The following article by Linda Robinson offers some practical ideas for making your garden safer and more enjoyable for your autistic child.
If you have an autistic child, it’s important to create a sensory-friendly garden that provides your little one with a safe, calm, and functional outdoor space that can be used to play, learn, and explore the natural world around him or her. For some tips on creating a safe and enjoyable outdoor space for children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), read on.
Creating an Autism-Friendly Outdoor Space
To create a safe, accessible, and functional outdoor space for your child, keep the following tips in mind as you design your new autism-friendly garden.
- Review HomeAdvisor’s tips on creating an outdoor sanctuary for children with disabilities.
- Soundproof the garden by building a fence and planting a few noise-blocking trees and shrubs.
- Invest in a few pieces of autism-friendly playground equipment for your new outdoor space.
- Fill your garden with plants that appeal to all five senses, including sunflowers, bamboo, silver sage, and sweet pea.
- Add a play tunnel or tent that gives your child a safe place to escape to if he or she experiences sensory overload while spending time in the garden.
Fun and Educational Activities for Kids with Autism
After creating a safe and functional garden for your child, make use of your new outdoor space with these autism-friendly activities, toys, and games.
- Enjoy a few autism-friendly outdoor activities like a scavenger hunt, hide-and-seek, outdoor yoga, and cloud watching.
- Have fun and learn something new with these science experiments for kids.
- Purchase a few outdoor toys and games for your little one to enjoy. Some great options for kids with autism include chalk, bubbles, garden tools, or a velcro ball toss.
- Make a sandbox for your autistic child. This DIY sandbox from The Spruce could later be converted into a raised garden bed.
For some additional information on parenting or caring for a autistic child, check out the links below.
- Benefits of Nature for Children with Autism
- Safety Steps to Consider When Setting Up an Autism-Friendly Garden
- Summer and Sensory Processing Issues
- Contact Living Autism to Find the Autism Services, Support, and Advice You Need
If you have a autistic child, these tips and resources will help you to create a safer and more enjoyable outdoor space for your little one. With a few simple modifications to your home garden, your child will have the safe and functional outdoor space he or she needs to learn, play, and explore the natural world.
If you need help looking for services for an individual with an autism spectrum condition, we can help. Click below for the Autism Placement Support Service.