Posts Tagged ‘disability’
Good Luck Blossom for Children – a Funky Online Sensory Toy Shop
The Trabasack team love supporting new ventures in the disability sector, especially when they’re beneficial for children living with disabilities. Blossom for Children is a fantastic new concept. It’s an online shop which offers a range of funky, fashionable and vibrant books, toys, aids and clothes. They were set up to generate income for the Tree of Hope charity but also to provide families and children living with special needs with the equipment and toys they deserve.
What’s in Stock?
Blossom for Children has a wide range of fantastic and carefully selected stock. Many of the products are universal and they include some of our favourites from EasyBelts to funky wheelchair gloves. Their range of books is brilliant, including titles from one of our favourite author and illustrators Hannah Ensor.
They also stock some really great colourful alternatives to the standard NHS equipment provided including bright crutches and tripods.
The shop is split into four distinct sections:
- Toys and Books
- At Home
Each of these section has a range of items which are designed to improve and aid independence. The toys section is packed with sensory play equipment and toys which can aid development as well as just being great fun. Some of the items do cross over so having a look at the whole range is recommended.
The At Home section also usefully contains a couple of books for parents and carers to help them too with the journey to diagnosis and supporting a child with special educational needs.
They also stock the Trabasack Curve Connect as a bundle offer and have put together this brilliant instructional video showing just how simple and easy to use the product really is:
Tree of Hope
The Tree of Hope Charity is dedicated to transforming the lives of sick children and providing the support needed to their families to do this. The charity works hard to raise funds so they can provide the support needed to families across the UK.
They work to provide grants to enable children to access the medical treatments, surgeries, therapies and equipment needed to help them flourish. Without the support of Tree of Hope the majority of these children wouldn’t have the support at all.
At Trabasack we’re really pleased to see more dedicated online retailers providing equipment and enjoyment for children with disabilities. Blossom for Children has a range of stock which will appeal to children with a range of different difficulties and makes accessing some products easier than ever before.
We want to wish Blossom for Children all the best and am sure we will see their business thrive and grow! Take a look at their shop now and please tell us what you think in the comments below!
Thanks to Gemma Conyard who sent us this lovely picture of her son with a red trimmed Trabasack Curve Connect. “My son with his Trabasack curve connect, I made him textured activity discs to keep him occupied while out and about :-)” She has put discs of material with different textures and colours so he can explore them. The sensory discs are a brilliant idea, being lightweight and easy to put inside the trabasack, they are great for children travelling in their buggies. I love the way she has put a little clacking frog in the middle so that it makes a click when he presses it!
Trabasack Connect is very good for attaching toys and materials as it has a soft fabric covering that sticks to ‘hook’ or rough velcro tape. I expect each of the sensory discs has a small piece of ‘hook’ tape so that it can be repositioned around the trabasack tray top.
Trabasack was created by a mum designing something that helped her child play so we love it when we see people creating toys to use with it.
You can use it to attach all sorts of homemade sensory toys. Here is a sensory toy that we made for our son last year. It doesn’t include a picture of our Joe as he had quite gruesome chicken pox at the time!
As you can see, we used some plastic bottles, some masking tape (orange and neon!), plastic flowers, tin foil and some wind chimes.
There are lots of things around the house that can be used as sensory play toys. You can experiment with anything with textures, bright colours or that make interesting noises, as long as it is safe for your child. If you enjoy crafts, doing it can be a lot of fun.
When you have experimented please do send your pictures to us at info(at)trabasack.co.uk Any pictures showing homemade toys on a trabasack will win one of our fun Trabasack ‘Manifesto’ T Shirts.
This article first appeared on the Trabasack website here: Homemade Sensory Toys
Skoog – The Squishy Cube that is Now Available on the Apple Store!
We have been big fans of skoog since we first saw it and are thrilled to see it breaking through into mainstream use, and now it is EVEN AVAILABLE ON THE APPLE STORE!
The Skoog is a curiously titled electronic device that, when combined with computer software, can bring the world of art and music to life for those with learning difficulties and physical disabilities.
“What exactly is a Skoog?!” I hear you ask – well, the Skoog is a soft, durable cube with coloured convex semi-circles on each side that work as buttons. It is made from a tactile and squeezable foam that really appeals to sensory desires, and when the “buttons” are pressed (or hit, tapped and even if the Skoog is shaken-about!) musical notes are created through the computer software.
Skoog Video from The Apple Store – all music featured made using a Skoog
The Skoog has been created to be easy to use and implement at home or in an educational setting – so simple to set-up, it simply connects to either PC or Mac via USB and once you have the correct software installed, you’re away!
The simplicity of usability of the Skoog makes it ideal for children and adults with learning difficulties or physical impairments, especially in comparison to traditional, conventional instruments. The sounds that can be created are endless, from the smooth, airy notes of a flute, to the warm pluck of Spanish guitar strings – all these creative noises and more are literally at fingertips of anyone who uses it.
What’s more is that the Skoog can be activated using any body-part (such as the chin, elbow, feet etc), which adds further accessibility for those with limited movement and dexterity, or those with physical disabilities.
The Skoog is itself touch-sensitive, and this setting can easily be altered whenever needed through the advanced software used to create the musical output for the Skoog. This not only enables the user to pick an instrument of choice to experiment with, but also allows for further creative expression – changing the timbre and force with which the notes are produced, providing endless scope for creating musical art.
The Skoog is a fantastic and innovative creative tool that has helped many children and adults around the world create music and art with ease, providing them with confidence, a sense of progress and achievement, and not to mention, an abundance of musical fun!
Pioneered by Disabled Musicians
Amongst the many pioneering electronic musicians who champion the Skoog as an instrument of choice is Charlotte White. Charlotte had an accident when she was in her early teens, and although it took a lot of strength and courage, she was determined to continue on her musical journey that she started before the accident.
Charlotte’s muscular-neuro disease has made it difficult to use musical instruments in the traditional way, but with the help of a number of innovative technologies such as the Skoog, she has been given the chance to create music again and be part of a number of orchestras and ensembles that have performed across the globe.
Charlotte is currently working on a new composition using the Skoog, and you can see photos of her performing with the Paraorchestra in Qatar here, along with a little help from her trusty Trabasack (or “Trabba” as Charlotte calls it!
The Skoog Goes Mainstream
Although the Skoog is of course ideal for aiding those with disabilities to creatively express themselves, it is also proving to be quite a hit as a versatile, mainstream musical instrument.
Fantastic news is that the Skoog is now available to purchase directly from the mainstream outlet of the Apple Store across Europe. The Skoog’s quirky design and unusual usability is sure to appeal to many at-home maestros and professional instrumentalists alike – and moreover, can now be purchased so simply with just a few clicks!
To illustrate the creative possibilities of the Skoog, watch the video below of the inimitable Brett Domino, doing a rather idiosyncratic cover version of the OutKast hit “Hey Ya!”
The Skoog reviewed in Future Music Magazine
The Skoog has also recently been reviewed in Future Music Magazine. Describing as a “distinctive, squishy, colourful object” and suggesting that you “pair it with an AlphaSphere for the ultimate WTF controller set up. 8/10″
The Skoog is so intuitive to use, and so much fun, there are seemingly endless creative ways of using it to create your own musical masterpiece. Click here to view and purchase the Skoog from the official Apple Store UK.
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- Sensory Stories for Children and Teens – The Book!
- What to Pack for your Child’s Hospital Stay
- How to make your own Sensory Wall
- Homemade Mirror Cube Sensory Toy
- Join Trabasack and Active Hands at Kidz in the Middle
- Sensory Play at Naidex National 2014
- Festive Christmas Apps for Kids