Our Best Toys to Help Your Child Manage ADHD in School

Our Best Toys to Help Your Child Manage ADHD in School

If you have a child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or teach students with ADHD, you understand how learning at school can be difficult. You can help students with ADHD — whether you are a parent or a teacher. Talk to the other important people in their life, pay attention to how they interact with peers and create a structure so the student learns to build a routine.

Certain types of toys are specifically designed for students with ADHD or sensory processing disorders. Many schools and educators are open to children using fidget toys and gadgets during the school day to help keep them focused. Having these toys available in the classroom or buying toys for your child to bring to and from school can aid them in their academic journey.

Continue reading to discover some of the best fidget toys for managing ADHD in the classroom.

Difficulties Children With ADHD May Face in School

Children with ADHD might experience more challenges in school than children without ADHD. Many schools have procedures to assist children with learning, such as giving students a distraction-free place to take exams. However, children with ADHD can still have difficulty in school. Some challenges might include:

  • Lack of physical activity: Besides the allotted recess time, children stay seated for most of the school day. Stillness can be difficult for some students with ADHD, for whom physical activity can be vital.
  • Trouble staying focused: Students with ADHD might struggle to focus for long periods, making classes and homework challenging.
  • Difficulty finishing work: Some students with ADHD may face challenges finishing their work due to distractions.
  • Being too talkative: Some students with ADHD might talk too much or be disruptive in the classroom.
  • Bonding with other students: Some children with ADHD might experience difficulty making friends at school. Children who are inattentive might seem shy to other students, while students experiencing hyperactivity might be met with disdain or aggression.

Additionally, ADHD often occurs alongside other conditions such as learning disabilities, anxiety and depression, all of which can make school more difficult.

The 7 Best Toys for Managing ADHD in the Classroom

Aside from any systems already put in place by the school, there are ways to help children with ADHD be successful in school. Sensory toys may help students experiencing ADHD or anxiety in the classroom. You might find the following list of toys effective for classroom use:

1. Classroom Fidget Kit

Fidget toys help classroom focus. The Classroom Fidget Kit comes with various fidget toys for individuals with ADHD meant to help any student. This option is a good choice for teachers because it provides many different options for fidget toys. The toys also come in a convenient bag for easy portability and classroom storage. Children can use fidget toys during storytime, while waiting for other students to finish an exam, during a lesson or in other parts of the day requiring more focus.

 2. Textured Marble Fidget Board

Moving around the marbles on a Textured Marble Fidget Board provides exploration and tactile learning. This fidget toy is special due to its unique design. It is colorful and glossy, adding a visual element to its tactile quality.

The colors and mirrored elements can have a calming effect on students who feel overwhelmed during the school day. Playing with fidget toys is also beneficial for children with anxiety, as it keeps their hands occupied during moments of stress.

3. Oral Motor Chew Sets

Chew tools are created specifically for use in therapy. They especially benefit children who crave chewing or children with oral motor problems. However, they can also be helpful for students with ADHD and can be used — with the teacher’s permission — in the classroom.

Chew Sets can help with breath control and muscle tone. These toys come in three levels — soft, medium and hard. Chew sets may be helpful for students with ADHD in the classroom if they experience distractedness even while their hands are occupied, such as during an exam or while taking notes.

4. Weighted Handwriting Glove

A Weighted Handwriting Glove can provide support and compression for students with ADHD who need to build fine motor skills for writing or self-help activities. This glove comes in sizes small, medium and large, and is made of soft cotton spandex with a weighted pouch that rests on the back of the hand. Items with compression can be comforting for kids with ADHD experiencing discomfort in school. Compression is also sometimes helpful for students experiencing anxiety.

5. Cuddly Mimbleballs

Cuddly Mimbleballs

Mimbleballs are fluffy options for kids to hold and squeeze during school. These little buddies are soft and comforting and come in pink, white and green. They also have fun frizzy hair and adorable button eyes. Mimbleballs are machine washable, making them a perfect addition to your home or classroom. They’re also sure to put a smile on a kid’s face during gloomy or stressful days!

6. Ball Chairs

Ball Chairs are great for any child who has difficulty sitting still for prolonged periods of time. As a bonus, they also help with posture and balance. The chairs stay in place using locking casters, making them equally safe and effective.

You can put one of these chairs at your child’s desk at home so they can stay occupied while doing homework in the evening. If you’re a teacher, you can outfit your classroom with one or two of these chairs that students can use as needed.

7. Activity Wall Panels

One of the most stimulating toys for individuals with ADHD is an activity panel. Activity Wall Panels can add a fun and stimulating element to the classroom. These panels are solid wood, and you can choose between a horse, zebra or frog design, or you can mix and match so students have different choices! Each animal has different activities that help students develop eye-hand coordination, motor skills and cognitive skills.

All the different options come with different activities — kids will find new ways to play every time! Additionally, these wall panels help encourage children to play together. The ability to develop fine motor skills while playing with other students is important for students with ADHD, who sometimes face difficulties making friends in the classroom.

The Toys From Enabling Devices Can Help Your Child Focus at School

The Toys From Enabling Devices Can Help Your Child Focus at School

At Enabling Devices, we work with therapists, teachers and parents to create tools and toys built to make life more joyful for people with disabilities. We have more than 40 years of experience and are dedicated to working together to make devices that are useful, fun and innovative.

If you’re a parent or teacher looking to make a child’s schooling experience more enjoyable, we’ve got something for you. To get more information on our fidget toys for individuals with anxiety and ADHD, contact us today!

10 Assistive Technology Tools That Can Help You Teach Online

10 Assistive Technology Tools That Can Help You Teach Online

In 2019, over 7 million students with disabilities navigated learning obstacles while attending school. That’s 14% of total student enrollment. In a typical classroom setting, teachers aid these students by designing Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) that are structured with assistive technological support. Teachers follow the same steps in an online setting, but the available instruction methods and assistive technologies are vastly different. This post outlines the 10 most beneficial assistive technologies you can use in your online classroom, as well as their unique benefits.

What Is Assistive Technology in Special Education?

Assistive technology is any device, software or product that improves a person’s ability to perform a task. In a special education setting, students use assistive technology to achieve the learning goals defined in their IEP. These aids can be as simple as a calculator or as high-tech as speech recognition software.

Generally, assistive technology falls into three categories:

  • Low-tech: Technologies that don’t involve complex electronics or specialized software are considered low-tech. Some examples include graphic organizers and a pencil grip.
  • Mid-tech: Mid-tech assistive technologies enhance another technology’s performance. Examples include screen magnifiers, adapted switches and talking calculators.
  • High-tech: Assistive technologies are considered high-tech when they’re stand-alone technologies that enhance performance. Common examples include keyboard and mouse alternatives, word prediction programs and text-to-speech software.


