5 Back-to-School Must Haves for Children with Special Needs
School supplies lists are coming out and the first day of school is right around the corner! Back-to-school shopping can be fun and exciting but shopping for a child with special needs can be a little more tricky. Luckily brands have become more inclusive and off not on functional but trendy items for our kiddos! I have to give a huge shout-out to Target, specifically their Cat & Jack brand. They carry ADORABLE adaptive clothes and now a back-to-school adaptive backpack line, as well as Billy shoes in their online store. Essentially a one-stop-shop for adaptive needs!
5 back-to-school must haves
1. Cat & Jack adaptive backpack
Cat & Jack adaptive backpack: These backpacks are designed to attach to the back of a wheelchair. The backpacks also have access ports for cords or tubes. No more sliding off the handles, hanging straps getting caught in the wheels, and bouncing bags bumping into your legs as you push the chair. Having a backpack that stays in place and lays against the back of the chair will make maneuvering the hallways easier. These Backpacks are also so stinking cute!
2. Cat & Jack adaptive clothing
Cat & Jack adaptive clothing: This company is killing it with their adaptive options! This clothing line has so many options and so many kiddos could benefit so I will break down some of my favorite items.
- Diaper-friendly jeans in larger sizes. Older kids who require briefs have limited options when it comes to cute pants. Jeans are typically not made to accommodate a brief which is why they will typically wear elastic pants or leggings. These jeans are specifically designed to accommodate a brief discreetly and functionally for older kids!
- seamless/tagless shirts: perfect for the sensory defensive kiddos who are picky with clothing! These shirts specifically say “comfy feel” in the description which will be great for the kids who are partial to wearing only cotton. This same no seam no tag design can also be found in dresses.
- Open abdomen tops: Getting a child set up to tube feed requires access to the mic-key button on their abdomen. These tops allow you to have that access without having to lift your shirt up. Super cute kangaroo pocket designs give you access to the port while looking like a typical pocket.
- Knee-length socks are perfect for pairing with orthotics! When you receive orthotics to get a few pairs of socks to fit them, but with kids, a few is never enough, and finding socks tall enough to fit AFO’s can be hard. These are the perfect length and are available in so many colors!
3. Billy Shoes
Billy Shoes: I have written about these before and I still recommend them to every parent with a child who wears AFO’s and SMO’s! They look like typical sneakers but the top unzips making it easier to place th efoot inside rather than trying to slide and push it in. You can order them directly from the Billy website or Target online now carries Billy shoes!
* I highly recommend following the sizing chart when ordering these for your kiddo.
4. Push pop fidget
Push pop fidget: These are trendy fidgets to help relieve stress, anxiety, or help maintain focus. This would be particularly good to help with the first day of school nerves that a child may have when beginning a new routine.
5. Bento box
Bento box: As someone who does not like their food to touch I actually have one of these for myself. These are GREAT for kids who are extremely picky about the food they eat. Having separate compartments can help a child strategically eat their food instead of it being scattered.
In conclusion, we recognize back-to-school shopping for a child with special needs can be a little more tricky. However, hopefully, these 5 back-to-school must-haves for children with special needs make the shopping experience a little easier. Brands are slowly becoming more inclusive and we hope to highlight their strides forward to encourage more brands to follow suit, and make it easier for parents like you to locate these brands!
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