With the 4th of July quickly approaching, it’s a great time to start thinking about some activities to do with your pals with visual impairments! It can seem overwhelming to think of creative ways to include someone with vision loss in 4th of July festivities, but it doesn’t have to be. In fact, one of these activities could easily become your newest family tradition! NewView’s Orientation and Mobility Specialist and Certified Teacher of the Blind, Andrea Hamen, recommended some super fun holiday-themed crafts that include a variety of sensory experiences.
1. Patriotic Paper Tube Rockets
Start saving empty toilet paper rolls now! Andrea loves this project. She said, “This craft is a hands-on activity and can be used to help explain what firecrackers look and feel like.” It is also pretty simple, all it requires is one cardboard roll per child, red, white, and blue construction paper, glue, and (if you want) glitter! You can also do your own take and find other tactile shapes or decorations to glue on. It’s a craft you can make all your own. Click here for the full instructions!
2. Firework Salt Painting
This craft not only creates beautiful results, but it can also be great for anyone with low vision who uses contrast as a visual aid! For those who are unable to use contrast to their advantage, it also provides a unique texture experience once it is dried. This might be our favorite one!
For this craft, all you need is paper (for high contrast, use black!), salt, white glue, watercolors, and a cookie sheet! Check out the full tutorial here, on busymommymedia.com/firework-salt-painting.
3. 4th of July Mini Fruit Pizzas
Any food-related activity is typically a winner in our experience. Food activities always have a reward at the end, and it helps encourage a sense of confidence when it comes to food prep. These can easily be made patriotic by topping them with berries, but you can also use any other toppings you want!
The littles can assist with putting frosting and fruit on cookies, and these cookies are delicious, so make as many as you want! They are the perfect dessert to bring to any cookout or family gathering this 4th of July.
4. Learn about fireworks
Fireworks can be jarring for anyone, but loud noises are particularly shocking for someone who can’t see them coming. If you want to help prepare someone with a visual impairment for what to expect from fireworks, Andrea says poppers and rain sticks are great tools to help explain the sound of fireworks.
Remember, everyone is different! If the loud noises aren’t startling and your kiddo is happy to hang out at a firework show, ask them if they’d like for you to describe what’s going on. Those with light perception also might enjoy the experience. If you’re not sure, just ask what they are comfortable with!