Many children with autism are especially sensitive to texture, making mask-wearing especially challenging. To help ease their experience, put a mask on yourself, and remind children:
- We wear masks to keep others safe from germs that might make us sick.
- Masks should cover our nose, mouth, and chin.
- Practicing wearing a mask can make it easier. The more we practice, the easier it can be.
Then tell children that Julia is also practicing wearing her mask, and so is her bunny friend Fluffster! Watch this video together, then try some of the strategies:
- Put masks on a stuffed animal or doll.
- Practice wearing masks at home for a short period of time, and work up to longer periods. You can do this by counting, like Julia’s daddy did, or by using a timer.
- Let children decorate their mask so it feels special.
Children younger than two (or children who are not able to remove the masks themselves) should not wear masks, so be sure to physically distance. Check out this printable page and this article on wearing masks.