On Saturday, we had an Autism Awareness Family Celebration at the Museum for children with autism and their families. Families were able to have fun together at this special event in the Museum’s Center for Creative Connections two hours before the Museum opened to the public.
Working with an autism specialist, we plan activities specifically for children on the autism spectrum to enjoy together with their families. Families had fun sketching works of art in the gallery, painting in the studio, exploring textures and weaving in the courtyard, and hopping, weaving, and crawling through fun obstacle course. We had two music therapists lead families in singing, clapping, and shaking musical instruments and a storyteller engaging everyone in a storytelling performance.
Meet some of the families who attended the Autism Awareness Family Celebration:
The Puga Family
Your family has attended every Autism Awareness Family Celebration. What other types of outings do you have? We don’t really go to many other events – we don’t have any time! Justin’s autism is extremely severe and there aren’t many places we go as a family; we do attend church together and frequent the park because Justin enjoys the slide. Occasionally, we even go to movies and restaurants.
What is it about the events at the DMA that keeps you coming back? These events are for the entire family, not just for kids with special needs. All of the activities give my other child time to experience art. Joshua loves to sketch! He spent at least thirty minutes creating a sketch of a Japanese screen.
What has been your favorite thing about the event today? Just being out together as a whole family is a plus. It is nice that you don’t have to separate each child according to activity. Everyone at the Museum is warm and concerned about our needs.
Family Fun Fact: Christina was able to bring her brother, sister-in-law, and brand new, beautiful niece to the Museum for the event.
The Schieber Family
What types of things does your family enjoy doing together? We enjoy playing outside together, hanging out, swinging, playing football and baseball, and traveling to Missouri.
How does this event compare to other family outings? There is a lot less pressure. Usually, we are so worried about what is going to happen, and this is really fun for all of the kids.
Do you often visit museums as a family? It is challenging to find things like this; we have never all gone as a family.
Family Fun Fact: All of the kids are within thirteen months of each other!
The Ruiz Family
What types of things do you all enjoy doing together? We love to go outside, play board games, learn about different sensory activities, and we love to have slumber parties and stay up late eating junk food together!
Your family has attended several Autism Awareness Family Celebrations, why do you enjoy returning to the Museum? We don’t attend that many events, but knowing that the DMA is a big place and that the Museum cares about kids with autism is awesome.
What is your favorite thing about the event? It is really great to see all of the different activities and knowing that some of them are things that I can do at home with my children. It is a great place to get ideas!
The Cervantes Family
What types of things do you do for fun? We love going to the park, the zoo, and the aquarium. Sometimes, we go to movies.
How does this event compare to other events that you have attended? Everything is well organized and not too overstimulating.
What has been your favorite thing so far today? Daniel loves the music!
Family Fun Fact: Daniel loves to fly on airplanes and he enjoys computers.
What are some of your favorite things to do together? We love to do fun things together! Right now, we are getting ready for ‘thinking day’ at Girl Scouts. We like to go to Museums together.
How would you rate the event today? It is really great and wonderful outreach to families. [Amanda enthusiastically adds:] “I would give it five and a half out of five stars!”
Family Fun Fact: Amanda is currently a Brownie Scout and is working her way up to Girl Scouts.
Thank you to all the families for attending!
Posted by: Amanda