Fun play for children with Autism and Sensory Processing Disorder

As a mummy to 2 beautiful boys with additional needs, I was quite shocked to discover that there isn’t much info widely available about fun play for them.

Now my boys have multiple toy boxes full of toys from multiple toy categories that just simply stay there because they are not able to play with them as other children are. They don’t have the imagination to role play or even join in team games but we’ve found some really fun things they absolutely love doing that you could try with your children too but this is only a list of what MY children enjoy and your children may hate the activities I’ve listed here it all depends on the individual. 

This particular list I have devised is mainly dedicated to those children who enjoy touching different textures. 

1. Shaving foam in the bath!!!! This is my eldest son (5 yr old) favourite treat to sit in an empty bath and play with shaving foam- great for sensory seekers. My youngest hates this and was disgusted when I covered him in shaving foam. 

2. Playing in water- my boys could play in the water all day long- as long as I didn’t try to wash them of course! – they could play for hours squirting  and pouring water and singing songs. We do a lot of our learning at bath time.

3. Play dough- have you ever made play dough? Oh it’s a sensory kids dream!!! They get to make it and then play with it and my boys get a real sense of achievement when they see what they’ve made. 

Simply ask them to pour 1 cup of flour into a saucepan with 1/2 cup of salt, 2 tablespoons of cooking oil, 2 tablespoons of cream of tartar, 1 cup of water with plenty of food colouring added in the colour of your choice, vanilla essence or essential oil to make it smell beautiful.

Stir the contents on a medium heat until the mixture forms into a ball, then let the play dough fully cool down before your children knead the playdoh and put it into a container and then into the fridge for an hour or two. 

Then the fun can begin!

4. Arts/ crafts Aka messy play

My boys love painting especially if it involves painting their hands and feet so we often do this before bath time. 

They also enjoy gluing and sticking different textures onto paper to make a sensory collage. Things like glitter, Pom poms, velvet material, bumpy card, felt piping sticks, 3D stickers are all great to use. 

Another fun activities is to cut shapes out beforehand and then let them arrange into a picture or paint the shapes and create their own design.

5. Baking – obviously under strict supervision!

My children both love baking cupcakes, biscuits and making peppermint creams and it’s so fun to see them enjoying themselves. Will share recipes in different blog posts.

6. Making their own sensory box that they can put toys inside for example light up balls, squishy toys, spiked toys etc. Will cover this later on a different blog post.

7. Playing with sand- now some children (like my youngest) will HATE this and will not want to be within 50 feet of a grain of sand. There are however others that will really enjoy the strong, hard texture of sand and will get much enjoyment out of just running their hands through. Let them do this for a bit first and then introduce a toy or two and start to model play – trying to learn the child about role playing. This will take a lot time so don’t expect it to happen right away. You can model play in all of the above activities I’ve listed to demonstrate role play to your children. 

Xxx

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