Putting a puzzle together with a visual impairment can be a little challenging due to the level of visual reliance to complete it.
However, this does not automatically mean it is not possible or fun to try! I have always avoided puzzles because it can be straining on my eyes and requires specific lighting but for the last month or two, I have really been enjoying puzzles.
I have been learning different ways I can improve my experience so I can enjoy doing puzzles!
With my personal impairment, I can see enough detail to successfully complete a puzzle with a little adaptation. Here are a couple of things I do.
1. I feel the edges of the puzzle pieces to help me better know the shape of the piece
2. When I place a puzzle piece in the correct place I can feel it going in smoothly (this happens for everyone it is whether they notice it or not) I personally am hyper-aware of this feeling to help me know I put it in the correct spot without straining my eyes.
3. I look at the completed image that is provided or on the box so I can see the whole picture to help me find where different details are on the puzzle since it can be hard for me to see on the actual piece.
4. I will start with edge pieces first to give me a base to start with. Most people I have done puzzles with start by doing this as well. It just provides a good point of reference for the rest of the pieces.
5. I will group pieces by what topic or subject so flower pieces together, buildings, sky, etc. This helps me to not only organize but eliminate pieces that are not going to help with a certain area so I can focus on as little visual noise at one time.
6. If none of the above work for a specifically challenging puzzle piece I will use the magnifier on my phone or if I am doing it with someone else…save that piece for them. 🙂
There are a couple of challenges to doing a puzzle. My eyes start to strain and get tired if I work on a puzzle too long so I have to take breaks from the puzzle.
It is also important to have good lighting not too dark or bright to help with seeing the finer details.
Regardless of these challenges, I am able to put puzzles together and really enjoy doing it!
Putting a puzzle together is not about having the ability to do so but the adaptability to make it work for your needs and preferences! No one way is the right way!
What are your favorite tricks and tips for putting a complex puzzle together?
It is interesting to see what different peoples’ methods are. Are you a sorter?
Do you start with the border?
Do you look at the colors or the shapes of the pieces?