10 good toys for children with autism

April 2, 2009 12:54:57 PM PDT
On this World Autism Awareness Day, Toys R Us has joined with Autism Speaks to identify toys that can help kids reach milestones

"Hi, I'm Michael."

7-year-old Michael Brown stopped while playing to introduce himself to us.

It is something his mother Heather says he wouldn't have done if it weren't for therapy.

Michael has autism, and works hard to improve his communication and social skills.

Toys help that mission.

His mother, Heather, of National Park, New Jersey, says, "You find toys that they're receptive to and you pull language from them."

So Toys R Us has joined with Autism Speaks to identify ten toys that 'speak to kids with autism.'

They're basic toys, like these stacking blocks, that won't overstimulate, but can bring out communication skills and encourage sharing.

"Which is a huge accomplishment for kids with autism," Heather says.

Some of the toys on the list also help with fine motor skills...which can also be a struggle for autistic kids.

Christina Carty of Autism Speaks says the best part is kids don't know they're getting therapy. To them it's just play.

"They're having fun while we are able to engage them and bring them into a social world."

And she says that can make all the difference when it comes to helping kids on the spectrum reach their goals.

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