New ‘Sesame Street’ video teaches kids with autism how to wear a mask
‘Sesame Street’ cartoon series makers released a short video where they show Julia, a muppet with autism, learning to wear a mask. The initiative has received a lot of appreciation not just on social media but also from experts and parents. Titled ‘Fluffster wears a mask’, the video is a must watch if you know someone with autism who has trouble wearing a mask.
Remember Julia from cartoon series ‘Sesame Street’? Julia, diagnosed with autism, is a favorite amongst many children across the world. Vocal about inclusion, makers of ‘Sesame Street’ have often come up with various programs to promote awareness about autism. In their new sweet video, Julia practices to wear a mask with her dad. For many children with autism who are having a tough time wearing the mask, this video tries to create awareness. The video which is above three minutes is titled ‘Fluffster wears a mask’. Parents and experts from the field has appreciated efforts of the makers.
Julia, muppet with autism
For those who watch ‘Sesame Street’, Julia needs no introduction. The four-year-old muppet who is under the autism spectrum was introduced a couple of years back in the series. Makers of ‘Sesame Street’ had said that by introducing Julia, they want to promote inclusion and also awareness about autism amongst kids.
On 21 September, ‘Sesame Workshop’, NGO behind ‘Sesame Street’ released a collection of videos and resources that are designed to help children with autism and their families cope with new norms due to the Covid pandemic.
Needless to say, Julia is the star in all videos! They are taught social distancing and also on how to wear a mask.
Julia is seen talking to her dad about her concerns while wearing a mask. She is worried if the mask will bother her ears or tickle her nose. After dad advises her to practice wearing a mask at home, Julia and her stuffed bunny Fluffster gives it a try.
Posting the video, Sesame Street tweeted, “Wearing masks keep us and others around us healthy. Join Julia and her dad as they practice wearing masks before heading out to the park! #SeeAmazing”.
Himabindhu Gattu, Co-Founder, Abhilasha Centre for Special Needs, Hyderabad says that there are a few kids in her center who have trouble wearing masks. “What ‘Sesame Street’ has done is a good initiative. One of my students had a tough time wearing a mask when he stepped outdoors. His mother had to make him practice wearing it at home until he got used to it. He is fine now, but there are many others who are struggling to wear a mask. I hope such videos, more than anything else, creates awareness about hardships that kids with autism undergo”.
Prarthana Arolkkar, who has a 20-year-old son under the spectrum says, “I have not let my son step outdoors since the past six months. So he has never had to wear a mask. But what ‘Sesame Street’ makers are doing is something great because it is a great step towards inclusion. Young children will learn to accept those under the spectrum and appreciate differences”.
Social media reactions
Many people took to their social media to appreciate the makers.
“A deeply heartfet thank you from 60 yr old autistic woman for Julia! Female Aspies mask symptoms & struggle for recognition”, tweeted Jay Astarte.
“I love that @sesamestreet is addressing this issue through their new character, Julia. @Kerrymagro talks about the importance of wearing a mask and the sensory challenges it may present for students on the autism spectrum”, tweeted Ms Crystal Law.
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