In the classroom, teachers supply their students with assistive technologies knowing they can monitor usage and guide group instruction. In an online classroom, teachers lose the ability to administer physical assistive technologies. However, there are still many effective solutions that students can use from home — either individually or with the help of a caregiver.

How Can Assistive Technology Be Used to Help Students?

Assistive technologies help students navigate learning obstacles. For some students, this may mean reducing stimuli by going to a quiet and dimly lit room. Other students may require more support, like aligning math equations or having braille text. Assistive technology can be used for at-home education to help students do the following:

  • Hear and listen to instructions
  • Understand math concepts
  • Improve writing abilities
  • Stay engaged
  • Write their thoughts and solutions completely and legibly
  • Read assigned text
  • Communicate with other students and faculty online

You can supply some assistive technologies as online resources that students can easily access. If you supply online resources, consider adding every resource to one webpage on your teaching module. That way, students don’t have to navigate through a handful of webpages.

Browse Assistive Technology Products

Additionally, you can supply in-home assistive technologies, such as an alternative keyboard or braille printer. Your school may or may not be able to cover these costs. If not, make a suggestion to the students’ parents, but be prepared if the student simply can’t access high-tech assistive technologies.

The Benefits of Assistive Technology for Online Education

The Benefits of Assistive Technology for Online Education

Assistive technology makes it easier for students to learn. Being able to take control of their education is huge for students with disabilities. For some, this feeling of control can even be life-changing. The use of various assistive technology devices in an online classroom facilitates the following benefits:

1. Instills a Sense of Independence

Students with disabilities overcome many challenges in their daily routine. At school, these challenges can make them feel dependent on others. Although there’s nothing wrong with receiving assistance, some students may feel different from their peers who don’t require the same teacher-student dependence.

Assistive technology restores students’ independence. It allows students to take charge of their own learning, manipulating technologies by themselves to achieve tasks independently.

2. Allows Students to Realize Their Potential

When students take charge of their learning, their newfound independence unlocks potential they didn’t know was possible. Stigmas and a lack of technology may have built boundaries that made it difficult, or impossible, for students to work around. With assistive technology, students don’t have to face the same obstacles. Students with disabilities have the potential to perform larger and more complex tasks, preparing them for a future of continued success.

3. Restores Confidence in Students With Disabilities

A sense of independence and unlocked potential helps students with disabilities feel more confident in themselves and their abilities. Without assistive technology, students may become frustrated when they can’t complete a task. With assistive technology, every task completed restores students’ self-esteem and willingness to complete more tasks.

4. Brings Students With Differing Abilities Together

Differing abilities can lead to social separation. At school, students learn foundational concepts they’ll use throughout their life, including social skills. It’s important for students of all abilities to interact with each other because:

  • Able-bodied students empathize with people different than them, breaking down the social stigma associated with differing abilities.
  • Students with disabilities feel included, strengthening their self-worth.

In an online setting, give everyone the same access to assistive technology. Giving only a handful of students access to assistive technology can make them feel excluded from the group. Offering everyone the same learning opportunities echoes the benefits outlined above.

10 Best Assistive Technology Tools for Teachers and Students

Online education is stressful for many teachers. Although special education is most often taught in-person, assistive technologies allow instruction to take place online. Meet with each student and, after designing their IEP, make a game plan. Prepare synchronous and asynchronous lesson plans. Reflecting on each IEP, think about the students’ learning obstacles and determine a list of assistive technologies that could help your student succeed.

Consider adding these 10 assistive technologies to your online instruction as needed:

High-Tech Assistive Technology

High-tech assistive technology students can use for online learning includes:

1. Speech Recognition Software

Speech recognition software, also known as speech-to-text, decodes the human voice to perform a defined behavior. An example you may be familiar with is the speech recognition software in modern smartphones. A single phrase activates the software, where you then use your voice to tell the software what to do. If you want to make a call, you can tell the software to call your friend, and the speech recognition software will start the call for you.

Students with disabilities, like those with a movement disorder, benefit from speech-to-text software because they don’t have to directly manipulate a keyboard or mouse. Also, students with stronger verbal than written skills can complete assignments like essays or short-response questions more easily.

2. Speech Synthesizer

Speech synthesizer, also known as text-to-speech, does the opposite — it reads text aloud to the students. A common example of text-to-speech software is an audiobook. The software picks up syllables, speech patterns, dates, abbreviations and more to piece together complete and coherent sentences.

Students can use speech-to-text and text-to-speech software together. That way, students can talk to their speech software, and their speech software can talk back. This two-way relationship benefits students who are visually impaired or who have a hard time deciphering sentence and word structures.

3. Electronic Math Worksheets

Students with dyscalculia have a hard time understanding math concepts. Numbers are difficult to differentiate, and aligning math formulas proves challenging. Electronic math worksheets are software programs that help students align formulas, work through problems and organize their thoughts in a single space.

Electronic math worksheets work in tandem with text-to-speech software, reading math problems aloud. Some software has built-in talking calculators, so students don’t have to transfer attention back-and-forth between worksheets and calculators. This makes it easy for students with visual impairments to complete their work, as well as students with attention deficits.

Word Prediction Program

4. Word Prediction Program

When students type with a physical or on-screen keyboard, word prediction programs help them translate their thoughts into complete sentences. As a student completes assignments, word prediction programs detect their speech patterns. As they type more, the program suggests words the students can click or tap.

Word prediction programs are valuable tools for students with general writing issues. Some students have a hard time typing on their keyboard, and word prediction programs can save them a lot of time. Others have a hard time slowing their mind down to complete coherent sentences. Whatever the case, every student can benefit from this type of software.

5. Alternative Keyboards and Mice

Some students have difficulties using traditional keyboards and mice. The fine and gross motor movements can be difficult for students with limited mobility, and students with visual impairments may find it hard to read keyboard fonts.

There are a number of alternative keyboards and mice available. Most are compatible with modern computers and laptops. Some alternative keyboards and mice attributes include:

  • Larger fonts
  • Color-coded key groupings
  • Angled keyboard shapes
  • Orbital mice

Provide parents with resources on where they can find an alternative keyboard or mouse that suits their student’s individual needs. Or, consider talking to your school administrator about supplying these keyboards and mice to students.

