Sensory Processing Checklist

Sensory Processing Checklist
___ Defensive: May not like to be held/irritable, avoids light touch,
dislikes messy hands/face, dislikes brushing teeth/hair, irritable during haircuts, avoids
going barefoot/ wearing shoes/socks, toe walks, avoids walking on wet, muddy, or snowy
ground, avoids tags on clothing, must have clothing tucked in just right, only wears
loose/baggy clothing, dislikes denim or wool, picky eating habits, behaviors when
standing in line, has a large personal space need.
* Respect personal space boundaries. Do not be imposing when stressed.
* Tactile input should not be forced, however should be sought out by the child.
* Provide cozy “personal space” areas such as pop-up tents, carpet squares, yoga
mats, soft quilts or throws, ball pit play.
* Sensory table/box play such as dry beans, rice, sand, water with scoops, cups,
shovels/spoons, etc. as tolerated. Place small objects into the textured containers
and have the child dig them out with a spoon, etc.
* Avoid light touch. Use firm touch, massage, vibration, pop-tubes, etc.
Provide play dough with tools to manipulate.
* Provide paintbrushes, tools, or sticks to draw with when using paints or other
messy textures.
Proprioceptive play (see below) can inhibit tactile defensiveness and allow for more
active tactile exploration.
___ Seeking: Seeks touch, leans on people/objects, poor personal
space/boundary awareness, leans on desk, firm grasp on pencil/crayons, inappropriately
mouths objects, messy eating habits, refuses socks/shoes/clothing items, poor ability to
locate items by feel without vision such as in a backpacked. .
* Provide arts/craft opportunities, doodling, finger painting, and large easel work
* Play dough activities. Squeeze, roll, pinch, sculpt, stamp, etc.
* Slime, ooze, and other play sets with tools to scoop and pour.
* Shaving cream play (draw/write in it), wall soap paints/bubble bath.
* Squish balls, small or large Koosh balls, light up balls, etc.
* Multi textured carpet squares, quilts/throws, and wraps for calming.
* Bubbles
* “Seek Sack” Place small objects into a bag and have the child find the object
called out using only touch, or provide a photo of the object to assist with tactile
* Make a “body sandwich” name foods to put on your sandwich, pat it all over.
* Weighted blankets, vests, etc. can be used for short periods of time (20 – 30
minutes) if the child seeks them out.
* Superhero capes
* Athletic type stretch shirts such as Under-Armour, etc.
* Wrestling play, Twister game, etc.
Yvonne Cosentino, OTR.L
PROPRIOCEPTION: ___ Avoiding: Appears clumsy, dislikes playground
activities, dislikes ball games, difficulty with gross motor coordination, difficulty keeping
pace with peers, falls frequently, poor sitting or standing balance, difficulty standing in
line or maintaining spot in line, decreased awareness of body position in space, light
grasp on objects, light strokes when writing or coloring.
*Lycra hammock gentle swing/play
* Body Sock play
* Pop-up tunnel play
* Swim noodle sword fights/battles.
* Body bowling- Roll around and knock over toy bowling pins or decorated empty
2 liter bottles.
* Animal walk games
* Dance to quit, rhythmic music. Perform hand movements to music from a sitting
* Provide slow, repetitive learning for new gross motor play. Rhythmic music or
video feedback may enhance learning.
* Provide opportunities for resistive fine motor play such as drawing in wet sand,
sidewalk chalk, draw on a large easel with a variety of tools, retrieving small objects
from theraputty, etc.
* Yoga
___ Seeking: High activity level, runs, climbs, crashes,
frequently bumps into or falls over people or things, hits, bites, throws, pinches, uses too
much force to grasp or manipulate objects, frequently breaks objects, difficulty sitting
still, etc.
* Provide heavy work play such as pushing, pulling, climbing.
* Ball games, beach ball, balloon volleyball, punch ball, etc.
* Large therapy ball bouncing/rocking forward back on belly
* Scooter board games from belly or while seated and holding onto a pull-steer
* Trampoline, leaf pile jump, crash pads, or other jumping surfaces
* Games such as Hopscotch, (Cranium ) Hullaballo, etc.
* Dance to music with a fast beat, clap hands, or sing loudly.
* Provide opportunities for resistive fine motor play such as drawing in wet sand,
sidewalk chalk, pop tubes, draw on a large easel with a variety of tools, retrieving
small objects from theraputty, etc.
* Horseback riding, swimming, tag, wrestling
Yvonne Cosentino, OTR/L
VESTIBULAR: ___ Avoiding: Difficulties with playground activities such as
swinging and sliding, fear of heights or being off the ground, holds tightly when lifted
from the ground or when seated on a therapy ball, fear of learning new gross motor
activities, avoids standing to climb/creeps up stairs, becomes nauseated when riding in
the car or swinging, fearful of swimming with decreased awareness of up/down under
water, poor eye-hand coordination, poor ocular tracking, poor balance/equilibrium
responses, difficulties performing bilateral coordination such as jumping jacks or
pedaling a bicycle, poor imitation during “move to music”, dance routines or gymnastics,
poor awareness of body position in space.
* Provide the “just right” challenge such as slow swinging, sliding with another
person or down a slight incline, mini-trampoline with a handle for support, and
added support during movement activities (i.e. add pillows to a wagon, etc.).
Decrease the challenge by decreasing the activity intensity, speed, and duration. Must be
child initiated and directed to avoid anxiety and promote learning and integration of
the sensation. Do not force participation in challenging activities, but try to offer graded
challenging tasks that will build new skills.
* Rocking chair or horse
* Make a game out of an activity such as an obstacle course; log rolling in the
forest, or scooter board games. Have the child design the course or game.
* Slight ramp for a scooter board to slide down or propel up.
* Seated skateboard games
* Razor scooters with handle/wider wheels are easier to steer.
* Hippo therapy
___ Seeking: Very active, seeks intense swinging, running, sliding,
spinning. Appears to be very well coordinated, however has difficulty with static balance
or copying motor plans/movement patterns. “Crash and burn” type play.
* Spin swinging, swing and kick a tossed ball, etc.
* Sit-&-Spin
* Games with a rapid start and stop or quick change of direction
* Rope swings, inner tube swings, rings, trapeze playground access.
* Scooter boards, Razor scooters
* Pogo stick
* Inflated balls or wheels that you can climb into and roll around in.
*Cheerleading, pom pom play, ribbon wands.
Yvonne Cosentino, OTR/L
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