I’m always looking for different ways to help meet Sweet B’s sensory needs and give her different experiences. One of the ways that we’ve done this is with balloons though I will be the first to admit it- we have such a love hate relationship with balloons. Why? Well, pretty simple and I’ll get into it with a list of pros and cons. For the most part they have become a regular part of our sensory play at home, though a little more sparingly since Squeaker arrived.
Pros of Balloons for Sensory Issues:
* Diversity- whether filled with air, helium, water, shaving cream, or beans, we get a lot of use out of our balloons.
Cons of Balloons for Sensory Issues:
* They pop- and for a child who has auditory sensory issues, this is a big deal. It’s one reason we stopped using balloons filled with air or helium and instead find alternative ways to fill the balloons.
* They’re a mess. Once they pop or somehow become so dismantled and ragged from overuse, they’re a mess to clean up. I can’t stand finding little pieces of balloon in the carpet or under the table… or the mattress, or in clothes. Or in the yard. You get the picture.
Using balloons in sensory play has been both a dream and a nightmare. They’ve come in handy to make makeshift stress balls (by filling with beans or pom-poms) but at the same time, they get chewed on and then I have to worry about finding pieces of balloons elsewhere.
Sweet B enjoys playing with water balloons in a water tub and I have no problem with that. It provides her with needed tactile input and we can talk about the colors, the texture, the weight of the balloons, etc. It really does become a unique learning experience for her.
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