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Water & Sand Therapy

Although water and sand therapy may look like child’s play, it is highly therapeutic for autistic children and they will be more likely to receive the therapy willingly. For most of the children, being in the water doesn’t feel like a chore or like a clinical doctor’s office — it’s fun. Children who shown limited response to other types of therapy may respond well to water and sand therapy. A number of children with autism are sensory avoiders, 

which they dislike crumbs, dirt, paint, rocks or anything they unfamiliar with on their skin. These unfamiliar things are like little wailing siren that cannot be turned off. To overcome this, water is always the way in. This is due to the water is easier for children to accept as it is transparent and crystal clear, which cannot make their fingers dirty.Children will get used to it and eventually touch all of it. Besides, water is not just wet, it can be rough or warm or cold. It can be used to stimulate children’s senses.

Sand, on the other hand, is suitable for the autistic children that are sensitive to sensory input. These children are sensory seekers that always looking for input. Also, those who constantly seeking sensory input can even roll around and lie in dry sand. In addition, when the water is added into dry sand, it will become wet and soft. Just like kinetic sand, children find the flow of the soft sand pleasing.

Playing with water and sand does not only involve scooping the material, filling buckets and dumping it out again. Children can also try on other activities that listed below that will require them to push, pull, drag or dig repeatedly:

  1. Hide some objects and find them by digging.
  2. Pour different volume of water on it to obtain different texture of materials.
  3. Make use of construction vehicles to make hills, roads and dig hole.
  4. Prepare some undersea animals toys and make a little marine world.

Three main benefits that can be obtained through water and sand therapy:

  1. Language: Giving an opportunity for children with autism to play with different types of textures, tastes and objects induces them to speak and communicate, aids them to build new way of talking about their world.
  2. Fine motor skills: In general, sensory play often involves in using and building fine motor skills. Fine motor skills require the ability to use and coordinate small muscle groups. It is crucial for writing, shoe-tying, buttoning and zipping, among other things. According to the article, by exploring preferred items in the water and sand, children can begin using pinching, pouring and grasping movement.
  3. Calm emotions: The simple act such as pouring water or running fingers through sand is always cathartic ad calming to many children who may be struggling emotionally. It helps soothing the nervous children and also serve as an outlet for the angry children.  

Source:
https://www.autismspeaks.org/blog/2016/09/06/day-we-took-our-son-autism-beach
https://www.autismfamilypower.com/sensory-seeking-for-sand/
https://www.dealwithautism.com/forum/resources/using-sensory-sand-tables-for-children-with-autism.40/
https://specialneedsparenting.net/sand-and-water-sensory-tables-special-needs/

水和沙治疗

虽然水和沙子的治疗可能看起来像孩子的游戏,但它对于自闭症儿童来说是极具高度治疗的,且他们更愿意自愿接受治疗。对于大多数孩子来说,在水中感觉不像是一件苦差事或者像临床医生的办公室让他们感到陌生害怕。对其他类型的治疗反应有限的儿童可能会对水和沙子治疗反应良好。许多自闭症儿童有感觉障碍(经常避免感觉),他们不喜欢面包屑,泥土,油漆,岩石或任何他们皮肤所不熟悉的。为了克服这个问题,水是很好的工具,因为儿童容易接受水。它透明且晶莹剔透,不会使手指变脏。孩子们会习惯它并最终触及它。此外,水不仅是湿的,它可以是粗糙的,温暖的或冷的。它可以用来刺激孩子的感官。

另一方面,沙子适用于对感觉敏感的自闭症儿童。这些孩子常常需要寻求感觉。此外,这类型的自闭症儿童甚至可以翻身躺在干沙中。当将水加入干燥的沙子中时,它会变得潮湿和柔软,就像动力沙一样,而孩子们会发现柔软沙子的流动,令他们愉悦。

玩水和沙子不仅涉及舀取材料,填充水桶并再次倾倒。孩子们也可以尝试下面列出的其他活动,这些活动需要他们反复推,拉,拖或挖:

1. 隐藏一些小玩具并通过挖掘找到它们。
2. 在沙里倒入不同分量的水,以获得不同质地的沙。
3. 利用施工车辆玩具制作山丘,道路和挖洞。
4. 准备一些海底动物玩具,创造一个小小的海洋世界。

通过水和沙疗法可以获得三个主要好处:

1. 语言:为自闭症儿童提供机会,使用不同类型和纹理的物体,使他们能够说话和交流,帮助他们建立谈论自己世界的新方式。

2. 精细动作技能:一般来说,感官游戏通常涉及使用和建立精细运动技能。精细动作技能需要能够使用和协调小肌肉群。除了其他方面,它对于书写,绑鞋带,扣扣子和拉链至关重要。根据文章显示,通过使用孩子偏爱的玩具探索水和沙子的治疗中,儿童开始学会使用捏,倾倒和抓握运动。

3. 平静的情绪:一些简单的行为如泼水或用手指穿过沙子,总是会让许多可能在情绪上不稳定的孩子平静下来。它有助于抚慰紧张的孩子,也可以作为平复愤怒中的孩子的方法。