When Tom was younger, it was difficult for me to know how he was feelings.
He was nonverbal until he was 5years old and even when he started to speak he struggled to find the words to tell me how he was feelings. It was hard to interpret how he was feelings from his facial expressions as he was often expressionless, rarely smiling or frowning.
Not being able to interpret how Tom was feelings made me feel terrible and made him angry and frustrated leading to frequent outbursts and meltdowns.
This experience showed me that Tom needed a simple nonverbal way to understand and communicate his feelings.
Like many autistic individuals Tom has strong visual skills. He finds it easier to understand pictures rather than words. By showing him faces displaying different emotions and pairing them with the words describing these emotions, Tom leant how to identify his emotions and was able to use the pictures to show us how he was feeling.
Being able to quickly and easily communicate his feelings led to a reduction in his anger and frustration as he felt understood and supported.
We created this visual feelings thermometer with 6 simple colour-graded ‘feelings’ faces to help your child comfortably and confidently share and discuss their feelings, worries and emotions.
With this range, it’s quick and easy to make personalised visual timelines, reminders, checklists and prompts which can be used anywhere in the home, at school, in care settings or when out and about.
TomTag visual supports can provide structure and guidance to help children and young people make sense of, remember, and master the steps involved in learning key skills to manage their daily lives.
TomTag is easy to clean and keep hygienic. TomTag’s plastic button holders and blank buttons can be washed in warm water and a little hand soap should they become dirty and dried with a soft cloth. The stickers are highly water resistant. Simply wipe over with a wet cloth or anti-bacterial wipe and dry with a soft cloth.
TomTag uses symbols to show a series of separate tasks or steps involved in a task that are part of a routine, sequence of events in a timeline or they can be used as a list to teach a new skill by breaking down a single activity into smaller steps.
Many children with autism and other additional needs have strong visual skills. They are more likely to remember and understand what they have seen rather than what they hear. Using a visual support like TomTag to present information visually and in a step-by-step manner allows visual thinkers and learners to take in information at their own pace. Visuals can act as a reminder when children forget what’s been said or become distracted. TomTag helps to bring their attention back to the task or current situation.
“Finally I’ve got a ‘emotion-traffic light’. This is great in many ways I can show how I feel if I’m happy or OK or Sad and up to a really deep red angry. But I could use it as a pain scale or a scale of how much energy I have or about my inner tension, how strong a certain emotion is and as well as how bad a flashback is.”
WARNING: Please note – TomTag is not a toy. Not suitable for children under 36 months due to small parts.
red, blue, green, orange, yellow, purple, grey