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Assistive technology that can be made at home

Assistive technology has been the lifelong partner of people living with disabilities but when we hear that word, it often connotes expensive, out-of-pocket, money, assessment, quotation, and more. Let’s change that perspective starting today as we have gathered information on how to make your own assistive technology for your children using materials at home. It is inexpensive, easy to make and implement and the best part about it is that it will be in conjunction with your child’s ongoing therapy, management, or treatment session. Here are some of the examples of DIY assistive technology that even you and your child can build together.

Object Calendar


Object calendar is used to assist you and your child with the transition from one activity to the next. Transitioning from one playtime to reading time can be challenging, so the object calendar can be a great assistive technology to make transitions easier and smoother.

Things you need :

Old calendar or any material that can be flapped

Colored paper or tapes

Objects or toys

How does it work?

The calendar will be divided into sections according to your routine or activities you have planned. Place specific toys or objects per section according to the sequence of your routine or activity.

Communication Key Chain


This is the best alternative communication device especially for equipment or devices which cannot be taken everywhere like to the pool, garden, park, library. Children with disabilities tend to have challenges in processing and communicating their emotions which may prompt tantrums in public places. This communication key chain will facilitate communication between you and your child and can decrease the chances of frustrations and tantrums.

Things you need:

Cut out communication images

Binder rings

How does it work?

Once you have gathered all the communication images, have them laminated, and then attach the ring to your child’s belt or bag.

Adapted Grip


Some challenges encountered by children with disabilities is their ability to get a strong grip which forms part in almost all of the day-to-day tasks- holding the spoon, writing, combing hair, brushing one’s teeth, and the likes. This adaptation can help train the child on how to develop a strong grip to help facilitate independence in doing tasks in the future.

Things you need:


Modeling clay

Empty prescription bottles or an old 35 mm film container

How does it work?

Insert the crayon or marker into the hole and secure it by using modeling clay. Your child may now navigate how to hold the material according to his or her preference.

Touching slate


It will benefit the visually impaired children as it will give them the opportunity to appreciate shapes through drawing even without vision. Yes! Drawing is possible for them.

Things you need:



Pill bottle or old film bottle




Drawing pen

How does it work?

The actual writing is done on the Velcro, which is supported underneath by plywood. As the child writes on the slate, wool comes out of a pen and sticks to the Velcro. The image or pattern that the child is making will reflect in a textured way, thereby giving the child the opportunity to touch, feel and appreciate the image created.

Self Management and Behavioural cards


Children with disabilities may have challenges in terms of processing, expressing, and verbalizing their emotions, this will impact how the child will behave and react in an appropriate way. A child with communication barriers may tend to have tantrums and cry as a way of expressing his or her frustration. These self-management and behavioral cards will pave the way to helping the child communicate better instead of getting frustrated because they cannot express or relay what they want.

Things you need:

Behavior or emotion image


Ring binders

How does it work?

Once you gathered all the images, have them laminated and attach them to your child’s belt or bag. When the child wants to communicate something, all he/she needs is to grab the specific image and show it to you. In return, you may also use the image/s to reply to your child’s message. You may have the option to choose any theme or topic you want to print like an emotion check or behavior card.

Assistive technology is a means to help your child achieve his or her goals, and what’s good about it is that there are a lot of DIY ideas which you can copy with pride and this will work in conjunction with your child’s therapy.

Do you need help with your child’s NDIS plan? Choose to be Plan Managed today and allow us to help you and your child live a stress-free NDIS journey.

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