‘Pandemic Packs’ helping kids with disabilities not regress as life stays remote


The lack of in-person play can be a major setback in progress for kids with disabilities.

WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) — The pandemic has put a halt on a lot of routine activities, and for some children, this is a huge hurdle in development. But therapists at Easterseals in Wheeling are getting creative with virtual interaction as schools remain remote. 

Some schools have allowed in-person therapy to meet but for the schools strictly online, a lot of weight is falling onto the parents’ shoulders, so Easterseals is lending a playbook. 

Students with developmental disorders are getting something called a ‘pandemic pack’. These are packets filled with a variety of sensory objects like cotton balls, ribbon, tape, a bouncy ball, and exercise cards. 

This is all in an effort to try to prevent regression which can take place if kids with disabilities don’t stay active. 

Kids aren’t moving as much because they’re stuck at home. We have just tried to get as creative and animated as we can to try to engage the kids. We try to have the parents get the siblings involved to make it more fun. It’s a whole team effort. 

Krystal Wilson, Physical Therapist at Easterseals

For example, when kids are doing work for 2 to 3 hours at a time, parents can schedule a movement break once an hour; Try to sing, dance, play with playdough, an obstacle course, or even use the goodies in the Easterseals pandemic packs. 

Parents, there are also some free apps that encourage movement with a purpose; head here.

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