Searching for Christmas gifts each year is stressful – at least for me it is. It's hard to figure out what to get each person on your list something you know they will love and appreciate. If you have a child with special needs on your gift list this year, figuring out what to get them can be just as frustrating, if not more so. Especially if they are not able to communicate their wants or what interests to you. Are you struggling to find a great gift for children with special needs?
Today I am teaming up with Achievement Products for Special Needs to give you some tips on how to pick out those gifts. And don't miss the special 15% off discount code to Achievement Products below.
This is a sponsored post on behalf of Achievement Products for Special Needs. All thoughts are 100% my own.
5 Tips for Buying Gifts for Children with Special Needs
If the child with special needs on your list is not able to communicate their wants or needs because of their condition, the first 3 tips here can be extremely helpful. Of course, if the child is able to tell you what they want, that makes your gift buying much easier.
1. Ask about what types of sensory input to avoid
Many children with special needs have different textures, noises or other items they cannot tolerate due to sensory processing problems. The first thing you would want to do is ask their parent or guardian some of the follow questions. These are just a couple to get you started.
- Do they dislike certain textures such as things that are soft, hard, tight fitting, etc (especially in regards to clothing – sticking with tag-less clothes is always a safe bet as these irritate many children).
- Are they afraid of loud noises? (This may rule out toys with obnoxious sounds or movements)
- Do fast or spinning movements bother them?
2. Ask about what types of sensory input they enjoy
On the flip side, some children may enjoy toys with a lot of movement, flashy, or loud noises. They may enjoy things that spin, flip, or items they can jump on. They might like tighter fitted clothing or softer textures. Be sure to ask what types of things they DO enjoy.
3. Stick to hands-on toys or toys that give real life experiences
If you can go the route of real, wooden toys, these are so much better than plastic. Plastic toys do not provide much sensory input at all. Wood, metal, tin, etc. provide so much more input for ANY child, but especially those with sensory processing difficulties.
Again, this goes back to the first two questions, some children may not like the sensation of wood or metal. Just keep this in mind when asking about what toys to gets.
4. Does the child has a special hobby or interest they always enjoy?
Many children will have a special interest or hobby that they are especially interested in. It could include trains, dinosaurs, animals, building or engineering type activities, drawing, space, or science type themes. Of course, they may already have a lot of these types of toys, so just make sure to find out what they already have so you can find something different to add to their collection.
5. Are there any items that they need for day to day care or coping/sensory needs?
Some great stocking stuffer ideas could be sensory fidgets, water bottles, or a sensory chew necklace. Other items could include weighted back packs, ear phones or head phones for noisy areas, a mini trampoline to help calm, large pillows for their sensory calm down area etc.
Many families with special needs children are already spending so much money on the items they need for day to day life. There are doctor's visits, special therapies, items they may need to function at home etc. Being able to help provide an item that will help improve a child's quality of life will not only benefit that child, but their family as well.
So now you need ideas on where to look for great gifts for children with special needs right?
How Achievement Products Can Help With Their Holiday Gift Guide
One of the items on their holiday gift guide is the Car Matching Set. It comes with a wooden storage box, 2 wooden boards, 18 pattern cards, 24 different cars and 24 tires. What is great about this set is that not only are the kids having fun, but they are working on much needed skills of visual discrimination and spatial relations, as well as classifying, patterns, and fine motor skills.
And what kid won't love playing with these colorful looking cars and wooden pieces?
I love that these are wooden pieces and that there are so many patterns to choose from. These are perfect for both boys and girls. I know we will get a lot of use out of this set for a while.
Start Shopping with Achievement Products for Special Needs Holiday Gift Guide
Get 15% off EVERYTHING in the Holiday Gift Guide with the special discount code: APGIFT15 *This code is valid through 11/17/14.
You can also check out my previous post for Achievement Products on setting up a sensory room at home.
Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Achievement Products for Special Needs. I was compensated for my time in writing this post and also received a free car matching set in order to highlight the holiday gift guide. All thoughts and opinions are 100% honest and my own. Please read my disclosure policy for further questions.