He was more interested in talking about a ball that he uses at Tara's School to assist with his breathing calming strategies.
When L initially told me about the ball a week and a half ago, he described the ball as a something that stretched. I thought he meant a ball that had a spring inside and came apart in two halves.
How wrong I was!
My background is tertiary science so when I finally saw the ball at Tara's School on Tuesday just gone, my first thought was that it reminded me of a bucky ball. Yep, it's a science term! The ball had a structure similar to that of an expanded bucky ball.
L was right, the ball did in fact come apart, it stretched to become larger and could be collapsed back down.
Do you think that I could find said ball anywhere? Of course not!
Everyone who I showed the photo to, knew what it was and where they used to be sold but not one store that I visited had them in stock. Nor were any of the stores planning on restocking them in the future.
I searched online and can I say that some very, very inappropriate images were shown, so I quickly gave up!
Eventually I put a call out on my personal Facebook profile in the hope that one of my friends would be able to find said ball. And as luck would have it, one of my wonderful friends just happened to have one at home. Thanks Bec!
You know that you are onto a winning sensory toy when L stops watching his favourite show on television to play with the said toy.
But, whatever you do, do NOT call it a toy in front of L.
This statement evokes a very prompt response of "IT NOT A TOY!"
L was very quick to show me how to use the expanding ball.
The idea behind it, I think, in terms of it being a calming strategy is that by expanding and collapsing the ball while breathing in and out, that that motion alone gives L something to focus on. He's not realising that he is taking time out to calm down as in his mind he is just "playing" with the ball.
The ball is also a great tool to assist with L's hand/eye co-ordination, his fine motor control, as well as assisting with L's sensory input to assist him to recognise when he has to be gentle (sensory proprioception input.)
See I told you that I can turn any child's toy into a therapy activity.
Now to find another elusive ball as O has now decided that the ball is great to help her focus when she is completing her spelling homework!!