Re-Creative Resources
By Kimberly Grandal, BA, CTRS, ACC, Executive Director
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Executive Director
Re-Creative Resources
About Kim

Kimberly Grandal, Founder
and Executive Director of Re-
Creative Resources, Inc., is a
strong advocate for the field of
Therapeutic Recreation and
Activities, with over fifteen
years of experience working
with the elderly in numerous
management and consultant
positions.  She is an Activity
Consultant Certified and a
Certified Therapeutic
Recreation Specialist. Kim is a
member of the New Jersey
Activity Professionals
Association and the New
Jersey/Eastern Pennsylvania
Therapeutic Recreation

In 1990, Kim graduated from
William Paterson University
with a BA in Sociology and
later studied gerontology
courses at Union County
College and Therapeutic
Recreation courses at Kean
University. Throughout her
career, Kim has been the
Director of Therapeutic
Recreation for several long-
term care facilities, including
one of NJ’s largest.

In 2006, Kim founded Re-
Creative Resources Inc. She is
a speaker for various state and
local activity associations such
as NJAPA, MOCAP, and
NJACA, as well as the Society
of Licensed Nursing Home
Administrators of NJ. She also
offers lectures for Re-Creative
Resources Inc., local colleges,
and community groups, and
provides consultation and
support to numerous facilities
in the state.

Kim is the editor and writer for
the “The Rec-Room", a
monthly newsletter published
by her company. In addition,
she writes monthly articles for
the Activity Directors Office
newsletter, and has contributed
articles to Creative Forecasting
Magazine, and The
Continuing Care Insite

Kim is a recipient of the
Kessler Institute of
Rehabilitation 1997 Triumph
of the Human Spirit Award.  
Her passion is to promote the
field of Therapeutic
Recreation and Activities and
to unite Recreation Therapists
and Activity Professionals. Kim
currently serves on the NJAPA
board as the Chairperson for
the Legislation Committee.
Resources Inc.

Re-Creative Resources, Inc. is
committed to enhancing the
lives of long-term care
residents through the use of
Therapeutic Recreation. We
provide a variety of services
such as Therapeutic
Recreation seminars,
in-services, resources, form
development, program analysis
and development,
consultation, and support for
activity professionals and
recreational therapists. A
selection of downloadable
training materials and forms
are available for your
convenience as well as a free
job posting site.
Subscribe to Kimberly's Newsletter
See Kim's You-Tube videos (Click Here)
Meaningful One to One Activities
By Kimberly Grandal, CTRS, ACC/EDU

Meeting the individual quality of life needs and interests of residents in long term care
facilities is quite the challenge for Activity Departments. Many residents require one to
one interventions for various reasons such as cognitive impairments, severe physical
limitations, health conditions and sometimes, choice. Activity staff, volunteers, family
members, visitors, and other health care providers can provide one to one activities that
are meaningful to each resident.  When offering one to one activities it’s important to
note the following:

  • One to one activities involves two people (resident and staff, peers, family and/or
  • The intervention depends on the needs and interest of the individual (should
    reflect the comprehensive assessment)
  • Try to visit the same time and day
  • Don’t just visit; have something prepared
  • Document resident’s response to visit
  • With some creativity and adaptation, most group activities can be offered on a
    one to one basis

Here are some great ideas for one to one programming.

Activity A-la-Carte
Create a cart filled with a variety of recreational activity supplies and equipment such as
word puzzles, books, magazines, current newspaper, trivia, reminiscing materials, craft
projects (tip: create individual craft kits which includes all the necessary supplies to
complete the project and put in a zip-lock baggie), sensory kits, a variety of balls, rhythm
stick, CD player with extra CD's, table games and puzzles of various sizes and difficulty,
manipulatives, etc.

Adapted Physical Games, Sports and Exercise
Residents who do not participate in group activities, often are not provided or offered the
opportunity to participate in physical games, sports or exercise. For residents who are
interested, offer 1x1 exercise and range of motion. Also for sports and physical games,
you can motivate residents to participate in a One-One Sport's Competition. Choose a
sport or adapted physical game such as bowling, basketball, horseshoes, beanbag
toss game, etc. and keep score for each resident. Afterwards, announce the winner and
give a ribbon or certificate. Or have a cart filled with a variety of adapted sports and call it
the “SportsMobile”.

Art Cart
Fill a cart with a variety of arts and crafts supplies and equipment. Don’t forget sample
finished projects and directions on how to complete the projects. Be sure to have large
variety of adapted equipment such as dycem, adapted scissors, large eyed needles, a
clamp to hold projects, lacing cards, sponges for painting, large handled paint brushes,
and so on.

