Ho! Ho! Ho…ld on a minute!

The holidays are a time filled with joy, love, and sparkles! But for some, this is a time filled with schedule changes, new faces, and sensory overload. If you are one of the many families who sees this time of year as a daunting experience, you have come to the right place to learn some Autism Friendly suggestions for helping you and your family through the holiday season!

These are a few of our favorite things!

  1. Discuss plans ahead of time: Surprises aren’t always a good thing! Go over the plans for holidays with your child in advance. Using a calendar or a list to help give a visual can really help!
  2. Show pictures: The mall, relatives, a new restaurant; get some pictures to show your child so they know what their destination looks like. When they arrive they will remember it and maybe it won’t be so scary. If time, take a test ride and walk around when it isn’t as busy.
  3. Talk to family and friends: A little heads up could go a long way! If your child eats at a certain time or they work hard for some TV time, let the family know that these routines are important to you and your kiddo so they can help you keep to it!
  4. Break it up: Instead of jamming all the fun into one day, spread out the joy! Open presents throughout the day, take breaks between visits, and allow for some down time to help everyone recoup!
  5. Recognize the little things: As busy as the holiday season gets, set aside time to provide that attention and praise that your child needs, especially during this time of year. Introduce a token system at home to help provide more structure and frequent reinforcement to your little one. Set some goals for each day, some favorite items to earn for reaching those goals and give that frequent feedback to your child. Maybe even connect it to an advent calendar!
  6. Search for sensory friendly holiday events in your area: As awareness for Autism increases in our communities, so have the number of events that keep this special population in mind. There are many sensory friendly opportunities around town that focus on providing a typical experience while keeping the sensitivities and needs in mind for children on the Autism Spectrum. For a list of some events in the Tampa Bay area, see below!

So that’s our list
Check it twice!
Hope you enjoyed
All the advice!
BCOTB is coming to town!
Happy Holidays!

Sensory Friendly Events in the Tampa Bay Area

Sensory Friendly Santa
Lawyers Autism Awareness Foundation
Chester Ferguson Law Center
Tampa, FL

Sensitive Santa
Westshore Plaza
Tampa, FL
12/4 from 9-11

Caring Santa
Tyrone Square
Saint Petersburg, FL
11/20 and 12/4 at 8:30am

Sensitive Santa
Westfield Mall
Citrus Park, FL
12/4 from 9-11

Sensitive Santa
Westfield Mall
Brandon, FL
12/4 from 9-11

Sensitive Santa
Westfield Mall
Clearwater, FL
12/4 from 9-11

Published On: November 28th, 2016 / Categories: Blog, Holiday /

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