Friday, February 16, 2018

Where to Find Free Social Stories

Looking to find some free social stories for children with autism? Then look no further than this list of social story resources!

Social stories have been a valuable tool for my son over the years. I have written quite a few personalized ones for him over the years and have witnessed how successful they have been for him.

But writing social stories on your own can be time consuming, especially if you want to include clip art and photos. It takes forever to find good photos to include!

So to save you time (and money!), here are some of the best places to locate free social stories for kids.

Where to find social stories for free

Where to Find Social Stories for Free

1. Free Printable Social Stories Library - I have created some free social stories for kids and will be continuing to add more in the future.

2. Free Halloween Social Stories for Kids - A massive collection of Halloween themed social stories. Includes printable social stories as well as video social stories.

3. Social Stories Library from ABA Resources - There are so many printable social stories here! Topics range from school, safety, emotional self-regulation, and behaviors, just to name a few.

4. Folder Stories from File Folder Heaven - There are lots of free social stories here that cover topics such as washing hands, trying new foods, and apologizing.

5. Free Social Stories from Positively Autism - Not a huge collection of social stories, but still lots to choose from.

6. Huge Social Stories Library from One Place for Special Needs - There are literally pages upon pages of social story resources here, including printable and video social stories.

7. Social Stories Library from ISEA - A great list of social stories covering topics such as using my school voice, riding the bus, losing a tooth, hugging, and more!

More General Resources for Finding Free Social Stories for Kids

1. Teachers Pay Teachers - You can find tons of printable social stories on TPT. Simply type in your keywords in the search bar and then select free in the leftside menu. You will need to create a TPT account first, but it's free to join!

2. YouTube - You can also find lots of video social stories for free on YouTube.

3. Pinterest - Pinterest can be a wonderful resource for locating specific social stories. The only downside is there are so many that it can be overwhelming.

Other Social Story Resources You'll Love

Where to find social stories for free
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Tuesday, February 13, 2018

4 Tips for Managing Sensory Issues During the Winter

Tips on how to manage sensory issues during winter.

Winter can be challenging for many reasons, especially if your child is autistic and/or has sensory issues.

New transitions.

New routines.

New clothing.

All of these seemingly simple things can throw kids off and cause issues.

Our biggest issues during winter revolve around winter clothing. From zipping up to remembering to wearing mitts to chewing nonstop on the top of the coats, both of my kids need extra support for helping them manage their sensory issues. These are my top tips for managing sensory issues during winter.

4 tips for managing sensory issues during winter

How to Support Your Child's Sensory Issues During Winter

Don't worry, these tips are nothing crazy or difficult to implement. They're simple little changes you can do once that will (hopefully!) help all winter long.

4 tips for managing sensory issues during winter
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Monday, February 12, 2018

Valentine's Slime Favors with Free Printable Cards

Looking for a non-candy Valentine's alternative? Try making these DIY Valentine's slime favors. Free printable slime Valentine's cards are included!

I am not a big fan of Valentine's Day cards, simply because they get looked at for a few seconds and then that's kind of it. Although we have found many ways to reuse the store-bought cards before recycling them.

I'm also not a big fan of all the candy that comes along with Valentine's Day either.

So this year, ditch the store-bought Valentine's Day cards and make something fun for the kids instead!

These DIY Valentine's slime favors for kids include free printable cards, just to make it even easier for you to switch it up this Valentine's Day.

Make Valentine's slime as a non-candy Valentine alternative - comes with free printable Valentine's cards

DIY Valentine's Slime Favors for Kids

I love that you can personalize these Valentine's slime favors to include as much or as little slime as you'd like or whatever color of slime you want.

You can also decorate the containers however you see fit. We used glass jars for photography purposes only. I would definitely suggest using plastic containers or zipper seal baggies instead!

Make Valentine's slime as a non-candy Valentine alternative - comes with free printable Valentine's cards
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Thursday, January 25, 2018

10 Classic Video Games to Play with Your Kids

Relive your childhood by playing some of the best NES and SNES games with your kids. This list of classic video games to play with your kids is a great starting point (and a great way to revisit your memories of "Nintendo thumb").

It's no secret that our family loves to play video games.

In fact, I grew up playing them and my parents actually owned a movie and video game rental store so we had access to all the coolest games. My husband and I even have all of our old consoles too. So every so often, we dust them off and enjoy some of our favorite games with the kids.

