Our April Giveaway is to win a set of 5 Fidget Cubes. To understand why toys like this can be such useful tools, it is first necessary to understand a bit about sensory processing disorder.
Sensory Processing Disorder – what is it?
This is a condition in which the brain has trouble receiving and responding to information received through the senses. People with sensory processing disorder are over or under sensitive to things in their environment. For example, a soft item of clothing may feel itchy or chafe the skin. A light in a room which many people would consider appropriate might be far too bright and overstimulating for a person with sensory processing disorder. On the other hand those with the condition may also respond in the opposite way to stimulus. For example, a fire alarm may send most people running from the building, but some individuals with sensory processing disorder might barely notice it, and may fail to respond at all.
In addition, individuals with sensory processing disorder may:
- Be uncoordinated
- Bump into things
- Be unable to tell where their limbs are in space
- Find it difficult to engage in conversation or play
Sensory processing problems are usually identified in children. But they can also affect adults. They are commonly associated with conditions such as autism.
How can “fidget” toys help?
Many children with special needs experience issues with sensory processing. When things start to become difficult to deal with, these children will typically start to “act up“. This could manifest in a wide range of ways. For example, children might get up from their seat in the classroom and start to disrupt the learning of others, or they might start screaming or shouting to block out whatever is causing the upset, or running from the room altogether and hiding somewhere they feel safe. The reaction of one child can be wildly different to that of another with the condition, so it is impossible to generalise too much. However, one thing which seems to be common is the need to fidget. When things start to become difficult, it is typical that a child with sensory processing disorder will start to play with objects nearby, or their fingers, hands, clothes – literally anything within arms reach could suddenly gain their intense attention. If a parent, teacher or practitioner can recognise these early warning signs and intervene it can prevent the situation from escalating. This is where fidget toys can really be helpful.
If a child is given an appropriate toy to divert their attention to when things become too much for them, they will be able to channel their anxious energy into playing with it, rather than disrupting others or escalating their feelings until an inevitable “meltdown” takes place. It might take some trial and error to find out which type of toy will “fit” the individual child best, but once this is worked out, it can be incredibly therapeutic for a SEND child to play with bendy arms and legs (for example) or a ball which lights up and flashes when played with. Of course, sensory toys come in all shapes and sizes. And to some extent, all toys are sensory because they can be physically held, heard, explored etc. However, toys labelled as being sensory toys for special needs children have usually been tried and tested and are known to be effective for children with SEND. This month, we are giving away a set of 5 “fidget cubes” – these are handy little cubes you can add to your classroom kit and try with any students who you feel may benefit from using one during your lessons.
How to enter the Axcis April Giveaway
If you’d like to be in with a chance of winning this great prize, why not enter our giveaway? all you need to do is follow THIS LINK and select how you’d like to enter. It takes just a few seconds and is entirely FREE of charge. So why not take a peek now and get yourself entered into this month’s Axcis Giveaway?
Register today and work for Axcis
If you’re not already registered with Axcis, but would like to seek a SEND teaching or support position, why not get in touch or register with Axcis today and find out how we can assist you? We have offices nationwide and a team of expert consultants who have proven relationships with specialist and mainstream schools in your area, so if you need work, why not register now?
Terms and Conditions are applicable to all giveaway entrants.