fbpx

Play At Home

All of us here at Inclusion Matters by Shane’s Inspiration are here to support you during the COVID-19 health crisis. We know stress this pandemic has placed on our lives. It has been difficult to create a sense of normalcy. Children with disabilities often require an array of essential services which support their educational and physical development. These services have been cut significantly at this time, presenting the potential for a profound negative impact on the children we serve.

So, we created over 60 ideas to help spark playful learning, therapies, and fun projects in your home. Our Professional Advisory Board members and partners share ideas to help our families at home. We hope to be back on the playground again soon, but until then, we hope these ideas will guide you in ways to play together at home. We will continue to add new posts, so check back for updates.

Play Scientist at Home

It’s Fun Friday! Let’s play scientist at home using some common household ingredients and some ingenuity. Science is something everyone can get involved with, no matter what your age or ability! So, explore, experiment, and empower our kids!

Tabletop Play

There are plenty of opportunities for building fine motor skills on the playground, but tabletop play can be created in any environment! Exercising their hands with different objects can support motor and sensory development for children of all abilities. 

Ballet For All Kids

In honor of #InternationalDanceDay, let’s invite our little ones to experience the joy of dance through Ballet For All Kids! Research has shown that movement helps children with special needs improve social communication and motor skills.

Creating Resilient Families

Supporting your child’s resiliency and self- esteem can often be a challenge, especially at this time of working and learning from home. Josan Callender, our friend, special education teacher and author, has shared a wonderful way for parents or caregivers to support learning and play at home.

Musical Play with Laurel Terreri

Music is a great way to connect while being at home together! Laurel Terreri, board certified music therapist at Miller Children’s & Women’s Hospital Long Beach, takes you through music, movement, and instrument-making, all from the comfort of your own home!

Global Day of Play

Today, we reached the homes of families from all over the world via Zoom and FB Live for our #GlobalDayofPlay! We are so grateful to the amazing artists, including Jason Mraz, who enchanted us with their performances and inspiring stories. As you can see, we all had a blast!

Garden Play & Horticultural Therapy

Gardening reduces stress and helps children cope with anxiety and frustration. Since we all might be feeling a bit of that, why not create a garden at home? Or bring a garden into your home with some fun, garden crafts for kids of all ages and abilities.

Play Spaces Under Things

Our young friends love creating their own play spaces in different areas of the playground, especially underneath things! These fort-like spaces allow for creativity, independence, and sensory regulation. With this kind of freedom, imagination runs wild.

Yoga for ALL with Limor Landau

Let’s learn yoga! Limor Landau teaches classes that are aimed at infants and children with special needs, but are suited for anyone. It’s a wonderful opportunity for children to experience a warmer, more soulful approach to therapy.

Tips from a Specialist Teacher

As we are in the midst of our Stay-at-Home Learning, we recognize what parents and teachers are up against during this unique time. We appreciate all that they have accomplished. We invited one of our favorite teachers, Corky O’Rourke, to share some advice.

Let’s Get Animated like Ian

“Ian” is an animated short from the Ian Foundation and Mundaloco CGI in Argentina. Born with cerebral palsy, Ian wants to make friends, but discrimination and bullying keep him away from his beloved playground. But this boy is determined.

Exploring Food Using Play

Believe it or not, playing with food is a great way to introduce new foods to kids of all abilities! It decreases mealtime anxiety and builds familiarity. Teaching kids with disabilities how to cook is an important life skill to promote independence.

Sports are for ALL Kids

Children need to move to ensure their physical and mental well-being. Now, more than ever, our kids are spending hours in front of screens for distance learning. So let’s get them moving with some creative sports, games, and play for kids of all abilities.

The Museumgoer at Home

Do you miss going to museums? We do, too! But our friend Cari Moreno has created a website to bring the museum home to you! The Museumgoer is dedicated to sharing museum-related activities for kids (or adults with kids’ spirits) that can be done at home!

Play, Explore, Learn

Free exploration lets our friends on the playground learn the world around them at their own pace, with their own abilities! It can also encourage joint attention, concept learning, and their use of senses! Kids of all ages love to explore!

