Navigating Silverwood With A Child With Sensory Processing 

July 2, 2021.Katie Campbell.7 Likes.25 Comments

When planning our first trip for my twins to Silverwood last summer, I was a little apprehensive about how my 5-year-old would navigate the hustle and bustle of a theme park, knowing that our decisions have been shaped for her entire life by Sensory Processing Disorder. (If you aren’t familiar with SPD, Sensory processing disorder is a condition in which the brain has trouble receiving and responding to information that comes in through the senses.)

As we jumped feet first into Silverwood, I learned how to take my tools, paired with Silverwood’s unique park, to experience a magical day without meltdowns and tears!! Trips to Silverwood quickly became a new family favorite adventure! 

Here are a few tips that worked for us:

1. BE PREPARE AND MAKE A PLAN 

 Being prepared is key, and the great thing about Silverwood is they make it so easy for families to do just that! In the days leading up to your trip, head to their website to find a detailed list of all the rides. This list includes the intensity level of each ride with imagesSensory kiddos need to know what will happen ahead of time, so these images and descriptions on the website are a great way to let sensory kiddos know what to expect before arrival! Together, we go over all the rides, look at the map, and plan for our trip, so there are no surprises. 

Be prepared by bringing in a small bag filled with noise-canceling headphones, snacks, a change of clothes, and any comfort item your child loves. It is so easy to become overstimulated in any situation, especially a theme park. Bringing headphones along is a helpful way for everyone to enjoy the day while supporting your sensory kiddo’s needs. 

2. TAKE A SENSORY BREAK AND VISIT THE QUIET GARDENS

If things get too overwhelming and you need a break, Silverwood has a beautiful little escape that provides a calm environment without having to leave the park. The Quiet Gardens has some benches among gorgeous trees and flowers. This location is positioned perfectly near the kids’ rides in Critter Camp. After enjoying a peaceful rest in the garden, you can hop back into line at the Tiny Toot Rollercoaster around the corner.

3. ENJOY THE TRAIN RIDE

When your sensory kiddo needs to escape the summer heat or noise, we love to hop over to the Train Ride, which runs every hour, on the hour. The Train Ride gives a chance to sit and enjoy a relaxing and entertaining ride as you take in the sights of Silverwood’s backcountry. It’s fun for the whole family! Make sure to sit near the back of the train for a quieter experience. The train does have a skit at the Silver mine about half way through the ride that can be loud and sprays water for guests sitting in the uncovered portion of the train.

4. CELEBRATE THE DAY AT THE ICE CREAMERY! 

A stop at the Ice Creamery is sure to create smiles and a boost of energy when everyone needs a recharge. Their famous ‘one scoop’ ice cream won’t break the bank, and my girls’ eyes light up when they see how large ‘one scoop’ is. Once you have your delicious ice cream, we love to find a quiet, shady spot, and Silverwood has plenty of beautiful open spaces to choose from where you can sit and enjoy your cold summer treat! We usually plan our ice cream stop towards the end of our adventure as a way to celebrate our magical day! 

There you have it! Those are my top 4 tips of visiting the park this summer and what worked best for us. If you have some tips for other parent’s navigating the park with children with sensory processing, comment some suggestions below.

Meet The Conductor

My name is Katie Campbell, married to my husband Branden, and together we are raising our 3 daughters ( 6 years old twins + 16 month old) in the Spokane Valley where my husband and I were born and raised. I am often found with an Americano in one hand and a camera in the other. I am a photographer, writer/blogger, and passionate about sharing holistic health tips. When I am not busy chasing my girls, I am chasing sunsets and adventure.

Don’t Forget To Enter To Win 2 Tickets To The Park This Summer!

Categories: Kids

Comments (25)

  • Ulises Castro . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    Thank you for the tips. Excited to go again this year!!!

  • Kimberly Mckoon . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    Thanks you giving our kids a great summer.

  • Kristy . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    This is amazing, as a parent of a now adult child with multiple disAbilities, including SPD. We always made sure to find a few quiet places to sit and chill, have a snack and drink. I always kept a small sheet with us to put in the ground in a grassy area.

  • Kalia . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    This is very helpful!! My cousin that usually goes with us stopped because of sensory issues

  • Hannah Jongeward . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    I have a child with sensory seeking and this is such a helpful post! He gets overstimulated and these are some great tools!

  • Kenzie Millspaugh(morris) . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    Thank you for these amazing tips! My 3 year old gets overstimulated very easily. Last time time we went he was just 18 months so our next visit hopefully this month will be a different ball game!

  • April Brayboy . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    I would love to bring thr grandbabies and spend the day together ❤ thank you for the opportunity to win

  • Cassie W . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    Great tips!

  • Janelle . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    Great Advice, thanks!!

  • Amanda . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    Thank you for the great tips. They will be very helpful with two littles that have sensory concerns.

  • Hannah morse . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    Love these simple yet great ideas!!!

  • Lena M Hansen . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    i also have some sensory issues. i am very sensitive to loud noises and i sometimes get a headache.

  • Angie . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    The theater pizzeria was a great place to take a break for our SPD kids when they got overstimulated. The train was too much though, as the actors can be quite loud and difficult for those with auditory sensitivities to manage. If you do ride the train try to sit away from the speakers.

  • Trista . July 2, 2021 . Reply

    Thanks 😊

  • Taija . July 4, 2021 . Reply

    Great article!! I feel this is helpful for all kids!

  • Leslie . July 4, 2021 . Reply

    We adults (aka: supervisors) split up alot of the time, so none of the kids have to do anything they don’t feel safe doing. Giving them choices is super important!

  • Katey . July 5, 2021 . Reply

    Love the idea to prep kids ahead of time. Showing pictures from the website or Facebook are a great way to do this!

  • Megan Cykon . July 5, 2021 . Reply

    Thank you for the great tips. I didn’t know about the garden.

  • Alex S . July 5, 2021 . Reply

    My wife and I love Silverwood! This is great info for anyone with SPD or family members of someone with it. Thanks!

  • Shylo . July 6, 2021 . Reply

    Thank you so much for this!! We are headed to silverwood tomorrow with a 4 year old with SPD. It will be our second time and these tips will help make sure this year is better than last year!!

  • Cassie Craigo . July 6, 2021 . Reply

    Thank you for all the great articles on how to have the best experience at Silverwood!!❤️

  • Rachael . July 6, 2021 . Reply

    Great way to protract parenting on vacation

  • Alexciamarir . July 7, 2021 . Reply

    Great tips!!!

  • L B . July 8, 2021 . Reply

    Thank you for the tips!!!

  • Laura ODell . July 8, 2021 . Reply

    We love to cool off and relax for a bit on the train ride! Best insider tip for sure.

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