How to celebrate Bonfire Night with an autistic child – ideas from real parents

Bonfire night with an autistic child is a tricky one and we’ve haven’t found the right solution yet.

In the past, Little Bear has managed to enjoy a display with ear defenders but for Big Bear it’s all a bit too much.

For the last couple of years we’ve visited the garden display at our local pub. It can get a bit crowded but at least we’ve got an easy getaway if it doesn’t go well, unlike a large event.

However, I always like to know how other parents of children with additional needs do things.  I asked SEND bloggers and social media followers for tips on how they celebrate Bonfire night with an autistic child.

Here are some great ideas which might help if you’re looking to make a plan for this year:



My son loves the visual aspect of the fireworks so we watch from the car on top of a hill with a McDonalds or snacks (obviously this only works if you have a hill you can park at).



Bonfire is easy because the bonfire display is in a field three doors down from us so we watch them in our garden where there are no crowds. We buy a load of sparklers and just enjoy it as a family.

Gemma – Isla’s Voice 


We watch from our window.

Kathryn Louise


We love bonfire night. Over the years we’ve learnt how to make it work. We can only watch fireworks at displays with ear defenders. He can’t watch ones from the house as it worries him.

Becki – Mummy Est 2014


My son actually loves fireworks – but I find it so cold stood around at the big displays. Think we’ll try something small this year.



For fireworks last year and this year we’re going away. Before that, it was always down to the beach to watch the fireworks. Now we just spend the weekend there!

Jo – First Time Valley Mam


We love this time of year! We always go to a firework display and our essentials are camping chairs (used to be the pushchair but they’re too big now) ear defenders and hats and gloves and a waterproof coat. Flashing torches etc. They love being out in the dark and watching the fireworks. We’ve made the mistake in the past of not remembering ear defenders and had to leave so I think they definitely make the difference for us.



For more ideas on what to do on Bonfire night, take a look at the National Autistic Society’s website for tips.


  • What do you do on Bonfire Night? Let me know in the comments below.


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