On June 7, the Johnson County Museum will launch Sensory Friendly Mondays, a new slate of programs designed to make the museum accessible to more people in the community. During Sensory Friendly Days at the Johnson County Museum, the museum’s exhibits, including KidScape – a 3,500 square foot interactive history exhibit designed for children ages two to nine – will be presented in a comfortable, low-sensory way.
“The Johnson County Museum strives to be a place open and welcoming to all members of our community,” said Museum Director Mary McMurray. “Sensory Friendly Mondays are an exciting new way for the museum to welcome individuals with sensory processing challenges and their families to enjoy a fun experience at the museum.”
Sensory Friendly Mondays were developed with support from Britain Development, a program of AdventHealth Shawnee Mission.
“The Britain Development team is dedicated to providing family-focused developmental services to young children with special needs,” said Leah Palmer, curator of education for the Johnson County Museum. “Their partnership and expertise have been essential to realizing our goal for these programs – creating an experience where those with sensory processing differences feel welcomed, wanted and comfortable exploring all the Johnson County Museum has to offer.”
"The Johnson County Museum Foundation is grateful to AdventHealth Foundation Shawnee Mission for their generous financial support of the Johnson County Museum's Sensory Friendly Mondays," said Board President Lonita Cook. "Charitable donations such as these make a tremendous impact on the Johnson County Museum Foundation's ability to support the phenomenal work being done at the Johnson County Museum."
The addition of Britain Development as a program partner is an important step in ensuring museum spaces will be welcoming to all visitors. In preparation for the program, Britain Development’s child development experts audited all museum spaces, including galleries, restrooms and common spaces, in preparation of the event. Britain Development staff also developed sensory bags for use during the program so that young visitors have everything they need to enjoy their visit.
“AdventHealth Foundation Shawnee Mission is proud to support Britain Development and the Johnson County Museum in the development of Sensory Friendly Mondays,” said Laurie McCormack, executive director for the Foundation. “Community partnerships such as this help bring the expertise of Britain Development staff beyond the walls of the B.E. Smith Family Center to the community. We are thrilled at the opportunity to share this knowledge and serve more members of our community.”
Sensory Friendly Mondays feature limited-occupancy sessions designed specifically for children with sensory processing differences and Autism Spectrum Disorders, and their families. The programs take place on the first Monday of every month from 9 a.m. to noon. Learn more and register at jcprd.com/museum.