Play activities come in all shapes and sizes.
This is a guest post from Tammy Lessick. She’s a mother and someone I’m very glad I’ve met via Twitter. Tammy speaks from the heart.
I am a WAHM of two. I have a five year old girl and a nine year old boy. My son is [tag]nonverbal[/tag] and diagnosed with [tag]Autism[/tag]. Both of my children love doing activities that involve the whole family. Whether it is hiking at the park or sitting at the table with one of our [tag]Story Time Felts sets[/tag].
My son doesn’t like board games, and he doesn’t like to play with toys. Doing activities, as a family, indoors is limited for us. We have the following choices: painting, felt sets, watching movies and cleaning. My son loves being outside, so most of our family activities involve the outdoors. The park is our favorite place. There are the paddle boats, playground, and hiking trails.
I love the hiking trails because they are both fun and educational. My children learn how to navigate the trails by following the marks on the trees. They learn about different plants and animals. It is also great exercise and the only exercise my son actually gets, except for roller skating.
On the days when we are stuck indoors because of the weather, it is either independent [tag]play[/tag] for my daughter or one of the family activities I listed above. My son will sit and watch movies all day if we let him. I love to take out one of our felt sets and play with my children. I have my own sets for my business and my children have a couple of their own too.
My daughter loves putting the different pieces on the board and telling stories. My son loves to “talk” to me while putting his pieces on the board. He has a dinosaur and an ocean set. We discuss the different animals and he explains to me why he has placed them in certain spots on the board. My daughter loves creating gardens and picnics with my farm set, and she loves telling stories with her “Cottage Classic” and “The Little Engine that Could” set.
It is important that a child is able to be creative. [tag]Creativity[/tag] enhances learning and independence later in life. A child with special needs may require creativity on the parent’s side to bring out that child’s creativity. My daughter has an amazing imagination, while my son needs one-on-one interaction to help bring his out. I have found that the two important things to remember are to gear your activities towards your children’s interests, and to be involved in their activities. These two things are especially important when your children are young.
Follow her on Twitter: @taless