October 21, 2022, WKYC Good Company
CLEVELAND, Oh. (WKYC)- Halloween is a fun time for kids, and all kids, especially those who are neurodiverse shouldn’t feel left out of the festivities. So on this spooktacular Ask Alli segment, we have Frazier Behavioral Health CEO, and autism mom Alli Frazier here to tell us her tips, tricks, and treats for an autism and sensory-friendly Halloween.
Starting with her tip for a spooktacular Halloween, consider displaying blue pumpkins in your neighborhood. Blue pumpkins can signify that a child has autism or another sensory processing condition. You can paint blue pumpkins to show support and put them on your porch to let others know that you are accommodating to their sensory sensitivities.
Alli said, “This was a social media movement by moms and dads of neurodiverse children. They didn’t want to go to every single house and have to explain their child has sensory sensitivities. So if you see a child carrying a blue bucket, it signifies that maybe we need to reduce noise or not have flashing lights or not try to scare them or maybe not expect them to say ”
Now to a helpful trick while you’re out and about collecting candy. Alli suggests having sensory accommodations at your fingertips.
“Having your child carry hand digits, wearing a weighted vest, using noise-canceling headphones. As an added bonus, you can add a Halloween playlist. Try to pick a costume that’s not too itchy or scratchy,” Alli said.
For a treat, Alli shares this recipe for Halloween success:
- A pinch of verbal praise and keep it specific! (I like your walking feet, good job using your words).
- A handful of social etiquette. Practice phrases such as “trick-or-treat,” “thank you,” and “Happy Halloween!”
- 1 and a quarter cups of modeling. Your child might need you to model trick-or-treating for the first few houses before they feel confident to do it on their own
- 3 bits of encouragement. “I am so proud of you for going trick-or-treating this year!”
- A dash of patience. Remember this might be very overwhelming for them!
- Add a lot of love
Makes: 1 serving of a successful and memorable Halloween night
To request a consult or connect with the experts at FBH, give them a call at 216-446-2944.
You’ll find them at 5885 Landerbrook Drive, Suite 310, Mayfield Heights, Ohio
To watch the full clip on WKYC’s website please click here.