25 Elf on the Shelf Ideas for Autism | Disabled | Wheelchair | Hospital | Service Dog

Wheelchair and Hospital Elf Ideas

I’ll admit, when Elf first came out, I loved him. Then I hated him. Well, not him, but I hated how competitive it was on social media. Seemed like every mom was trying to outdo all her friends with crazy Elf ideas. Now we’re back to loving our Elf on the Shelf again.

Once I started digging into this and looking for Elf ideas with disabilities, I found that you can really get carried away. You can get a wheelchair for your elf, create Elf in the hospital settings…even get him a service dog!

disabled elf on the shelf

I kind of wish I had done this a few years ago. And, over the years, we’ve come up with some really last minute Elf on the Shelf ideas, and some fun ones that represent our family.

*Please note, I found most of these pictures on Pinterest and they had nothing attached to them. If they are your photos, please email me and I will happily link back to your original post.

Autism Elf on the Shelf

Let’s start with an Elf on the Shelf who has autism. No big deal, right? 2% of the population has it, so why not your Elf?

Here is an Elf who likes to line up things.

elf shelf autism

He lines up train cars too. I mean, who doesn’t? And these are both pretty easy to do and you likely already have the stuff at home.

elf shelf autism lining up things

How about a weighted blanket? You know what–go to Dollar Tree and get an oven pad or holder. And voila! Instant weighted blanket.

How about a swing for vestibular input? Is your Elf a sensory seeker?

vestibular sensory seeker elf

ILS Learning Corner has a whole sensory series for your Elf. Tons of great ideas!

elf-shelf-sensory-tactile

Elf on the Shelf Neurology Ideas

How about an Elf who has epilepsy, seizures or other neurological issues?

Here is an Elf getting an EEG.

elf getting eeg

And here is an Elf getting an MRI.

I’m trying to think of what I could use at home to mimic an MRI. A tissue box maybe?

Elf on the Shelf Wheelchair

Does your Elf use a wheelchair? There is a blog called Have Wheelchair, will travel and they have a lot of cool wheelchair ideas.

elf shelf wheelchair

Elf on the Shelf using Crutches.

You can buy wheelchairs for dolls, so that would work. I also saw makeshift ones made out of Legos, using CDs for wheels, all kinds of creative things. I also have seen crutches and walkers for dolls too.

elf shelf crutches

Elf on the Shelf Service Dogs

Does you Elf need a service dog?

You can get one!

elf service dog

Elf on the Shelf with T1, Type 1 Diabetes

Hey, it happens! Make your child feel at home if your Elf has to do testing too.

elf shelf t1 type 1 diabetes

Elf on the Shelf Hospital Ideas

Maybe your child is at the doctor or hospital a lot. Which is not funny on any day, but certainly not at the holidays. Let them know that they are not alone. Sometimes Elf has to go to the hospital too.

elf hospital

Sometimes he doesn’t always behave in the hospital.

elf insulin

And sometimes Elf gets the flu. Bet he wishes that he got a flu shot! Click image if you want to know more about the photographer.

elf shelf with flu

I hope this helps you plan some Elf on the Shelf ideas for your child with autism, special needs or other disabilities.

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  • Fine Motor Skills-Games, crafts and coloring activities are a great way to use and practice a child’s fine motor skills.
  • Speech and Language– Many parents seek out a language-rich environment for their child. Any activity can be an opportunity to use and repeat new words and language, mimicking sounds, new vocalizations and articulations.
  • Executive Functioning Skills– Depending on the game or activity, it can be an opportunity to practice executive functions such as working memory, sequencing, following directions, task initiation and more.
  • Handwriting and Fluency- This piggybacks onto the language skills a child needs, but with worksheets, coloring pages and games, they can be a low-risk opportunity to practice handwriting and fluency.
  • Practicing Previously Acquired Skills-Applying already acquired skills across all environments, bring the classroom teaching into the real world.
  • Sensory-Textures, sounds, taste, vestibular, interoception, anything!
  • Social Awareness-Practice traditional social skills in a safe environment, such as: joint attention, taking turns, reciprocating conversation, waiting politely, and more.
  • Gross Motor-If you’re in a new place, practice walking across uneven surfaces, new surfaces, inclines & declines, stairs, or increasing endurance.

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