Autistic Children Practice Taking Flight with Airport Exploration Day
A child's first trip to the airport might be a little scary, especially if they are living with autism.
"Airport Exploration Day" gave dozens of kids a chance to practice taking a flight from the Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport.
They got tickets and boarding passes, went through security with real Transportation Security Administration agents, and walked out on the taxiway to see a Learjet up close.
Organizers say careful planning can ease anxieties for children with autism.
"We came through, we took pictures of the airport," said Region 5 autism coordinator Amanda Armstrong. "We sent social stories, which are stories that talk about whatever you're going to be doing in advance, so the kids already know what they're going to be doing when they get here."
The exploration day was a combined effort by state and local autism groups and the valley airport. Kids finished up by making a photo ID and visiting activity stations.
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