Help Them Visualise The Day Beforehand
Another idea that some parents find useful is to make a booklet with pictures of Christmas trees, decorations and Christmas food to help your child visualise what might happen on the day. However, its best to take care as if your child is very literal, as they may become anxious if your own Christmas does not look exactly like it does in the photographs.
If your child is worried about Christmas, you can help them share their concerns by using a worry toy or writing down their feelings in a worry book.
What Are Fidget Toys
One of the most common sensory products or sensory tools is a fidget toy. Essentially, a fidget toy is a small toy, that fits in one hand and that you can fidget with. Fidget means to make small movements with the hands. Fidget toys are popular for children with autism. Furthermore, fidget toys can also combine more than one sense even though they are handheld, they can combine what a child feels, holds , hears, sees, and even smells. Thus fidget toys are sensory toys. Finally, fidget toys can help a child with autism stay calm or be focused on learning.
A common DIY fidget toy or do-it-yourself fidget toy is to fill a balloon with flour or cornstarch and tie the end. It makes a squishy, fun toy. Of note is that it is also quiet and inexpensive! Children, including children with autism, will enjoy making their own fidget toys like this.
One of the most commonly purchased fidget toys in recent times is a fidget spinner. It involves the senses of vision , proprioception or movement , and even sound .
Did you know that there are adult fidget toys too? Adults also use things other than toys to fidget. Adults might jiggle coins or keys in a pocket. Hold a pen or pencil and move it around in their hands.
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Christmas Can Be A Magical Time But If Someone In Your Family Is On The Spectrum Theres Extra Pressure To Get It Right These Simple Pointers May Help:
Wishing you a very merry Christmas and happy New Year!
Autism v Autistic As an organisation that support people who have autism / are autistic, we recognise that different individuals and groups in these communities have different preferences for this description. Autism Together uses both descriptions, often using the terminology of the original source or that which we consider most appropriate to its context
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Be Flexible With Your Expectations
Often times we have expectations with how the holidays will go that we dont even stop to think about.
The kids will get there and give hugs and kisses to all the grandmas and grandpas and aunties and uncles, then theyll run off to start happily playing with their cousins. When its time to open presents there will be tons of excitement and joy as the kids all happily rip off the paper to see what goodies are inside.
These expectations may be way off base when youre considering an autistic child.
Letting an autistic kiddo set the pace for certain interactions is going to mean less meltdowns and less headache for everyone.
Maybe theyll give high fives to family instead of a hug, or maybe they just need their space.
Try to be okay with whatever way they show affection, or even if you cant tell theyre showing it at all.
Opening presents in a house full of excited kids can be overstimulating for everyone, let alone autistic kids.
Understand that your autism-friendly Christmas may include the child opening presents one at a time slowly over the night and not in one chaotic free-for-all.
Calming Autism Sensory Led Light Projector Toy Relax Blue Night Music Projection
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- Make sure this fitsby entering your model number.
- This product reproduce the sparkling sea and allows you to feel as immersed in the deep sea calm
- Projects relaxing water waves on the ceiling for a soothing bedtime effect
- With this lamp can achieve a sense for physical and mental relaxing effect
- Relaxing multicolor LED mimic the movement of ocean waves
- Material: Plastic
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Decorate At Your Own Pace
While my children love to put up yards of tinsel, fairy lights and anything else they can distribute round the house or cram onto the tree, for lots of autistic people this sudden burst of colour and light can cause a serious amount of sensory overload. If this is a challenge for you then decorate the house as slowly as you need to. Displaying Christmas cards as they arrive is a great way to start celebrating gradually, and using paperchains instead of tinsel can really reduce the amount of sparkling light your child has to process.When it comes to the tree, consider making the fairy lights static rather than twinkly or alternatively dont have lights at all, and instead make your own decorations that you can add to year after year.
Gift Ideas For Autistics Adults
1. ASK THEM. Many times, people are more alike than different. We may communicate differently and learn differently, but inside we all have likes, dislikes, and wishes. So whatever is hot and trendy with all teens, whether it be a book, movie, video game, music chances are a teen with autism may enjoy it too. Just ask them. Like many other things, you can adapt. So if a girl wants to read the Twilight series but struggles with reading, get the book on CD or audio. Get a gift card for clothing at their favorite store or take them shopping.
2. Amazon Echo Dot-I am adding this new this year. I just heard from so many parents how this is a perfect gift for teens. And every holiday season, they offer one model for under $30! There are so many uses for this, especially in a special needs household. We use ours all the time.
