Friday, June 3, 2011

Summer Time Thoughts

With summer just around the corner many kids are out of school. The bad thing about summer time from a lot of kids who have sensory issues tend to be the fact that they have a hard time adjusting to a new routine especially not having school. These kids tend to do very well with structure and routine and if you are a parent like me you don't do so well with it.

Here are some things I have tried.
  • Alarms for exact meal times is a huge one including snacks. Sometimes that 10-30 minute wait is just too much and then you have behavior issues. Now living by an alarm is not a fun thing but it does help you do things on time for those kids who do things according to a strict schedule.
  • Lists of what will happen in your day is another one. It's hard to record every detail but many times giving a child an overview of what you are doing works well.
  • If you are going out give your child a detailed agenda. For my son he needs to know what we are getting at the store and he's really good at keeping me stick to my list. If I don't then we tend to hit some behavior problems. He knows when the list is done we can go home.
  • Lastly, you need to have a list of activities or things on hand to meet those days where you will have sensory issues galore. For my son it tends to be physical activity so things like going to the park or if we're not going to the park going to a fast food resturant playland after we eat and when it's not busy because they have air conditioning. For my daughter it would be things like shaving cream, playdoh, vinegar and baking soda, and aggression cookies.
  • Another task is that depending on your child's sensory issues if you can declutter it can seriously help. I have found this true with our son. Our house is no where near de-cluttered but when we strip his room bare he does so much better. (This is one reason why I don't do happy meal type toys and cheapy toys.)
  • Lastly, many times when people think about summer they think of water but I have some kids that don't like their clothes being wet. Try to find some way to involve them in the summer fun without being wet. Some ideas might be an aquadoodle mat or playing with ice cubes in bags. Using squirt guns or spray bottles on different spray levels to decorate or paint or making popcicles are all good fun summer activities that involve some sort of liquid but don't have to have direct contact with the child.

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