Facilitating a Game of Wii Bowling

by beagooddad on May 20, 2008

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We bought our Nintendo Wii the other day and happily fired up the Wii Sports game to play some Wii Bowling after creating all of our little Miis.

The kids LOVE Wii Bowling. Unfortunately, Pookie’s Mii constantly drops the ball or accidentally roles it backwards which sends Pookie into a fit of Giggles. Then I started to get frustrated and the only real option was to stop playing.

Which made me mad. I know he was trying to have fun but I just couldn’t figure out why he kept dropping the ball on purpose. He LOVES real bowling so I know he understands the concept. What was I missing?

BeAGoodMom suggested having him hold the remote upside down which seemed to make a lot of sense. But before I got a chance to try it, I read an article where a woman with autism explains how while learning to type she needed somebody to initially put their hand on hers. As she got better she needed less physical contact and eventually just needs somebody in the area to keep her focused.

I decided to give it a try with Pookie. Pookie and I started to bowl one day when BAGM and Geetle were spending a day together. The first frame, I put my hand over his and when he was supposed to let go of the button, I forced his finger off of the button to release the ball. He watched the ball roll down the lane. He jumped and flipped his hands and ran and dove onto the couch.

Apparently we had been having more of a issue than just a stimming problem.

The next frame I kept my hand on his and let him release the button on his own. A few frames later, I only needed to put my hand on his elbow. He even had a couple where he rolled it with me just standing near him.

We had a great time and are looking forward to our next chance to play. Towards the end, he realized that if you hit some of the other buttons, game menus pop onto the screen which made him laugh. I think next time we play, we will BAGM’s tip of holding the controller upside down so that he only can see the button that he is supposed to use to release the ball (it is on the back of the controller) and also put some kind of pressure on his hand/elbow/shoulder.

Pookie gets OT for preschool. Sometimes I forget why he gets stuff like that. He is capable of doing so many physical things that a lot of autistic kids have trouble with that I forget how difficult some things like using a motion sensor controller to play computerized bowling really are.

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