Gifts that are Engaging for the Whole Family

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Opening a World of Play

A big way we express our love over the festive period is through the exchange of gifts, it is not everything but it certainly is something we enjoy. For many of our children, playing with their Christmas gifts, albeit often in a quirky and unconventional fashion is not an issue and choosing a gift to buy at Christmas time is not always an issue. What if your child has sensory impairments and multiple needs and communication difficulties? What toys do you buy? What will create fun for the whole family?

SENSE, a national charity that supports people who are deafblind, have sensory impairments or complex needs commissioned an enquiry into the importance of play. SENSE’s Play Inquiry highlighted many things that many like us in our community will find familiar no doubt; the real importance of play for development and that disabled children had fewer play opportunities than their non-disabled peers. It also highlights how parents and carers of disabled children often needed help and support in building their confidence in how to play and interact with their children, something many of our community are really familiar with.

Opening up a world of play for your child to help them develop physically, emotionally and socially is something we can all do, and is not as complicated or as expensive as you might think. Phew! You might imagine that expensive equipment may be necessary but you can actually use some everyday toys and items for some inclusive family fun. SENSE have created new handy, simple and practical play toolkits created and released by SENSE with versions for parents and for play settings are available for free as downloads and YouTube Clip demonstrations.

Check them out for great ideas in what you can use for play and how to include the whole family so siblings can join in too. You may be inspired and get ideas for festive fun and gift options and suggestions for family who might not know what to buy.

Sense have the beautiful Woodside Family Centre in Kingswood. Go to their website to find out more information about the family sessions they run

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