The kids think it is awesome. I also think they find the simplicity of these retro games, as well as the simplicity of the controllers, appealing.

List of classic video games to play with your kids from And Next Comes L

The Best Retro Video Games Your Kids Will Love to Play!

Whether you are a seasoned gamer or a casual gamer, this list of classic video games is sure to delight you and your kids! From playing Super Mario Bros on the original NES to racing games on the SNES, you're going to enjoy this blast from the past!

Who knows? Maybe your childhood favorites are on the list!

List of classic video games to play with your kids from And Next Comes L
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Friday, January 19, 2018

Free Visual Schedule Printables to Help Kids with Daily Routines

Visual schedules, or visual daily routine charts, are a wonderful way to help ease transitions and reduce meltdowns for children. This list of free printable visual schedule pictures will make those daily routines a breeze!

There are many benefits to using a visual schedule at home, and at school, with your children. They can be a powerful tool for keeping your child organized, providing independence, and reducing meltdowns, for instance.

I remember when we were first introduced to using visual schedule pictures at home and it was simply life changing for us! Due to J's hyperlexia, he thrives when there is written text because, when it comes to hyperlexia, if it is not written down, it may not exist. So I spent an afternoon whipping up our very own visual schedule and quickly put it into use at home. Having a visual daily routine visible to him really reduced anxiety and frustration for him and dramatically improved our day-to-day-life.

So if you are looking to help your autistic kids with their daily routines and transitions, I highly recommend grabbing a copy of these free visual schedules printables for kids.

Free visual schedule printables to help kids with daily routines & transitions from And Next Comes L

Awesome Free Printable Visual Schedule Pictures for Home

I have always been a big fan of consistent daily routines for our children. Knowing what comes next helps reduce frustration and meltdowns. So using picture schedule cards for home can be a great way to help your kids with their daily routines. Here are some wonderful visual routine cards for kids that are free to download.

1. Free Visual Schedule Printable

2. Daily Visual Schedule from Natural Beach Living

3. Printable Bedtime Routine Visual Schedule from From ABCs to ACTs

4. Before & After School Visual Routines for Kids from Where Imagination Grows

5. Printable Morning Routine Visual Schedule from From ABCs to ACTs

6. Morning & Night Routine Visual Schedule from Natural Beach Living

7. Morning Routine Visual Flash Cards from Living Locurto

8. Self Care Visual Schedules from Living Well with Autism

Free Printable Visual Schedules for Preschool

Perhaps you are homeschooling or have preschool aged children? Then you're going to love these free printable pre-k visual schedules!

1. Visual School Schedule from This Reading Mama

2. Visual Schedule Printables for Preschool from No Time for Flash Cards

Other Visual Autism Resources You'll Love

Free Printable Visual Calm Down Cards for Kids

Visual Sensory Toys & Tools

Benefits of Using Visual Schedules

Free visual schedule printables to help kids with daily routines & transitions from And Next Comes L
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Tuesday, January 16, 2018

50 Sensory Diet Activities

Looking to spice up your child's sensory diet program with quick and easy sensory activities? This list of sensory diet activities is perfect for your sensory seeking child!

When raising autistic kids or kids with sensory processing disorder, you often hear the phrase sensory diet mentioned. You know that incorporating sensory diet activities into your child's day makes a huge difference in their day-to-day life. Or at least I know we have!

Yet, it can be tricky to fit all the sensory activities your child needs into their day or even trickier to find the right sensory diet activities for your child.

This list of 50 easy sensory diet activities, however, will show you that you don't need to pick complicated activities and that many of the daily activities you likely already do, fit the bill for a good sensory diet activity.

List of 50 easy sensory diet activities for kids from And Next Comes L

This post contains affiliate links.

List of 50 Easy Sensory Diet Activities

Finding sensory diet activities shouldn't be complicated or use a lot of fancy materials. In fact, most of these activities are things you either already do at home or they are easy enough to do right at home with materials you have on hand. Yes, these are sensory diet activities for home!

And even if you have little ones at home, most of these activities are the perfect sensory diet activities for toddlers too!

This list of activities includes activities to provide all types of sensory input. From vestibular and proprioceptive to oral motor and auditory, this list is a great starting point to help your child get the sensory input they need.

