Every parent who happens to have a child with special needs will definitely do all that they can for the kid to learn and grow the right way. Perhaps, many parents are not aware but, learning and play can both be done at the same time.
There are educational and fun toys that are appropriate for kids of all ages with disabilities, and as parent, or gift-giver, you need to consider the child’s specific needs. Take note – whether it’s a physical or learning disability, choose the right playthings that can help create a solid foundation for his improvement. Plus, you need to build on whatever strengths are obvious.
Providing the Right Play Items for Young Children with Disabilities
Here are three examples of fun toys that can help support your special child’s limitations, such are:
1. Oball – Perfect for babies 12 months and up, this lightweight ball has holes on for tiny fingers to grasp. They can throw and catch it and in the process, develop their gross and fine motor skills. This hollow ball comes in various textures and colors – truly a big help for kids with sensory and visual impairments.
2. Wikki Stix Alphabet Cards – Each colorful stick is coated with a non-toxic wax, can be bended and twisted into shapes, letters, any form, which surely spells F-U-N for your tot. Join him in his play and you’ll be boosting his sensory and cognitive development, as well as his communication and social skills. Appropriate for ages 3 and up.
3. Elefun Game – It’s one of the cheap toys for kids, a toy elephant that blasts butterflies spouting more than four feet high in the air. For ages 3 to 6, kids will surely love catching the showers and sorting the butterflies. In the process, their gross and fine motor skills, as well as visual perception and scanning are improved. A great activity when integrated into a party, guests will surely have fun, their social skills enhanced, too.
What To Choose If You’re The Gift-Giver
It may be a bit confusing and sometimes daunting when looking for the apt gift to give a differently-abled child. This is quite true especially if you’re not an immediate family member and don’t have any idea about the kid’s preferences.
A lot of child experts agree that gift-givers oftentimes make a mistake when shopping for toys as they tend to under- or overestimate the ability of the special child. That could be very frustrating to all parties involved, especially if the age- and ability-appropriate toys is not balanced or unmet.
Remember, you’ll never go wrong with an educational toy designed to help with a handicap. Yet, not all children will enjoy educational materials according to experts. They might even find such to be frustrating.
What To Do
All kids, including those with impairment, surely have a wide range of interests. Should you want to pursue the gift-giving, don’t hesitate to consult the child’s parents first regarding his personality and preferences. This way, you’ll also be encouraging the parents to reach out and make them open to discussions about their loved one.
Gift-givers may think that toys and games that involved interaction or sports equipment is not a good idea. Yet, experts again say that social interaction is necessary if you want to help the child grow well. Hence, consider this fact when buying gifts.
Luckily today, certain toy manufacturers and organizations are already aware of this dilemma. In response, they have come up with several strategies including the creation of technology-assisted toys. Example is a soccer ball that beeps – just appropriate for children with visual handicap.
There are still many more. What’s important is that, these toy-makers and institutions have realized the importance of issuing guidelines for special children in their funny games and toys specifically for children with physical, cognitive or developmental disabilities.