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Do you have someone in your life who has autism, ADHD, or Sensory Processing Disorder? Are you hoping to find them the perfect gift? As an autistic adult who also has ADHD, and as a sensory seeker, I can help you find the best gifts for everyone on your list. In this article, we'll explore some smaller gifts that can be used as stocking stuffers, Easter basket fillers, or just little gifts to make any day special.
Playable Art Ball
For someone who loves to have things to fidget with, this little gizmo is perfect! The colorful little balls are connected and can be twisted and turned in all directions. You can create designs with it, or just play around with it while you think. If your gift recipient isn't crazy about bright colors, this also comes in a natural wood color.
Arctic Flare Thinking Putty
There's nothing silly about this putty! Crazy Aaron makes Thinking Putty in all different designs. I love the Arctic Flare because it looks white, but when you shine the included blacklight on it, it changes color! Then, even after you turn the blacklight off, it continues to glow for up to an hour.
If you want to do some snow-themed activities but don't have any actual snow, or if your kids love to make slime, this is a great gift! To make the basic snow, you just add a little bit of water. The powder expands and becomes fluffy, like snow. Apparently, you can then add it to any slime recipe. You can also just play with it. Try making snowballs, or use cookie cutters to make different shapes!
Color Bath Dropz
Lots of sensory-seeking kids (and adults) love water. These drops can be added to the bath tub, the backyard kiddie pool, or a bin of water to make water play more colorful! They are brightly colored and fizzy, plus they're non-toxic and won't color your skin. Try adding multiple tabs at once to make new colors. For instance, what happens when you put a blue and a yellow tablet in at the same time?
Mr. Sketch Markers
There is a special place in my heart for Mr. Sketch markers. As a teacher, my kids get so excited when I use these markers! They don't realize that I enjoy them just as much! Each marker has a delicious scent. The markers are also nice and juicy, and last a long time.
Glitter wands are so much fun to look at. When you turn them over, you get to watch all of the glitter and colors swirling around inside! I could stare at one of these for hours!
A music teacher at one of the schools where I worked had one of these, and the kids would go crazy for it. When you shake it, the spring moves around inside the tube, making a sound like thunder.
I always loved these when I was a kid! Pushing the button is a sensory experience in itself, as the water gives it an interesting feeling of resistance. Playing the game is challenging, but also fun and relaxing. Adults and children can enjoy this low-tech fidget toy!
A spinning top is a classic toy. Watching the top spin is very visually satisfying, and visual sensory seekers will love it. Learning how to spin the top and get it to keep going as long as possible can even improve hand eye coordination and patience. These are made of wood, not cheap plastic, and they are hand made. They come six to a pack, so you can give them to six different people or split them up any way you want.
Beadeez Stress Balls
Not all stress balls are made the same! These ones are filled with water beads. Squeezing them and making the beads move around inside is oddly satisfying. When I've worked in schools, these have always been the most popular kind of stress balls for kids. They come in a three pack, so you can give away two, and keep one for yourself to help deal with the holiday stress.
As this article shows, good things can come in small packages. I'm an autistic adult, and I would love to get any of these objects as a gift. So I'm betting your loved ones will enjoy them too!