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Sensory-friendly Activities For Kids With Autism

Children on the autism spectrum experience the world differently, leading to everyday sensory stimulation being easily overwhelming on their unique senses. This is where sensory play comes in. Designed to stimulate the five senses – touch, sight, smell, taste and sound –, these activities help kids on the spectrum especially, to engage and stimulate their brain and help improve cognitive development, concentration and coordination.

Beyond giving the child a fun and natural way to discover their environment and improve their cognitive, social, emotional, physical and linguistic development, sensory activities can be a calming tool for kids on the spectrum. Ahead, we share five fun and safe sensory play activities that kids of all abilities will love!

Edible Slime

A sticky activity your kid will definitely love, edible slime ensures tons of stretchy fun. And if your child has a tendency of putting things in his or her mouth, its edible properties ensure your child stays safe!

Bouncy Ball Art


Photo credit: Crayon Box Chronicles

All you’ll need for this extremely messy activity are paint, huge sheets of paper and bouncy balls! Simply tape down your ‘canvas’, dip the balls into paint, bounce each one off the surface and watch the paint splatter all around. Encourage your child to explore various painting methods – rolling, smearing or even reaching for other items to create new prints!

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Calming Epsom Salt Sensory Play


Photo credit: Fireflies and Mudpies

Need an activity that’ll help soothe kids, or help them wind down after a long day? Try Calming Epsom Salt Sensory Play! The granular texture of the Epsom salt will occupy your child for hours. Add in glass gems, a paintbrush or other small toys – you’ll be amazed at what they can imagine just from these simple additions! To help your cranky child calm down further, stir in your child’s preferred essential oil into the mix.

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Fireworks Foam Sensory Activity


Photo credit: Integrated Learning Strategies/Mommy Evolution

Bring the fireworks to your child with this ultra fun, kinda messy foam sensory activity! Prep whip cream, food colouring, popsicle sticks and a surface you don’t mind getting dirty – scoop out two spoonfuls of whip cream and drop in a teeny bit of food colouring in each blob. As your kid squishes and mixes the whipped cream, engage them in conversation where possible. Have them describe how the cream feels between their fingers, what they’re creating, etc. While you can substitute whipped cream for something foamier like shaving cream, the former is a safer option in case your kid decides to do a surprise taste test on the mixture.

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Rainbow Dyed Noodles

Inject rainbow fun into your child’s playtime with rainbow dyed noodles! It’s easy to prepare: cook your pasta and portion them into clear bags according to each colour of pasta. Then add in food colouring with a drop of vegetable oil and let your kid shake and squish each bag till the pasta is fully saturated in colour. Let each bag sit for 10 to 15 minutes before rinsing the noodles under cold water to remove excess food colouring. To play, put the noodles into a clear tray or box so your kid can dive into the squishing, stirring and sorting.

Find out more here!

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