Posts Tagged "infant games"

You tell me. What’s going on in this photo?

Posted on Apr 15, 2014 | 3 comments

You tell me. What’s going on in this photo?

  So what do you think is going on here? All captions accepted in the comments below!   Answer tomorrow…  

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How to choose the perfect gift for your special needs kiddie!

Posted on Nov 29, 2013 | 0 comments

How to choose the perfect gift for your special needs kiddie!

It’s that time of year! And if you are American, today is the official start to the holiday gift buying season. Here’s a post I wrote for BabyCenter for the occasion. Please click through for an amazing holiday gift guide (inspired by many Mama Lewis readers’ ideas – so thank you!) It’s a gamble all parents take. Every holiday, we pin our hopes on a toy, praying our child will love it. My daughter May is disabled and we have the same gamble, but the probability that it will be a costly, unused toy – not to mention, the heartbreak that comes with that – is strong. May might love the gift, but if she can’t access it, what’s the point? Here are 3 simple steps to choosing the perfect gift: 1. Choose a present the child can access, not one that challenges them to make progress in an area of weakness. This is for fun, not therapy. If it is too difficult to use, it will probably just be ignored. 2. Try to find a toy that enables the child to create something, like a sound or light show. It’s a simple, delightful sensory pleasure. 3. Actually press the buttons or move the joystick yourself. Does it move easily, without you having to exert much force? For a child with physical disabilities, you may find that non-electronic toys – like a clinking toy piano – are easier to use. And finally, check out my gift guide for great...

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This week I’m… getting messy with May!

Posted on Nov 7, 2013 | 4 comments

This week I’m… getting messy with May!

It’s Autumn and the Harvest season. Time to get into food with May. And I mean really into food. All hands in. Halloween and Thanksgiving are great opportunities to work with pumpkins. May’s interest and ability to reach forward (or thrust forward as she does) is growing. Pumpkins offer a great contrast in textures: the smooth, cool shell and the slimy, stringy guts littered with seeds. Plus, pumpkin guts make the silliest sploosh sound when you pat with your hands. Also, they make tasty treats. But, I’m not a food blogger. I wouldn’t trust my pumpkin recipes – go see Tinned Tomatoes or Maison Cupcake for that. Here are some photos of our favorite model – and her baldy mom (I don’t want to sound vain, but I defy anyone to say that cancer hasn’t turned me into a supermodel). May enjoyed and I hope your little ones do too! Click to enlarge! What kind of messy play does your special needs kiddie enjoy? Photo credits: Stacie Lewis, Katinka Szegedi  ...

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This week I’m… using an iPad?

Posted on Mar 17, 2013 | 10 comments

This week I’m… using an iPad?

May wants an iPad. It’s not because she thinks I deserve to watch more movies. (Though that’s a bonus.) She wants an iPad because it may be the first piece of equipment that really helps her learn to see. May has Cortical Visual Impairment (AKA Cerebral Visual Impairment). CVI is the brain damage that stops her from understanding what she sees. This photo is a good example of how May does not focus, not because she can’t, but because she’s never understood there is anything to focus on. Over the past few years, we’ve spent money on a lot of visually stimulating toys and lights. They’ve blinked and glowed and flashed. They’ve turned on by banging them and flicking a switch. They’ve been black and white, or multi-colored. We could devote an entire room to these instruments and, let me tell you – we’ve spent a lot more than an iPad is worth. May’s visual therapist, who has been working with May since she started at her special needs school, is amazing. She is patient and keen to help May – which may seem like a basic characteristic in a therapist, but is not. She phoned me last week to tell me how she’d used an iPad with May their last session. “Now it was only the first time I tried,” she said, trying not to build up my hopes, “but she held her focus on the screen for 14 seconds.” That’s major, people. “And, she followed – not with her eyes, but with her head – the image across the screen.” Whoa. What? Followed something as it moved? She directed me to some research by Muriel Saunders, assistant research professor at the University of Kansas’s Life Span Institute, who as TechNews Daily explain it “was conducting a study about how children respond to adaptive switches – a tool that teaches kids with disabilities cause and effect skills needed for early language development – when her assistant asked to use an iPad to gauge interaction. “We gave 15 toddlers between the ages of three and four with cortical visual impairment an iPad to play with and were completely shocked with the results. Children with the disorder don’t usually look directly at people and objects, but they were completely drawn to the light of the iPad and could interact with objects on the screen.” May’s visual therapist used the iPad with other students on the same day, with similar results to May. I’m not implying an iPad is the miracle we need so that May can see, but if it helps – it will be a miracle. Make of that what you will. We are applying for charity funding to cover the costs. Watch this space! Do you know a child who has benefited from an...

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How happy can a half-brained beauty be? (VIDEO)

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 | 4 comments

How happy can a half-brained beauty be? (VIDEO)

Next month, May will be four years old. (Deep breath, people!) Our half-brained beauty has impressed us all with her progress since she was a baby, but what of her happiness? Frequently, people ask me how May is, and I immediately say, “She is very happy.” Many parents must wonder, at the first diagnosis, how this will be at all possible for their little one. I certainly did. If May has achieved anything in her life, it is a great amount of joy. Yes, she has her moments. But, usually they are linked to some kind of pain or illness. Given the severity of her injuries, if May is happy 90% of the time, I would imagine it is possible for just about any child to be happy if they receive the love and attention they desire. It’s not all about physio! Want some evidence? Here’s May and her brother, Ieuan, having a bit of a boogie this week (Sorry, includes my amazing...

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