The child uses a Kenyan coffee scoop to transfer corn kernels.

Transferring corn kernels with a spoon

Transferring corn kernels with a spoon

Roberta Frosolini


The child enjoys an exploration of African artifacts whilst practicing transferring with a scoop.



  • eye-hand co-ordination
  • fine motor control
  • left-to-right eye movements
  • independence




  • Two hand-carved wooden bowls
  • Corn kernels
  • Coffee scoop (or any other type of spoon)
  • Tray


Give the presentation in silence. Use appropriate terms only if the child asks you to, i.e. coffee scoop, spoon, corn kernels.

Control of Error

Visual (spillage) and auditory


The scoop for transferring may be placed between the bowls, eliminating the need to point its handle left- or rightwards for a left- or right-handed child.

Pick up the coffee scoop using a tripod grip of your dominant hand, securing with the other hand the bowl and its corn kernels.

Transfer the corn kernels from one bowl to the other by moving the coffee scoop across the tray.Repeat this action until all the grains have been transferred, then replace the coffee scoop on the tray. Pick up any kernels you may have spilled only at the end of your presentation and place them into the full bowl. Reverse the bowls so that the activity is ready for the child to use.


Offer the child opportunities to closely examine a variety of African artifacts through activities such as polishing wood. We have used Tanzanian serving spoons to help children practice the skill of polishing.

Further Challenges

The child may use, according to their abilities, a variety of utensils & serving dishes which may vary in size, such as a mustard or spice spoon.