Let’s be honest, kids never want to be the same Halloween costume twice, which leaves parents on November 1 wondering what to do with them. Taunton resident Tyler Mosher has a solution and is ready to turn gently-used costumes into learning tools for his students at Puzzle Pieces, LLC in Quincy.

Mosher has been an occupational therapist for the past five years. He started in nursing homes working with the elderly, but when the pandemic hit, he was forced to rethink his career.

“It was a hard shift after the pandemic,” Mosher said. “I took that time to refocus my career and I shifted to pediatrics.” Since the summer of this year, he has dedicated his effort to help children grow, adapt, and learn.

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“The best part about my job is obviously the kids,” he said. “Every day I get to go to work and talk about the Avengers. I know more about Paw Patrol than any 29-year-old man should.”

But all this talk about superheroes and cartoons are tools that Mosher uses to help children develop important neurological skills, and he hopes to incorporate Halloween costumes into his lessons.

“The costumes are a fun way to work through sensory processing disorders,” said Mosher, which is a blanket term for how our body senses the world around us.

“A child may be bothered by cotton or wool, tags may bother them to the point they cry, and these can be signs of anxiety,” he said. “But if we put them in a Wonder Woman costume and ask them to defeat the army of LEGO monsters, and they spend a half-hour in cotton with no fuss, now that material doesn’t seem so bothersome.”

This allows Mosher and his colleagues to do a deeper analysis of what really bothers children when they have an aggressive or emotional response to everyday tasks like getting dressed.

“Their wool sweater makes them itchy, is that because they are sensory processing, or is it rooted in something deeper like anxiety?” proposed Mosher.

Halloween costumes are a way to get the children excited. Playtime becomes a teaching moment, like how when fidget spinners were the hottest toy a few years ago, they were used in Mosher’s office to regulate and focus.

The fad of fidget spinners has come and gone, but Halloween costumes will always be exciting for children. Whether it’s Wonder Woman, Paw Patrol, or a firefighter, the costumes sitting in your basement could go to good use in the Puzzle Pieces classrooms.

If you are interested in donating your Halloween costumes, visit the Puzzle Pieces website and send your costumes to 1266 Furnace Brook Parkway, Quincy, MA 02169.

Let’s help make learning fun.

LOOK: How Halloween has changed in the past 100 years

Stacker compiled a list of ways that Halloween has changed over the last 100 years, from how we celebrate it on the day to the costumes we wear trick-or-treating. We’ve included events, inventions, and trends that changed the ways that Halloween was celebrated over time. Many of these traditions were phased out over time. But just like fake blood in a carpet, every bit of Halloween’s history left an impression we can see traces of today.

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