Looking for Fun Things that can be adapted for Kids with Special Needs?
It’s now July and I am sure parents feel the strain of, “Keeping their kid(s) entertained.” Our kids love to complain about being “bored.” Trying to find activities that the entire family will enjoy.
The summer season is an exciting time to spend with family, friends and have some fun. But, even with the weather on our side, summer can be a challenging time for parents of children with special needs. School lets out for the summer, and this can result in parents having a lot of time to fill with entertaining events.
Luckily, there are so many activities throughout the month of July. First, we have July 4th and the plethora of Independence celebrations. Special needs parents, we are in a different category.
We welcome opportunities to take our kids out but we do have fears about:
Flight or Fight
We have to strategically plan an outing. When planning an outing with our little ones that need extra care, let’s look at activities that provide outside entertainment. Those with sensory processing disorders may feel the need to escape if they are inside of a building or venue.
All activities listed are All Abilities friendly.
All American 4th of July Fireworks
Fireworks and music
Frisco Freedom Fest
Children’s fun expo, food fest, FC Dallas soccer match, fireworks and more
Please remember when bringing your children and or child to a firework show especially those with sensory processing disorder please take precautions and bring headphones to protect the child and/or children from the sound of fireworks.
There is still time to take in Fair Park Field Day. Fair Park Field Day at Leonhardt Lagoon aims to bring fun and joy to the park through “a free pop-up park experience as big as Texas.”
Attendees can take in the landscapes of the lagoon while enjoying lawn games, sports and free play activities. Little ones are welcome in the toddler area.
Field Days are free with free parking at Grand Avenue/Gate 5.
Events Happening in July
Sunday, July 14: Hawaiian Falls
6:00 PM – 8:30 PM
Hosted by the GIFT Ministry of Stonebriar Community Church
Those with special needs and their family/guests are invited for fun in the sun at Hawaiian Falls! All participants and minors must be accompanied by an adult.
Saturday, July 27: Surf and Swim Party
6:30pm – 8:30pm
440 W. Oats Road, Garland
Hosted by The Special Ones Network
Feel free to bring your dinner, if you would like. Open to special needs individuals and their family’s.
A Therapy Connection located in Richardson is currently offering three camps during July.
Chance to Dance: classes provide a creative, therapeutic, and artistic outlet for self- expression through the movement of dance and music, making the joy of dance accessible in a safe environment while encouraging everyone to showcase their strength and abilities.
Talk, Look, Listen: Campers will incorporate language based activities to promote communication and social skills through story time, songs, and outdoor activities.
Fine Motor Fun: Campers will focus on fine motor, hand strength, pencil grasp, shape, color, and letter recognition. This class is perfect for any kiddos heading into kindergarten or needing a quick mid-summer refresher for school writing skills
Monday’s and Tuesdays
July 8, 10, 15 and 17
Price $100 Per class.
Hands-On Art Camp for Children with Autism
Address: 1717 North Harwood Dallas, Texas 75201
Location: Dallas Museum of Art
Hours: June or July
Ages: 7-12 years old
The DMA offers an annual, week-long Summer Art Camp co-taught by an autism specialist, a music therapist, and a DMA educator. Hands-On Summer Art Camp for Children with Autism provides an experience for children on the autism spectrum that integrates sensory elements and fosters social integration among participants while focusing on works of art from the DMA Collection
Adventure Camp Arc of Dallas
Hours: 2-wk sessions, July-Aug, M-F, 10am-3pm
Ages: ages 5-21
Adventure Camp is a spring & summer day camp for children and teens with developmental disabilities, ages 5-21. Activities include crafts, games, entertainment, computer fun, swimming and field trips.
At Home Activities:
If you have a child with special needs, keeping their unique challenges in mind helps you sort through the seemingly endless list of fun, summer opportunities. Games for special needs children that include tactile and sensory activities can be not only calming and soothing, but also help with fine motor skills.
Finger-painting: Put on a few old shirts and don’t be afraid to get messy. Finger-painting is a fun way to keep children engaged and is great for strengthening the muscles in their hands and arms as well as improving fine motor skills.
Indoor camping: Unbearable Texas heat a problem? your child need not miss out on the fun of camping. Whether you use an actual tent or throw a big blanket over some chairs, creating a fun and cozy indoor camp will be an enjoyable experience for any child and or children with or without special needs. Be sure to bring in some favorite toys and snacks.
Color match buckets: Grab a few buckets and balls of varying colors, and have your child pick a ball to throw into the corresponding bucket. Invite siblings and friends to play for added fun and assign a particular color to each child. Whoever fills their bucket first wins the game. This can be a great opportunity to teach your child about the importance of good sportsmanship and build social skills.
Every child with special needs has their unique likes, dislikes, and fears. Making any necessary accommodations to any of these activities can help ensure a fun, stress free time for everyone involved.