Making Christmas Merry and Bright for Individuals with ASD – Autism Awareness

The Christmas holidays can be a prison term of wonder and please, taking part in family traditions, seeing loved ones, and a break from routines. The holidays can besides be a time of stress for those on the autism spectrum who thrive on familiarity and predictability. This can be a unmanageable time of year, but with some preparation and plan, the vacation season can be enjoyable .

Managing the Holidays At School For People With ASD

The school agenda may be interrupted with plays, concerts and assemblies. Teachers and educational assistants – give lots of warning about changes in the daily routine. work in especial activities into the ocular schedule. Create a social fib about a concert or a toy the children will see. It is much anxiety rooted in fear of the unknown that causes challenging demeanor and avoidance of new experiences .
Allow for some quiet or down prison term during a day that has fresh experiences in it. Create a design B if the school play is excessively hard for the child to sit through. If a music concert will be brassy, possibly use some noise cancelling headphones to lessen the reasoned. If the class is planning a Christmas party, walk the child through what it will be like. possibly the child can besides help with the arrangement or suggest a favorite game to play. If a choose natural process is included in the day ’ second events, the child is more likely to be enthusiastic about it. Think about scheduling a front-runner activity right after a new experience therefore that the child knows when the concert ends, there is some calculator time, games, or play time with a much loved toy.

Be careful about introducing new foods or ones that aren ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate normally consumed. Some children have food sensitivities and can ’ triiodothyronine tolerate traditional Christmas foods like shortbread, cocoa and other delights. They may be interested in trying them, but bridle with the parents first to see if they can handle sealed foods. The joy in the moment is never worth the aftermath of an upset stomach or GI system late .

Keep The Surprises To A Minimum At Home

Some children on the spectrum don ’ thymine enjoy surprises. If this is the lawsuit, don ’ t give a wrap endow or if you do, put a picture of what ’ s inside the box on the external of it. Predictability is samara to keeping children calm air .
For families, limit the amount of visitors to the house. large groups of guests can be challenging for the person on the spectrum to deal with ; so can an invasion of their space. Request that people not drop by without giving notice. This is a rule in our theater that we insist people follow. Limit the distance of a visit to something accomplishable. Every kin will differ .
If opening presents all in one sidereal day is besides submerge, spread it out over respective days. When our children were young, they took 7 days to open all of their gifts. It made Christmas stopping point a long time because the kids felt they were seeing something new each day and they very explored that new item. Our son struggles with opening presents ascribable to poor people fine motor skills so we put his things in giving bags with tissue composition. He then has independence with orifice gifts. clear up boxes and wrapping paper as you go to keep the chaos to a minimum. Our kids need a set of alone time after opening gifts because they like to explore them at their own pace. We give them that space .

Break With Tradition If It Means Happier Children

This can be a hard thing to do, but keep your child ’ second best interests at heart. My parents wanted us to come over on Christmas Eve and all day on Christmas because that ’ s what we did before we had kids. They besides expected us to to bring the children to Christmas Eve multitude which was about 2 hours long. This was just besides a lot a lot so we opted for a lunch and give possibility on Christmas Eve and just a dinner on Christmas Day .
Create your own vacation traditions that are meaningful to your child. Find ways in which they can contribute to vacation activities. possibly they like to put sprinkles on cookies, stamps on Christmas batting order envelopes, hang decorations, make cards by hand, or create e-cards on the internet. Every class, my daughter and I sponsor a caterpillar at a local anesthetic cat charity. together, we try to find out which cat-o’-nine-tails needs the most subscribe.

Minimize Outings And Follow Normal Routines As Much As Possible

Stick with one outing a sidereal day. Try to choose times that are less busy to do things. Mornings tend to be hushed on the roads. Matinee movies or shows are not arsenic busy as an early evening show. Buy tickets ahead of time to avoid line-ups .
Try to follow normal mealtimes and bedtime. Getting enough sleep is important as are regular meals with favored foods. If visiting person, bring snacks in case your child doesn ’ thymine like what is being served or can ’ thymine tolerate it due to sensitivities .
Create a dependable zone for down time. Have a hushed place for children to go both in their own home and in other homes. Ask your host ahead of time if there is an area your child can go to if they need some down time away from the group. Let people know your child ’ mho limits and ask that they respect that. sometimes a simple accommodation like lowering the volume of background music can make a huge difference .

Holiday Travelling For Those With Autism

Whether travelling by car or plane, creating predictability and being prepared is the key to reducing anxiety .

  1. Pack well ahead of time to make sure things are not forgotten. If possible, have your child put a few things on their checklist to let them feel that they have a choice in what items get to come with them. Bring a few things that anchor them.
  2. Draw up a travel plan and timeline. What time will you leave the house? Will there be a break in the journey for meals or to change planes? What time will you arrive at your destination?
  3. Plot your journey on a map. As you pass through certain towns or landmarks they can be checked off.
  4. Pull photos off of the internet and use them to create a social story of where you’ll be staying and what you’ll be doing there. Hotel websites will list their amenities; these can be incorporated into a schedule of the stay. Ex: Pool times, breakfast, on-site activities
  5. If not staying in a hotel, try to get photos and information of where you will be staying (relative’s house, cabin) Use this information in a social story to lessen anxiety. Look at pictures of the family and friends they’ll be seeing.
  6. Book a place that has cooking facilities in order to keep food/meals the same. If a child is following a special diet, eating in a restaurant can be difficult. We also bring many of our own GF/CF products because small town grocery stores often don’t carry these items.
  7. Plan activities ahead of time and share the information while still at home. Again, the internet is a great tool as most attractions will have a website, allowing for pre-planning and creating familiarity.
  8. Suggest doing something that takes in a special interest. Marc loves to sing and listen to Christmas songs so attending a sing-a-long or a church concert makes him very happy.
  9. When visiting family, keep visits short in duration and expectations reasonable.
  10. Have a look at the website Autistic Globetrotting for additional travel tips, reviews, and destination information.

Every family has its own cycle and footstep. Do what works for your child – think about maintaining predictability through routines and conversant toys, places, and people. Merry Christmas to everyone across the earth !

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