Browse Assistive Technology Products

Mid-Tech Assistive Technology

Mid-tech assistive technology students can use for online learning includes:

6. Braille Support

Some students with visual impairments require Braille support to follow along with lessons. There are a handful of Braille support tools for online learning. Two of the most influential support tools are:

  • Refreshable Braille display: Most commonly, a Braille display device is a keyboard attachment that displays text from a computer screen. It takes information from the screen — wherever the cursor is — and raises or retracts the Braille characters to reflect the information displayed.
  • Braille printer: A Braille printer is like a normal printer, but instead of printing text in ink, it prints text in Braille. This assistive technology is especially useful when distributing textbook pages or worksheets.

Many traditional schools have Braille printers available. It’s harder to distribute Braille text in an online setting if the student doesn’t have a Braille printer in their home. Braille support requires solid parent-teacher communication because not everyone can afford Braille displays or printers.

7. Proofreading Programs

Some students with disabilities find it hard to type and form complete sentences. Proofreading programs are similar to word prediction software, except they don’t think ahead. Instead, proofreading programs read what students have already written and make suggestions based on grammar principles.

A lot of proofreading programs are free and students can install proofreading programs on their web browser. As they type, the program will correct mistakes, provide quick translation, define words when prompted and act as a personal trainer.

8. Talking Calculator

A talking calculator is like an average calculator, except it has a built-in speech synthesizer that vocalizes numbers, operations, symbols and solutions. Talking calculators are particularly helpful for students who are visually impaired. When working through solutions, the calculator confirms they clicked the right number and will vocalize the calculated solution.

Talking calculators may also be beneficial for students with other disabilities. The added element of verbal confirmation can help students stay focused and engaged. Students can find online talking calculators. Or, they may prefer purchasing a physical talking calculator.

Low-Tech Assistive Technology

Low-tech assistive technology students can use for online learning includes:


9. Timer

Timers are suitable assistive technology tools. Using a timer in your online instruction is beneficial for:

  • Transitioning from task to task: Switching tasks can feel overwhelming for students, especially those with an autism spectrum disorder. Having a timer helps students mentally prepare for the switch and maintain their motivation.
  • Staying on task: When students see the timer ticking down, they may feel more motivated to complete their tasks before the timer finishes.
  • Promoting independence: Timing a task tells students what they need to do and how much time they have to do it. This sense of control promotes independence for students.

You can use a digital timer, keep a timer in-view on your webcam or encourage students to buy their own timers to keep on their desks.

10. Graphic Organizers and Outlining Programs

Students have a busy schedule. Graphic organizers and outlining programs are important for students with learning disabilities because they keep their schedule manageable. A busy schedule can feel very overwhelming for students, lessening their attention span and willingness to learn.

Visual organizers and schedules are a good way to compartmentalize daily tasks for your students with learning disabilities. They can help students manage their tasks on their own without overwhelming or stressing them out. Additionally, schedules that use color coordination and pictures to organize tasks can help students better remember and understand what they need to do.

On your teacher module, outline your program the best you can. Keep a public calendar that lists synchronous due dates. Also, send notifications to students to remind them to add other important dates and times, like one-on-one instruction. Keep the same line of communication with the students’ parents, too.

Browse Learning Aids for Online Teaching at Enabling Devices

Browse Learning Aids for Online Teaching at Enabling Devices

Teaching special education online is new for many teachers. Enabling Devices offers assistive technologies that help students learn from the comfort of their homes when paired with the right instruction. For 40 years, we’ve designed assistive tools that satisfy today’s growing needs. If you’re a teacher or administrator looking for ways to strengthen your online teaching, browse our assistive technologies today. For immediate service, give us a call at 914-747-3070.

15 At-Home Learning Resources for Parents

15 At-Home Learning Resources for Parents

Whether your child is a virtual student or you want to supplement their in-school learning with online resources, you have a range of options to choose from. Learning from home takes some considerations, especially if you have a child with disabilities. But it can also provide an excellent opportunity to encourage your child and adapt their learning activities to fit their needs.

We’ve compiled some of our favorite educational resources into one list that’s a great place to start when looking for learning from home resources. Whether your child is learning virtually or you’re looking for ways to keep them engaged during the summer months, check out these tools and get started!

15 At-Home Learning Resources for Parents

You probably find yourself spending a lot more time helping your child through their classes, whether they’re virtual or in-person. We get it — most parents aren’t trained as teachers. And even the best school districts may not offer just the right content to meet each student’s needs.

Even with quality public instruction from your child’s school, you may choose to supplement learning at home. But finding the right tools at the right price can be tricky. It doesn’t have to be! With the right options — including free resources — you can help your child make the most of whatever educational environment they find themselves in this year.

Reach for the stars

1. Reach for the Stars With NASA Online

If your child has an interest in science and space, go right to the source! The best place to learn about space is from the folks at NASA. Dive into NASA’s Space Place, an interactive site where kids can learn all about our solar system and the universe we live in. Your child will explore the wonders of the universe by watching videos with bright colors and movement, or you can help them with space-themed activities.

You can help your child discover the Big Bang theory with the more tactile activity of making glittery, stretchy universe slime. Or discover ions in action with a fun static electricity activity. From learning about the phases of the moon to watching a video of the Ingenuity Mars Helicopter flying around, kids can get an up-close look at the universe around them through visually engaging content and tactile experiences.

2. Tour the National Museum of Natural History From Home

View all the Smithsonian has to offer from the comfort of your own home. This virtual tour allows students of all ages to take in the exhibits at this world-class museum. View their extensive permanent collection of dinosaur fossils, gemstones and other fascinating exhibits. Bright, eye-catching colors and textures will help keep your child engaged as they click through or listen to information about each exhibit. Discover the diversity of rich patterns and shapes in our natural world.

3. Head to the Zoo or Tour the Farm

We just can’t get enough of virtual field trips! Taking a virtual trip to the zoo or farm is an ideal way to experience a variety of animals and learn all about their behavior. The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden offers behind-the-scenes tours of various animal enclosures, and they’re all on their Facebook page for you to watch! Each video focuses on one animal at a time, allowing children to learn about one specific animal before moving on to the next one.

Or, discover where food comes from with interactive virtual farm tours. FarmFood 360 offers 360-degree video tours of different types of farms, including egg, beef, dairy and chicken farms. Your child will stay engaged by clicking around the screen or tilting a mobile device to virtually tour farms. Scamper with the pigs during feeding time, or relax among the gently waving apple trees as workers pick the bright red treats.

