How Do I Teach My High Schooler with Special Needs Time Management Skills?
Strategies to Help Your Child’s Memory
The holiday season can be quite stressful with all of the planning, gift giving, decorating, and meal preparations. However, how much more anxiety do our friends who have special needs feel regarding each passing holiday season. Here are a few tips to help our children who struggle with bright lights, loud noises, chaotic schedules and much more.
- Maintain a set routine: Many of our children with special needs require a set routine to feel organized, calm, and sensory regulated. So why abandon that when it comes to the holidays. Try to stay on a set schedule to avoid overstimulation. This means you might have to have a family member help out when it comes to planned activities and shopping trips. Don’t be afraid to ask for help in order to maintain sanity at home. If you have a holiday party to attend or a shopping trip to enjoy, see if a trusted friend or family member can come over to lend a hand with your child.
- Plan trips that are sensory friendly: Often times holiday excursions can be loud, bright, and full of too many people. So, an option is to find daytrips that involve less people, and a sensory friendly environment. Here are a few examples to look for: (sensory friendly movies at the local theater, there are sensory friendly times for pictures with Santa in some cities, some cities even are autism certified and give out passes for the entire family for local events, restaurants, and hotels, even check out zoos, aquariums, and conservatories who have sensory friendly event times.)
- Bring your own sensory tools: If you are planning an outing with the family, you can bring your own assortment of sensory friendly tools. For auditory overstimulation, you can bring ear plugs, or noise canceling headphones. During meals, you can bring your own snacks and if the smells are too much, use a favorite scented lip balm to mask the smell. And lastly, fidgets and comfortable clothes can provide some support to help limit or decrease a meltdown.
I hope these few suggestions can provide some comfort going into the holiday season. Just remember that there is always hope, and to reach out to your support system when things get overwhelming.