Fabulous Find Friday: Joy Jars

Today’s Fabulous Find is Joy Jars. Joy Jars were started by a young girl named Jessie while she was fighting her own battle with cancer. The jars are created to bring joy and hope to kids in the hospital. Each jar is filled with an assortment of toys and activities for each age group. We used these in my internship and the kids loved unpacking their jars. You’d be surprised how many things they fit into each jar!

 

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Fabulous Find Friday: Chewelry

Today’s Fabulous Find is Chewelry! Chewelry is exactly what it sounds like, jewelry that you can chew. Many kiddos in the hospital have sensory issues, especially if they have been chronically hospitalized. There are also many developmental delays associated with chronic hospitalization but it’s often hard to find a developmentally appropriate toy when the child is typical physically. Chewelry is designed for kids and adults which means it’s helpful regardless of the person’s age. It’s also designed to be stylish so it’s not as obvious that it’s meant to be chewed. But nonetheless, it can be a soothing chew when needed.

ARK's Pizza Textured Chew Necklace ARK's Basketball Chew Necklace ARK's Chewmoji™ Necklace

Fabulous Find Fridays: When Someone Very Special Dies

Last month I share with you a great journal for children who are coping with a loved one’s serious illness. Sometimes those loved ones die which means the child needs a different kind of support. One of my favorite bereavement resources for school age children is When Someone Very Special Dies by Marge Heegaard. This book is also a journal that encourages children to reflect on their experience following a death. Through language and spaces to draw, children are accompanied in their grief journey.

Fabulous Find Friday: Love Your Melon

When you hear Love Your Melon, the first thing to come to your mind is probably winter hats. But Love Your Melon is more than that. Not only do 50% of their profits go to nonprofit partners who are actively fighting pediatric cancer, but Love Your Melon also has Campus Crews. These crews are on the ground raising money and also giving back to children with cancer. During my internship, Love Your Melon Campus Crews organized Halloween festivities for both of the pediatric hospitals that were in their city. The kids in the hospital loved having the college students give out treats to all the rooms while in costume.

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Fabulous Find Fridays: When Someone Has a Very Serious Illness

It’s hard to find books for kids about illness, even harder to find age appropriate journals. When Someone Has a Very Serious Illness by Marge Heegard is a great journal for school age kids to use when they are processing and working on coping with a loved one’s diagnosis. It gives enough direction that you don’t need to be a therapist or a Child Life Specialist to guide a child in their journey through this book, but the book can be a great partner for Child Life Specialists during their support sessions for children. The books pages are filled with open spaces where a child is encouraged to express their feelings and thoughts about a special someone’s serious illness.

 

Fabulous Find Friday: Child Life Secrets Exam Study Guide

Earlier this week I took the Certification Exam and this book was by far the most helpful resource that I used to study. What’s great about this study guide is that it covers a wide variety of material ranging from ethics and professional practice to play and child development. The other thing that’s nice about this book is that not only is there a practice test with answers, but there are paragraph length explanations for why each answer is right/wrong. After reading the books on the Association’s assigned list, this is a great study guide to use in the month before you take the exam. I highly recommend it!

Fabulous Find Friday: Regional Child Life Groups

Going to the national conference is a great way for professionals and students alike to network and learn new things about the growing field of Child Life. But sometimes it’s not possible to attend due to costs or scheduling conflicts. Luckily, there are a variety of regional Child Life Groups around the United States that offer conferences, student seminars and PDUs. These resources are typically cheaper than the national conference and closer to where you live so you don’t have to travel as far or take as much time off of work.

Click here, Regional Child Life Groups, to find a group near you.

Fabulous Find Friday: Fubbles No-Spill Tumbler

Today’s Fabulous Find is probably one that many of you know but I want to share with you all nonetheless; Fubbles No-Spill Tumbler! These tumblers are the best for bubbles because while it is easy for children to use the bubble wand, it is also hard for the bubble goo to spill out of the tumbler while the child is holding it. By using a container that doesn’t’ spill, it empowers the children and allows them control over their environment (while also not making a mess). And we all know how effective bubbles are for helping kids cope in the hospital! 😉

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Fabulous Find Friday: Flipeez Hats

If you haven’t seen these hats, then you are missing out. The Flipeez hats are children’s hats that are monsters and also popular characters, like Paw Patrol and Elsa. But the best part is that they move. The ears on the Paw Patrol puppies move and Olaf’s arms open wide for warm hugs.

I know that you’re probably wondering why I’m sharing children’s apparel instead of tools and Child Life finds but these hats could actually make an awesome Child Life find. The character hats, like Paw Patrol and Frozen, fit adults! As a ski instructor in the 3-6 year old program, I love using these hats as distraction to help the kids cope with the new environment and stress and uncertainty of doing a sport they haven’t done before. When you’re talking to a child and the ears on your hat suddenly move, they pause and kinda watch in shock. As you continue to wiggle your ears, the kids become more engaged and eventually demonstrate their comfort level by asking to try the hat themselves.

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Fabulous Find Friday: Hopper the Cancer Crusher

Hopper the Cancer Crusher is another friend for our oncology patients. Hopper is a froggy friend with a mediport like many patients have. He comes in hospital pajamas and wears a bandanna. Similar to Chemo Duck, Hopper is another great tool for preparation for procedures and general support during a patient’s hospital stay. Visit his website to learn more; Hopper the Cancer Crusher

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