4. Wind Down With Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library

Say “Goodnight” with famed singer Dolly Parton as she reads bedtime stories online. Accompanied by an activity sheet and songs, these read-out-loud videos are a great way to wind down at naptime or at the end of a long day. Your child can follow along with the textured and brightly colored pages of popular children’s storybooks as Dolly’s relaxing Southern voice lulls them to sleep. You’ll also find resources for reading tips for parents to help keep your child engaged with storytime.

5. Get Fit With School of Strength

If your child is interested in sports or even just needs to get out their extra energy, the Special Olympics School of Strength is an excellent free resource for athletes with special needs and their coaches and caregivers. The series includes four videos under 10 minutes to help your child warm up and build their endurance, strength and balance.

For children who crave more activity, try the 30-minute-long extra-credit videos with celebrity trainer Shannon Decker and Special Olympic athletes. The site also includes minute-long extra-credit challenges, like frog jumps and side-to-side bouncing, accompanied by quick gifs and easy-to-follow steps for quick workouts.

Modify the videos for your child’s athletic ability with three different levels of exercises — superstar, champion and master trainer. Give your child the best experience with tools for coaches and caregivers that explain the various workouts, how to empower athletes, healthy foods and drinks and workout calendars.

6. Explore Early Exercise With Young Athletes At Home

Help your child grow their motor skills and confidence with Special Olympics Young Athletes at Home. Young Athletes at Home includes different activities tailor-made to build your child’s skills and prepare them for school by teaching them physical skills, turn-taking and following directions. Easy-to-follow flashcards detail activities for all ages and abilities, such as beginner obstacle courses with household items, dance games with place markers and activities like pretending to be different animals.

Activities on the flashcards are meant to build foundational skills like:

  • Health and fitness
  • Walking
  • Running
  • Balancing
  • Jumping
  • Throwing
  • Catching
  • Striking objects
  • Kicking
  • Dribbling and other, more advanced sports skills

Young Athletes also helps you figure out safe places to play with your child, how you can encourage your child’s development during activities and how to promote daily healthy play. It even details everyday household items you can use like tape or stickers instead of gym floor markers and empty cups instead of cones. Follow those and other tips to create visually engaging exercise activities for your child.

Discover Inclusive Education Resources Through Educating All Learners Alliance

7. Discover Inclusive Education Resources Through Educating All Learners Alliance

As a parent of a child with a disability, you may have experienced the challenges of remote education. Educating All Learners Alliance, or EALA, is a group of inclusive education organizations that supports the educational needs of students with disabilities. EALA has online learning resources for parents and educators who work with students with disabilities. Specific resources include teaching and learning strategies, information about particular intervention services like speech and physical therapy, fostering social and emotional well-being and best family communication practices.

The organization also offers webinars to discuss various disability and education concepts. Common topics include discussions on how families can use EALA resources, other families’ experiences with hybrid and remote learning, information on the most recent accessibility education technology, national disability policies and other best inclusive education practices.

8. Make Reading Easier With Bookshare

Students with learning disabilities, dyslexia or physical disabilities sometimes have trouble reading in a traditional sense. But with Bookshare, qualifying students with disabilities in the U.S. can enjoy more than 1 million titles for free. Your child will be able to read on the device of their choosing, whether they prefer to use a laptop, smartphone, e-books or an assistive device.

Your child will be empowered to customize their reading experience to their needs. Bookshare allows children with disabilities to curate their e-reading experience with adjusted reading speed and multiple fonts and colors. They can also choose from a variety of reading methods, including read-along highlighting, listening to their books or reading in braille. Plus, Bookshare even allows students to add bookmarks and notes and use partner apps and study tools to help them process the information they’re reading.

9. Learn From Home With Do2Learn

If you’re searching for a well-established learning resource for kids with disabilities, Do2 Learn has you covered. Founded in 1996, Do2Learn provides resources for parents and teachers of children with special needs. It offers fun activities for students to build different academic skills like fine motor development, language skills, math and learning strategies, in addition to providing educational resources for building social and behavioral management skills. The site even features picture card resources for people with language difficulties to help develop and communicate daily life skills!

As a parent, you’ll also be able to research more about disability. You can explore the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act’s definitions of disability, how school districts and early intervention centers evaluate children for different disabilities, the characteristics of multiple cognitive disabilities and strategies to address them. Additionally, you can review your rights as a parent with a child receiving special education services.

Use Chrome Extensions to Maximize Web Accessibility

10. Use Chrome Extensions to Maximize Web Accessibility

With Google Chrome browser extensions, you can maximize webpage accessibility right from your browser. Authorized Google Education Trainer and Certified Innovator Eric Curts has compiled a list of Chrome browser extensions for easy readability, increased focus and comprehension and easier navigation. Tools include:

  • Word prediction
  • Dictionaries and picture dictionaries
  • Text-to-speech
  • Voice typing
  • Font replacements for people with reading disorders like dyslexia

Other services help with focus, like horizontal reading bars and ad-blockers.

11. Boost Communications Skills With Seaver Autism Center

At the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, schools sent children home for remote learning. While this move was challenging for most families, it was especially difficult for many children with autism. Because attending school is a significant source of socialization and professional support for students, many parents are searching for resources and activities to help their children develop conversation skills. The Seaver Autism Center has online learning resources for parents to help their children continue to grow in their ability to communicate effectively.

The Center has hosted webinar series on topics like advice for overcoming sensory issues while wearing masks, strategies on combatting anxiety as businesses and public places re-open and how caregivers can take care of themselves during this time. Additional resources include games like Simon Says, charades and using a conversation ball. The Center also has a plethora of general information and resources for parents of children with autism.

12. Get Away With Easterseals Recreation and Camping

All children should have the opportunity to attend camp. Easterseals is the largest camping and recreation services provider for people with disabilities in the U.S., with 30 camps across the country. Services include both day and residential camping with a variety of barrier-free recreation options like water sports, campfires, arts and crafts, horseback riding, bingo and dances. Your child can discover their independence in a safe place away from home while developing their interests, learning how to work on a team and create life-long friendships.

But beyond providing an accessible camp experience for both children and adults with disabilities, Easterseals also provides respite services for both you as a caregiver and your child with special needs. You can rest, relax and connect with other caregivers through support groups and retreats with the peace of mind that your child is safe. Plus, their blog and brain health center resources also include great information for parents of children with special needs.

13. Join a Parent Group

Parents of children with special needs have particular concerns for their families and child care. By joining a parent group, you’ll discover a range of resources, like information about your child’s school, learning at home resources and which local medical professionals are best with children with disabilities. You’ll also be able to share and relate to other families’ experiences. Parent groups are a great educational resource for emotional support and learning more about your child’s disability.

