Holiday activity ideas!

toy car and christmas decorations
By Psychologist Emily Coen

In a year filled with lockdowns it can be tricky to keep coming up with creative ideas to keep the kids occupied! So, faced with another 5 weeks of “I’m booooored, what do I do?” I thought I’d come up with some local ideas for those in Melbourne to keep the boredom at bay!

Disney: The Magic of Animation Sensory Friendly sessions

This exhibition features over 500 exceptional artworks including original paintings, sketches and concept art that have been specially selected by the Walt Disney Animation Research Library in Los Angeles, California. These rarely seen works reveal the development of beloved stories and animation techniques from your favourite Walt Disney Animation Studios films and shorts, including Mickey Mouse’s first talkie, Steamboat Willie (1928), films such as Fantasia (1940), Sleeping Beauty (1959), The Little Mermaid (1989), The Lion King (1994), Frozen (2013), Moana (2016), Frozen 2 (2019) and Raya and the Last Dragon (2021).

The ‘relaxed visit’ sessions are suited for visitors with ASD, sensory sensitivities or anyone who would benefit from a quieter and less busy setting. These sessions give you a chance to explore this magical exhibition in an environment that suits you and your children.

When: Sat 8 & Sat 15 Jan 2022. 10–11am

Jurassic World by Brickman

A Lego Lovers delight- Ryan ‘The Brickman’ McNaught (from Lego Masters) will unveil an epic, world-first exhibition at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC). He transforms Jurassic World — the blockbuster franchise from Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment — into an immersive must-do adventure that will be the largest LEGO® brick experience in Australian history. Visitors to Jurassic World by Brickman® begin their journey by walking through the iconic 4-metre-tall Jurassic World gates to experience the Isla Nublar. Find more information at:

Shaun the Sheep’s Circus Show

Everyone’s favourite sheep takes over the iconic Sidney Myer Music Bowl stage this summer. Academy Award winning studio Aardman and internationally acclaimed circus company Circa bring Shaun the Sheep to life. Shaun the Sheep’s Circus Show combines Circa’s awe-inspiring acrobatics with the playful charm of the multi-award winning TV series. Performing in an open-air theatre for the very first time (COVID-safe!) see these two worlds collide in an ingenious adaptation for all ages.

Funfields park (including sensory friendly event)

Visit Victoria’s Biggest Theme Park, only 40kms from Melbourne. With Awesome Rides & Attractions, including NEW Dragon’s Revenge Swing Ride (Now Open), NEW Pegasus Sky Bounce ride & NEW Mystic Kingdom coming soon! Funfields is also home to Volcano Beach Heated Wave Pool and 3 ProSlide World Record Waterslides; Kraken Racer, Typhoon & Gravity Wave & many other wet & dry rides including Re-Imagined Amazonia Falls, Pirate Ship, Go Karts, Alpine Toboggan Slide, Mini Golf and so much more.

Special Sensory Friendly Event: Tuesday 12 February 10am- 4:30pm For Info & Tickets >

Melbourne Museum – autism friendly resources

Melbourne Museum explores life in Victoria, from our natural environment to our culture and history. The Melbourne Museum has something for the whole family thanks to their permanent eight galleries, including the children’s gallery for babies to 5 year olds. The Melbourne Museum is also an autism friendly museum. Partnering up with AMAZE, the Melbourne museum has created a range of social stories and sensory friendly maps to assist their visitors get the most of their visit.


ArtVo is an immersive art gallery or ‘trick art’ gallery – the first of its kind in Australia.Unlike a traditional art gallery or museum, visitors are encouraged to touch and interact with the artworks, photographing themselves and becoming part of the art. With over 11 themed zones, visitors can explore large interactive 3D artworks painted directly onto the walls and floors. Additional sculptural elements allow visitors to immerse themselves into different scenes, locations, and famous paintings. For more information visit:

Vincent Van Gogh at The Lume Melbourne

Stepping into THE LUME Melbourne is an epic adventure into art. Australia’s and the Southern Hemisphere’s first permanent digital gallery transforms the world’s finest art into fully immersive sensory encounters. The walls come alive as light ripples across every surface and masterpieces come to life. Curated tastes, aromas and a choreographed soundtrack add thrilling new dimensions to this 360-degree experience.

Explore, play, dance and marvel as every surface becomes an animated canvas: floors, walls and guests alike. Be transported as familiar landscapes become moving images that tower four storeys tall, while you wine and dine in the heart of the gallery. Create your own journey, linger where you please and be delighted by new perspectives on iconic artworks.

THE LUME embarks on its first adventure with a fantastic trip through the vibrant works of Vincent van Gogh. Surprises await in this symphony of colour, sound, taste and aroma. Get ready to experience the captivating world of Van Gogh in a whole new light. See for tickets and information.

Emily is a registered psychologist with a Master of Professional Psychology. Emily has experience working with children, adolescents and their families across home, clinic, and educational settings. Emily has a special interest in working with autism spectrum disorder, developmental disorders, anxiety, behaviour management, and emotion regulation difficulties. Emily is passionate about working with children and their families in a flexible and creative manner, to best support their goals. Outside of work, Emily enjoys spending time with her family, reading a good book, playing netball, and cheering on the Geelong Cats.

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