6 Tips and How-To Video on Switch Adapting Battery Toys

6  Tips and How-To Video on Switch Adapting Battery Toys

Wanting to get started adapting your own battery operated toys?

Here are some tips and a great how-to video we found on YouTube.

Big thanks to Rhonda Etter, at Assistive Technology for Kansans, for creating and posting this very helpful clip.


ATK how to adapt toys video from Assistive technology for Kansans


1. Choose toys with: a simple on off switch – not motion sensing toys.

2. Use C, D, AA/AAA batteries – not the flat disc batteries you see in watches or hearing aids.  Check out our Adapting Toys and Accessing Play page for different battery adaptors 

3. Get a Hoola-Hoop to corral moving, battery operated toys and keep them in one area. A dry bath tub also works – with emphasis on dry.

4. Unless you’re going wireless, pick toys that don’t move too fast to avoid cables getting tangled or broken.

5. Use good quality batteries like the ones you use with a camera. The current is flowing farther in your adapted toy -- through the switch adaptor, the switch or wireless interface and back. This extra mileage for the current can cause toys with cheaper batteries to perform sluggishly and drain faster.


adapted toy dinosaur with switch cable taped to bottom front bridges canada accessible toy


6. Make a little loop and tape the adaptor wire to the toy. This may save your battery device adaptor wire from getting yanked out of the interrupter if the cable gets pulled on. Consider an extension cable, too.

7. Don't forget about a SLAT!  A Switch Latch and Timer latches the on function until you hit the switch again to release, or for a set period of time.  This can make a big difference for some of our users.  Check out our Adapting Toys and Accessing Play page for details.


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  • Bogdan Pospielovsky
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