Starting Sensory Story Times
Thursday, August 28, 2014
At yesterday’s Picture Book Read-In, Tricia Twarogowski shared some
of her experiences in setting up Sensory Story Times for kids who have
special needs. These programs are designed for children on the autism
spectrum or with sensory processing disorder, though they’re also
appropriate (and welcoming) to all kids.
In Sensory Story Times, they’re careful to include and exclude
sensory stimuli to help kids participate. So they include singing songs,
but they exclude sharp, loud sounds like hand claps. They do knee claps
instead. They try to use natural light instead of overhead lighting
when possible, since fluorescent lights flicker and buzz. The program
leaders don’t wear perfume or use scented products, which some kids are
Details like these, along with lots of other information, are
available at the Libraries and
Autism website. There are videos to watch, articles to read, and
resources to download. It’s a great website, whether you’re just
starting your research or are looking for books to use in programs
Creating a welcoming environment for children with special needs
extends beyond the program and the room where it happens. It’s in the
way the kids and their parents are treated the whole time they’re in the
library. So Tricia helps library staff get ready for Sensory Story
Times by coaching them about how to help a young person who doesn’t make
eye contact or behaves in unexpected ways.
Tricia is currently the Branch Manager at the Northwest Akron
Branch of Akron-Summit County Public Library. You can watch a video about the
Sensory Story Time they host and even email her with questions, at email@example.com.
Her talk yesterday was a great contribution to a fun day with picture
books. Thanks Tricia!
- Nathan Swartzendruber, SWON Technology Educator
Kids Programming at
the Summer Reading Workshop
Looking for new kids programming ideas? SWON’s
Summer Reading Workshop on September 22nd has a full day of it.
Although there’s plenty of Summer Reading discussion, most of the day
will be spent talking about programs you can use whenever you wish.
Space is limited, so register