1. Swing

Sensory swing

2. Roll like a log, in a blanket like a burrito, or down a hill

3. Hang upside down off of a couch or monkey bars

4. Ride a bike, scooter, or similar

5. Walk across a balance beam, stand on a balance board, or stand on a balance cushion

6. Spin

7. Do a handstand

8. Sit on something wobbly like a wobble stool, exercise ball, or balance cushion

9. Jump on a trampoline, bed, cushions, or similar

10. Hop like a kangaroo or using a hopper ball

11. Finger paint

12. Play with scented dough, sensory bin fillers, or similar

13. Draw with scented markers

14. Play with a sensory bin

Soap foam sensory bin

15. Get a massage

16. Listen to music, audiobooks, or nature sounds

17. Make a sensory path or walkway

18. Climb through a sensory tunnel

19. Bake cookies or bread

20. Brush skin

21. Play with textured balls

23. Rock in a rocking chair

24. Play auditory hide and seek with a musical toy

26. Crash into a crash mat or pile of pillows
27. Wear tight or snug fitting clothing like compression clothes or pressure vest

28. Blow bubbles in water using as straw

29. Sit with a weighted blanket or cushion across your lap or use a weighted vest

30. Play and knead play dough, putty, slime, or similar

31. Take a shower or a bath

32. Chew gum

33. Rub on scented lotion
34. Blow bubbles

blowing bubbles

35. Do animal walks

36. Go on a sound scavenger hunt
37. Do yoga

38. Climb into a body sock

Playing with a body sock

39. Go swimming

40. Blow dandelions, pinwheels, or a small instrument like a whistle or harmonica

42. Look at sensory bottles, lava lamps, kaleidoscope, or similar

43. Climb a tree, or on a ladder, rope ladder, rock wall, playground equipment, or similar

44. Take a scented bubble bath

46. Sleep with stretchy bed sheets

48. Play in the dark with flashlights or glow sticks

50. Lay on an exercise ball or have someone roll it across your body

Other Sensory Diet Resources You'll Love

List of 50 easy sensory diet activities for kids from And Next Comes L
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Friday, January 12, 2018

Free Calm Down Kit Printables

To help with anxiety in your child, a calm down kit can be a great way to teach your child self-regulation skills and coping skills. This collection of free calm down kit printables will help you make the perfect calm down box for your kids in no time!

Teaching your child calming strategies is so important. It helps them self-regulate, manage big emotions, and reduce stress and anxiety. One way to help young children learn coping skills is to create a calm down kit for kids.

Really anything can be put in a calm down kit, but this list of free calm down kit printables will make putting together a calm down kit for your kids a breeze.

Free printable calming strategies resources to help you put together a calm down kit for kids from And Next Comes L

Free Printables to Help You Plan Out Your Calm Down Kit for Kids

When making a homemade calming kit for kids, it can be tough to decide what to put in it. It's important to consider your child's interests, as well as their sensory preferences when putting together a calm down bin for them. Thankfully, there are these free printables to help you plan out what to put in a calm down anxiety kit for kids.

1. List of Things to Put in a Calm Down Kit for Kids

2. List of Things to Put in a Calm Down Kit for Older Kids

Free Printables to Put in Your Calm Down Kit for Kids

There are lots of different things you can put in your homemade calm down kit for kids. While fidgets and chewies are a must, many kids benefit from having visual supports to help them self-regulate and calm down. These free printable calming strategies resources make the perfect addition to any calm down kit!

4. Calming Strategies Pack from Kori at Home

5. Relaxation Prompts for Kids from The Chaos & The Clutter

6. Calm Down Tools Mini Book from The Mommy View at Views from a Step Stool

7. Breathing Exercises Cards for Kids from Childhood 101

8. Coping Skills Cards from Littles, Life, & Laughter

9. Deep Breathing Printables from Coping Skills for Kids

Free Printable Posters to Put Up in Your Calm Down Area

Having a dedicated calm down area in your house (or classroom if you are a teacher) is a wonderful idea. It gives your children a perfect place to retreat too when they are feeling anxious or overwhelmed. Don't have a calm down area set up yet? Check out these tips for setting up a calm down corner for kids.

1. 9 Calm Down Ideas Poster from Childhood 101

2. Take 5 Breathing Poster from Childhood 101

3. Managing Big Emotions Poster from Childhood 101

Other Ideas You'll Love

Homemade Calm Down Kits for Kids

Calm & Focused DIY Essential Oil Blend

Christmas Calm Down Kit for Kids

Free printable calming strategies resources to help you put together a calm down kit for kids from And Next Comes L
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