Attention: Blow The Man Down

Focussed Listening & Breathing

This game requires focussed listening skills. and when done in sequence also puts working memory to work. In order to knock down the right pegs, players must discriminate between the words and sounds that they hear, hold them front of mind and concentrate on blowing hard enough to have the pleasure of knocking the pegs over.

Additionally, this game requires the ability to direct breath with force, pushing the air through the straw using the diaphragm (the large bell shaped muscle at the base of the lungs) and the muscles that expand and contract the chest wall to allow the lungs to fill with air. This controlled breathing, respiration is required for speech production and can also aid in calming (we use blowing games often clinically for just this purpose).

Set Up

Collect 5 – 10 pegs. In each peg clip a small piece of paper with sounds, words, numbers or pictures on them.

Stand the pegs on end along the edge of a table, spaced about 13 cm apart.

The game is for your child to listen to sounds you call out (starting with 2 of them) and blow the pegs down in the order you called them out with party favours or straws.


1. You can have your child stand, kneel or squat during the activity.
2. Increase difficulty by choosing words that sound similar – if your child’s frustration tolerance is OK, lose a point for each correct one. Compete with them for added fun.

Also Works On: Oral motor strengthening; visual discrimination; visual scanning; auditory discrimination; working memory; balance; core strength


Activity Materials


You Will Need...

  1. 5 – 10 pegs.
  2. Small pieces of paper with sounds, words, numbers or pictures on them to attach to the pegs.
  3. A table, or flat surface that will allow you to space them about 13 cm apart.