Zooz Fitness Workout with Jake Weiner

Exercise is important, and it can be fun too! Meet Jake Weiner, Founder/CEO of ZOOZ Fitness. ZOOZ creates adaptive, inclusive, and active workout routines designed for young adults with disabilities, which promotes health and wellness of mind and body.

Obstacle Courses at Home

Many of our families are missing key therapies. How are you keeping bodies, hearts, and minds moving today? Consider an obstacle course inside your home! Simple activities can stretch your arms, help you balance, and connect the brain.

Sesame Street’s Amazing Children

Sesame Street sees the “amazing in all children,” including our friends with autism. We learn that some of our friends might see the world a little differently, but it doesn’t keep them from playing at https://youtu.be/RuV8AddbXIs.

Storytime with Kali Rocha

How about an original story from actress Kali Rocha (Disney’s Liv & Maddie and Man with a Plan)? Curl up and listen to “The Treasure Pot”, a story about kindness and inclusion written by Kali and her daughter, Savria with sound effects by her son, Barlow.

Time for Bubbles

Bubbles are always a hit with our buddies on the playground: https://youtu.be/m_DgXp7eTZQ. Playing with bubbles is fun to feel and can also help with coordination, motor, and visuospatial skills. Bubbles can be a favorite at home, too!

It’s You We Like, Mister Rogers

Fred Rogers showed young children the world in simple, yet direct ways. We love when Jeff Erlanger visited Mister Rogers and talked about his electric wheelchair. Join them in singing, “It’s You I Like” at https://youtu.be/UNUficgWE3U.

Dance is for Everyone!

You can sense the joy kids feel when they dance. Dance is for everyone, no matter what their age or ability! Take some inspiration from these kiddos and their buddy as they dance together at https://youtu.be/aVs-jMMsVUA. We have ways to get hearts pumping at home!

Indoor Workout with Katelynn Johnson

We’re all sitting inside more than ever. Try this quick, inclusive workout with Katelynn Johnson at https://youtu.be/S6hyTrZt4ZU. Use cans as resistance for seated arm exercises and your small pet as a fun weight for standing leg workouts!

Make a Sensory Bottle

Want to make a fun and easy calming sensory bottle craft in minutes with your kids? All you need are a few items which you probably already have in your home. The OT Toolbox provides tips to parents, therapists, and teachers to help our kiddos who need a little sensory support.

Jam with Jamie

Move and groove with Jamie Kolnick, the founder of Jam with Jamie. Grab some fun items to dance with, like scarves or music shakers from around the house! Then sing along with Jamie. Jam with Jamie is on a mission to bring music into kids’ lives everywhere!

Curious George & Universal Studios

Curious George is our favorite little monkey who loves to PLAY. His friends at Universal Studios Hollywood join us as buddies to kids of ALL abilities and bring Curious George to our playdates. We found some great Curious George-themed ways to play #athome!

Sensory Time with Jennifer Quick

It feels good. It smells good. It’s shaving cream! Watch as our Education Program Manager, Jennifer Quick, shows you ways to use shaving cream as a sensory favorite at home! All you need is a cookie sheet or surface as your blank canvas.

Wheelchair Racing & Macarena

Kids just wanna have fun! That includes kids with disabilities. Check out these kids racing wheelchairs and dancing the Macarena. Just because someone uses a wheelchair doesn’t mean they don’t enjoy going fast and having a little frivolity in their lives.

Musical Play at Home

Our friends on the playground love to sing songs and play rhythm instruments with their buddies (https://youtu.be/S2Tff83CM9c). It’s soothing, joyful, and inclusive! These are things we can all use in our lives, especially right now.

Stretch with 14-year old Ezra Frech

Stretch with 14-year old Ezra Frech – Meet Ezra Frech, a 14-year old aspiring Paralympian, who was a part of our private launch of our first virtual My PlayClub on Saturday, 3/28/20. Join Ezra for a few stretches as he shares his story at https://youtu.be/BbzhiO6X39A.