Making Your List, Checking it Twice (December 2017 Newsletter)

Are you at a loss for what to get your kids for Christmas/holiday gifts this year or do you have a “deer in the headlights” look when others ask what they should get your child? Here are some helpful tips for finding educational, meaningful and developmentally appropriate gifts:

* Give experiences! Ask for passes to family friendly venues in the area (e.g., Brookfield Zoo, Kohls Children’s Museum, Chicago Botanic Garden, etc.) or enroll your child in a local class/activity (e.g., Park District Classes, etc.) to help encourage peer interactions. 

* Gift cards or money. I know that many people feel strongly about not giving money/gift cards, but this can be a great tool for teaching your child about the value of money, budgeting, saving, etc. It also given them responsibility for and some control over (within reason) what they are picking.

* Educational Toys. Personally, some of my favorite toys and games that my kids have and that we have around the clinic came from Learning Resources. They offer products geared towards all age and ability levels 

* Pretend Play. Dress up and pretend play can promote language development and cognitive skills. Turn off those devices and get those imagination going!

Therapist Recommended Toys, Games, etc. We often have families ask for recommendation and/or where we got our toys, so we compiled a list for you to check out.

Toys To Build Language
Games
Pretend Play
Puzzles and Books
Sensory and Regulation
Feeding and Oral Motor

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