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There are many activities for children with autism that can promote hands-on play and positive tactile and analytical experiences. Here are some suggestions for ways that you can entertain your child while also encouraging learning, exploration, and fun. These activities focus on involving multiple senses, as they open and utilize many pathways of the brain at once, which proves an effective way for your child to develop key skills during play.

Create Sensory Boxes

Creating sensory boxes out of different material and items provide a contained place for your child to explore, relieve stress, engage their senses and have fun. Sensory boxes are a contained area, in which one or many material or items are placed to engage your child. For instance, the box can be filled with rice and have a few small shovels or a funnel so your child can engage their sense in a contained area and manner, while still providing stimulation.

Use Word Game, Puzzle, Maze and Color-by-Number Books

These types of books will encourage your child to work on visual skill, problem-solving, and motor skills while simultaneously having fun. Having books opposed to computer, iPhone, iPad, or other electronic games, bears the benefit of helping hand-eye coordination and visual perception skills.

Build an Obstacle Course for Your Child

You can easily create a fun obstacle course for your child—either inside or outside—with many dollar store items or even just stray items around the house. Use items like hula hoops, jump ropes, tape or chalk, balls, or other items to create numerous terrains for your child to navigate through. This activity will help your child build balance, motor skills, and incorporate exercise into their everyday activities.

Make a “Calm-Down Bottle” with Your Child

A calm down bottle can be made out of almost any sort of plastic bottle, for instance, a smaller or larger soda bottle, a water bottle, or even a clear shampoo bottle. Add water and food coloring, as well as some hair gel to add texture to the bottle. Then, the fun stuff. Feel free to add filler materials such as glitter, small plastic dinosaurs or animals, or even paper clips so that the child can interact with the inside of the bottle with a magnet. This is a great item to capture your child’s attention and interest, and a very fun activity to assemble together.