If you’re looking to speak one-on-one with someone going through a similar experience as you, check out the Parent to Parent Program. Parent to Parent USA is a great resource to find fellow parents whose child has the same disability as yours. You can also find parent groups for specific disabilities. By talking to other parents, you’ll be able to share your experiences and gain insight and tips from other caregivers.

14. Research State-Run Programs

Beyond privately-run parent groups, states also have resources to support parents of children with disabilities. While some groups are state-specific, each state has a Parent Training and Information Center, or PTI. Some states also have Community Parent Resource Centers, or CPRCs, which local parenting organizations run. These groups can provide you with information about your child’s disability, resources available to your family and how you can effectively support your child.

15. Consult How-To Resources for Parents

A big part of helping your child through at-home learning is knowing how to provide them with the emotional support they need. Even more than reading, writing and math lessons, children need the love and support of their parents.

The Child Mind Institute offers resources for parents to help them talk to their children about some of today’s most pressing topics, including disappointment, back-to-school anxiety and fear of getting sick. They also offer resources for parents of children with autism, including topics such as managing anxiety, telehealth and revising an IEP for distance learning.

Shop Assistive Technologies and Tools With Enabling Devices

Shop Assistive Technologies and Tools With Enabling Devices

Since our founding nearly 40 years ago, Enabling Devices has been committed to providing products that help individuals with disabilities lead more productive, fulfilling lives. We firmly believe that a disability shouldn’t prevent you from learning, growing and making the most of what the world has to offer. It just means it’s time to get creative! We are proud to offer a variety of products to assist with learning, play and communications for children and adults.

Browse our shop or contact us for help finding the right products for your needs.

10 Resources for Getting Through the Pandemic

Reputable Disability Charities

COVID-19 is taking a toll on all of us. We’re afraid of contracting the virus, worried about unemployment and the loss of financial security, grieving for those who have died and are sick and uncertain about when and if life will ever return to normal. For individuals with disabilities and their families, worries may be even greater. According to the CDC, most hospitalized COVID-19 patients — 90% — of hospitalized patients have one or more underlying conditions.

At Enabling Devices, we’re all about making life easier for our customers and community. To that end, we’ve compiled some information about new legislation and resources that may help individuals and families during this unprecedented time.

 COVID-19 Legislation to Help Families and Schools

1. The CARES Act

It’s been about two months since President Trump signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) into law. The law provides more than $2 trillion in direct aid for workers, families, hospitals, small businesses and local governments fighting the coronavirus.

If your adjusted gross income is less than $75,000 a year as an individual or $150,000 for a couple, you may have already received a no-strings-attached payment of $1200 to offset losses of income due to the pandemic. If not, it should arrive any day. Families in that income bracket with dependents will also receive $500 per child. If your income is higher, but still less than $99,000 per individual or $198,000 per couple, you are entitled to some portion of $1,200.

For more specific information, check out this May 6 article in Business Insider. Another good source for details especially pertinent to individuals with disabilities and their families is howtogeton.wordpress. We don’t know yet whether stimulus checks will be a one-time thing. Currently, some lawmakers are pushing the federal government to issue another round of stimulus checks. Fingers crossed!

2. Education Stabilization Fund

Enabling Devices’ school customers may be particularly interested in the CARES Act’s funding of the $30 billion Education Stabilization Fund. The Fund is distributed between the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund; The Elementary and Secondary School Education Relief Fund (ESSER Fund); and the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund (GEER Fund), which has the most flexible guidelines of the three. GEER, which was announced by U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos on April 14, is an emergency block grant of $3 billion that provides funding for students, schools and other educational institutions. GEER gives governors the power to distribute funds at their own discretion. Funds can be used to cover expenses including COVID-19 response efforts, afterschool and summer learning programs, nutrition and mental health services, internet and remote learning and technology-related purchases.

3. Heroes Act

While $30 billion may sound like a great deal of money, given the length of the pandemic, education groups are clamoring for more. According to Education Week, several education groups including two teachers unions told congress in early April, that they needed “upwards of $200 billion in new aid.” Now, writes Education Week, House Democrats have proposed The Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (Heroes Act).The Heroes Act would create a $90 billion “state fiscal stabilization fund” for the U.S. Department of Education to distribute to K-12 as well as higher education. If approved by the U.S. Senate, schools would see approximately $60 billion dollars in funding for education including $12 billion for special education.

COVID-19 Resources for People with Disabilities or Chronic Conditions

4. National Homework Help for Visually Impaired

The National Homework Hotline for Blind/Visually Impaired Students (NHH-BVI) is offering free homework help and tutoring for students from kindergarten through college affected by school closures due to the coronavirus.

5. Global Healthy Living Foundation

The GHLF is providing free support program for individuals with chronic health conditions and their families during the pandemic. Users will be able to find the latest information about COVID-19 as well as free support services.

6. Vocational Rehab Services

On May 14, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Rehabilitation Services and Special Education released guidelines for vocational rehabilitation services during the pandemic. As reported by Disability Scoop, “Vocational rehabilitation agencies can continue to serve individuals with disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic, though some adjustments may be needed…” Essentially, services including job coaching, career counseling, pre-employment transition services. You can get more details here.

7. Child Mind Institute Resources

The Child Mind Institute, an independent national nonprofit for children and families with mental health and learning challenges is offering a range of services and resources during the pandemic. Offerings include Facebook Live chats with experts; remote evaluations, telehealth and flat-fee phone consultations for parenting questions and videos concerning COVID-19 issues.

8. Sesame Street Resources

You can count on Sesame Street to provide help for children and families. The nonprofit’s campaign #CaringForEachOther, includes ideas for stay-at-home activities; parenting videos; and advice for all sorts of COVID-19-related situations you are likely to confront with your children.

9. RespectAbility Zoom Gatherings

RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization that works to fight stigma and provide opportunities to individuals with disabilities are offering Zoom gatherings facilitated by expert advocates to encourage community connection, resource sharing, and COVID-19-related information and problem-solving.

10. The Arc

The Arc, a national, community-based nonprofit that serves individuals with intellectual disabilities and their families, is a great source for up-to-the-minute information about COVID-19 that’s specifically relevant to the disabilities community. On thearc.org, you can read about legislative advocacy efforts, and find fact sheets about unemployment benefits; the small business bill; recovery rebates and more.

Enabling Devices will continue to update resources as the COVID-19 pandemic develops. Meanwhile, we wish all our customers safety and wellness.

