The Ultimate Christmas Gift Guide for Visually Impaired Children
Do you have a visually impaired child in the family and need some inspiration for an amazing and accessible gift they’ll love?
At Useful Vision, the North East’s leading charity supporting young people with sight loss, we’re here with our comprehensive guide to the very best Christmas present ideas for visually impaired children of all ages.
Fill your boots with fab stocking-stuffing ideas for under £10!
Products with interesting smells are also a great choice, such as scented pens or stickers that release an exciting burst of fragrance when scraped. For a sweet scratch-and-sniff surprise, try these tutti-frutti smiley stickers or enjoy the yummy smell of vanilla with these butterfly stickers in an array of vibrant colours. If your child loves stinky scents, these wriggly worms really smell like they’ve been rolling around in the mud!
Older children may prefer pampering gifts such as bath bombs, shower jelly, scented room sprays, or fruity lip balms in their stocking. Small items of clothing, such as snuggly socks or a cozy beanie, are a great option for visually impaired children of all ages.
And, of course, you could always include their favourite sweet treats!
Treat the whole gang with a gift everyone can enjoy…
The RNIB Shop has a huge selection of carefully curated items to meet the needs of visually impaired people of all ages and abilities. Grab adapted family classics such as the braille edition of the world’s favourite card game UNO, tactile connect 4, and an exclusive-to-RNIB edition of scrabble, which features large print, braille, and enhanced colours on every tile for increased accessibility.
Bop It is a fantastic quick-fire game, which can be played independently in ‘solo mode’ or with family and friends. The classic version features three simple commands – ‘twist it’, ‘pull it’ and ‘bop it’. The actions correlate with pulling or pressing different coloured tactile handles and buttons. Once a child is familiar with the physical layout of the game, they can jump in by following along with the verbal cues.
Construction toys can help visually impaired children to identify shapes using their hands, and problem-solve by figuring out which pieces fit together. Get the whole family involved for a brick-building extravaganza. Create the tallest tower with tactile blocks such as Duplo or try a fort building kit.
Finally, you could challenge the family to a sing off and belt out all your favourite hits with a karaoke machine.
Gifts for Music Lovers
Without music, their life would b flat! Don’t fret, we’ve got you covered with the perfect gift ideas for visually impaired children who dance to the beat of their own drum!
Children starting to explore making music will get hours of fun out of this giant keyboard playmat, featuring a touch-sensitive surface allowing them to play the piano at the press of a foot. You could also try a beginner’s instrument such as a ukulele.
If your child is ready to learn more about making sound, music lessons would be great gift option. Parents from Useful Vision’s exclusive Parent & Carer forum recommend multi-award winning Sweet Symphony and Little Beethovens Music School for accessible music lessons.
For older music fans, a good pair of noise-cancelling headphones is always a winner, or how about a spotify premium gift card so they can listen to unlimited, ad-free music from all their favourite artists?
Gifts for Teens
Teenagers are notoriously tricky to buy for! Get in their good books with gifts that are cool enough to impress, while still being functional and intuitive to use.
For techy teens, you can’t go wrong with a gift card for Apple or Google Play, depending on if they’re an iPhone or Android user. Both platforms offer hundreds of apps designed for visually impaired people, and the gift cards can also be used on products, accessories, music, movies, audiobooks, and more.
Lovers of lounging will the over the moon with a snuggly, wearable blanket such as The Oodie or Snuggy, available in tons of funky patterns. Adventurous foodies will be thrilled with a japanese snack box, stuffed with authentic treats.
This year, visually impaired influencers, such as Molly Burke and Emily Davidson, have been changing perceptions around beauty and fashion. Molly, who has retinitis pigmentosa, creates ‘Get Ready With Me’ YouTube videos, where she demonstrates how she does her hair and make-up as someone who is completely blind. Although the cosmetics industry still has miles to go in terms of accessibility, some brands are leading the charge by creating products that are easier for everyone to enjoy. Here are some suggestions for makeup-loving teens:
Molly names Too Faced as one of her favourite brands, with products that feature a tactile design and a range of scented palettes, creating a fun sensory experience. ‘Sweet Peach’ is filled with an array of corals, pinks, and bronze shades with a delicious peachy aroma. Or try the cocoa-scented ‘Better than Chocolate’ option, with warm shades and pops of glitter. Browse the full range of sweet-smelling eyeshadows here.
Maybelline’s Lifter Lip Gloss features embossed writing on the packaging as a tactile marker which makes it easier to identify the product. Rectangular packing prevents it from rolling away if knocked over and the transparent body means the lip gloss colour can be easier to distinguish compared to products which only have the shade name written in tiny letters.
Colour Pop’s ‘She’s a Rainbow’ and ‘Fade into Hue’ palettes are organised in a logical ROY-G-BIV pattern, the standard sequence of hues that make up a rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. The sensible colour story makes it easier to memorise the palette layout for people with low vision.
Function of Beauty shows how to create a trendy but accessible product, offering a highly customisable range of haircare. Each shampoo and conditioner is available in a different bright colour, a useful feature for those who can delineate by shade. Function of Beauty also allows you to add or omit scent, allowing for a tailored sensory experience. With a range of delicious fragrances and the option to control the level of fragrance from light to strong, your function of beauty order can be as individual as your teen.
Wrap it Up…
Now you’ve secured your perfect gift, make the experience more hands-on by using braille labels, tactile gift tags, or by creating braille christmas cards. You can even use embossed or textured wrapping paper to make gifts more tactile! Check out this video for some extra tips about wrapping prezzies for those with a visual impairment.
We hope you gained inspiration from our Ultimate Christmas Gift Idea Guide for Visually Impaired Children. If you have any suggestions, leave us a comment on our Facebook page. From all of us at Useful Vision, we wish you a wonderful Christmas and a happy New Year!