The most appropriate toys for children with disabilities

The most appropriate toys for children with disabilities

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Gambling is and should be a universal activity. All children, regardless of their age, race, nationality, physical and social condition, have the right to play; It is a right that is contemplated and reflected in the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Jose Antonio Pastor He is a pedagogue, president of the Spanish Association of Toy Manufacturers and president of the Crecer Jugando Foundation. With him we talked about stimulation, developing and the game. We also talk about toys that are aimed at children who have a visual, auditory, motor or intellectual disability.

What should we bear in mind when thinking about toys for children with disabilities?
Above all, and whatever the special need, it is important to choose toys with the child's interests, needs and safety in mind. It is also important, on a general level, not to put in the hands of children with a disability only toys that are aimed at younger children. Care must be taken not to limitcapabilitiesand potentialities by giving them little stimulating toys.

What type of toy is the most suitable for children with motor disabilities?
Specifically, for motor-type disabilities, they are very interesting toys with easy-to-fit pieces, large structures, that do not require too fast or simultaneous movements - for example, pressing two buttons at the same time. They must have easy access to their springs, keys, that is, to all their functions.

What type of toy is the most appropriate for children with hearing impairments?
The same toys as for any boy or girl: dolls, board games, skates, bicycles ... On the other hand, we must bear in mind that hearing impairment does not have to mean total hearing loss. So let's think about the little one's possibilities: do you hear something? Yes? Do not? Depending on these aspects, you can choose toys with sound effects that are accompanied by other effects that they can perceive: vibrations, lights, movements ...

What should be the criteria of parents when buying a toy for a child with visual impairment?
The general criteria should be the same as in the previous case, think about your possibilities and, from here, reinforce what you can do to take on challenges. For example, with the help of a rope or a bar, some bells and with the right company ... could a blind child be encouraged to ride a stretch of track on skates? Sure, many kids won't be comfortable with it, but surely some others will. Let's not start from limitation, but from possibility.

What type of toy is best for children with intellectual disabilities?
In this case, it will depend a lot on the type of intellectual disability–Whose spectrum is very broad and whether it is associated with another disability, thereby adapting to the child's intellectual and physical level and the moment of development of the child. Toys for school use can be a good choice, as they are designed to facilitate learning in an attractive way.

Can parents adapt a toy for a child with a disability? What role does the family play in the development of this activity?
Parents can adapt toys for their child to enjoy and get more out of it, making it easier for them to use. They can enlarge the game cards, for example, by making large photocopies or putting Velcro to fix the toy, as we said before. More complex adaptations can also be carried out which can be carried out in specialized companies. The important thing is that with the adaptation we make sure to comply with the safety conditions, not adding any danger to the child, while continuing to be an attractive and desirable toy.

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