Monday, July 26, 2010

Discovery Gateway

Dallas has been hinting ( A LOT) about a pair of headphones he would REALLY like to have. We went to the apple store on our date a few weeks ago and he saw them there. We were waiting on a check that was STILL pending ( took another week and a half) and it finally cleared and he didn't get them himself.

So being the really cool wife that I am ( RIGHT!) was given a few gentle nudges to go back and get them. Since the apple store is next to the discovery gateway I had a little thought. I have been wanting to take Tyler but have not been given a yay or nah from other special needs moms. I have heard that it isn't great for special needs kids in Chairs but that other little kids really like it. So I took the plunge.

Since it wasn't planned I didn't have enough time to talk myself out of it. Off we went. We switch cars with Dallas ( I prefer the hybrid if we are driving into the city) and found a parking spot downtown. I had really hoped for a spot close by the gateway but didn't find one. Instead we parked in the parking terrace closest. ( it is the winter one for anyone planning to go)

Ty walked all the way to the museum. I was pretty impressed. A little daunted by the fact that there are a MILLION stairs to get to floor #2 so we took the elevator. The admissions was a little steep considering I wasn't' sure what we were going to be able to do. I was optimistic though. I had just hoped that we would find something.

The first part was a "Garden" and it was filled with Tubes and balls. He LOVED it. There were so many kids but he really liked getting up and putting the balls in the different tubes. He didn't care where the tubes went he just cared that his bucket never ran out of balls.

There were so many balls and places to put them. He finally decided on just getting the balls to go down. He also had a great time watching them go. He was a pretty excited.

The next place he was interested in was the music place. He LOVES music. He likes the sounds and likes the way they sound and how to make them work.

Soon we headed off to the next part. It was the part where the town was kid sized. He liked it a little. Not a ton. But the part he was OK with was the water. He LOVED it.

So we spent the better part of the hour with him making the fish go.
Ty had a great time in the area with the water He played and smiled and then played some more. We slowly moved over to the grocery store and the farm. He liked the plastic horse but not enough to get on it or pet it. And the chickens... well the chickens made him be "all done"

Next up was the earthquake. He built up a "Leaning Tower of Pisa" ( which is what he calls EVERY tower at this point.) We turned up the machine and down it came. He loved it. He thought it was the coolest thing ever. When it hit the ground he said "Boo!" and asked for it again.
We then went to the wind tunnels. I wasn't sure how he would like them. They are kinda "loud" but not really loud. But he had a blast. We spent 25 minutes there. He would put in the little papers an then say "up!" then wait and watch and he would say "DOWN." as they came fluttering out and down.

We went to the KSL room and Ty wasn't horribly impressed. He did like the chairs that spinned so he sat for a minute before he was all done and asked for the balls again. But before we left I wanted to take him to the Life flight helicopter outside.

It is a real helicopter and it was donated by the Life Flight program at IHC. Ty went up to it. Climb the stairs and got in the back and turned around and looked at me and and signed all done. I personally was a little taken back and transported QUICKLY to the time of lift off 5 years ago. Dallas standing in front of a helicopter exactly like that made my tummy churn. I was JUST fine with him not wanting to do it.
Then we headed back down to the main floor and played the balls again. He really liked that and less kids were there.

So, here is a little "Special needs" kids review
  • If you have a wheelchair this is NOT wheelchair friendly. The activities are around a lot of stairs. Though there is elevators to get you to the activities but the actual activities are confined in small spaces. The "Kids eye" they could walk through and be pushed but again, limited space.
  • Sensory: Depending on the day and activity there is A LOT of noise. Ty did really well and liked it but he had to have me really close.
  • Price: is crazy! For the 2 of us plus parking validation ( we didn't have a handicapped permit or we could have parked closer to the building) was 20 bucks! Because he couldn't do all the activities ( either due to his physical ability or his sensory) we paid a lot ( I felt) for what we did do.
  • We would, however, go again. I think that because outside activities are so limited I would like to take him during the school day that he is out, giving him some growing time and playing time and exploring. Most of all he needs the imagination time. So maybe I can have some activities that i want him to try and do in the kids eye part.

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