Creative Art Adaptations
By: Carmen Willings
Updated April 7, 2020
There are relatively easy adaptations to the creative art activities to make them accessible to students who are blind or visually impaired. While younger students typically participate in creative art within the classroom, most school age students take advantage of this time for an inclusive opportunity with typically developing peers. Older students and adults may participate in community art classes or for leisure.
Whether art activities take place in your classroom, in a dedicated art room, or at home, the creative art area is a place where students can explore a variety of interesting materials. If you have creative art activities within your room, incorporate materials to make the activities more tactual. It provides individuals with a means of self expression and originality. Individuals can explore a variety of materials, textures and colors, and develop fine motor skills. You can make this time more meaningful to individuals who have low vision or blindness by adding scents and textures and using a variety of dimensional materials.
In class, provide the students with verbal directions about all parts of the activity. When the student hears other students receive directed descriptions of the project, they will not only gain the advantage of hearing the communication for her own reinforcement, but the student will also realize that other students also need guided directions.
Unless the student with a visual impairment has had previous art experience, they may not know where to begin with a creative project until they are presented with an example. Be aware that an example likely will tempt them to reproduce it to some degree rather than produce something that is truly original – and thereby limits their own imagination. Remember that art is often an abstract representation of visual impressions (Why does cotton represent snow?) Help the student to understand the association. When possible, provide real objects that the craft represents. If time and encouragement do not give them the motivation they need, an example can be used. If you are assembling a “craft” that is supposed to have a specific end result, introduce the student to a model of the finished craft first. Guide the student’s hands and indicate landmarks and associations.
Adaptations for Students with Low Vision
For individuals with low vision,
Adaptations for Students with Minimal or No Usable Vision
For students with minimal vision,
Art to Develop Cognitive Skills
The creative art area is another station that lends itself well to teaching concepts.
Art to Develop Fine Motor Skills
Participation in art activities is an excellent way to develop fine motor skills. Possible activities include:
Creative Art Adaptations
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