4. Clock that is a Phone Charger-I like this clock! We have one. And for many reasons, it is a great gift idea for teens with autism or other disabilities. First, it is a clock and you can set multiple alarms on it. I like this for the kid who struggles with executive functioning skills such as time management in the morning. You can set one clock for a wake-up time, and another for you should be out of the shower and dressed time. Then, its also a charging dock. For the kid who likes to take his device to bed with him at night, no more struggles of where to keep it while they are sleeping.
21. Audiobooks A great idea for struggling readers.
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Best Toys For Autistic Children Of All Ages
November 13, 2019gift guide
As a company that creates toys and weighted items popular with autistic children, were often asked for recommendations regarding Christmas, Hanukkah, and birthday gifts. For example, one of our favorite practical tools for nonverbal communicators is our Tiny Talker, which can become essential for daily life.
We love having these discussions with customers and friends, and thought that perhaps others would have similar questions. With no further ado, please enjoy what we believe are some of the best toys for autistic children of all ages.
Sensory Fidget Toys Set 54 Pcs Relieves Stress And Anxiety Fidget Toy Special Needs Stress Reliever Toys For Kids Adults Sensory Therapy Toys For Adhd Autism Stress Anxiety
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Consider this Amazon’s Choice product that delivers quickly
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Silver Plasma Lightning Lamp
Another great gift for autistic children is the classic Plasma Lightning Lamp. The base produces high-frequency electromagnetic waves that cause the gases to turn into plasma.
If you touch the ball, the lightning bolts will combine into a strong beam and follow the movement of your finger. Clap hands to it and watch the pattern in its striking pulsations.
The Autism Playbook For Teens
The mindfulness-based activities in The Autism Playbook will help teens to calm their minds, relax their bodies, have fun, and build better relationships. Through systematic exercise, teens will develop their ability to concentrate, detect cues from their environment, and manage their experiences of emotions positively and proactively. Relatable stories throughout the book offer support and practical examples for teen readers.
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Tactile Sensory Gifts For Autistic Kids
Some of you may not even know what the heck a tactile sensory gift is, but thats why Im here to help!
Tactile basically means touch. When you can find a toy that gives kids something interesting to touch, thats a tactile sensory gift.
I absolutely love this three-pack of fidget balls! Theyre just the right size to fit into my sons hands, and theyre squishy and fun to play.
What sensory-friendly gifts are you getting for your autistic kids this year?
PS: Did you know that I run a group for autistic self-advocates and parents of autistic kiddos to join together to embrace autism? You can join by entering your info below!
Dont forget to pin this post to save it for whenever you need to find a sensory-friendly gift for autistic kids!
How To Figure Out What To Buy A Child With Autism
Parents and guardians of children with autism, often, have a difficult time deciding what to purchase for their child or what to tell others to get them. Throughout the year, they may have tried numerous times, with no luck, to get their child to try playing with a new item. They may consult with the childs teacher or therapist to find out if the child shows any excitement for things they work with them on.
Sometimes teachers and therapists witness some measure of enthusiasm toward a sensory item used in their classrooms or sessions. For family and friends who want to buy the child a present, parents often suggest getting them clothes. Even then, there may be specific characteristics in addition to size that the gift buyer needs to be aware of.
Some children have sensitivities to certain materials, textures, or colors. For example, they may not be able to tolerate the feel of sleeves on their forearms. Some colors might help them feel more calm than others. Children of all ages may like to see a favorite cartoon character or action hero on their clothing. Its best to inquire with the parents to find out if the child has any preferences when it comes to clothing.
Visual toys for kids with autism.
Also Check: How To Make A Visual Schedule For Autism
Educational Dvds Toys And Games
Children with autism tend to learn more visually or by touch and as such, sometimes struggle with instructions given in the traditional school settings. Giving interactive educational materials like DVDs, toys and games including popular brands like Leapster or Leap Pad help children with autism learn, while keeping them entertained, according to surveyed parents.
Toyerbee Sensory Fidget Toys
Quick Review: As all parents know, fidget toys are an amazing lifesaver for a child with anxiety or an active mind. This set of 19 will mean your child always has a fresh fidget toy to explore.
Check the price on Amazon.
Benefits for children with autism:
A fidget toy is one of the best ways to help children with autism relax and concentrate. The toys help children to focus on a conversation and filter out other sensations in their environment. This ability to enhance focus has meant theyre being used more and more in educational settings.