Six Ways to Stay Safe When Complete Social Distancing Isn’t an Option

social distancing

We’ve all heard that “social distancing” is an important part of containing the spread of the COVID-19, the new coronavirus. But maintaining a distance of at least six feet away from another individual is impossible when that individual is your caregiver. Many people with disabilities rely on a caregiver outside of their household to help them with eating, bathing, walking, toileting and dressing. So what’s the best way to stay healthy in these instances? Here’s what some of the experts recommend:

1. Educate yourself about COVID-19 prevention
Be aware of the symptoms of COVID-19, and contact your health care provider if you believe you or a loved one has contracted the virus. Stay abreast of recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization for protecting yourself and others from contracting the virus.

2. Contact your home health care provider
If your caregiver works for a health care agency, Easter Seals New Jersey advises you to contact “their representatives and find out more about what precautions they are taking to ensure their staff is following proper protocols to ensure they do not spread the disease.”

3. Be assertive
Don’t shy away from conversations regarding home and personal hygiene. Make sure your provider is observing guidelines for handwashing and disinfecting surfaces and equipment. If your provider has access to masks and gloves, insist that they wear them. Have your provider use a different bathroom if possible. These actions will help to protect both of you.

4. Take extra measures to protect yourself and your caregiver
New Mobility.com advises wheelchair users to “regularly disinfect surfaces, especially those that are regularly touched. High-concentration (70%) ethanol alcohol mixtures, hydrogen peroxide and bleach are all effective disinfectants. Manual wheelchair users, especially those at higher risk of severe symptoms due to secondary complications, should consider regularly disinfecting their push rims. Bleach wipes are easy and effective.”

5. Hold residential facilities to enhanced standards
If you or your loved one resides in a group home, nursing facility, etc., make sure they are following recommended protocols such as: enhanced cleanliness; no visitation; staggered meal times, daily temperature taking and cancellation of group activities.

6. Have a back-up plan
If your caregiver becomes ill and is unable to come to work, be sure to have a back-up plan in place ahead of time. This is easier said than done, acknowledges New Mobility. Some solutions to consider include: asking friends or family members to help where they can; obtaining the proper supplies and training to complete certain tasks by yourself; and making others aware of your medical status and health care needs in case of an emergency.

Stay well!

Inclusive Theater Plays a Role in Under the Radar 2020

Four actors with disabilities on stage

In 2019, the theatrical world was taken by storm when three actors with disabilities appeared on Broadway.

Ali Stoker, who is paralyzed from the chest down and uses a wheelchair, played Ado Annie in “Oklahoma”; Russel Harvard, who is deaf, played the Duke of Cornwall in “King Lear”; and John McGinty, also deaf, played Harvard’s understudy.

While these performances were groundbreaking, it remains true that Broadway, (and Hollywood), are far behind where they should be when it comes to inclusion. And if roles for actors with physical disabilities are hard to find, opportunities for actors with developmental and intellectual disabilities are even rarer.

That’s why the 16th annual Under the Radar Festival at New York City’s Public Theater seems so revolutionary!

A vehicle for showcasing the theatrical work of new, diverse and emerging artists, this year’s festival includes two productions starring performers with disabilities. As New York Times theater critic Jesse Green points out in a Jan.13 review, titled “When Disability Isn’t a Special Need but a Special Skill,” the actors’ disabilities only serve to enhance their performances.

Actor Jess Thom who has Tourette’s syndrome plays “Mouth,” in Samuel Beckett’s “Not I.” Due to her Tourette’s, Thom’s performances are unpredictable. She is likely to go off script at any time due to her verbal and physical tics. Yet that is, in part, what makes her performance so special, contends Green. “…Far from masking Beckett’s brilliance or diluting the play’s power, Thom’s speech patterns make uncanny sense of ‘Not I,’ in the process making it more overwhelming,” he writes.

Performances of “Not I” are “relaxed,” meaning that people are encouraged to tic, talk and move around the theater as needed. An American Sign Language interpreter/performer is present for every performance.

“The Shadow Whose Prey the Hunter Becomes,” another play in the festival, is written and acted by Scott Price, Sarah Mainwaring, Simon Laherty and Michael Chan, who all have intellectual disabilities. The play is set at a community meeting where attendees explore serious topics such as disability, identity, labeling and the social impact of technology and artificial intelligence. Writes Green: “Soon we discover that the meeting has been called for the purpose not of justifying the neurodiverse but of warning the rest of us about a future in which the technology we’ve created will one day, like the shadow of the title, render everyone inferior — disabled, in fact.”

Now that’s food for thought!

For more information about the Under the Radar Festival, visit publictheater.org.

New Year’s Resolutions for Special Educators

Group of Students as a table with their teacher

The beginning of a brand new year is the perfect time to set resolutions for the year ahead. Are you hoping to develop more patience, take a professional development course, try a new teaching technique, or focus on personal growth? These are all worthwhile goals. Yet, setting resolutions doesn’t guarantee you will keep them. One goal setting method that many find helpful is the SMART method. SMART is an acronym that stands for the words: Specific; Measurable; Achievable; Relevant; and Timely. According to Chris Joseph, writing for Chron, “setting S.M.A.R.T. goals can help keep you motivated and provide a way to measure your progress during your journey.” Here are some examples of New Year’s resolutions for special educators:

Keep good records
Beginning Jan. 1, I will spend 30 minutes per day writing three sentence long progress notes on five students. By the end of each week, I will have completed progress notes on 25 students. Keeping regular notes on each student will make life so much easier when it’s time for parent conferences and report cards.

Take your lunch break
This semester I will take a 40-minute-long lunch hour at least three days a week.

As helping professionals, neglecting our own needs can be an occupational hazard. Yet, finding time to eat a nutritious and relaxed midday meal isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity. Your students will benefit from your improved mood and higher energy.

Get out of the classroom
This semester, I will take a 20-minute walk to clear my head and get some exercise. Just as it’s important to eat well, it’s equally important to get fresh air and exercise. A brisk walk around the campus or the neighborhood surrounding your school can work wonders for your physical and mental health.

Be organized
On the last Friday of every month, I will spend one hour sorting through the paper on my desk and in my drawers to keep myself organized. We all know how overwhelming it can be when we can’t find the documents and supplies we need to do our jobs. Organizing our work spaces can spell the difference between feeling stressed and discombobulated and feeling empowered.

