On April 27, 2011, Stacey Ratner presented “The Inclusion of Children with Autism” at the Suffolk Cooperative Library System. Ms. Ratner has kindly shared her powerpoint presentation, which is available here. The last few pages provide specific strategies and tips for helping children with autism (and all children) feel more comfortable in our storytime programs.
Changing program formats takes time and perseverance. Jill C. of the Longwood Public Library suggested getting back together at the end of summer to discuss our efforts to put Ms. Ratner’s recommendations into effect. This discussion will take place on Wednesday, August 17th in the SCLS Auditorium at 2pm. Please come and bring your success stories and tips as well as any failures. I’ll be eating a bagged lunch in the auditorium between 1pm and 2pm if you’d like to come early, bring your lunch, and browse books from the Review Collection.
Speaking of the Review Collection: on the very same day Ms. Ratner discussed using picture symbols with children with autism, a book titled Jay and Ben (Lee & Low) arrived in the Youth Services office. This story is translated into picture symbols and the accompanying website has resources for using the book with children with autism. The website indicates that replacement symbols (which will come in handy for libraries) as “coming soon.”