Tag: switch adapted play

Domino Train switch adapted toy

Image showing the switch adapted Domino Train toy
Domino Train switch adapted toy

Domino Train is a super new fun toy in our catalogue of switch adapted special needs toys. One of the reasons I like it is because it’s a train and all boys, including big boys, like trains – it’s part of our DNA.

Other reasons are it’s bright and colourful, it sounds its bell as it chugs along and it has a bright green light on the front. Good enough reasons anyway but the best thing is that Domino Train leaves a trail of coloured up-standing domino tiles behind it. Now that’s interesting and not something you’ll not find very often. Normally you would say the main interest would come from the train itself; it is good but I think the line of domino bricks creates the possibility for good cognitive training and development. I’m sure lots of parents and professionals will latch onto this feature of the Domino Train.

Watch this short – 20 second – video of Domino Train on our YouTube Channel.

Learning with Domino Train

Here are four simple ideas that you could introduce when playing with Domino Train:

  1. developing cause and effect skills: making the Domino Train chug along using the switch
  2. numeracy: asking the child to make a trail of X dominoes
  3. colour recognition: asking the child to make a trail that contains a certain number of yellow tiles.
  4. eye co-ordination: asking the child to knock the dominoes down using the Domino Train or another toy

I’m sure clever parents and professionals will think of lots more ideas. Share them with us via our Contact Us page and I’ll post them to this blog. If you find these ideas about using toys to help develop cognitive understanding you may like to have a read of this posting about the Benefits of Switch Adapted Play (parts 1 and 2)

Rolling the Switch Dice

Noah and his Dad playing Shoots and Ladders using Switch Dice
Noah and his Dad playing Shoots and Ladders using Switch Dice

Recently I blogged about using Switch Dice for playing board games and said I would be sending out samples for review.

Just to recap, Switch Dice is a switch accessible electronic dice. Pressing the switch causes the bright red LEDs to flash and show the number of spaces the player should move in the game.

Stacy Warden, living in Colorado, was one of the first to get one and try it out. She writes a blog – Noah’s Miracle – about her son Noah. He is six years old and was born with a cerebral palsy condition.

The Warden family love playing board games. And, as Noah uses a switch with his other toys, it seemed reasonable to think he would be able to use it to ‘role’ the dice when it was his turn to play. All that’s needed is to plug a switch (any 3.5mm) into the front of Switch Dice and press it to make Switch Dice ‘roll’.

Very simple but for many kids with CP getting actively involved in game play, rather than watching others take their turn, can be difficult if not impossible. I believe Switch Dice has the potential to remove that barrier.

The picture shows Noah and his Dad playing Shoots and Ladders (I think we know the games as Snakes and Ladders in the UK)

Getting Noah involved and participating in the family fun was Stacy’s goal. Read her blog posting Rolling the Dice to see how it worked out.

She also has a lot to say about two other switch adapted toys: Domino Train and Rally Racer and a new app-controlled communication toy Toy-Fi Teddy that lets users swap messages through their phone and tablet.

Noah’s Miracle is a good read – I encourage you to bookmark it and sign-up for regular updates.

Rally Racer review

Last December Kara Melissa (blogs at http://karamelissa.com) purchased the Rally Racer switch adapted car for her Son, Seb.

It was his main Christmas present so very important that it worked for him (and his younger sister). Seb uses switches attached to his tray and has worked hard at learning to target these switches to access his communication aids, computer and iPad games. Rally Racer needed to be a ‘drop-in solution’ for Seb’s switch configuration. It was!

icture showing Seb laughing because he has just crashed the Rally Racer racing cars
Seb has just crashed the Rally Racer cars

Kara initially contacted me via Facebook and we then bounced ideas back and forth on email. It turned out that Seb wanted either a train set or racing car set. In the end it was the Rally Racer racing car set that won out. I built one for Seb and shipped it to Toronto.

Picture showing the two Rally Racer cars Seb has crashed at the track cross-over point.
Rally Racer cars – crashed again

Gifts for Seb was my blog about Kara’s approach to finding toys suitable for a six year old with a cerebral palsy condition and especially her search for toys that ‘continued to deliver’ long after the initial excitement has passed.

Kara tells me Rally Racer was a bit hit on Christmas Day with family and friends. Seb was thrilled to bits 🙂 His absolute favourite bit is crashing the cars – isn’t that typical boy fun.

This week she sent me a blog link to her Rally Racer review. It’s a very good read and Rally Racer gets an A+ rating which ain’t bad in my books.

I encourage everyone to read the Rally Racer review and join the 1300+ parents and professionals who are following her blog.

Watch this space: Kara is also planning to review the Switch Dice for playing board games we designed; I’m looking forward to hearing what she says about it.