A bookmobile is primarily an independent activity in which residents choose a book or
other reading material from a traveling cart of books. When finished, the resident
returns the borrowed item. You can turn this into a one to one activity simply by
spending some time with the resident and doing a book or literature review. Ask the
resident if they liked the book. Who their favorite character was. Least favorite character,
the ending, etc. Download a free Lending Library form at
com/freeforms.htm which could be used for your Bookmobile as well.

Fitness Trail
Ask the Physical Therapist for 10 simple range of motion or stretching activities, with
accompany directions and picture. Make each station as attractive as possible, frame
and hang in a hallway. The Fitness Trail may be utilized by all facility staff, family
members, volunteers and the residents. It can be a scheduled activity or a spontaneous
one. You may want to incorporate the Fitness Trail into restorative programs and/or
therapy as well.

Individualized Sensory Kits
Create individualized sensory kits for those who benefit from sensory stimulation. Ask
family members to gather important and familiar items including favorite music, an
award/trophy, family photos, favorite cologne or perfume, knick-knacks or memorabilia,
anything that the resident really treasured and enjoyed in the past. Please inform family
members that the items may get lo. make copies o family photos or even have the
family take a picture of an item they they do not want to bring in for fear of losing. Try to
create kits that include items for all six senses (sight, sound, touch, taste, smell,
movement)   Read, Sensory Kits and Themes at

Individualized Reminiscing Kits
This is similar to the Individualized Sensory Kits above but focuses more on residents
with little to no cognitive impairment. Family photos, family videos, scrapbooks,
memorabilia, knick-knacks, travel photos, etc. are great for this type of kit.

Multi-Sensory Cart
More and more facilities are creating Snoezelen Rooms or multi-sensory rooms. You
can bring the multi-sensory experience to the resident anywhere in the facility, whether
it's in a resident's room, a corner in the hallway, the day room, etc. You do need a quiet
area that can be darkened, however for the intervention to be most successful. There
are several traveling-type Snoezelen carts, and multi-sensory carts available on the
market now. You can also make your own by stocking a sturdy cart with aromatherapy
supplies, soothing sounds, a water panel or bubble tube, a projector, flavored lip
balms, scented lotions, textured objects, etc. Caution: be sure to securely mount bubble
towers, water panels, etc. for they may tip over easily and create a big mess! (I know
from experience). Some great resources include:
  • Flaghouse  (official Snoezelen equipment which is a trademark of Rompa
  • TFH Fun and Achievement (multi-sensory equipment)
  • Nasco Activity Therapy (multi-sensory equipment)
  • Abilitations (multi-sensory equipment)

There are various types of photomurals available on the market. Many of them can be
placed on a wall or on some type of portable, rolling device. These murals are often
scenic and are a great way to stimulate a resident, promote solace, spirituality and
peace. Bedscapes Healing Environments are beautiful fabric photomurals with
accompanying CD soundscapes. Bedscapes bring nature's restorative benefits to the
patient's bedside for comfort, peace and relaxation and are a wonderful resource for
individual and group activities. Murals can be attached to privacy curtains and walls.

Portable Fish Tanks or Aquariums
Some Things Fishy sells an aquarium on wheels called the Rolling Sea. It has some
great features and can be rolled from resident to resident. Most facilities have a fish
tank or aquarium in the lobby, and sometimes in the day rooms. Having a fish tank that
is mobile can be quite simulating  or relaxing for various residents. Consider a product
like the Rolling Sea or ask the maintenance department if they can mount a small fish
tank to a cart.

"Take Out" Cooking
Perhaps there is a resident that has enjoyed cooking or baking in the past, but doesn't
enjoy group activities. Well, bring the cooking right to his/her room. Many facilities have
a toaster oven, convention oven, break machine, popcorn popper, waffle maker,
blender, etc. These appliances are easy enough to put on a cart and bring to a resident
in his/her room. Be sure to discuss with the resident what he/she would like to cook or
bake and bring all the ingredients. You may want to try to keep the cook times brief
though, unless a volunteer, staff or family member is available for safety reasons.

Traveling Tunes
Set up a cart with a variety of music, CD's, casettes, CD/cassette player, ipods or
walkman's, headphones, etc. Visit residents who enjoy music. Be sure that you have
the specific type of music that the residents enjoy. Traveling Tunes can also be done
with live music such as a keyboard (on a cart), guitar, accordion, etc.

Trivia Contests
This is similar to the adapted physical game contest, but includes trivia questions
instead. Give the resident a point for each correct answer and tally up the points. Give a
certificate or trophy to the person with the most points.

The most important part is to create one to one activities and interventions that are of
interest to each person. Having a well-planned, well-researched program of one to one
activities will help you greatly enhance the quality of life for your residents.