Sesame Workshop is expanding its Sesame Street and Autism: See Amazing in All Children initiative with new resources featuring Julia, a 4-year-old Sesame Street Muppet with autism.
The new resources available at sesamestreet.org/autism are designed to help families create new routines, build flexibility, and cope with the challenges of change during turbulent times.
In continued partnership with Exceptional Minds, an academy and studio preparing young adults on the autism spectrum for careers in animation and beyond, Sesame Workshop has launched a new animated video featuring Julia as she learns how to handle her fear of the dark by drawing what she’s afraid of—helping her brother along the way. This video was written, produced, and animated by a team of artists on the autism spectrum. Accompanying the animation are new printable’s and colouring and activity sheets, including Good Night routine cards to help children develop a healthy bedtime routine.
Sesame Workshop continues to expand the breadth of the See Amazing in All Children content library based on feedback from advisors and community members, and has also launched Mandarin and Cantonese adaptations, in partnership with Friends of Children with Special Needs (FCSN) of the We’re Amazing 1, 2, 3 digital storybook featuring Elmo and Abby Cadabby learning different ways to play with Julia and help their friend feel safe and comfortable.
“Autistic children and their families are facing unprecedented challenges this year, and Sesame Workshop is here to help kids create healthy routines, develop self-regulation and calming strategies, and build resilience,” said Dr. Jeanette Betancourt, Senior Vice President of US Social Impact at Sesame Workshop.
Created in 2015, the Sesame Street and Autism: See Amazing in All Children initiative aims to increase public awareness of autism, foster greater empathy and understanding, and support families with free resources to help them navigate everyday moments and challenges. Sesame Workshop has partnered with Exceptional Minds since 2015, starting with Emmy-nominated Benny’s story.
“The Exceptional Minds team of artists on the spectrum continue to showcase their writing, producing, and animation talents on our latest Sesame Workshop short, Backyard Camping. This project amplifies the workplace skills of our amazing artists while shining a light on autism inclusion. Eighty percent of adults with autism are unemployed or underemployed, but with Sesame Workshop’s continued partnership, we are changing that,” said David Siegel, Executive Director of Exceptional Minds.
See Amazing in All Children was developed in consultation with over 250 organisations and experts within the autism community. With 1 in 70 Australians diagnosed with autism, this initiative is designed to show that all children – autistic and neurotypical alike – are amazing in their own ways.
About Sesame Workshop
Sesame Workshop is the nonprofit media and educational organisation behind Sesame Street, the pioneering television show that has been reaching and teaching children since 1969. Today, Sesame Workshop is an innovative force for change, with a mission to help kids everywhere grow smarter, stronger, and kinder. We’re active in more than 150 countries, serving vulnerable children through a wide range of media, formal education, and philanthropically-funded social impact programs, each grounded in rigorous research and tailored to the needs and cultures of the communities we serve. For more information, please visit www.sesameworkshop.org.