Sensory Game

Search Knowledge Base by Keyword

Sensory Game

< Back

Q&A Session 5 with the Director of The Son-Rise Program

Topic: Sensory Game

Q: Dear Bryn,
My son is 4 and autistic. We’ve been running our program for 15 months in the playroom. The changes are truly incredible! Thank you for your help! Recently, my son is into this sensory game involving lots of my volunteers’ “skin.” He likes to pull up one person’s shirt and sit on her back or flip over it or just touch it or kiss it. Very sweet, and my volunteer doesn’t mind, except when someone is observing. Other games he likes along these lines include putting his hand behind someone’s knee and having them squeeze his hand by bending their knee. Sounds strange, but wondered if you have run into this before? Is it just sensory? Should we set limits involving personal exposure? Should I let the volunteer decide just how far to go? I’d appreciate your advice!

Mitch’s Mom

A: Dear Mitch’s mom:
(That’s you Betsy, isn’t it? You can’t hide from me! (ha!) )
In responding to your situation, I am keeping in mind that you have been doing your program for a meaningful length of time. I also know that you have taken the Maximim Impact Program here (Part II after The Son-Rise Program Start-Up) and that you have had consultations as well, so you have had opportunities to focus on your attitude, your perspective etc. So, with all that in mind, here are some thoughts.

One idea to pursue is this: Could this be an “ism”? I know we usually see an “ism” as not involving other people, but many times they can. A child can have an “ism” in which they have an adult flip pages in a book and read, over and over again, as they watch. A child can have an “ism” in which they have an adult swing them by their arms, or give them a horsey ride. So, I would observe closely and see if you could determine if he is “using” people as an “ism”. One area to focus on is eye contact. Once he turns you over and kisses your back, you can’t make eye contact can you? With his hand behind someone’s knee, bent over, is any eye contact possible? He might create these scenarios as a way to “be exclusive” while also getting a sensory benefit. I would really try to make it much more interactive:

when he wants to kiss my back, I would ask him to look at me, or say the word “back”

when I do lay down, I then only lay down perhaps for 30-45 seconds, then I get up, and offer him another opportunity to interact, as above.

I would ask him to look at me while I squeeze his hand behind my knee, explaining his eyes help make me strong!

I would also focus on perhaps creating other options for him, that would enable me to get more eye contact and interaction:
using a brush on his hands,
asking him to kiss my hand, instead of my back, or other parts of my body.
giving him different sensations on his mouth, throughout the day, soft and hard, prickly and feathery.

If he is seeking to have more sensation, let’s give it to him – but with our focus on interaction! It’s wonderful to ask him to participate in getting what he wants.

Remember, we put the toys on the shelf, so we can have an opportunity to be helpful to have the child ask us for things. In the same way, if you or your volunteers immediately lie down for ten minutes while he kisses your back (the image, by the way, is too cute!) it’s like putting toys all over the floor. You want to create a scenario where you might play a little “dumb” and ask him to really look and speak when he wants these things.

It sounds like a wonderful area of motivation – so have fun with it! Let me know how it goes.

With warmest regards to all of you,
Bryn N. Hogan

Have any questions? Ask an Autism Expert

Contact us for a complimentary priority call with a Son‑Rise Program Advisor & free Autism resources.


Our Commitment to Privacy

The Autism Treatment Center of America® (a division of The Option Institute & Fellowship®) are committed to your privacy. This notice serves to help you better understand what information we collect, how we use that information, and with whom we may share a limited portion of that information. If you have questions or concerns regarding this policy, you should contact Customer Support by email

We know that you value your personal information, and we strive to protect your privacy as if it were our own. The Autism Treatment Center of America (a division of The Option Institute & Fellowship) uses of your information is limited to the ways outlined in this notice, except as required by law and/or to comply with a judicial proceeding, court order, or legal process served on us.

Information We Collect From You

  1. Online Contact and Info Requests: If you submit an online request for Option Institute products such as free brochures, or submit a question through a “Contact Us” or “Call-Me” form, we may have to gather additional information from you to respond to your request. Such information will include name, shipping address, telephone number, and email address.
  2. Non-Personal Information We Receive Automatically: Like most websites, we utilize cookies. Cookies are a mechanism to remember information about you when you navigate from one web page to another. Our website uses cookies to hold a user’s unique session identifiers, allowing us to serve correct information back to the user. Such information may include your language and currency. Our website cookies do not hold any personally identifiable information. We may use other similar technologies that allow us to collect non-personally identifiable information about your visit to help us better your experience.

