Making your programs more inclusive of autistic families (and families with other sensory needs or disabilities) doesn’t have to take a lot of time or money. There are small, simple changes that you can make in an hour or less today that will help autistic families feel welcome and supported at your library programs (not just storytime). Here are four ways to get started.
October is AAC Awareness Month! AAC stands for “augmentative and alternative communication,” and it’s often used to refer to a tool that can help someone communicate without speech, like a picture board or a tablet with a communication application. It can be as simple as a white board, or as high tech as a computer that can detect the user’s eye movements and translate them to speech. Someone who is non-speaking, or has difficulty speaking, can use their AAC to communicate with others. Let’s learn a little bit about AAC devices and how you can support AAC-users in the library.
Thrillers have been surging again in YA literature for the last few years. The popularity of thrillers ebbs and flows in YA (raise your hand if you devoured I Know What You Did Last Summer in the 90’s like I did), but Kate McManus’ One of Us Is Lying brought this genre to the top again in a big way, and it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. Thrillers are also a perennial favorite among the middle grade crowd. What’s the appeal behind this genre, and what can we offer young thrill-seekers?
In a recent conversation with a colleague, she mentioned that it had been a while since she had finished a book she started. Shortly after that, a caregiver asked me if a particular book was on her child’s reading level. These exchanges got me to thinking about adult reading habits….and how we need to allow children to have those same habits.
Summer slide. I know I am preaching to the choir here, but it is still a thing. Ideally, addressing summer slide should be a part of your annual goals or tasks, much like summer reading or Banned Books Week. Even more ideal, if there is such a thing, is partnering with schools and other local agencies. First, though, as my old college professor used to say, we can’t discuss a topic without defining it first. So, here we go. What is summer slide and why should I care? Summer slide, and I think Colorado Dept of Education puts it best is: (T)he tendency for students, especially those from low-income families, to lose some of theachievement gains they made during the previous school year. Why you should care Summer slide can affect almost any child. However, the children it impacts the most are the most socioeconomically disadvantaged. Here’s a thousand words…
I’ve been offering preschool outreach for 14 of the almost 15 years that I’ve worked in the library field. For the last few years, I’ve appreciated the challenge of reimagining what preschool outreach could look like. Although I still provide traditional storytimes, the different approaches I added have reinvigorated me and captivated the preschoolers I serve.
Today’s post focuses on interactive or experienced based prizes, where summer reading participants do something at the library when they complete a reading level.
Library summer programs have changed a lot in the last few years. Maybe that’s a good thing? More Take and Makes When programming shut down, many libraries began offering take-and-make bags for patrons. This proved to be so popular that even when programming started back, libraries continued to offer take-and-makes to patrons of all ages. Outdoor Programming For libraries with the space, outdoor programming became a welcome, more safe alternative to indoor programming. Even in the heat of the summer, library staff brought programs outside to a more covid-safe environment. Less Programming When libraries began opening back up and offering programming, many library staff took a look at their regular pre-pandemic programming with a critical eye. Were we prioritizing quantity over quality? Maybe higher quality, less frequent programming is the answer. Tracking Apps While many libraries were already using online tracking programs for their summer reading, some used their library’s…