Changing How Alert You Feel

Changing a child's alertness by providing sensory input can really help them succeed at tasks requiring concentration - like most educational tasks require. The following list of techniques be used before or during educational tasks to help fulfill a child's sensory needs.
  • Put Something In Your Mouth
    • Eat hard candy (sugarless can be used)
    • Eat crunchy food: pretzels, popcorn, nuts, apples
    • Eat chewy food: gum, raisins, bagels, chunks of cheese
    • Eat sour food: pickles, sour candy
    • Eat sweet food: fruit or candy
    • Drink from a straw: use an "exercise bottle" to drink liquids such as a milkshake, a slurpie (partially thaw a frozen drink, or other drinks
    • Try a combination such as trail mix (crunchy, chewy, sweet), Starburst (chewy, sweet, tart), or chips dipped into salsa (crunchy and spicy)
    • Use green rubber tubing
    • Take slow deep breaths
  • Move
    • Do isometrics - push arms on a wall or push hands together
    • Walk quickly
    • Run up and down steps
    • Do an errand for a teacher
    • Shake head quickly
    • Roll neck slowly in a circular motion
    • Jump up and down - try to touch a door frame
    • Play sports - basketball, swimming, baseball, frisbee, etc
    • Do aerobics with a group or at home to music
    • Dance
    • "Doodle" on paper - if not too distracting
    • Use a therapy ball
  • Touch
    • Try holding and "fidgeting" with a Koosh ball, paper clips, rubber bands, straw, jewelry, or clay
    • Rub gently or vigorously on your skin or clothing
    • Take a cool shower or warm bath
    • Wash your face with a cold or hot wash cloth
    • Pet or play with an animal
    • Hold or lean up against a stuffed animal or large pillows
  • Look
    • Put bright lights on in the room if the child is in low speed
    • Dim the lights if the child is in high speed
    • Clear off the table you are working on if it distracts you
    • Watch fish in an aquarium
    • Read a book or look at a magazine
  • Listen
    • Listen to classical type music - even, slow beat
    • Listen to hard rock type music - loud bass, uneven beat
    • Use a personal music player (iPod, CD player) if the music bothers someone else
    • Avoid loud, noisy places if the child is in high speed, or if it bothers them when they are trying to concentrate
Comments