes too warm or sticky, place the putty in its tub and put in the fridge.
  • Keep the putty in its tub when not in use.
  • Do not allow the putty to come into contact with rugs, fabric, hair or clothes as it can stain these materials.
  • Do not eat the putty or leave it near young children or pets.

1 Make your name

6 pictures showing how to make your name out of putty

  1. Roll the putty into a cone shape.
  2. With your thumb and your finger, pinch off small pieces of putty by twisting the narrow end of the cone. Roll these pieces between your thumb and your fingers to make small pea shapes.
  3. Take the pea shapes and roll into long sausages.
  4. Use the long sausage shapes to create your name.
  5. Once you are finished, be careful to gather all of the small pieces and remould them into a ball.

2 Fried eggs

Fried egg shape made out of putty

  1. Split the putty in half. Flatten one piece of putty to make a pancake shape on the table.
  2. Roll the other piece of putty on the table to form a ball, then place this on top of the other piece to make a fried egg.

3 Spaghetti and meatballs

Spaghetti Meatballs

  1. Roll the putty into a cone shape.
  2. With your thumb and your finger, pinch off small pieces of putty by twisting the narrow end of the cone. Roll these pieces between your thumb and fingers to make small pea shapes.
  3. Roll the pea shapes into long thin spaghetti.
  4. Lay the spaghetti on the lid of the putty, then take smaller pieces of putty, roll them into small balls and put them on top of the spaghetti.

4 Snail

Snail Picture

  1. Roll the putty into a sausage shape.
  2. Take one end of the putty and roll it into a shell shape for the snail.
  3. Leave enough for the head of the snail.
  4. Roll two small pieces of putty into sausage shapes to make antennas.

5 Spider


  1. Split the putty in half. Roll 1 piece into a ball.
  2. Roll the other half of the putty into thin sausage shapes, then shape them into legs and attach them to the body.
  3. Shape the ball to make eyes and a mouth.

6 Crocodile

crocodile picture

  1. Use half the putty to make 3 large triangle shapes to form the body and mouth.
  2. Mould a tail, teeth and legs using smaller pieces of putty in triangular shapes.
  3. Roll the putty into two small balls to form the eyes.
  4. Join the pieces together to make a crocodile.

7 Caterpillar


  1. Using half the putty, roll out 6 large balls to form the body.
  2. Roll out 8 smaller balls of putty to form the feet of the caterpillar.
  3. Roll 2 of the balls into sausage shapes to make the antennas.
  4. Join each of the shapes together to make a caterpillar.


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Please note: this is a generic information sheet relating to care at Sheffield Children’s NHS FT. These details may not reflect treatment at other hospitals. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professionals’ instructions. If this resource relates to medicines, please read it alongside the medicine manufacturer’s patient information leaflet. If this information has been translated into another language from English, efforts have been made to maintain accuracy, but there may still be some translation errors. If you are unsure about any of the guidance in this resource or have specific questions about how it relates to your child, always ask your healthcare professional for further advice.

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