Amusement and theme parks are extremely fun destinations that can be enjoyed by almost anyone. Families and friends alike love going to theme parks, as it is a very popular American pastime to do so.
Many families opt to bring their children to theme parks during the weekend, spring break, and for other special occasions. And while many children automatically thrive in the excitement of theme parks, kids with Autism may not be as open to what the theme parks and their environments have to offer.
Sesame Place is Now a Certified Autism Center and Families are Thrilled
In an effort to create a more inclusive environment for these kids with Autism, this park in Langhorne, Pennsylvania has partnered with the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards in order to allow kids with a variety of needs to have a positive experience in their park.
Certification in hand, Sesame Place reopened its 38th season on April 28, and now include quiet rooms with adjustable lighting to calm down any kids who may be experiencing a sensory overload from the park and comfortable seating areas where visitors can take a break and renew the energy after a fun-filled day.
In addition to that, the park now offers special training for all of their employees that teaches them about sensory awareness, autism, and its development, and motor skills, among many other subjects that are necessary for understanding how children on the Autism spectrum behave.
Another option is to provide kids with noise-canceling headphones that the park offers for those who prefer low-noise experiences. The steps that this park has taken to ensure the positive experience of children who may never even dreamed to spend a day at an amusement park in the past is truly incredible and shows the progress of society into offering innovative and easy solutions to accommodate all types of people with various needs.
Sesame Place: First Theme Park Designated as Certified Autism Center
According to Catherine Valeriano, Park President at Sesame Place: “As the first theme park in the world to complete the training and become a CAC, Sesame Place is better equipped to offer families inclusive activities for children with autism and other special needs.”
To keep their certification, Sesame Place must take the autism training every two years. New hires will go through the training as part of their orientation.
Valeriano said a goal of the park is for families to create positive, lasting memories together. “This designation just really reinforces that commitment to our guests. In addition, it ties back to a really strong partnership that we have with Sesame Workshop (…) which is definitely a leader in autism awareness in the programming they developed.”.