Since its inception, Miami Children’s Museum has provided an inclusive environment where all children are welcome to play, learn, imagine, create and explore through hands-on interaction with the exhibits, activities and performances. In addition to being an early childhood education expert, the Museum has long been recognized as a leader in South Florida for providing programming for children with special needs. Since July 2012, Miami Children’s Museum’s Sensory Friendly Saturdays, a monthly program for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) has garnered state-wide recognition and attracted families from across the state to visit during the event when the Museum is open exclusively to these children and their families. Response from children with ASD and their parents/caregivers who have visited during this time when there are fewer crowds and while the Museum’s lighting and sounds are lowered to provide a more sensory-friendly experience has been extremely positive.
Miami Children’s Museum has a long history of providing hands-on arts, music and theatrical programming and activities to schools and centers for special needs children. A few examples of past collaborators that have requested the Museum’s outreach activities for populations with special needs include The Sagemont School, Autism Services Council, The Arc of South Florida and Arc Broward. In addition, the Museum has provided programming for Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and has been selected as an exhibition site for VSA Florida art exhibitions.