Home activities during school closure
Updated: Dec 16, 2021
Plan Your Day Using Visuals: Regardless of your child’s communication level, this is an effective way of managing arousal and self-regulation as it will help children understand change in their routine and what to expect. Make an activity schedule. You can use a white/black board, now-and-next board, calendar or a piece of paper. Ask your child to participate by drawing/writing activities, encourage them to colour it, use different types of pencils, crayons, chalk.
Incorporating Sensory Input into Daily Activities:
Bath time: Use different sponges/bath cloths to brush the body in downwards strokes. Use different soaps and ask children to choose their favourite scent. You can integrate water-play, shaving foam during this time. Apply lotion after bath time, let the child try different lotions and ask them to rub it onto their skin in firm downwards strokes. They can also do this for you or you can rub lotion onto their skin.
Dressing: Reduce noise and light levels (turn off the radio, TV and lights). Break the dressing skill down into small steps. Dress the child in front of a mirror to help them to develop their body awareness and with motor planning. Consider the position that your child gets dressed in. If they find movement difficult, stand them in one position. If they find balance difficult have your child sit down to put on socks and shoes and the legs of trousers.
Meal prep: Let your child mix ingredients, e.g. making dough, rolling and making it flat. Allow you child to marinate or tenderise meat with the meat mallet. Allow children to help carry pots, plates and set up for meal prep (safe unbreakable plates etc). You can demonstrate how plates and cutlery need to be placed (try a different pattern each time) and ask them to copy the presentation.
Meal time: Encourage chewy food and drink out of a straw. They can sit on a wobble cushion, use a weighted lap-pad, weighted blanket or even a cosy blanket can help too.
Household chores: Ask children to participate in housework. Encourage then to clean their toys. Allow them to clean surfaces, wipe tables and door handles. You can demonstrate how to vacuum and ask them to copy. Encourage them to move furniture or carry laundry basket for you. Gardening is another great activity they can participate in.
Play time: Make an obstacle course. Ask your child to plan by drawing/writing the steps on paper first. Incorporate jumping, crawling, bouncing, skipping, hopping, going under/over/through. Use furniture, sofa, chairs, cushions/pillows, blankets, beanbags and gym balls. You can use the following activities as part of the obstacle course or integrate them in the daily timetable for approximately 20-30 mins.