Enjoying Fireworks with Special Needs Kids
Tips for Enjoying Fireworks with Special Needs Kids
Bright and loud, fireworks can be overwhelming for some people with ASD. A way to dampen the sound – headphones, or earplugs for example, can make the experience more pleasurable.
[Source: The Autism Society of America]
Watch from a Distance: Try watching the fireworks from a distance so you can enjoy the stunning visual effects without the intense noise and crowds. Park nearby so you can take a break in the car, or have a quick get-away if needed.
[Source: Aviva Weiss, Fun and Function.com]
Bring along sunglasses and noise-blocking headphones: If watching a firework show or just hanging out in a neighborhood where residents will be setting off fireworks, noise-blocking headphones may be helpful to quiet any loud or unwanted sound. Bright lights from fireworks also have the potential to stir up sensory discomfort, so having sunglasses on hand or a hat can help to ease visual overstimulation.
[Source: Sara Peronto, FriendshipCircle.org]
Practice: Give your child a sense of what to expect. Watch other fireworks displays ahead of time on TV. If sound is an issue, keep the volume relatively high on the TV set. The idea is for everyone to understand what they will experience at the real event. Check online for a YouTube video to watch.
[Source: Carol Moore , Education.com]
Focus on the fun! Tell your child why you enjoy fireworks or a holiday barbecue with friends. Let him see that you’re excited to attend. This will help him get excited too. Describe the activities you know he’ll enjoy, whether it’s seeing a friend or the ice cream cone he’ll get as a treat.
[Source: Autism Speaks]
Set Expectations: Let your child know how long the parade, party or fireworks will last, so they feel more in control. It’s also important to provide them with a choice to opt-out if it becomes too much.
Create New Rituals:
Create new Fourth of July rituals with family and friends to celebrate Independence Day. Plan a backyard barbecue or picnic rather than going downtown to watch the fireworks. Watch a video or let your child create an indoor fireworks show with Grand Finale Light Show. With the push of a button, they can “set off” their LED fireworks complete with colorful lights and sounds.
[Image by bayasaa on Flickr]
Do you have any other suggestions for enjoying fireworks with your children, please share.
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