This is part one of my Ultimate List of Sensory Toys and today I am sharing my favorite toys and activities to give your kid Vestibular Input. These activities are good for ALL children but especially children with sensory processing difficulties.
I wanted to share a Sensory 101; what is it, why is it important, how can we integrate sensory activities into play, , sensory processing disorder, how preemies are impacted, (my daughter was a micropreemie) and what to do if you have concerns.
My kid loves trains. She’s fascinated with them. There’s a cargo line that runs past our house and the train comes through once or twice a day. It’s a ritual now that whenever we hear the whistle of the oncoming train, we run, frantically out onto the porch to wave to the train and watch it pass. Everyone knows it. When that whistle blows, even JPEG loses his mind, barking, and scrambling to the front door. Addie’s face lights up, one part joy, one part fear that she’ll miss it, one part complete shock. She stops what she’s doing, instantly, and sprints for the door. So I decided this year to make her a train table!
One of the things people ask me about most often is, How did you get Adeline to talk? or What toys do you like to get your toddler to talk? At 14 months old, Addie was not talking, she was only babbling "mama" so we began our journey of speech therapy. After 10 years as a special educator, and 2 years working with my own daughter with language delays, I wanted to share what I've learned along the way. I've come up with a list of my favorite toys to get your toddler talking, explained how to play with it, and what skills you can work on while playing.
The countdown to Christmas has begun, and I guess that means I need to start shopping! When it comes the holidays, I’ve always been pretty traditional, and even more so now with Addie. I want to recreate all the traditions I had with my family growing up, so she can have the same experiences I cherish so much. Each year my parents would get us a book that was from them, and not from Santa. The book was always a beautiful, hardcover classic. Those were books we never donated or sold when it was time to purge old toys and books. Most of those books (the ones that weren’t lost or ruined because children), I still have today. I came up with my list of favorites we have or a few I have on Addie's Christmas Wish List!
If any of you follow along our Instagram stories you know we are reading about 2-3 times per day. As a former public school teacher who had to purchase most of the books in my classroom library, I have quite the collection. Each time my former place of employment used to send me another box of books they found of mine John would joke and say, "Can you at least gid rid of one?" Um....nope! Hence while we have a book closet, yes, an entire closet dedicated to children's books which may sound like I have an excess of closets but I do not. We currently do not have a linen closet! Haha! I've curated some of Addie's favorite fall books to share with all of you!
Reading is one of the things we do together at least twice a day, and it started when she was in the NICU. Born at 26 weeks, Adeline spent 114 days in intensive care and there were very few ways to connect. One of the ways we connected, especially my husband, was to read to her for hours a day. Each night when he would get done work, I would do kangaroo care while my husband would read and read. SInce she came home we've continued and we came up with a list of A.Belle's Best Board Books every Baby Needs!