Too many kids these days have attention issues and can’t sit still. They are overstimulated and overworked. The fidget spinner became one of the hottest toys that was seen in every kids hands last year. The toy has been promoted as helping people who have trouble focusing or those who fidget to relieve nervous energy, anxiety, or psychological stress. There are claims that a fidget spinner can help calm down people who have anxiety and other neurological disorders like ADHD and autism. As a parent of a kid that has sensory processing issues, it is so nice to see that toys are being made that won’t red flag a kid for having an “issue”. All kids are playing with them, not just kids that have learning deficits.
A toy doesn’t have to be categorized as a “fidget” to be a good sensory toy. There are amazing products in every store that can help your kid with staying focused or needing input into their body. These are some of my favorite finds you should try!
Bathtub Finger Paint
Bath time can be super fun and a time where you can work on skills with your kids. This is a really good activity for sensory integration. Kids can use their imagination and create a picture, learning to use different colors. Practicing fine motor skills while strengthening hand muscles. You can have your kids practice drawing numbers and letters too. There are no real rules in fingerpainting, other than having fun. So let your kids have fun, learn and get clean all at the same time!
Slime has taken over the world. Parents complain about their kids playing with it and what a mess it makes. I have a love hate relationship with it. I know how much my boys love it, and they spend hours making various types - much better than watching youtube. Most kids crave tactile stimulation, it is therapeutic and relaxing and can relieve kids anxiety. Sticky things are another texture kids love to play with… anything sticky.
I am obsessed with these paint sticks. Maybe my love for drawing with crayons has never left me, but this is taking it to another level. These are big and chunky and last a long time. When you draw, the color just glides onto the paper, making it easy and fun for your kid. There is something about how these colors look on paper, but pictures seem to all come out looking amazing. These are definitely my fav! They come in metallic too!
Clay is a staple in my house. My son makes clay characters all the time. He loves being independent, using his imagination, then baking his creations, making them come to life. Clay is such a good way to increase fine motor skills and build hand muscles. Creating characters requires patience and focus to make small pieces for eyes, ears and noses. When you can find something your kid loves, and it is working on skills they are lacking, it is a win win!
Squishies are the best, you can take them with you wherever you go. Kids can bring these to school (if you have permission for a fidget), keep in the car, take to a friends house, You can pretty much find a squishy in anything you can imagine. Poop happens to be a favorite among the kids. Some have scents to them, so make sure if your child is sensitive to smell, to check first.
Floof and Dirt
Something that I steal from my kids all the time is their kinetic sand. There is something so relaxing about playing with this coarse, gooey but not sticky, thick moldable sand. I have anxiety and it is so calming to me. The Floof is something new I have never experienced. It is fluffy, moldable and definitely addictive.