Spotlight on Autism Products
Research is the greatest tool when finding products for autism. While no parent wants to deny their autistic child the best, there is nothing worse than a pile of useless products and an empty wallet.
Autism Products: Learning Videos
Many parents of autistic children can testify to searching the Internet for the best learning tools for their children. These products often cost hundreds of dollars. Keep it simple and replace the three hundred dollar videos with episodes of Sesame Street. Many of the DVDs, Blu-Rays and videos can be purchased for less than ten dollars.
Sesame Street works for autistic children the same way it works for typical children. The videos are grouped by initiatives and they are health and wellness, respect and understanding, literacy and numbers, and emotional well-being. Autistic children can relate to particular characters, bright colors, and repetitive lessons throughout each show. Personal experience, as well as speaking with parents of children with autism in support groups, has shown that these videos are effective in verbal and non-verbal children.
In their book Diagnosis and Assessment in Autism Eric Schloper and Gary Mesibov mentioned a fascination with Sesame Street characters as a possible reward that parents can use as a reinforcer.
Autism Products: Toys
Sensory balls are incredibly popular with therapists as well as parents and caregivers of autistic children. These can generally be purchased at a major retailer such as Wal-Mart for a very affordable price. They come in all sizes from the very large sensory balls that children can actually sit on, to small sensory balls that can be held in the hand. Some vibrate while others have plastic spikes. The purpose of sensory balls is to provide stimulation and help to improve motor skills. Occupational therapists can generally give tips on the best sensory balls for each child.
In terms of educational toys the Tag Reading System is an excellent option. Initially many autistic children will continually and obsessively press the buttons for sound stimulation. Eventually they will mimic and understand the sounds. One of the best features of this autism product is the headphone jack so that it can be used in public places to prevent tantrums and meltdowns due to overstimulation. This can be vital for long waits and visits to the doctor’s.
Autism Products: Potty Training
The key to potty training with most autistic children is praise, determination, and consistency. Potty training autistic children can be an ongoing process for a number of years. Products such as the Family Seat with Built-in Potty seat is an excellent way to ensure progress. It comes in stylish wood or plastic which makes it easier to integrate into the home. There is also no transitioning the child back from the “potty seat” to the “potty”.
The Safety First Jackpot Potty Seat may assist in offering praise for a successful potty training session. It features lights and sounds which are great sources of positive reinforcement.
Sesame Street Video https://www.sesamestreet.org/videos
Todd Leopold “How do you get to Sesame Street?” https://articles.cnn.com/2009-02-11/entertainment/sesame.street_1_sesame-workshop-sesame-street-children-s-television-workshop/2?_s=PM:SHOWBIZ
Schopler Eric, Mesibov Gary. Diagnosis and Assessment in Autism. Published by Springer, 1988
Family Seat with built in potty https://www.onestepahead.com/catalog/product.jsp?productId=6766