Lawful Basis For Processing Your Data

  1. Consent: We will not process any personal information unless you agree to our Privacy policy and freely give consent to process your information for the purpose of your request.
  2. Fulfillment of Requests: We only store and process your information for the purpose of your request. Your information is removed and no longer processed after the request has been fulfilled. If you have also freely consented to receive marketing or promotional communications via a request form or registration form, we will retain your information until you revoke your consent or unsubscribe from receiving those communications via the instructions located at the bottom of all our emails.

Sharing of Your Data

  1. If we are required by law: we will disclose information about you in response to a subpoena, court order, or other legitimate governmental request.
  2. We will only share your data with third party service providers such as email services to facilitate fulfilment of your information or contact request. None of your information will be processed or stored by any third party if you choose to revoke your consent or submit a request to be forgotten.
  3. We do not share or distribute your information with any other third parties for any purposes other than the purposes you freely consent to.

Use Of Information Collected From You

  1. Information Requests and Customer Service: After submitting information to us via our online forms, your contact information including your email address will be used to respond to that request. After you submit online information requests to us, you may, from time to time, receive email or other communications from us or our service providers with information including information about our upcoming programs or products if you choose to agree to receive those communications. If you do not wish to receive these communications, you are able to opt out of at any time by following the unsubscribe link found in the email.
  2. Third-Party Service Providers: We work closely with other companies and individuals to facilitate transactions and better your experience. Examples of third-party service provider services include shipping orders, analyzing data, providing accurate search results and links, affiliate marketing, and newsletters. Any information that we share with a third-party service provider is done so safely, securely, and under a contractual relationship with that provider to protect your data.
  3. Promotional events: From time to time, we or a service provider acting on our behalf may use your name, email address, telephone number and/or mailing address to send you information or offers for a program, product or other service we believe to be of interest to you. If you do not wish to receive these communications, you are able to opt out of at any time by following the unsubscribe link found in the email.

Data Retention Policy

We maintain a data retention policy to protect your data. Information collected on our website will be retained for as long as necessary to fulfill the purpose for which it was collected.

How We Secure Your Information

We are committed to protecting the security of your personal information and to honoring your choices for its intended use. To prevent unauthorized access, maintain data accuracy, and ensure the correct use of information, we strive to maintain physical, electronic, and administrative safeguards. We use industry standard security protocol such as encryption and https security protocol to protect your information.
Any time we share your information with a third party consistent with this Privacy Policy, we utilize technological or contractual safeguards in an effort to keep your information safe.
While we are confident ordering online is safe and secure, if for any reason you cannot access the secure server or feel uncomfortable ordering online, please feel free to place your order with us by phone at 877-766-7473 or +001-413-229-2100.
At any time you wish to opt out of receiving promotional mailings, you may call or email Customer Service (

Your Rights

At any time, you can use the following request form to request any of the following:

  1. Confirm whether or not personal data about you is being processed.
  2. Provide you with further details about how we process your personal data.
  3. Provide you with a copy of any data which we hold about you.
  4. Withdraw your consent to using your personal information, where we rely on your consent as a legal basis to justify using your personal data.
  5. Consider any valid objection to the processing of your personal information (including the right to object to processing on grounds related to your particular situation where we are relying on our legitimate interests as a legal basis for processing).
  6. Request to update or delete personal data which we hold about you.
  7. Restrict the way that we process your personal data.
  8. Consider any valid request to transfer your personal data to a third party provider of services (data portability).

We will consider all requests. However, certain personal information may be exempt from those requests in certain circumstances, which include a need to keep processing information for our legitimate interests or to comply with a legal obligation. If such an exception applies, we will notify you when responding to your request. Please note that we may ask you to provide us with information necessary to confirm your identity before responding.

Policy Updates

We reserve the right to update the above policy at any time. If we decide to change our Privacy Policy, we will post the updates to this Privacy Policy here and on any other place we deem appropriate, so that you are aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it.