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Posts Tagged ‘play’

5 Ways to be an A+ Grandparent to your Special Needs Grandchild

Posted on: January 2nd, 2014

Expecting a child is a family affair.  Parents, grandparents and siblings excitedly anticipate the new baby’s arrival all the while subconsciously projecting their respective inner visions of the perfect family addition onto a tiny, unsuspecting infant.  Ten fingers, ten toes, Dad’s ears, Grandma’s nose.  A science and math whiz?  A little league all star?  President??


Down Syndrome Guild of Southeast Michigan and Belightful Yoga Present…

Posted on: April 11th, 2013 No Comments

Six Reasons Special Needs Kids Gotta Have Art

Posted on: February 11th, 2013

A picture is worth a thousand words.  To a non-verbal, special needs child, the benefits of pictures and art go far beyond words:  

Art provides special needs kids the chance to creatively communicate thoughts and feelings when they don’t have the words to express them.  For example, Valentine’s Day is a great time for special needs children and their families to use art for loving self expression.


Flip2BFit®: Building Relationships while Building Muscle

Posted on: December 12th, 2012 1 Comment

Flip2BFit® is the newest fitness craze for differently-abled kids!  The game combines nutrition trivia, yoga, stretching, and aerobic exercises in a fast and fun workout appropriate for the whole family.  Players compete individually or in teams in a race through the park to meet “Springer” the dinosaur in the playground.  Crab crawl, lunge, toe touch, and do the downward dog to move your piece around the park.  Make a poor nutrition choice and you’re going to have to move back a few spaces!

Early and ongoing exercise helps differently-abled children make significant strides toward purposeful movement and increased cognitive and social development. (more…)

Differently-abled Children and Nature Deficit

Posted on: March 9th, 2012 No Comments

For parents of a differently-abled child, especially with a diagnosis such as autism, allowing our children to play outside can be stressful. In light of the risk of wandering, lack of communication, and hyperactivity or aggressive factors, parents sometimes feel that simply educating and entertaining our differently-abled children indoors is safer and better for everyone. This is simply not the case overall, however. Children need to be allowed to reap the emotional, mental and physical benefits of nature. Sedentary lifestyles for our children can promote obesity, encourage lethargy, discourage creativity and, in some cases, even potentially cause depression. (more…)

Flip2BFit Game

Posted on: March 7th, 2012 No Comments

Children and Fine Motor Skills

Posted on: February 15th, 2012 No Comments

Happy First Birthday, Baby!  Your baby’s work on her fine motor skills is really paying off now.  She can pick up and hold her toys (and other “stuff” that you rather she wouldn’t).  She enjoys turning the pages of her board books while you are reading to her.  Stacking cups present her fun and interesting challenges. (more…)

Its All in the Details

Posted on: January 24th, 2012 No Comments

Fine motor development refers to baby’s ability to use the smaller muscles in his hands and feet.  Fine motor skills grow simultaneously with gross motor development.  For example, while he learns how to use the bigger arm muscles to reach for a favorite toy, he is also learns how to use the smaller hand muscles to grasp it.  You may notice that while he pumps his legs (large muscle group) he is also spreading his toes (small muscle group). (more…)

Welcome to Toddlerhood – Part 2

Posted on: January 12th, 2012 1 Comment

They say that you have to learn to walk before you can run.  I would suggest that children with autism need to learn how to stand first.  Holding Mom or Dad’s hands while they help raise and lower her can be a fun game for baby and a great opportunity for lots of positive reinforcement.  As an added bonus, those large muscle groups will be growing stronger and she will learn some of the motor planning necessary to stand.  (more…)

Welcome to Todderhood – Part 1

Posted on: January 11th, 2012 No Comments

Today we’re going to talk about baby’s gross motor skill development between 12 and 18 months of age.  He has mastered creeping and crawling and graduated to furniture cruising.  His strength, coordination and balance grow daily.  Now, he begins to take those first shaky steps toward independent mobility!  He occasionally will fall as he practices his walking skills.  And, at times he may revert to crawling if he feels that is a more efficient way to reach his goals.  But, walking has opened up the world to him and he will be eager to experience it. (more…)