Many children love to explore different textures and stimulate their senses. I know that there are many kids who go through a stage of freaking out at the thought of getting paint on their hands or even worse, glue. But most kids ease through this stage and eventually explore sensory play.
Children with special needs may have heightened or decreased sensitivity to different textures. Sensory play may be a wonderful option for them but there are some things that can be overstimulating for them and it isn’t enjoyable. This is also a wonderful intervention for children in the hospital. I did this several times with patients and they responded very well to it.
I introduced Oobleck, which is just cornstarch and water to my boys and two of their buddies; ages 4, 21 months, 10 months.
They were so excited in the beginning of this activity, banging on the table and screaming.
As soon as Joey (21month old) placed the corn starch in the bowl, my son (the arm grabbing the bin) pulled the bin and some of the corn starch fell on top of the table. That’s when we lost Joey. Maybe it was the mess on the table or maybe he was upset that his part didn’t make it in. Whatever the reason, he was upset and wanted no part in this activity. Entering the terrible twos, duh, duh, duh!
Gavin and Tommy, dumped in the water and began to explore the oobleck. They became very engaged and excited. Soon they were adding more water and cornstarch to the bin and their tiny voices became louder, that’s when we lost Blake. An overtired baby had enough and just wanted his crib and a binky.
Of course when you ask the boys what it feels like their answer is a typical one of four year olds, diarrhea and poo poo. Proud moment in motherhood.