For your child, the toy can give them a place to direct excess energy. It also gives them something to do with their hands. These benefits mean that fidget toys help children with autism and ADHD achieve what other children find easier: eliminating extraneous sensory stimuli in their environment.
19 Sensory Toys in One Gift: Ive added this toy to the list because its got so many great toys. If you give your child one toy per week, itll be 19 whole weeks of unique sensory toys!
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Finally What Do Other People Do
I recently asked my Facebook followers what steps they take for an autism-friendly Christmas. Id like to finish this article with some of their responses.
However you choose to celebrate Christmas, I wish you all the best and I hope this article helps a little. And again, youre more than welcome to join , or see more of my stuff on YouTube. And for those who feel my work is worth supporting, heres a link to my Patreon page for those who want to help me keep doing this for a living.
A very merry Christmas to all. May yours be full of peace and genuine joy.
Take care, God bless,
Top 10 Toys And Gifts For Children With Autism Picked By Parents
When it comes to living with a child who has autism, educational experts, pediatricians and scientists all have their advice for parents. But who better to bounce ideas off of than other parents of children on the autism spectrum?
MyAutismTeam is a social network for parents of children with autism that has more than 20,000 members. Described as a “Facebook-Meets Yelp- network,” the site utilizes local reviews of doctors and services and connects members to fellow parents they can ask for advice. MyAutismTeam also connects parents with 30,000 providers, from babysitters to dentists to Taekwondo instructors, who all have experience working with children with autism.
“Parents of kids with autism constantly worry whether they are doing enough, or are doing the right things to help their children thrive,” Eric Peacock, CEO and founder of MyAutismTeam, said. “We focus on making it easy for parents to learn from others who have been in their shoes, so they don’t have to start from scratch when looking for providers that are highly recommended.”
Children with autism, much like most children, gravitate to toys and activities for their entertainment, and parents have noticed their kids prefer certain games more than others. To find out the top gift and toy ideas for children with autism, MyAutismTeam recently surveyed 1000 of its members. For World Autism Awareness Month, here’s what the community voted as their top 10 gifts:
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Best And Worst Christmas Gifts For Autistic Children
Finding the perfect gift for a child with autism is not always an easy task. Due to the various sensitivities and needs that many children with autism may have, its important to carefully consider what kinds of gifts are a good choice for them.
To ease your holiday shopping, here is a list of autism presents that should be avoided!
Harkla Hug Inflatable Peapod
Quick Review: This inflatable Peapod is a 60-Inch cocoon that your child can climb into. Its a relaxing, comforting play space that provides a child with sensory needs a big hug.
Check the price on Amazon.
Benefits for children with autism:
I have found in my time teaching that many children with autism benefit from the comfort of gentle pressure on their laps or bodies. I often provide them with duvets to cover their bodies to feel that sense of comfort.
This alternative is a but like a beanbag boat. Children can dive into the Harkla Hug and use it as their own personal private space for hiding from the world.
Have a read of the reviews on Amazon. It appears many parents have attested to their benefits for children with autism. In fact, the Harkla Hug was specifically designed for children with sensory processing needs.
It RocksGently: The underside of this pump is designed so you or your child can gently rock the Harkla Hug. It may be a great way to get your kid to relax and have a sleep!
Includes Pump: Youll need to pump the Harkla Hug up. Fortunately, it comes with an electric air pump. When you need to free up space in the house, deflate it for easy storage.
Age Range: 6 12.
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An Autistic Persons Guide To An Autism
I dont like Christmastime. And I should be allowed to say that without being criticised for it.
Dont get me wrong, I love what Christmas stands for. But December is that month when Expectation Claus sneaks into your house, instructs you to follow all these traditions , and youre not allowed to tell him youre sad because everyone is supposed to be happy and joyous at Christmas. Its the rules.
Like everything else in life, autistic people see Christmas differently to most others. This article is written for those who find Christmastime problematic for autism-related reasons, whether youre autistic yourself or have autistic relatives.
Im aiming for this to be a short guide but inevitably I wont manage it, so I wont drag out the introduction. But I normally start my articles by linking to , my YouTube channel, and the Patreon rewards on offer to those who help me do my autism advocacy for a living. So there they are!
Im going to cover five of the main issues when it comes to autism and Christmas, and how to handle them in ways that maximise genuine Christmas joy. So, lets start with the big one: