Get-hooked June 14, 2020
These doting mothers from Kochi have come up with interesting activities for youth with autism
Deepti Mathews, Anita Pradeep and Sangeetha John, three mothers of youngsters with autism have come up with some interesting activities during lockdown. All three of them who are members of Ernakulam Autism Club are reaching out to other children under autism spectrum too. They do it with four interesting C’s- craft, computers, communication and cooking.
The lockdown was definitely not easy for many youngsters with autism who found it difficult to stay at home. Parents have been trying different ways to keep them engaged. Three mothers from Kochi did just that, but they reached out to a wider audience. Deepti Mathews, Anita Pradeep and Sangeetha John who have children with autism have come up with some interesting initiatives. Their ventures through Ernakulam Autism Club are now receiving a lot of appreciation and love from all corners. Read on to know more.
An interesting and novel initiative
Deepti, Anita and Sangeetha are doting mothers who wants nothing lesser than the best for their children. The lockdown was a great opportunity to teach their kids interesting things. All three of them are part of the Ernakulam Autism Club (EAC), a renowned organization that reaches out to people with autism in Kerala.
That is when the idea of four C’s appeared on their minds. Craft, computer, communication and cooking were some interesting ways to keep children occupied. Within no time, the mothers decided to spread the word. They discussed about this to other parents through WhatsApp groups and social media who were excited too!
Now, they have interesting initiatives for youngsters with autism every week. New activities are taught to those under autism spectrum in an easy and interesting manner. All three mothers are loving the responses and plans to keep this going for more days to come.
The Four C’s
Knowing craft, computer, communication and cooking are inevitable in today’s world.
Deepti Mathews, who is a software engineer by profession is the mother of Sam Varghese who has autism. Deepti decided to handle crafts and computers. There are many YouTube links on how to do crafts easily. But most parents do not have the time to check on them. So Deepti picks up interesting and easy videos for children that are then shared with parents who teach it to the child.
“We have to take into account sensory issues of children and so on when we pick the videos”, says Deepti. Since she is into computers, Deepti knows how to pick interesting stuffs to teach children. “They love animation, colors and music. So I try to teach them that through all these. It helps to increase competency and instills confidence in the child”, she says.
The lessons are simple and parents can always help the child if needed.
Working on communication building
Sangetha John, whose daughter Sherin Mary has autism, is exceptionally good with teaching communication skills. Sherin, who is a poet, has even published her own books, thanks to Sangeetha who stood by her! This doting mother has a way of teaching skills to other children too.
She picks up an image from Google which is then shared with children. They are asked to speak about whatever comes to their mind after seeing the photo. They can draw or even narrate about it. Four sessions are over already. In the last one, Sangeetha gave an image of a frog riding a bicycle and she is brimming with happiness when she talks about the innovative responses she received for the activity.
“One child even made a poem from it. We get different responses when this image is shared. It is just wonderful to see them thinking innovatively”, says Sangeetha. She highlights that the main purpose of this activity is to build imagination. Parents are also over-whelmed by this activity.
“This also helps to build a conversation with the child, she says. The activity is for youngsters with autism under any age group.
Exploring cooking skills
According to experts, cooking has a therapeutic effect on people with autism. Nothing better than an expert cook and mom stepping in to teach cooking lessons, and that is what Anita Pradeep is doing.
Anita, who is a home baker, makes delicious dishes. Her son Brian Varghese also helps her. Brian, who is under the autism spectrum, is an artist who has showcased his works at different venues across India.
Anita makes videos on basic cooking and these are shared with people with autism so that they can try out the same at home. This is indeed an exciting activity that can be done during lockdown.
“My dishes are all easy which can be done without hassles at home. All the kids are enjoying it very much. If they need assistance, parents are there to help them. The first warming up video was on how to make lemonade”, she says. All the videos are edited by Anita’s elder son Rohit.
Anita also shows how to serve it. She has also done videos on making mango shake and healthy date balls. More are on the way!
Watch in Sign Language
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