The Benefits of Kinetic Sand
Seeing as Kinetic Sand is our Product of the Month, it makes sense that we want to share with you all the amazing things it can do for your kids!
Most people we come across have never heard of Kinetic Sand before but once they experience it they never forget it. It really is more than just sand! and that 2% magic really exists.
My two kids think its super cool, yet we all find it so difficult to describe to people; I even started carrying some around in a little plastic container in my bag just to be able to show people how amazing it is. So basically I describe it as your normal 98% clean sand with that 2% touch of magic turning it into a easily moldable, yet free flowing substance. When squeezed it becomes a solid mass that can be molded into intricate designs, yet with a simple touch it can cascade with an amazing motion.
It looks like wet sand yet is completely dry, leave it out for hours, days, weeks it will never change consistency! It only sticks to itself meaning that there is no stickiness, no sand grains in everything, and its EASY to clean up!
We recommend it for all children as its a fantastic for indoor and outdoor play and really allows children to use their imaginations, yet we do especially recommend it for children that are on the Autism Spectrum, or have Sensory Seeking tendencies. We have found that more and more Occupational Therapists are using this product to help children further develop their skill sets.
So we thought why not share just some of the ways Kinetic Sand may benefit your child:
1.Firstly, it can assist children with fine tuning their fine motor development, as Kinetic Sand is a hands-on material it encourages children to squeeze, squish, smash, cut, poke, pinch, roll, and flatten it. They can also scoop it up with utensils and build castles, and mold shapes and so much more!
2.Secondly, as previously stated it is recommended for Sensory Seekers or children with Sensory Processing Disorder. They wont be able to get enough of it! Just like with the fine motor benefits, children who are seeking tactile input will squeeze, squish, and squelch the Kinetic Sand. It can keep them busy for hours.
Some children on the autism spectrum or with Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) enjoy deep pressure and find this calming, feedback from people who have played with Kinetic Sand suggests that this can be achieved through the squeezing of the sand!
In contrast it can benefit children who are sensitive to messy play experiences, or children who are hesitant to try new things in general. It seems that obviously after a little cohersion, they will get involved, generally once they realise that it isn't like normal sand and wont stick to them or get stuck under their fingernails etc.
3. Pre-Writing Activities are a great thing to encourage children to do with Kinetic Sand, by having a child practice drawings, letters, numbers, shapes and pre-writing strokes with either their fingers or other objects.
4. Creative Play is a big thing with Kinetic Sand as there is no one way to play with it, there are some children that struggle with imaginative play and this is a fantastic way to encourage creativity in a relaxed way.
5. Pretend Play, similar to creative play in the way that it requires creative thinking, it differs in the set of developmentally-based cognitive skills required. Props are a great way to encourage toddlers and preschoolers to Pretend Play as they will mimic everyday activities, and potentially build other skill sets at the same time. Even little zoo animals, or trucks and cars can turn a lump of Kinetic Sand into an island zoo, or a mountain to drive up and over! And if your child offers you a spoonful of pretend chocolate ice-cream (Kinetic Sand in an ice-cream scoop) you watch the smile on their face as you "num num num" and pretend to eat it!
6. Speech and Language uses; this is a BIG one in our house as my son has been undergoing Speech Therapy for some years now. Obviously the sand itself doesnt assist his speech but through the interactions that take place between the child playing with Kinetic Sand and the Speech Pathologist, Parent, or other children, the child is building speech and language skills whilst taking the pressure off. Even if your child is non-verbal you can have some powerful play assisting speech and language growth by getting down at your child’s level and making eye contact, following your child’s lead, becoming a narrator, and commenting and asking questions.
7. A true Sense of Calm, something that is strangely experienced by many people, both children and adults, just the simple fluid movement of the Kinetic Sand can both amaze and sooth something deep within. The airy texture, slowly moving through your fingers, encourages you to play over and over.
This can be a great tool to use as a 'first and then' activity reward to encourage children to engage in task that may normally bring anxiety.
There you have just a few fantastic examples of how Kinetic Sand can benefit your child (and you!) and of course there are many more!
If you would like to experience the amazing product that is Kinetic Sand CLICK HERE!