When you have a child on the autistic spectrum, it can be even more challenging to entertain during the summer when the schools are out. That said, with a little bit of planning and with the right ideas, there’s no reason you cannot create a fun and memorable summer for the kids.
A Character Day
If you haven’t heard of a character day before, you’re about to find out what it is and why it’s such a great summer activity for autistic children. A character day is all about your child choosing their favorite TV, movie, or book character and dressing up as them for a day.
This activity is good for creativity and engages your child’s imagination and motivations. Start the day in the morning by making your costumes, then head out for small excursions to show off the fancy dress. In the evening, you can finish up with a movie that includes the character.
The summer is all about the sun, and what better way to play than with water-based games. Children love the combination of a hot sunny day and games that include water, such as paddling pools, water balloons, and squirt guns. It’s fun, and it stops them from getting too hot.
A great way to enjoy water-based games in the summer is to organize a playdate and invite some of your child’s friends around. Make sure your autistic child understands the nature of the day and that it’s well planned to ensure there are few surprises, then simply have lots of fun!
Depending on the level of autism your child has, some sports might be more suitable than others. For instance, team-based sports require communication and take place in loud environments that involve some pressure – this is not ideal for some levels of autism.
However, the summer months are a great time to get involved in a sport, so what are the best sports for autistic children? Any sport with individual competition such as swimming and running can be perfect because they don’t require much, or any, coordination or communication skills.
Arts and Crafts
Depending on your child’s personality and level of autism, arts and crafts might be a good idea. If your child is something of a perfectionist, they might become upset if the result doesn’t meet their expectations, so try to encourage the enjoyment of the process rather than the final result.
There are lots of arts and crafts activities to choose from, including painting, costume making, map-making, and anything else you can think of. Arts and crafts projects in the garden with some Kiln Dried Firewood for the wood burner is the perfect way to spend a summer evening.
Small excursions are a good idea for autistic children because it gives them a chance to practice some of the skills they have learned in school; that said, you need to make sure that the excursions you choose are suitable for your child and their level of autism to avoid stress.