These toys were gifted by TigerParrot.com
Buying toys for a small child with Autism is not easy. Bobcat has a firm affection for trains and all sorts of vehicles – but mainly trains. This is quite common with children on the spectrum, so we often visit miniature railways, the London Transport Museum and he has countless little trains and wooden tracks. This is of course all fine, because that’s what he likes. But, sometimes we need to encourage him to do other things and play with other toys to work on his fine motor skills and promote social skills like taking turns. He’s not very good at these so we need to find ways to help him developing these better.
I have recently come across Tigerparrot.com a brilliant online shop for inspiring toys for babies and children. The site has an extensive selection of gifts, toys, homeware and clothing items. They also have toys specifically designed for children with special needs and also educational toys. So browsing through these categories I have found a few great toys which Bobcat will love – and they are also beneficial for his development.
Since Bobcat started to enjoy Snakes & Ladders a little while ago, I thought this should be great fun. Basic boards games are really good to learn taking turns, how to deal when not winning and moving the little tokens around also promotes fine motor skills. I’m a big Janod fan for their wooden toys are fantastic – and this is no exception. This one is made of cardboard and wooden pieces – no plastic!
2. Melissa & Doug 52 Wooden Alphabet Magnets In A Box – Uppercase And Lowercase Letters
Many children on the spectrum are hyperlexic (a child’s precocious ability to read) and Bobcat is one of them. However, the curriculum in mainstream schools promotes phonics instead of spelling and he did not like this change initially, but he started to pick it up now. These magnetic letters are a great way to turn learning into a fun activity. The letters have lovely bold colours which are again something these children are often obsessed. Stinging the word together on a magnetic board or even on the fridge whilst I have a dinner to cook is something Bobcat always enjoyed – and again, great muscle exercise for the pincer grip. This is too a plastic free toy, which I really like.
Or Theraputty as we call it. It’s an occupational therapy intervention for children who have fine motor difficulties as well as poor postural motor control. It’s a silicone polymer and is gluten, latex, nuts, egg and soy free. We have actually just been advised using these and so I was delighted to find these on Tigerparrot. Comes in a plastic container – but that’s also functioning as storage container so at least not single use plastic.