Keep learning
By Feb. 15, I will sign up for one continuing education class in a subject that will help me to grow professionally. It’s natural to be apprehensive about returning to the classroom as a student, but there’s nothing like professional development to give us renewed energy and inspiration for our careers.

Invest in personal growth
By March 1, I will register for a class or activity that will enrich my personal life. All work and no play makes Jack or Jill a dull (and unhappy) boy or girl. Make sure to get out there and do something special for yourself. Self-care will make you a much better educator.

Eight Ways to Thank Wounded Warriors on Veterans Day

Veteran in Wheelchair in front of an American Flag

On Veterans Day, Enabling Devices salutes our veterans, especially those who have service-connected disabilities. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 4.7 million veterans, or 25 percent of all veterans, had a service-connected disability.

Interested in honoring our disabled veterans this Veteran’s Day? Consider volunteering or making a donation to an organization that supports them. Here are some of the most reputable:

Wounded Warrior Project
Founded in 2003, WWP provides a range of services to veterans who sustained physical or mental injuries, or illnesses during military service that was performed on or after Sept. 11, 2001. WWP also offers support services to family and caregivers of wounded veterans including benefits and career counseling; mental health services such as PTSD treatment and stress reduction; and physical fitness training programs.

Disabled American Veterans
DAV’s stated mission is “empowering veterans to lead high-quality lives with respect and dignity”. Their efforts include “fighting for the interests of America’s injured heroes on Capitol Hill; and educating the public about the great sacrifices and needs of veterans transitioning back to civilian life.” The organization provides veterans with over 600,000 rides to medical appointments and helps veterans complete more than 200,000 benefit claims. DAV’s services are free to veterans of every war and their families. There are 1,300 chapters all over the United States.

Puppies Behind Bars
This multifaceted nonprofit organization trains inmates to raise service dogs for wounded veterans, and bomb-detecting dogs for use in law enforcement. The dogs are specially trained to work with veterans with PTSD and traumatic brain injuries. Since the program started in 2008, 66 dogs have been paired with wounded veterans in 26 states.

Homes for Our Troops
Approximately 11 percent of the homeless in the U.S. are veterans. Homes for Our Troops, founded in 2004, builds and donates accessible houses for severely injured veterans of post 9/11 wars. The organization also adapts existing homes so that injured veterans can continue to live in them.

Fisher House, Inc.
With an A+ rating from CharityWatch, you can feel secure that your donation is going to good use when you support Fisher House, Inc. Fisher House provides nearby temporary housing for families of veterans who are hospitalized for an injury or illness. To date, Fisher House has built 84 locations on military installations and on VA campuses. The program also gives scholarships for veterans, their children and spouses and raises money for the travel needs of families of hospitalized veterans.

Semper Fi Fund
Another A+ rated charity, Semper Fi is committed to providing the resources severely injured veterans require to recover and transition back into civilian life. The organization offers three distinct programs — the service member and family support program which provides direct financial assistance and programs for veterans and their loved ones; the transition program that provides education and career assistance to help veterans to live productive lives despite their injuries; and the integrative health program which offers a variety of physical and mental health programs and therapeutic activities.

Hope for the Warriors
Hope for the Warriors offers a spectrum of services to wounded veterans and their families including physical and mental health and wellness programs; transition services; and sports and recreation activities. The Hope for Warriors Wish program fulfills wishes for wounded warriors who need financial assistance to fulfill their dreams.

Gary Sinese Foundation
Supporting veterans had always been important to actor Gary Sinese. But after 9/11, he stepped up his volunteer and fundraising efforts on behalf of the men and women who defend our country. In 2011, he founded the Gary Sinese Foundation which offers programs such as R.I.S.E. (Restoring Independence Supporting Empowerment), a program that builds adapted homes and modifies homes and cars for severely injured veterans. The Foundation’s Relief and Resiliency programs provide recreational activities to the children of fallen heroes, as well as mental health and financial assistance to veterans and their families. In addition, the Foundation’s Community and Education branch helps to raise awareness about the issues facing military families, and provides meals and arts and entertainment experiences to active military and veteran communities. The Gary Sinese Foundation also serves the needs of first responders.


CDC Sees Increase in Diagnoses of Developmental Disabilities

Pediatrician Examining a Girl with Down Syndrome

In recent years, the prevalence of autism spectrum disorder has been steadily rising. In fact, the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network found that one in 59 children carry a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder. New research suggests that it’s not only autism that’s becoming more prevalent — the numbers of children diagnosed with at least one developmental disability has also increased.

The October 2019 issue of the journal Pediatrics reported that between 2009 and 2017, the number of children ages 3-17 diagnosed with at least one developmental disability rose from 16.2 percent in 2009 to 17.8 percent (or one in 6 children) in 2017.

Data for the study, “Prevalence and Trends of Developmental Disabilities among Children in the United States: 2009–2017” included the health information of 88,000 children using the “National Health Interview Survey, a nationally representative survey of the civilian noninstitutionalized population. Parents reported physician or other health care professional diagnoses of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder; autism spectrum disorder; blindness; cerebral palsy; moderate to profound hearing loss; learning disability; intellectual disability; seizures; stuttering or stammering; and other developmental delays.” 

As reported by Disability Scoop’s Michelle Diament, “the prevalence of autism, intellectual disability and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder increased during [2009 and 2017] while there was a decrease in the percentage of kids in the catch-all category of ‘other developmental delay.’”

The survey found that the greatest increases in diagnoses occurred among boys, Caucasian and Hispanic children, older youngsters, children who lived in cities and those whose mothers were relatively uneducated.

Though the survey didn’t look at the causes of the increase in developmental disabilities diagnoses, the CDC hypothesized that “previous research has found improved awareness, screening, diagnosis, and service accessibility may contribute to the increases seen.”

That could be good news, since early intervention is key in improving the prognoses for children with developmental disabilities. Programs like the CDC’s Learn the Signs, Act Early help families to identify developmental disabilities early so that they can access services and resources that can address their children’s deficits. Though developmental disabilities aren’t curable, children who receive the services they need are more likely to be successful in school and in other areas of their lives.

Examples of early intervention may include speech and language therapy; physical therapy; occupational therapy; hearing and vision services; psychological services; social work services; nutrition services; and medical and nursing interventions. Children with developmental disabilities have the greatest chance for success if they receive appropriate therapies between the ages of birth and 3 years old.

