Special Needs

  • Making Access Possible (MAP)

    Pretend City Children’s Museum strives to make access possible for every child and give every family an equal opportunity to learn and play in an immersive educational environment.

    It is a place where a child’s unique abilities are embraced and encouraged to flourish and play at their own pace. Pretend City offers the benefits of a role playing experience to support a child’s social emotional development.

    Pretend City offers a monthly Family Autism Night for free. Click here to learn more about it!

    Why Visit Pretend City?

    Practicing “pretend play” is a highly valued learning experience for all children.  Pretend City serves as a microcosm for the real world, giving children a chance to “practice life” in settings they are most likely to encounter throughout their lives, such as the grocery store, gas station, beach and restaurant.

    Pretend City also features an observation room that can be available to specialists and therapists who wish to observe the child without interrupting the natural course of their play.

    What Does Pretend City Have To Offer Differently-Abled Children?

    Onsite Support

    Pretend City’s educational staff has been trained to facilitate whole family social emotional play and are always available to enrich your family play experience with their welcoming smiles and practical support. If you need any additional support or would like recommendations on purposeful play throughout the museum, please feel free to ask our Pretendgineers and BrainBuilders for assistance.

    Safety

    Children’s safety and well-being is our top priority. We have staff working in many of the exhibits throughout the museum to help monitor and supervise the play in their exhibit space. For the safety of all children, all doors leading to outside will sound an alarm, notifying all staff that a child or guest has opened it. In addition, a Pretend City staff member remains at the front of the museum to watch the front door for the duration of the event.

    Adding a therapist

    When your family purchases a membership you will be able to add not only an adult alternate, but your therapist or their agency’s name as well, at no additional cost. If your agency does have several therapists that work with your child then we will list only the agency’s name on the membership card. The therapist that is coming that day with your child will need to show their agency card with their name on it, in addition to their personal identification.

    Discounts on memberships

    Families purchasing a membership during our Family Autism Nights will receive a 10% discount on that day when they purchase an Individual or Family membership.

    Calming Items

    Upon request the following calming items are available: headphones, weighted animal-shaped shoulder pads, weighted vests, sorting and patterning activities. We understand that the museum can be overwhelming at times – please note that we provide a quiet space for your child, ensuring a safe space away from over stimulation, help promote self-care, and provide opportunities for engagement in prevention and crisis de-escalation strategies, as well as a host of other therapeutic exchanges.

     

    Questions or suggestions?

    We are always learning at Pretend City! If you have any suggestions on how Pretend City’s Family Autism Night can help your child and other children with disabilities, please contact Ashley Hart at ashley.hart@pretendcity.org or (949) 428-3900 ext. 209.

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