Shoebox Tasks for Kids with Special Needs

Shoebox Tasks for Kids with Special Needs

2021-02-16T07:25:49+00:00November 17th, 2020|

Finding an activity for children is not difficult for some. However, for some parents, they put in more effort in finding activities that are suitable for their kids especially when they have special needs. Typically developing children find it easier to do an activity as they have skills and abilities that are at par with the developmental milestones making them more independent to start and accomplish a given activity or tasks. For some kids, completing a puzzle can be very easy. However, for some, they may even struggle on how to hold on to the puzzle pieces.

Ultimately, our goal for our children is to be independent. If we want them to be independent, we have to let them feel that they can actually finish a task on their own. This will help them build their confidence, making them more open and independent to try and to experience new things on their own. This will be a step-by-step process which means they should start from a skill that they have already mastered, and then eventually the difficulty level will gradually increase. This will help them slowly gain their independence in accomplishing a task.

A perfect example of an activity is the so called “Shoebox Task” where you can create a structured workstation which children can do and finish. This goes perfectly especially for children with Autism because these children need “structure” and the sense of accomplishment after finishing a task. There and then, they’ll be more independent in doing these tasks. In the long run, their independency will be generalized into different contexts.

It’s a win-win situation! You don’t have to spend much, you are saving mother earth and at the same time, you are helping your kids to be more independent.

So what are the examples of shoebox tasks?

  1. Matching and recognition activities

You can transform a shoebox to something that can help your children with literacy and numeracy. Letters and numbers recognition is a very important foundational skill for our children to read or write. Just paste or write numbers and letters then you can let them match them accordingly.



  1. Sorting activity

One of the most fun activities would be sorting. You can sort almost any items you can find at home. Leggo blocks, pictures, toys — all of these can be sorted out according to its size, shape and colour. This is a good way for the children to learn how compare and contrast. Moreover, this will help them with their visual discrimination. This is perfect for pre-school aged children!

  1. Cause and effect

– Shoebox activities are not only for preschoolers or bigger kids but also for babies and toddlers! These boxes can be transformed into cause and effect toys. For example, when a ribbon is pulled, one side will be longer, while one side will be short. This will tap the interest of the children that when an action is done, there will be a corresponding effect to it.


  1. Fine motor skills

 One of the most helpful tasks would be the fine motor tasks. This is because most of the children with special needs are having difficulty in controlling and coordinating the fine muscles in their fingers. There are hundreds of things you can create using shoeboxes and other recyclable materials to enhance fine motor skills such as bottle caps, shoe lacing, slotting and threading tasks.

Free $200 Worth of Educational Assessment

*Terms and Conditions Applied