Five Reasons to Bring a Pet into Your Child’s Life

Little boy hugging a Golden Retriever dog

Considering adding a pet to your household? If you have a child with a disability, the benefits of owning a pet can be significant. In fact, research has shown that pets can help children with physical and developmental disabilities in myriad ways. Here’s what the science says:

1. Pets encourage increased physical activity.
A 2017 case study at Oregon State University found that a program that incorporated the family dog into an exercise program for a 10-year-old boy with cerebral palsy “led to a wide range of improvements for the child, including physical activity as well as motor skills, quality of life and human-animal interactions.” Said study co-author Megan MacDonald: “They develop a partnership and the activities become more fun and challenging for the child.”

2. Pets help children with autism to form connections with others
Many children with autistic spectrum disorders have difficulty connecting to other people. Studies show that autistic children in homes with pet dogs, learn to make such connections. For example, a 2014 study published in the journal Pediatric Nursing, found that in families with dogs, 94 percent of children “were bonded” with them. And “children living with dogs interacted with them in play and/or sharing personal space,” noted researchers. In addition, having a pet also gave children an “opportunity to learn responsibility and companionship.”

3. Guinea pigs help to improve social skills
Can’t manage caring for a dog right now? How about a guinea pig, hamster, gerbil or even a turtle?  A study conducted at the Autism Resource Center at Hospital Bohars in France found that autistic children from families that owned pets “were better able to share toys and food with both parents and other kids and better able to comfort others than the pet-less children were.”

4. Pets reduce stress and improve mood in children with learning disabilities and ADHD
According to the National Institutes of Health, “Interacting with animals has been shown to decrease levels of cortisol (a stress-related hormone) and lower blood pressure. Other studies have found that animals can reduce loneliness, increase feelings of social support, and boost your mood.”

5. Fish tanks can be therapeutic for children with disruptive behaviors.
The calming effects of watching fish swim in a fish tank reduces behavioral problems in children with emotional and behavioral disabilities according to a study at the University of Pennsylvania. Other studies have shown that gazing at fish tanks also reduces anxiety as well as heart rate and blood pressure.




Strive for a Sensory-friendly Holiday Season

Girl in Santa Hat in Front of Christmas Tree

For many of us, the Christmas holiday season is the happiest time of the year. It’s a time to celebrate with family and friends, to give and receive gifts, to sample delicious baked treats and enjoy the beauty of holiday lights, decorations and caroling. But for children with sensory processing disorders, Christmas can present significant sensory integration challenges. Here are some steps that will help make the holidays happy for every member of the family.

Turn down the lights
Though most children with sensory processing disorders enjoy the stimulation they receive from music and colorful, flashing lights, the holiday season may offer too much of a good thing. If you’re planning a trip to a Christmas lights display in your neighborhood, prepare your child in advance, and don’t over-do it. Make sure your child is well-rested and well-fed before making the excursion and set a time limit that takes your child’s sensory needs into account.

Beware of crowds
During the holiday season, we are more likely than ever to encounter large groups of people. Whether it’s holiday shopping at the mall, or attending a party or family gathering, large crowds can be overwhelming to children with sensory processing disorders. If you must take your child shopping, choose times when the stores are likely to be less crowded. Some malls are even designating certain shopping hours for families with children with sensory challenges. Likewise, when attending a big party, make sure you leave before your child becomes tired and over-stimulated. Bring along some of your child’s favorite toys or videos, and make sure there’s a quiet place where he can unwind if he needs to take a break from the action.

Lower the volume
Holiday music, Christmas carols and large groups of people can be too noisy for many children with sensory processing disorders. Noise cancelling headphones can make the difference between a child who’s having a melt-down and a child who’s enjoying holiday activities.

Respect your child’s tactile sensitivities
Sure, it’s disappointing when your child refuses to wear the special holiday outfit you’ve purchased for family photos! But forcing her to wear clothing that makes her physically uncomfortable is a no-win situation. Instead, choose an outfit you know she’ll enjoy wearing, even if it’s the same one she likes to wear every day.

Some children don’t like to be touched — especially by people they don’t know. Never insist that your child receive a hug or a kiss from a friend or relative against his wishes.

Whenever possible, stick to your child’s schedule
Many children with sensory processing disorders thrive on routine. But during the holiday season, routines are much harder to follow. While some flexibility is necessary, your child is likely to be a great deal happier if you adhere to his routine. For example, on evenings when no parties or family excursions are planned, follow his normal bedtime routine. Likewise, attempt to maintain your child’s usual diet and do your best to prevent her from binging on too many sweets.


10 Plush Toys to Keep Your Child Warm and Cozy All Winter Long!

Young Girl in Wheelchair Playing with Bunny Rabbit Plush Toy

Psychoanalyst Donald Winnicott was the first to coin the phrase “transitional object” in 1951. What does it mean? Put simply, the transitional object is an item — usually soft to the touch and often a blanket, doll or plush toy – that serves as a bridge between a young child’s total dependence on his mother to his gradual dependence on himself. Often known as a security blanket or lovie, the young child relies on the object when tired, stressed or upset — think Linus and his blanket or Christopher Robin and his Winnie-the-Pooh. Transitional objects help children to negotiate their growing independence in a healthy manner.

Enabling Devices offers a wide selection of plush toys. These soft, cuddly and adorable “lovies” make great holiday gifts for the young children in your life. Here are some of our favorites:

Tangled Tabby is rocking ‘round the Christmas tree, but makes a great friend all year round. Her cute dance will delight children no matter the season. (#9342)

When the weather gets cold, Tranquil Turtle will remind your child that warmer days are coming with his tropical colors, wave-like projections and soothing sounds that simulate the peaceful mood inspired by an ocean breeze! (#4083)

Rusty is everyone’s favorite painted pony. Activate with an external capability switch and Rusty trots to the lively theme song from The Lone Ranger (#1074)

Floppy Bunny is our bestselling plush toy who hops, flops his ears, moves his snout and makes bunny sounds. (#150)

Mickey Mouse fans will delight in this adapted version of the beloved Disney character, who sings the popular Wiggle Giggle Song. (#9416)

Not only is Mother Goose sweet and cuddly, she also teaches children to recite nursery rhymes. (#9309)

Give the budding drummer or musician in your life Drummin’ Billy. Press his foot and he sings and drums to the beat. (#9350)

The adorable wild-haired lion Let Loose Lenny entertains with a lively rendition of “Shout!” (#9344)

Give a hug and our Vibrating Seal will gently vibrate. So soft and cuddly! (#9300)

Sing along with Wheelie! This adorable animated plush toy bus sings, lights up and dances to “Wheels on the Bus” when you activate your switch. (#9323)

To see Enabling Devices’ full selection of plush toys, click here.

Happy Holidays to All!