How we support kids of all abilities

“One way we welcome all families into the library is providing supports for kids with disabilities,” said Early Literacy Librarian Shelley Harris.

Pens that scan and read text aloud

With one of the scanner pens available for checkout (pictured above), you can scan text in a book and hear the words read aloud. You also can look up any words you don’t know.

The pens were developed for people with dyslexia, Harris said, but are useful for a wide range of people, including those with a visual disability, English-language learners, or anyone who reads below grade level. “They can make higher-level texts accessible, in the same way that audiobooks do,” she said. “Even if you can’t decode the word on the page, you may know that word when it’s spoken out loud, in context, and you can be exposed to all that rich vocabulary that way.”

AAC poster

October is International AAC Awareness Month

In October 2017, to mark International AAC (Augmentative and Alternative Communication) Month, a giant poster of words went up on the train room window in the Main Library Children’s Services area.

“This is augmentative and alternative communication for people who can’t use their voices to speak, or sometimes need assistance,” Harris said. “All children can practice talking and putting together sentences with it.”

Fidgets and BoardmakerSupported storytimes and play

Our weekly storytime designed for children with disabilities ages 3+ with caregiver support (previously known as Sensory Storytime) is relaunching this fall as Supported Storytime and Play.

Starting Tuesday, September 4, join us for classes that are structured with Boardmaker schedules and include fun picture books and songs, along with fine and gross motor movement activities. Special supports like lap weights and fidget toys are available to help children be successful. Siblings welcome.

Monthly themes will culminate in special activities. September’s theme is Nature. On Friday, September 28, join us for Supported Sensory Nature Exploration, in which we discover the world right in our backyard, exploring nature with all five senses outside in Scoville Park.