How to Have a Family Fun Night When You Have a Sensory Sensitive Kid

Thank you Warner Bros Consumer Products for sponsoring this post. Grab the family, turn down the lights, and activate the Scooby-Doo! Mystery Inc. Theater skill on your Amazon Alexa enabled device by saying “Alexa, open Scooby-Doo” and away you go! Gather ‘Round. Get Solving.

Bowling. Laser Tag. The Movies. Festivals.

If you ask any typical family what they like to do for their Family Fun Night, these are probably at the top of the list.

They’re all great family activities.

Unless you’re a family like ours.

Those activities are a one-way ticket to a sensory meltdown for my eldest kiddo. The mere thought of heading to a loud bowling alley or a crowded festival gives my son anxiety.

It’s too loud, and too busy, and too crowded, and too bright.

There are too many choices and too many decisions and too many things that can go wrong.

So out of necessity, my family is on a constant quest to find family fun activities that don’t require us to leave our home.

We need the perfect Family Fun Night In because home is where we can control the sound and the smells and the brightness.

Home is where my son can step away if he needs some down time to self-sooth.

Home is where we all feel more comfortable.

And to add to our challenge of finding family fun activities at home, I have a 4, 10 and 12 year old. There’s not a whole lot that will entertain and interest all three of them at the same time.

We’ve done movie night and game night…but my kids were itching for something new and different. And so was I.

Cue Amazon’s Alexa and Scooby-Doo.

“Alexa, open Scooby-Doo, we’re ready for a mystery.”

How to Actually Enjoy Family Night When You Have a Sensory Child

My family just got to try out the  Scooby-Doo! Mystery Inc. Theater Skill for Amazon Alexa, the newest interactive storytelling hour. And we fell madly in love with it.

Over dinner, we gathered around our Amazon Echo Dot for an old school storytelling hour, channeling the days when families used to gather around the radio to hear about their favorite characters.

The Scooby-Doo! Mystery Inc. Theater is the modern version of the “golden age” of radio.

There were familiar characters and celebrity voices with a real narrator. There were sound effects. And it was enough to engage all of us and sweep us into the wonderful world of Scooby-Doo and Shaggy as they solved yet another mystery.

We couldn’t help but be drawn to it. And with no screens and therefore no images, it left a lot up to our imaginations.

But unlike the golden days of just passively listening to radio stories, Amazon’s Alexa took our story hour to the next level.

We got to interact with Alexa and choose the story’s direction by making decisions for Scooby and the gang along their journey.

We decided how the mystery would unfold.

The narrator asked us questions all throughout the mystery: “Should Velma confront the ticket taker or go get Scooby and the gang involved?”

My four year old got to decide. And she was beyond thrilled to tell Alexa—and Velma—exactly what to do.

My daughter decided that Velma clearly needed to go get the gang. She needed back up. This ticket taker sounded a little sketchy.

When it was my son’s turn, we followed the story from the point of view of Shaggy and my son got to decide what Shaggy should do to solve the mystery. Go into the dark room alone or go get the gang?


Like Shaggy would ever go into a dark room on his own… No way, my son decided, Shaggy had to go get the gang too.

It’s amazing how well my three kids came together and bonded over Scooby-Doo. Maybe it was the delicious Scooby Snacks we nibbled on for dessert or maybe it was the fun masks they got to color and cut out. (We got our Scooby Snacks on Amazon  and printed the masks from here. )

How to Actually Enjoy Family Night When You Have a Sensory Child

Either way, it left my kids begging for another turn to tell the characters what to do in the story.  

All of this Scooby Doo fun inspired us to take our Family Fun Night In one step further and build our very own Mystery Machine with the help of some simple stop animation. While the two younger kids set up the pieces, my eldest son directed and shot the video.

Want your very own Mystery Machine to build? Or Scooby themed paper plates and blankets to make your Family Fun Night In even more fun? Check out Amazon’s Scooby-Doo product page.

And when my four year old needed a new activity, she got to color free Scooby-Doo printables while the boys finished up their animation project. (Get your kiddos their free printables and games to download at the Scooby-Doo website.)

How to Actually Enjoy Family Night When You Have a Sensory Child

If your family is searching for a new Family Fun Night In and wants a turn to tell Scooby and the gang what to do in their latest caper, visit the Amazon Alexa Skill store and enable the Scooby-Doo! Mystery Inc. Theater Skill.

Family Fun Nights In have never been more imaginative or more fun with Amazon Alexa’s Scooby-Doo Mystery Theater Skill.

This Scooby-Doo inspired evening will definitely be a staple in our house whenever we need something fun and silly to do together.  

We just need to let Alexa know when we’re ready: “Alexa, open Scooby-Doo because we want to solve a mystery”…and we’ll bring the Scooby Snacks.”

How to Actually Enjoy Family Night When You Have a Sensory Child


I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER  and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.


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