3 DIY LED Life Hacks For Parents Of Children With Visual Impairments

Did you know October 7th is National LED Light Day? To celebrate, today’s blog highlights 3 creative projects that use LED lights to help kids with visual impairments have more independence – and fun!

Because LEDs emit very little heat, they can safely be incorporated into everyday objects. If a child has low vision or can see light better than objects, adding LEDs to toys and functional items can be a simple yet useful enhancement. These ideas may lead you down countless creatives avenues – and we’d LOVE to hear about them in the comments – but here are three to get you started:

1. Light up your child’s stuffed animal

Child with toy bear

With this simple LED addition, the next time that favorite teddy bear falls out of bed or out of arm’s reach, it will be easier to locate independently. 

Items needed: 

  • Fabric scissors 
  • Needle and thread
  • Battery operated LED


  • Cut a small opening near the top of the stuffed animal. 
  • Please the light directly under the cloth, trying to avoid the stuffing so that the light is able to shine through as brightly as possible. 
  • Stitch up the stuffed animal.
  • Repeat on the opposite side the of the toy for increased visibility.
  • Depending on the strength of the battery, you may need to repeat this mini procedure to replace the light(s) overtime.
  • If sewing isn’t your strong suit, you can also purchase an LED teddy bear on Amazon and other retail sites.

2. LEDs in motion – choo-choo!

Toy train

If your child enjoys playing with toy trains and tracks, try adding an LED to the lead train to help enhance the experience.

Items needed: 

  • Heavy-duty double-sided tape or a hot glue gun
  • Battery operated LED (small enough to fit the toy train of choice)
  • Toy train


  • Experiment with the placement of the light before attaching. You may find that adding the light to the top of the train, or inside of the train if the LED is small enough, creates the best effect.

3. Illuminate mealtime

Use a light strip to outline your child’s placemat. This can help kids acclimate to the parameters of their place setting more easily. 

Items needed:

  • Battery operated LED strip (you can purchase here from Amazon or at many other retailers)
  • Heavy-duty double-sided tape or a hot glue gun
  • Placemat


  • After attaching the light strip to the placemat, be sure to set the battery pack in front of the placemat and  away from the child’s seat to leave a clear area for eating. 

We hope some of these ideas come in handy to you or someone you know. If you have other DIY Assistive Technology projects that you’ve found useful, please share your ideas in the comments below.

Fun fact: Why National LED Light Day?
On this day in 2014, three scientist, Isamu Akasaki, Hiroshi Amano, and Shuji Nakamura, received a Noble Peace Prize in Physics for the invention of the blue light-emitting diode (LED). LED inventors

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