Keeping someone with dementia active and meaningfully engaged can be at times difficult for carers. We’ve compiled a list of 7 activities that you can try out through the course of a week, they are all easy to access and best of all completely free.
Asking someone with dementia help you fold the laundry is a great way to keep them occupied, give them an activity they can feel successful at.
No matter how well or poorly the towels are folded, the aim is to make someone feel good about the activity and that they are making a contribution to household tasks.
Create a memory box
A memory box can help someone with dementia feel connected to their past career and previous hobbies. See our guide to creating a memory box insert link here
Find our buy a length of medium-thickness rope. Loosely tie a few simple knots and ask someone with dementia to help you untie them.
Thread pasta onto a piece of string
Get some dry pasta with large holes, a large safety pin and some string. Make a “needle” by threading and tying off the the string through the safety pin and tie off the end with a big not. Using their “needle” and thread the person with dementia will be able to string pieces of pasta along the length of the string.
5. Create a box of fun fabrics
This is fun for everyone, but especially for someone who used to enjoy sewing or fabric crafts. Get a box and put dozens of pieces of assorted fabrics inside. Try to get different colours and a variety of textures like lace, felt, silk, velvet, wool, cotton, etc. Much enjoyment can come from enjoy touching, folding, and sorting these fabrics.
Make a DIY picture puzzle
Print a copy of a favourite family photo that is particularly special to the person with dementia. You could also print out a photo or image they like, like a car, colorful fruit, etc.
Laminate the photo and cut it into four (or more) puzzle-piece shaped pieces and voila, you have a puzzle.
Cut pictures from old magazines or calendars
We all have pile of magazines, catalogues, brochures and newspapers in our homes. Simply collect any of these into a small pile and ask the person with dementia to cut out anything that they like the look of.