Inclusive play company PunkinFutz has partnered with nonprofit educational organization Sesame Workshop to deliver a line of Sesame Street play products.
The new collection is specifically designed to support children with a broad range of physical, sensory, developmental, and emotional needs while promoting a comfortable transition and return to classroom learning.
PunkinFutz is known for its sensory playthings, with a focus on the 20% of the children’s market with adaptive needs. The company was founded in 2016 by two parents looking to meet the product gaps they found for their own children.
The products arriving this summer will incorporate Sesame Street characters Elmo, Cookie Monster, and more. They include a calming compression vest disguised as a paintball game and dress-up toy; a weatherproof and highly reflective wheelchair bag that’s also compatible with scooters and bicycles; a fidget set to use everywhere from car travel to waiting room stays; a sensory set that helps all children remain calm and focused for classroom learning, and more.
Children will also be able to access ongoing content with the “PunkinPassport” — a reusable play guide and online content filled with programming, activities, and jokes included with the back-to-school bundles
“Back-to-school 2021 is particularly important for children of all abilities. After a year and a half of disruption, children are experiencing learning loss and anxiety at unprecedented levels,” said PunkinFutz Founder and CEO Lisa Radcliffe. “Our unique sensory play line, now featuring the Sesame Street characters, is designed to help all children calm and focus, to put their best foot forward as they return to in-person learning.”
In line with PunkinFutz’s mission to hire from the community it serves, each product from PunkinFutz supports employment for adults with disabilities.
In designing its collection, the company secured feedback from experts and families – including occupational and physical therapists, designers, educators, parents, and children – to ensure the comprehensive needs of all children are properly addressed via the products.
“As Sesame Workshop continues its mission to help kids everywhere grow smarter, stronger, and kinder, we are thrilled that PunkinFutz has included the Sesame Street characters in its ongoing effort to bring smiles, comfort, and joy to kids of all ages and abilities through this invaluable collection,” said Gabriela Arenas, Vice President of Licensing, North America, Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind Sesame Street.
The Sesame Street collection by PunkinFutz will be available exclusively on jcp.com for purchase beginning July 30, 2021 and exclusively at jcp.com through August 26.
“Alongside PunkinFutz and Sesame Workshop, we’re honored to introduce the JCPenney community to extraordinary play products and educational experiences designed for all kids,” said Michelle Wlazlo, executive vice president and chief merchandising officer at JCPenney. “This partnership helps JCPenney deliver on our commitment to incorporating more inclusive design in our product assortment to better serve the American family.”