Tap to Chat and be social

New event for those using alternative communication methods

Submitted Photos Tap to Chat is geared toward children who use alternative communication methods to talk with others.

For many kids, teens and adults, communicating verbally comes naturally and easily, but that isn’t the case for everyone. Some have to learn different ways to communicate with those around them, whether it be through a device that speaks for them, through pictures, sign language, or through someone else.

On Saturday, the Minot Center for Pediatric Therapy and Make a Scene Kids Theatre (MASK) are collaborating to put on a special social event for kids and teens who communicate in different ways.

Tap to Chat will be held from 10 a.m. to noon at the MASK Theater, located at 2915 10th Street SW. The event will focus on different activities for kids that will allow them to interact with volunteers and with each other. Children will get to paint pumpkins, choose a snack at the snack shack, feed goats at the petting zoo, and take a pretend pony ride.

“We want to give kids a chance to practice using their devices or supports in a social setting outside of their home or therapy,” said Kylee Geer of Minot Center for Pediatric Therapy.

According to Geer, there are many families in our community who are working on developing their child’s communication skills. The goal of the event is to help kids learn, interact and grow.

“When you use an alternative form of communication, it can sometimes feel isolating,” Geer explained, “so we hope to give kids more confidence in using their devices.”

Tap to Chat is free and those attending don’t have to be patients of Minot Center for Pediatric Therapy. The event is open to kids and teens using alternative communication methods along with their parents and siblings.

MASK works to create events to support children and teens in the community. To register for Tap to Chat or to see other events they offer, go to www.steamnd.org.