Gift Ideas for Kids on the Spectrum

It can be difficult to find the right gifts for children on the spectrum, especially those with sensory difficulties. I can only speak from my own experience and lead you to articles other people have written, but I’ll do my best.

When I asked my son what he wanted for Christmas this year, his answer was candy and blue and red presents (meaning the wrapping paper). I was thrilled as this was the first time he’d ever actually answered that question, but it doesn’t really give me a lot of ideas either, beyond what kind of wrapping paper to get.

I made lists for my family members that included toys he likes, characters he likes, and things for our therapy sessions at home.

Leap Frog systems – leap pad, leap pad tag reader and tag junior (my son is four and loves his tag reader. They have a lot of age appropriate books that he enjoys)

Color wonder art systems – we love these. They aren’t as messy and my son doesn’t mind touching the clear gel as much as he does actual paint.

Ipads, Ipod Touch – these have a wide variety of apps for kids on the spectrum.

Sensory balls, therapy putty, scooters, swings, and weighted clothing are all good options as well.

We like the chipper chat games from Super Duper Publications and use them a lot in therapy and I can see a thousand and one uses for them during our home therapy time too.

Places to Shop for toys for special kids:

Fun and Function
Southpaw Enterprises
Pacific Pediatric Supply
Bright Tots
Sense Toys
ED Mega Store
Therapy Shoppe
Super Duper Publications

Toys R Us guide for toys for differently-abled kids

I hope you all find that useful!


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. John
    Dec 08, 2010 @ 22:29:29

    Hi there, thanks for your article. We have developed an iPad app that may suit some families with children and kids on the spectrum; indeed, our main app, Build A Story was developed in part for that very reason.

    It’s a simple way for kids to simply touch and place attractively-designed characters on a variety of settings and storybook themes. The kids, or parents helping them, can then actually write the story themselves, save the story over multiple pages, and read on the iPad and share with family and friends. Please feel free to find out more at itms://

    or at our website,

    Have a great holiday season everyone


  2. Sarah Wagner
    Dec 08, 2010 @ 22:37:50


    That is a very neat little app there! I’ll be passing that one along to some parents I know.



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