Responding to a patron’s concern that her child with autism was not compatible with a library’s quiet atmosphere, the Seminole County Public Library addressed her needs by developing unique storytimes for children with special needs. These special needs programs are designed to embrace children and families in an inclusive, non-judgmental way. Parents can relax and know that their child’s unique behaviors are perfectly acceptable. Ten years of experiences welcoming children with special needs and their families into storytimes will be shared in this webinar. Get specific examples of stories, activities, resources, pitfalls, achievements, and helpful tips. Diane and Sara first presented “Storytimes that Work for Children with Special Needs” as a breakout session at the 2014 FLA Conference.
Originally broadcast September 24, 2014.
Biography ~Diane Keyes
Diane’s background: bachelor degrees in English and art; a teaching certificate in secondary English. She taught remedial reading at the Muslim Academy of Central Florida and Jackson Heights Middle School for a total of four years. She enjoyed working with struggling students to improve their reading skills. Diane earned her Master of Library and Information Science degree at University of South Florida, and has been a Youth Services Librarian since 2000. In 2001 she began providing special needs storytimes and has continued to provide programs for children with special needs for the past 13 years.
Biography ~ Sara White
Sara’s background is in education; she earned her Master of Arts in Teaching from Wheaton College (IL). She had the opportunity to take a special needs education course and practicum as a part of her studies. For her thesis research project, Sara led a year-long book club for middle schoolers with low FCAT reading scores. She enjoyed working with students who had diverse learning needs, using games and discussion to promote reading comprehension strategies. Sara earned her Master of Library and Information Science degree at the University of South Florida, and has been a Youth Services Librarian since 2012.