Many mothers present doubts in choosing toys for their children with autism. Last week, a mother asked me: “do you have tips on toys that help in the development of the child with autism?” I found it very interesting and I decided to write some useful tips to facilitate this choice. It is quite common for parents to buy toys that provide the child’s isolation or even that she doesn’t even know how to play.
It is important to consider that the focus should always be the interaction between the child and your partner during the game. The function of the object is just approach them and provide a pleasant atmosphere, with exchanges of communicative shifts, looks, smiles and play physical and Tickle each other.
Our goal is to prevent the child pay attention too much on the toy and the presence of the adult/child becomes indifferent to her. We must help her become interested in the other, while both use the object of interest.
From there take you for an expansion of thought, because instead of asking: “what are the toys that help in the development of the child with autism?”, you might think: “How can I use the chosen toy to build effective interactions with my son?”
Choose Toys That Help In The Interaction, Communication And Imagination
Introduce your child to a given object should demonstrate various interactive and fun ways that we can perform with him. There are currently many electronic toys on the market available for all tastes and ages, but we must be creative and use other strategies.
Instead of buying cars the stack that make noise and will keep only the object opt for carts, planes and trains according to historyaah.com . Another tip is to choose stuffed animals, favourite characters, puppets, cloth puppets of hands, fingers and use your creativity, as: puppet Playhouse for example.
Some examples of toys that help in building the game of make-believe are:
Plastic kitchen Kit with miniature foods;
Little farm with miniature animals;
The fake money;
Simple musical instruments such as drums, tambourine, harmonica, flute, Bell, xylophone, cowbell, guitar, keyboard.
In addition you can use costume accessories such as:
Pirate eye patch;
Superhero masks and animals;
Face painting among others.
The adult can pretend that the dummy is singing the song of choice, as well as pretend gave rope and toy tickle the child. In other words, despite the dummy to be very attractive and fun adult will also be part of the moment of interaction, not to mention that the child will give many laughs and realize more the presence of the other through the proper use of the object.
Use And Abuse Of Creativity
Most of the toys can be made at home with the use of a variety of materials, so let your creativity and imagination go beyond. Some of them are:
Cardboard boxes and shoe;
Sensory box with scarves, feathers, rubber gloves, brushes, objects with different formats and fabrics with different textures.
Another important tip is to let separated material to color, draw, paint, write and let your child’s imagination to go beyond. Some materials needed are:
Scissors without tip;
I cite the example of a patient with 7 years and diagnosis of Autistic spectrum disorder. In the initial interview the mother reported that your son loves watching newspapers, know the names of the presenters, timetables and dreams of being a journalist. Even before the first contact I’ve imagined building an interaction by means of what is interesting to the child, i.e. using materials to fabricate a camera and a microphone and doing quick recordings during therapy.
Let’s create our newspaper and our own programming, now he will be the host and I the cameramen and live versa. Recalling that the use of tablets, as well as the recording of videos on mobile phones and later observation strategies may be used, provided that they do not create obstacles in the interaction and communication between the child/adult and therapist/patient. It’s all about dosing, know in which circumstances and the amount of time used.
Some examples of toys that can not miss in your House and help in the interaction with your child are:
Large blocks to assemble;
Balloons to fill;
Books with favorite stories;
Letters and numbers (mobile);
Various games like dominoes, memory and puzzle;
Cards for pairings and various associations;
Cards with a story.
It is interesting to enter games as the child is growing as: Board, physical and the “Twister”. These games have several steps linked to the same theme and an ultimate goal, cooperative in which participants make alliances toward a goal, games where participants act as different characters or animals and with questions about facts or personal questions. Noting that a good deal can be made at home, in order to consider the interests of the child and the adult.
It is worth noting that it is not mandatory to buy all the toys and materials herein, however select objects that your child demonstrates more interest and that does not represent a hazard to your health and safety.
The most important thing is to get to know the preferences and the way your son plays, so you will be well-placed in the choice of toys. These are resources that assist in building effective interactions, improved social skills, expanding the imagination and, consequently, a better learning.
I’ve also written another post with 2 interactive games for children with autism, click here and read more.