Looking for a few sensory activities to do with your kids over the holidays? All kids benefit from sensory-based play, particularly those with learning and behavioral disorders like ADHD and Asperger Syndrome. This is a great time of year to engage children in sensory activities the whole family can enjoy with a holiday twist. Read and share our ideas for sensory-based holiday activities below!
Baking is the easiest way to engage in a sensory-based activity with your children during the holidays. From kneading cookie dough to sifting and pouring, getting your kids involved in the kitchen offers a tactile experience with the welcome benefit of a treat once they've completed the task. Allowing them to do heavy work like pouring and kneading can give kids with sensory issues the proprioceptive input they need to organize their senses. Remove all other distractions except for some soft holiday music, and let your kids get messy in the kitchen. Need some all-natural, gluten-free sprinkles for those cookies and other treats? Try these!
Making holiday decorations and other crafts with your children can be fun for the whole family and help your children develop and improve fine motor skills. String beads or popcorn for a great fine motor workout. Glue pipe cleaners, glitter, and fuzzy pompoms to paper trees cut from green construction paper. With supervision, allow young children to use scissors to strengthen small hands which will help make handwriting easier. Wrap gifts in plain paper and allow children to decorate the packages for more fine motor practice.
3. Making music
Children with learning issues and processing challenges often have rhythm and timing issues and can benefit greatly from making music. So grab some pots and spoons from the kitchen, jingle bells, home-made rattles, or other "musical instruments", and have your children practice their percussion skills while listening to their favorite holiday tunes. Help them stay on the beat with their instruments while they sing for a multi-sensory experience. Don't have an instrument? No problem! Have children clap their hands or stomp their feet to the beat. For children who are sound-sensitive, find quieter instruments or use hands to tap on pots instead of spoons.
Do you have a child with sensory issues, motor skills delay, or other learning differences? Give your child the gift of connecting with success this holiday season by enrolling at a Brain Balance Center! Contact us today!