FROM JACK: OK, so here are some more fun ideas you can try in the The Son-Rise Program playroom using everyday household objects. Today, let’s do 10 quick game ideas you could try using a handkerchief! Remember – YOU create the fun in the game, not your prop. It is your enthusiasm and committment to your game that will make it enticing for your autistic child.
- Blowing Contest! Work on physical participation and flexibility with your child by having a competition to see who can blow the handkerchief up in the air the longest! You could add an extra element by taking turns and asking your child to count the seconds and keeping score!
- Who’s behind the Handkerchief? Hide your face behind the handkerchief and help your child with their eye contact by popping out from behind it as a different animal each time. Make big, funny sounds and animated facial expressions to inspire them to look at you.
- Silly Noise Machine – half stuff the handkerchief down your sleeve. Invite your child to physically participate to pull on the handkerchief. Them pulling on it causes you to make silly sounds.
- Find the Tickle! If your chld likes tickles, initiate a fun tickle game when they are available. Then hide your hand under the handkerchief and request them to pull it off so you can give them more tickles.
- Where’s the Treasure? Hide some “treasure” (e.g. a picture of a character they like) somewhere in the playroom. You are the pirate sent to find the treasure but your map (the handkerchief) has had the ink washed off! Encourage your chld to help you make a new map, working on their verbal participation. Give them fun prompts such as “I remember there was a scary forest somewhere on this map” then once the new map is made, go on an adventure to find the treasure!
- What does my voice tell you? To help a child understand intonation, use the handkerchief to blindfold each other (if your child will let you). Your child’s role, once blindfolded, is to guess how you are feeling from the sound of your voice. Really exaggerate the emotion in your voice to help them along. Encourage them to blindfold you and then THEY can play with communicating emotion through the tone of their voice.
- Blow blow blow! A simple game for children working on clear single words – once your child is engaged with you, lie on the floor and, in an animated way, blow the handkerchief as far as you can across the playroom, modeling the word “blow”. Be really fun and silly as you do this – many children love to see things blown around the room. Once they are motivated, help them say “blow”.
- Sticking spot! Use some artist’s tape and stick the handkerchief to the floor of your playroom. When your child is available, initiate a fun chase game. But, when you tread on the handkerchief, you suddenly become stuck! Help your child say the word “move” to free you and continue the chase game.
Feel free to post any of your own ideas or modifications to any of these games, and have a wonderful time trying them out!
With laughs and smiles,
Great game ideas. Thanks for sharing. I will definitely try them out with my kid at home.