Omaha Children's Museum launches new autism program

Jan 5, 2018

The Omaha Children’s Museum is one of three across the country to participate in a pilot program called Experiential Science for Families Affected by Autism.

Kim Reiner, Marketing & PR Manager for the Omaha Children’s Museum, says the program was launched by the museum Explora in New Mexico. 

Explora awarded the children’s museum a grant for the year-long program. 

Reiner says in last fall, the museum rolled out toolkits families can check out when they visit the museum. 

The kits are aimed at helping kids on the autism spectrum who have sensory sensitivities. 

Reiner says the kits include headphones to reduce noise, gloves, sunglasses and fidget toys. 

The museum has already been addressing the needs of these children by hosting three autism nights a year, in partnership with the Autism in Action Partnership.  Reiner says those nights are always well-received.

"We wanted to make our museum more sensory friendly any time of the year.  We wanted families to feel welcome to visit during the day whenever they wanted to and not that it was best just to visit these three nights a year.  So that’s why we wanted to create some new resources for families so they can come when they want to."

Reiner says the museum will continue to implement changes and make adjustments to things like the toolkit with feedback from parents and educators. 

There will be a listening session for parents of autistic children on January 23rd to obtain feedback on what parents think might work for their children when visiting the museum. 

For more information or to reserve a spot, the number is 402-342-6164.