Summer is finally here and with it comes amazing weather and plenty of reasons to be outside having fun. One of the biggest days to get out and enjoy the summer is Independence Day, the Fourth of July. Whether you’ll be out celebrating the holiday or just planning some outings or barbecues this summer, there are plenty of tips you should keep in mind to ensure a safe and fun season for the whole family. In this post we’ll discuss some of the ways to prepare for and enjoy the Fourth of July and other summer festivities with your child on the spectrum.
When preparing for the summer there’s quite a bit to consider. For one, school is out, which means time for a routine change that may feel disruptive to your child. One of the best ways to ensure your household is summer ready is to make your new summer schedule ahead of time.
Maintaining a structured daily and weekly schedule for your child on the spectrum can help ensure they are maintaining healthy nutritional habits and keeping up with therapy and other activities beneficial to their development and growth. Plan ahead of time by researching nearby summer and after school programming and enrolling sooner than later. Highly structured activities with professionals trained to support your child can make a world of difference and make the most of the down time during the summer.
When preparing for the Fourth of July and summer parties you know best what your child will and won’t enjoy. Fortunately, there’s plenty of ways to enjoy the season with the whole family. A few of our suggestions include:
- Enjoying fireworks from afar. The loud noises and big crowds can be a lot to handle. Instead of trying to get close- find out where you can enjoy the local fireworks show from a distance to reduce noise and the size of the crowd.
- Having a craft party– Whether it’s USA themed or just summer-inspired, nothing beats a little outdoor crafting with friends and family.
- Going to a museum– There are plenty of free museum days throughout the summer that are worth taking advantage of. Not only are they fun, they’re also informative and educational. Most museums will also host sensory-friendly days!
- Enjoying an outdoor cookout– Simple yet incredibly summer, a backyard cookout is a great way to be festive while enjoying a familiar and safe environment for your child.
The opportunities are endless, so remember, there’s no wrong way to enjoy the summer festivities.
How to Stay Safe
Being outdoors in the summer is a given, but it can be especially stressful when you have a child on the spectrum. To ensure your summer activities are safe, consider the following safety steps:
- Prepare– Not only will plenty of preparation and scheduling time help reduce behavioral issues in your child on the spectrum, it can also give you the opportunity to go over safety basics with your child.
- Talk boundaries– When enjoying a summer fest or Fourth of July BBQ, sometimes open spaces are involved. Prepare your child ahead of time by talking about boundaries to avoid any wandering. Make an action plan with friends or family to ensure your child is always being supervised when necessary.
- Opt for sensory-friendly and have a back-up plan– When possible, choose activities that are specifically meant to be sensory-friendly to ensure your child is in an environment that is comfortable for them. It can also help to have a back-up plan if things fall through.
- Communicate– Summer is a great time for family and friends. To ensure a safe environment communicate open and honestly with them about your child’s needs and behavioral tendencies so they know how best to support when necessary.
When you feel you’ve done enough preparation, get out there and enjoy the summer with your family. Safety, fun, and summer all go hand-in-hand. For more autism-related tips and news, be sure to keep up with us on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and feel free to reach out via our contact page to learn more about our services.