Children are born with a natural curiosity for their surroundings. Their minds are busy the whole time. As they grow and navigate their childhood, their senses inspire their curiosity all the more. They become interested in new things and start to be highly inquisitive. They also tend to have a short attention span. They may be interested in one thing that catches their attention and move on to another more captivating object. Children are easily distracted and due to this, it becomes challenging for them to focus and concentrate on one thing.
When you think of children with special needs, distractions for them are more distinct. Some kids may have high sensitivity to their surroundings while others find it extra challenging to maintain their focus and attention on one thing at a time. This is why being in a social situation where concentration is essential, such as in schools, can be a real struggle for children with ASD, Down Syndrome and especially ADHD.
As parents, there are things you can do at home to exercise your child’s focus and concentration. In today’s blog, let us go through each of them.
Activities That Involve Art
Art is an excellent way to develop your child’s creativity, attention to detail and concentration. It is an effective medium of expression for children with special needs. Therefore integrate arts and craft activities into their playtime. These exercises can include drawing or scribbling, coloring or creating DIY accessories. Art activities have another positive side effect: They lift their moods and encourage their creative expression.
Sensory And Memory Games
Memory games for kids, such as worksheets or matching-picture cards, are effective tools to enhance your child’s attention span. There are also memory games available to download on mobile devices and tablets which makes it more convenient. Multi-sensory games involve a mix of tactile play, auditory, visual and olfactory experiences. These are effective in further improving their memory and their sense of association and will reduce the feeling of being anxious and restless so they can focus and concentrate.
Occupational therapists employ exercises to increase not just a child’s ability to focus, but also their balance, flexibility and muscle strength. Exercises that focus on balance, flexibility and muscle strength can do wonders for a child with special needs. For instance, one study showed that occupational therapists who integrated yoga in their child’s activities, showed better results in controlling disruptive behavior, improved social interaction skills and minimized hyperactivity of special needs children.
Technological advancements have allowed for easier access to learning materials designed specifically for special children. Interactive media is one example of this. Audiovisual books, mobile applications and games for learning are widely available today. It makes children engaged – hence more likely to have longer attention spans. It can be said that the best interactive media are ones that have a broad range of sensory stimuli.
Each child responds to activities differently, so it is crucial to work with your specialist to figure out the best and most effective exercise for your child. Improving your child’s concentration and focus will help them as they grow up. This is best done in the earliest stages of their development. This proves how important early intervention is for children with special needs. If you wish to learn more about other activities that can help with your child’s focus, talk to our specialists today.