A memorable, accessible Easter egg hunt for your entire family—including your young person who is blind or low vision—can be in your near future. Picture your little one (white cane in tow) enthusiastically finding Easter eggs with their peers—imagine the joy, the victory, and the independence! That’s right, you can prepare an egg hunt where your child can locate Easter eggs using their hearing and sense of touch instead of (solely) visually searching for eggs.
But Easter is quickly approaching! Ready to get down to business and get your craft on? Or, no judgement here, ready to order premade beeping eggs? Either way, it’s game time.
Let’s look at the evolution of accessible Easter egg hunts—you can decide which will work best for your child (and your budget!) and get to work.
Making Beeping Eggs (Retro Style)
Father, David Hyche, shared the following instructions with APH FamilyConnect on creating beeping eggs:
There are several methods for constructing the beeping Easter Eggs and my way is simple but durable and dependable. I purchase the components from Radio Shack. The items I have been using are:
- a small steel toggle switch (275-635) or a cheaper small toggle switch if available
- a 3-24v piezo beeper (273-066)
- a 9v battery and 9v connector (270-325)
- electrical tape
- large plastic Easter eggs
Many stores have these eggs for sale in packages of six or twelve and I usually buy them after Easter at Hobby Lobby for about 99 cents for 6.
1) I construct the eggs by drilling one hole in the long end of the egg just large enough for the threaded end of the toggle switch to fit snugly through.
2) I then drill several holes around the egg with an appx 1/8 inch bit to allow the sound to escape.
3) I solder one lead from the 9v clip to one connector on the toggle and solder one lead from the beeper to the other toggle connector. The solder is needed on the toggle connections to keep that connection secure through rough handling.
4) The second beeper wire can be attached directly to the remaining 9v battery lead. This creates a single switch series circuit that allows the battery to be replaced by simply removing the 9v clip and re-taping the new 9v in place. The wires can be twisted together and secured with electrical tape.
5) I secure the toggle switch to the hole drilled in the long end of the egg using the nut and washers supplied with the switch. Tight but not so tight the egg cracks.
6) The piezo beeper must be secured to the 9v with electrical tape. Make sure that you attach the battery to the beeper with the long ends of the beeper running the length of the battery so the egg will close securely. You might want to put a small piece of tape on the outside of the egg holding the two halves together.
“Filling” Eggs with Beeping Tags
If we lost you at “solder”, have no fear. A more modern solution to accessible Easter eggs is filling plastic eggs with purchased Key Finders (Transmitter with Receivers). You or your child can press the transmitter and the receivers will beep. Your child can use those “sensory efficiency skills” and locate the eggs. You can trade each beeping tag for a sweet treat, toy, or certificate (ice cream family date)! Could Expanded Core Curriculum skills practice be more fun or tasty?
Utilizing Store Bought Beeping Eggs
While it’s a more expensive option, you can purchase store bought beeping eggs from several retailers. It doesn’t get any easier than that!
Tying Helium Balloons to Eggs
You can tie a helium balloon to each plastic or hard-boiled egg you hide. Your child can search for the balloons (at waist height). This is especially beneficial for children who are in a wheelchair or who have a difficult time bending down and grasping a small egg.
Don’t hesitate to think outside the box and consider what would work well for your child’s specific abilities, preferences, and vision. Perhaps you could fill plastic eggs with battery-powered lights and host a night-time egg hunt. Perhaps you could hide tactilely interesting eggs in a sandbox and have an unconventional egg hunt. Perhaps you could place eggs in containers or baskets and place the containers in your backyard; your child can locate the baskets with their cane.
Get creative—the options are endless!
General Egg Hunting Tips
Father, David Hyche, shares the following general tips for hosting an accessible Easter egg hunt:
To hold one of these events you will need a large flat grassy area with no holes, large rocks or fire ants. If you are from the northern US or a country that does not have fire ants, count your blessings.
I mark off an area appx. 50 meters square with stakes and crime scene tape as a safe boundary. Leave a space for easy entry and exit for the kids and helpers. I then have helpers turn on the eggs and place them on the grass around the area.
I use appx. 40 eggs at a time. As the kids find the eggs and pick them up the helpers turn them off and put them back in the child’s basket so that the noise is only coming from the eggs that are still in play. VERY IMPORTANT that partially sighted kids and sighted siblings wear blindfolds or they will find all of the eggs. During the event we make sure that all kids find eggs by placing more on the ground if needed.
Have fun, and a very Happy Easter to your family!