COVID-19 concerns have forced many families to pivot from our usual activities. Many school districts have implemented e-learning programs or have sent students home with packets of schoolwork. However, it’s important that we still allow our children with special needs to experience some sense of normalcy during this time, so experiencing one week free of academics and swapping it for an in-home “Spring Break Experience” is warranted!
Social distancing with your special needs family simply requires a little creativity; here are some ideas to get you started:
Break out the snacks and enjoy a movie that everyone in the family will enjoy. The beauty in doing this at home is you can control the sound and the ambiance if your child has sensory sensitivities.
Creating arts and crafts projects that allow your child to have a fun tactile experience can be a positive experience for them.
Music therapy is popular in the hospital and, frankly, could be beneficial for the entire family. Create a playlist using a streaming service like Tidal and use this as an opportunity for your child to move their body around and stretch.
During this time, we want to engage with one another in fun ways. Act out one of your child’s favorite stories and dress up! I am sure this will bring laughter to your family.
Depending on the needs of your child (and age), they may not have the ability to be hands-on, but being with the family is always a fun time. Turn on the music and share the cooking experience with your child. Allow your child to add take part in creating the menu.
Enjoy the breeze.
Take a walk outside. During this time many families will experience cabin fever, take a quick stroll and talk about the environment. Buds are appearing on trees and there are tulips piercing their way through the ground. This is a terrific opportunity to chat.
Break out the board games and instead of playing individually, play as teams to give your special needs child added support. This will be a fun opportunity to engage and create endless giggles and memories.
Ride and drive.
Load your family in the car, bring snacks and drive around. Sightseeing from the car in your city is fun, or you can take a ride further and play a game of highway bingo!
Although we are living in unprecedented times, our children deserve to be made as comfortable as possible, while leaving the heaviness of the situation to us adults. Stay safe and use this an opportunity for more family connection time.
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