Early Autism Project Halloween Safety Tips

Date: October 28, 2015

pumpkinBy: Lauren Freeney & Jacqui Abrams

Halloween can be fun. Children and adults have the opportunity to dress up as their favorite people or characters, and there are lots of cool activities to do with your friends and family.

Halloween can sometimes be challenging for children with autism. Here are a few tips for parents so you will be prepared to have tons of fun during the Halloween season!

OneIf you plan to go trick-or-treating, take your child to the store and look at costumes and decorations together before Halloween. Picking out a cool costume and dressing up can be a lot of fun and this experience will help prepare your child for the big day.

  • If your child doesn’t like the feel of the costumes, find a festive or funny Halloween shirt.
  • If you’re staying home and handing out candy, let your child help.

TwoYou may see people dressed as princesses and super heroes, but you may also see people dressed like spooky characters. It is important to remind children that it’s all pretend. Underneath every costume is a person who wants to have fun during Halloween, JUST LIKE YOU!

 

Three
It is very important to remind children to stay with their family and friends while trick-or-treating.

  • Wear lots of glow-in-the-dark bracelets and necklaces to stand out.
  • Write your name, phone number and address on your child’s arm in case you get separated.

 

FourPrepare your child for what to expect by practicing the sequence of trick-or-treating at home by using a bedroom door. Give step-by-step directions about what to do in say, and prepare them for seeing scary decorations that light up or make noise.

  • Talk with a few of your neighbors beforehand. You can also give small toys or edibles to your neighbors to hand out to your child if they are on a special diet.
  • If your child isn’t using vocal language yet, consider taping a sign to his or her trick-or-treat bag. It’s an easy way to communicate with other families and spread awareness!

Five

Remind children that while they may not like the candy they’re given, they do not need to say this while trick-or-treating. Instead, when you get home and look through the candy and select some favorites.

  • Make sure your child knows to tell you if he or she gets too tired or doesn’t want to trick-or-treat anymore. It can be tiring walking around!
  • Let children know ahead of time that when everyone gets home, you will help them check their candy and help them select their favorite. Hopefully they’ll share with you, too!

 

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