Sesame Street has always been awesome, but introducing Julia, a 4-year-old Muppet with autism, in 2015 showed the show’s commitment to “seeing the amazing in all children.” As part of their commitment to all children, Sesame Street offers an extensive resource website for families with children who have autism.
— Sesame Street (@sesamestreet) April 29, 2019
One resource, a free storybook called “Circle of Friends,” shows Julia standing up to bullies and making a new friend.
A video shows Julia and her friend Sam cheering up their friend Abby by teaching her a special hug. Same explains that Julia doesn’t like big hugs, so they do a “starfish hugs,” which is touching their fingers together. Another adorable video shows Julia singing with her family, including her companion dog, Rose.
As we look back on the last 50 years on Sesame Street, we are so proud to see the impact that Julia has had on children and families around the world since her introduction in 2015. Thank you to all who have supported our Sesame Street and Autism initiative. #SeeAmazing #Sesame50 pic.twitter.com/HC8oVDRi16
— Sesame Street (@sesamestreet) April 20, 2019
The website also has resources for parents and for service providers, though really all families can benefit from them. They teach kindness, empathy, and how to see the world through someone else’s eyes.
And how to give starfish hugs.