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Tips and Ideas for a Fun, Sensory-Friendly Halloween

10/15/2020 By Juliana Vazquez-Solis

With Halloween soon approaching, you may wonder, what are some interactive and sensory-friendly games my child can do for Halloween this year? How can I make this an exciting experience for my child?

It can be difficult to find fun and engaging activities for children with autism, especially for a holiday such as Halloween when everything is creepy and spooky!

At AIM Clinics, we are always looking for ways to help families during potentially tricky times like these and below you will find some great tips to help engage your child during Halloween, as well as some fun ideas for sensory-friendly games!

1. Consider your child’s interests.

Does your child like to bowl or play golf? Do they like slime? Do they like to play bingo, tic-tac-toe or scavenger hunts? Do they like to draw, color or paint? Instead of carving a pumpkin, you can decorate it with stickers and fun items or even paint it! By thinking about and incorporating your child’s interests, you will be able to find games that they will enjoy and happily participate in.

2. Know your child’s sensory triggers.

When choosing a game to play, be aware of the things your child likes and does not like. Your child might be sensitive to loud sounds, food textures or might be triggered by tactile textures, such as pumpkin pulp. Considering your child’s sensory processing triggers will help them enjoy their Halloween celebration.

3. Focus on their preferred sensory input.

Try to include your child’s preferred type of sensory input into games. For example, if you know your child likes to feel stuff, then you might want to try a game of who can make the creepiest slime! A guessing game of “What is in the Box?” filled with Halloween related items is another fun idea. If your child prefers more visual input, a Halloween game of Pictionary would definitely be a way to entertain your child!

4. Accept their choices.

If your child does not want to participate in a game, it’s okay! Do not try to force your child to play a game if they do not want to. You want your child to find the activity fun! It may take baby steps until they are fully comfortable to join in. Or, it may take more searching to find an activity that they will like, which is just fine!

As we know, children with autism may not always enjoy celebrating Halloween because of all the change and sensations that may come with it, like itchy costumes, big crowds of trick or treaters and loud parties.

Still, there are other ways in which you can help your child feel like a part of your Halloween celebration without missing out by creating some fun games and activities from the comfort of your own home.

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