“We are different, but all the same” and Sesame Street is showing how kids with autism are amazing like everyone else. See amazing in all children is initiative to de-stigmatize autism and I think it’s amazing! The initiative features Abby Cadabby, Elmo, and Grover with their new friend Julia, who has autism. American Greetings helped sponsor the initiative to see amazing in all children and Jeff Weiss, co-Chief Executive Officer at American Greetings. says they are proud to sponsor this program:
Sesame Workshop’s mission is a perfect complement to the American Greetings brand purpose of making the world a more thoughtful and caring place. Because we are a leader in meaningful connections – and creating personal connections fosters an environment of acceptance – participating in the See Amazing initiative to promote education and celebration of children with autism is a natural fit for American Greetings.
I watched the videos on Sesame Street Workshop, which include resources and powerful videos of families with autism, and I cried while I watched them because they are so real. My favorite video is about being a supportive parent. It talks about how to support your spouse or partner while raising a child with autism, but my favorite part of the video is when the father talks about how long it took his daughter to learn something as simple as blowing out a candle. It evokes such powerful emotions and it just speaks to how special our children’s accomplishments are, no matter what age they make those accomplishments. It reminds me of how proud we were when Squeaker started dressing himself. While Big Guy could dress himself at age three, Squeaker learned to dress himself completely just last year, at the age of eight. This was a major accomplishment for him, just like when he taught himself to snap his fingers. It took him a long time to do it, but he wanted to badly to snap his fingers, that he worked at it and worked at it until he got it.
I think it’s important for us all to support each other and for children to understand that while we are all different, we really are all the same. I think all children are amazing, and I hope that “See Amazing in All Children” will help other children see how wonderful children with autism really are. I plan to share this initiative with my son’s teachers so that they can help his classmates understand how great he is, even if he behaves differently than they do. His responses to his feelings might be different, but he still experiences the same feelings, wants, and needs that they do. As I say to my students, everyone’s brains work a little differently, but that doesn’t mean anyone is any less than everyone else, and I’m happy to see this sentiment shared on Sesame Street.
This initiative was funded with generous support from American Greetings, the Robert R. McCormick Foundation and Kristen Rohr, and aligns with Sesame Workshop’s mission to help all children grow smarter, stronger and kinder and I am so thankful to see Sesame Street help spread love for children with autism and shine a light on the 1 in 68 children in this country that need love just like everyone else.
The content of See Amazing includes:
- An iPad app Sesame and Autism (available on iTunes)
- A responsive website at www.SesameStreet.org/Autism designed with adaptations such as larger buttons, audio-off options, and the ability for children to customize content
- New videos, including a music video, “Amazing”, with Elmo, Abby, Grover and their friends
- Digital and printed story books, We’re Amazing 1,2,3!, featuring Elmo, Abby and Julia
- Digital family routine cards that support everyday activities
- Tips for parents, and activities for siblings
- Powerful videos of families with autistic children, produced by the Sesame Street production team with editing assistance by students at Exceptional Minds, a non-profit animation studio for young adults on the autism spectrum
I hope that you will check out the new program on Sesame Street and share it with your friends. It is truly an amazing initiative!
[ctt title=”Sesame Street and Autism: An Amazing Initiative!” tweet=”Sesame Street and Autism: An Amazing Initiative! Check it out here! http://ctt.ec/kE9Gc+ #SeeAmazing @embracespectrum” coverup=”kE9Gc”]