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Crazy Straws

Children love to drink and they love to drink though straws. A simple exercise that helps children focus at near point well is having them drink with Crazy or Silly Straws. These straws have curves and loops that draw the participantís attention to the liquid as it works up the straw. Using crazy straws is an especially good exercise for children who are Autistic or severely developmentally delayed that lack good near point vision.

Reportedly, when a healthy infant sucks nourishment, their eyes move in and out (towards their nose and away from their nose). Using a crazy straw helps older children be able to develop adequate eye muscles that may have been delayed in their infant development. Drinking liquids from a loopy straw is a fun way to do vision exercises.

Step by Step Instructions: Crazy Straws.

1. Obtain a set of Crazy Straws or a set of Silly Straws. Make sure that the straws are transparent.

2. Every time or near every time the child drinks something, have them drink though a clean crazy straw.

3. Most children will naturally follow the liquid as it works its way through the crazy straw. If your child does not, just gently remind them. If they refuse, just allow them to keep drinking (do not let it become a power struggle).

Exercise:Crazy Straws.

Time: about 1 minute, or as long it takes the child to drink something.

Recommended Frequency: about every time they have something to drink.

Materials Needed: lots of Crazy Straws or Silly Straws.

Pretest Assessment: the participant has trouble with near point vision, convergence, tracking, or weak eye muscles.

Mastery: is when the child can easily focus at near point, does not lose their place when they read and are able to follow the liquid in the straw well.

Additional comments: To avoid illness, make sure that the straws are clean prior to use.

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