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Child First

•Take a small favorite or at least familiar object with your child when you may be entering a crowded or stimulating environment. Have headphones or earplugs on hand for loud noises. While visiting with friends and family, ask them to plan for a getaway area for your child when overwhelmed. Plan an area of escape for your child if you have a large gathering in your home. Encourage interaction without forcing to a point of a meltdown.
•Use a timer. All of the children respond well to timers.
•Take pictures with you; especially if you will be going to multiple places. This will assist in reducing anxiety related to transitions.

How to Maintain Structure and Routine During Holidays and Extended School Breaks

More Tips

•Prepare your child for the next days activities. Review any new or different activities for the following day before bedtime. Review it again the next morning.
•Visually show the new activity/activities on a schedule.
•Develop a calendar for Thanksgiving and the extended holiday season in December/January.
•Prepare for over-stimulating environments and crowds.