Sensory Friendly Nights Welcome Diversely Abled Community

April 18, 2022

The Scott Family Amazeum exists to make authentic learning experiences accessible to a curious, creative community by creating an environment for everyone to play, explore, discover, wonder and learn. 

We know that each guest brings their own diverse abilities to the Amazeum experience. The Amazeum’s high level of energy, activity and vibrancy, adds to the experience of many guests, but can be disorienting, loud and stress inducing for those sensitive to the environment on busy days. We designed Sensory Friendly times to create an inclusive opportunity for all of our guests and even provide a space for local organizations to share resources and support. 

Our most recent Sensory Friendly Night celebrated the diverse abilities of children and their families during an evening of exploration and experiences all in a welcoming, authentic and understanding environment. Along with our wonderful partners,  Arkansas Support Network, Down Syndrome Connection, Play With Passion, Sunshine School, and The Ability Tree, we invited guests to engage with  Mud Painting, Sensory Bags, Foam Block Building, Sticklets, and (our personal favorite) Dance Party!

Our friends at The Ability Tree hosted a hybrid community spotlight during the night to share resources and programs they host for families with special needs. They had meaningful conversations with guests and gave out Thumballs! These soft, squishy toys facilitate non-verbal communication to share feelings and needs by pointing to words and phrases. 

We’ve created resources for our guests with special needs to support their visit to the Amazeum. Prior to Sensory Friendly Night, we share information about the evening and what to expect through social narratives. These slideshows put the Amazeum experience into context and outline the steps we take to make the guest experience amazing for our special needs guests. The narratives provide an orientation to the museum and experiences by explaining just what to expect from activities in terms of sensory stimulus so guests feel comfortable about attending. We also have a social narrative available on our website about our everyday exhibits and experiences! To make the Amazeum cozier and relaxed we turn the thermostat to a cooler temperature, turn down the lights, and do our best to create relaxed energy throughout the evening.

At the Amazeum, we are committed to creating opportunities to learn in a fun and interactive way by supporting access to everyone in our community and this night showcases our values in just that way - to support and inspire a curious, creative community. 

Sensory Friendly Nights (and Days) occur throughout the year. Subscribe to our weekly newsletter and be the first to know about the next event. Sensory Friendly information is available on our website to make any visit to the Amazeum a positive experience for every member of the community.