Last week I blogged about how I use board games to help teach turn taking skills to kids with ASD. I’ve been asked what games I recommend and while I have some general guidelines and games that I always try out, not every game will be a hit with every kid. I mentioned last time that Chutes and Ladders can be tricky as there is an element of chance in it, but it doesn’t have any text to read (a great thing in a kid’s game) and some kids really love the game. Some games come in character variant like Dora the Explorer or Transformers so that they engage kids’ interest. If you can find a game the child is interested in, that’s half the battle right there – they’ve bought in. So, what games do I have in my stash for kids with ASD? It’s probably not what you’d expect.
I was visiting my parents last weekend and one evening, we were bored. There was nothing on TV and we were all talked out. Yes we have tons of DVDs but there wasn’t one that we could all agree on. That’s when my inspiration struck. I got out my Playbook, connected it to the wireless network, and grabbed my HDMI cable. Luckily, my parents have a new TV with a very conveniently placed HDMI port on one side. I plugged in the playbook, switched the source feed on the TV to the HDMI port, and all of YouTube was at our disposal. We spent a very enjoyable evening watching music videos ranging from Great Big Sea to Gordon Lightfoot with some Simon and Garfunkel and The Guess Who sprinkled in.
I also showed my parents, who don’t use YouTube unless I send them a link to something, some of my favourite videos. Then I played a slideshow of the pictures I had on my playbook. Not every video looked good on the big screen but we could all watch them and it was a really enjoyable evening. Although I don’t have any kids, if I did, this would be an awesome way to show videos of the kids taken on the Playbook to friends, relatives, living further away who happened to visit. It’s a good thing that Dad has a playbook because I think the evening of YouTube might just become a family tradition. The next time I’m home, I’m going to set up the Remote control on the Playbook and sit on the couch to direct the action.