Simple Nonverbal Games!

girl playing non verbal gamesIn my work, I’m constantly encouraging parents to reduce their language, and amplify nonverbal communication? Why? Children with neurodevelopmental challenges typically have difficulty reading nonverbal cues. Through the use of exaggerated gesture, facial expression and body language along with fewer words, your child will need to visually reference to get information. Routinely doing so will build his/her ability to both read and use nonverbal channels of communication!

1) Charades:

Kids typically love playing charades. You can easily set up this game by writing down the names of animals and/or scenarios that are easily acted out. Here are just a few:

Animals: Monkey, dog, cat, rabbit, kangaroo, snake

Activities: brushing teeth, playing cards, shining a flashlight, fishing, playing frisbee

Emotions: scared, sad, bored, angry, happy, wary, proud

2) Silent Snack:

I’ve had several families try this, and most kids really enjoy it. Put a few snack choices out in individual bowls, and declare it “Silent Snack Time.” You can offer each person a taste of each snack, but make sure that everyone knows there’s not talking allowed! You can take turns sharing your opinions on each snack using thumbs up/down or facial expressions (yum/yuk). Have fun!

Related: Build Your Emotional and Nonverbal Connection

10 Simple Activity ideas

– Take turns placing toppings on homemade pizza.

– Put loose photos in a photo album – take turns sharing thoughts about the pictures.

– Refill the salt and pepper shakers using a mini funnel.

– Sort the pens and pencils in your “junk drawer” (of course you have one ūüėČ

– Put on some rubber gloves and play CSI, searching for “hidden treasures” under the cushions of your couches.

– Have your child empty pockets of pants en route to the washer (who keeps the change?)

– Have your child help you pump gas.

– Making hard boiled eggs? Show your son or daughter a trick. Watch how hard boiled eggs spin faster than regular eggs! Mark hard boiled eggs with a marker or pencil.

– Wash sponges and dish cloths in the sink together. (keep those rubber gloves handy).

– Build a structure with toothpicks and marshmallows (or clay).

– Fill up your pets’ water bowls with a watering can.

Want to go a little deeper? I help autism moms take back their power as a parent and show them how they can make a lasting difference in their ASD child’s life.¬†To arrange a time to discuss your challenges and goals and to learn more about the RDI program,¬†email me at¬†,¬†call 705-875-4605 or send me a message¬†here¬†for a complementary session!



Testimonial – A Sibling Connection at Last!

This testimonial was generously provided by an awesome family whose son was so passive just three years ago that he was near impossible to engage. Today, he’s an aspiring scientist and a thriving “guy-on-the-go,” attending Grade 1, and loving life, and his younger brother.

“We’ve been doing RDI with Sue for three years. When we look back over the past three years, the relationships our son has developed are so meaningful. Not too long ago, our son and his sibling had minimal connection. Now, his younger brother can’t wait for him to get off the bus so they can be together. When we’re out and about, our son’s friends are happy to see him. At the end of the day, seeing our son forge meaningful relationships is what it’s all about. This speaks volumes in terms of what is possible!”

~ Samantha and Chad, Whitby, ON


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