Highly sensitive children need to build quiet time in to their day, particular busy days. There are many ways to help a child (or their highly sensitive parent) restore a little calm. Here are some calming gift ideas to help you this festive season.
Books: I recently wrote a post with 9 book tips perfect for highly sensitive children, and some for their parents. The very act of sitting and reading with a child is calming – so books are good!
Relax CDs: there are lots of relaxation CDs around for both adults and children so it’s worth shopping around to find something that fits. For us the Relax Kids series has been a huge hit and I can personally vouch for it working a treat for tired mothers should they be listening along with their child…… (Amazon UK link for Relax Kids CDs)
Water Lamp: water lamps have the same effect as lava lamps. Children focus their attention on the bubbles, the colours and of course the fish and it works in a calming manner. A great example is this Fish Water Tube (UK link).
A journal: writing down thoughts, experiences and feelings helps process them. For both children and adults journaling can help instil calm in a busy mind. My favourite journals are Gadanke journals but the world is full of beautiful books for kids to fill with words! (use this link for kids’ journals Amazon UK)
A calendar or family organiser: as I mentioned in a previous blog post highly sensitive parents tend to become expert planners. Highly sensitive children like to know what is going in and when it is happening. With a calendar they can see how far away an event it, and can tick one day off at a time. It gives a sense of control and helps give a child peace of mind.
MP3 player and headphones: one of the things that is guaranteed to relax my eldest son is listening to his mp3 player with his headphones on whilst lying on his bed. He has a very simple player but there’s so much choice out there depending on the age of the child you are buying for. MP3 players (UK link) have restored the peace in our home on many an occasion!
Bubbles: who can’t resist bubbles? No child I know that’s for sure. The great thing about bubbles is that you can use them to calm, but also to energise, if children need to get their feelings out. Use bubbles (UK link) to calm breathing or blow them yourselves and get the children running around to catch them.
Kinetic Sand: we bought kinetic sand for my sons last Christmas and it’s still a hit. From my youngest to my oldest it has a calming effect. You can get lots of accessories for the sand too – or just put the Kinetic Sand (UK link) on a table and let imaginations run wild. And as an added bonus it works wonders for parents too…..
Lego: I’ve saved the best for last. Lego works so well for getting a child to focus, to concentrate on something else other than their worries or the busyness of their day. The effect on my children is astounding and the words, “go play with your Lego” can often be heard in our house. My sons inherited a lot of bricks and sets from their father’s childhood – it must be one of the most long lasting toys on the market! So many friends I speak to say the same thing. The act of building and creating calms children and of course the other wonderful thing about Lego (UK link) is that there is a set available that will meet every possible interest you could imagine!