As parents, we want to help our child(ren) in all environments, but sometimes it feels like home is one place where we need the most support. Why is that? We feel lost when we get home after therapy, school, and outings and believe our children will somehow appreciate the extra effort…
Firstly, let us cover why our children usually act out more at home. This is where they feel safest and they have total freedom to relax and be themselves. That doesn’t mean “themselves” mean they will shout a bit louder or run a bit faster, but it does mean that all the suppressing they did when the lights were a bit too bright at school or the therapist was a bit too loud, will have a type of “after effect” on our child.
With a few adaptations, we can ensure our haven returns to just that for us as well as our children. Here are 3 tips for you to help your child at home be as calm as your soon-to-be calmer home:
- Cool and calm down corner – I highly recommend creating a sensory corner at home where you include some safe to use toys and a few soft pillows and blankets. You can even have this all in a fun tent for your child to go to before and after an outing or transition. See it as a meditation corner where your child can de- or resensitize their sensory needs.
- Countdowns instead of meltdowns – before you stop a favorite activity or start one that might elicit some excitement, give your child a simple countdown strategy, such as “5 more minutes before we get ready for bed”. This will allow your child to mentally prepare for the upcoming change in routine and transition of activities.
- Schedule it! I can not state how important a visual schedule of daily and weekly activities is for our children, but also, for us all. Be consistent in showing your child in the morning and the evening what is expected of them for the day and week ahead. Keep it fun, interest-based and as a bonus tip – add a “surprise” activity in there to work on flexibility.
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