Nov 12 open door special needs storytime conversation sparks


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  • With the May 2013 publication of the DSM-5 diagnostic manual, all autism disorders were merged into one umbrella diagnosis of ASD. Previously, they were recognized as distinct subtypes, including autistic disorder, childhood disintegrative disorder, pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS) and Asperger syndrome.
    According to Autism Speaks: Autism Spectrum Disorder is estimated to affect more than 2 million individuals in the U.S. and tens of millions worldwide.
    1 in 88 American children ASD
    By comparison, this is more children than are affected by diabetes, AIDS, cancer, cerebral palsy, cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy or Down syndrome – combined.
    prevalence rates have increased 10 to 17 percent annually in recent years
    11% of all special education students in LCPS are identified on the autism spectrum. (10% of all LCPS students are identified as “special education” *District profile*
    The LCPS Child Find Center screens children between the ages of 2 – 5 for developmental progress
  • Characteristics
    Difficulty expressing needs verbally
    Laughing or crying for no apparent reason
    Difficulty interacting with others
    Little or no eye contact
    Obsessive attachment to objects
    Sensory integration problems lead to over or under -activity
  • Like regular storytimes which incorporate the research and practices of ECRR (Every Child Ready to Read), sensory storytimes incorporate books, songs, and movement activities.
    But they also combine these activities with the research and practices from the Sensory Integration Theory, developed by Dr. A. Jean Ayres for children w/learning disabilities, later applied to children w/ASD
    Open Door Storyime incorporates the research and practices of both ECRR and Sensory Integration Theory.
    Sensory Integration and the Child, first published in 1979, latest edition 2005
  • Sensory activities may include:
    Touch = Light touch of various textures; deep pressure w/weighted blankets “snakes”; playdough; painting; props
    Auditory = Big Mack Switch; music; instruments
    Visual = Flannel board; books; props
    No taste! Allergies!
    Smell = I avoid any scent, indirectly through Playdough; painting
    Internal: Therabands; pushing Educubes; crawling through tunnel; balls; balance beam; yoga; dance; movement games w/props
  • Bibliography - The Out of Sync Child Has Fun (book)
    Movement Based Learning for Children of All Abilities (book)
    Resource List – Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library Online Learning Archive
    Autism Speaks; LCPS Child Find; LC PRCSR; Parent Network Group for the Arc of Loudoun; LCPS Special Ed Advisory Committee; Radiant Child Yoga -- Yoga for Children with ADHA, Autism & Those Who Are Differently-Abled
  • We are not “teachers” or “therapists” – we do not have a specific curriculum!
  • Always … create an environment that is positive, supportive, and encouraging through activity and interaction
    Remember primary focus is on the children in the room not the just the content.
    “embrace chaos”. That takes practice for some people, but is so worth it when you are enjoying yourself along with the kids and families.
  • Some things are the same as a regular stoytime.
    Open Door has elements that are unique and are repeated every storytime.
  • Samples from Boardmaker software, some elements of a typical Open Door Storyime
  • Heather:
    Posted signs, preview at beginning of storytime. As completed, remove and place in “Done” envelope.
  • Sing our hello song while holding the mirror
    If children are non-verbal, parents introduce child.
  • Increase awareness of breath capacity, rhythm, and control.
    Different toys help control rate and force of breath, lip closure and tongue position affecting speech and articulation
    Hands on to feel ribcage, resistance when lying down place a beanbag or Beanie Babie; book or stuffed animal on belly. Watch it rise on inhale and lower with exhale.
    Imagery as relevant to your storytime theme.
  • The switch allows all the children to “read”. Also, provides tactile stimulation as well.
  • “games” – flannel board activities; guessing games; etc.
    Emily and John are playing the raindrops in the cloud game. Raindrop cards have pictures of different words that start the letter “R” They take turns pulling a card out of the “cloud” and saying the name of the item depicted on the card.
    Olivia & Naya are playing From Head to Toe, a commercially available game. They choose a card and complete the action depicted on the card
    You can also use flannelboard games: Little Spot so short and fat are you under the ______ mat?” Create different colored “mats.” Hide a Spot figure under one of the mats. Repeat rhyme, point to mat, children say color name, pull mat off flannelboard, continue until Spot is revealed.
  • Share adapted books…
    Dog’s Colorful Day: Children place color dots on “dog” while you read story.
    Place story figures on flannelboard
    Other examples: Where’s Spot w/velcro pieces under flaps
    From Head to Toe: Cover the body part words with transparent yellow tape and circle body part in illustration.
  • Use with songs, rhymes, or to hold during story.
  • Typically include 3 stories.
  • Examples of songs. Simple songs we can sing (piggy-back tunes)
    AND using commercial music while we sing along and move.
  • Examples of fingerplays and action rhymes
    Ten Little Dogs
    Two Little Eyes
  • Proprioception: Provides information about where our body parts are in space. Informs us about how much pressure we must exert on an object.
    Resource List -- Examples of theraband activities can be found online:
    Move to music; chants; rhythms
    Oliver Twist
    Head, Shoulders, Knees, & Toes
    There’s a Dog in the School
  • Vestibular Movement: Provides information about where our body is in space. If we are moving, or our surroundings are moving and the speed and direction of the movement.
    RESOURCE: Movement Based Learning for Children of All Abilities” by Cecilia Koester
    Many benefits:
    Increases awareness of body, awareness of self
    Improves gross and fine motor skills, coordination, balance
    Facilitates motor planning
    There are CDs available or create your own rhymes or narratives.
  • Improves attention span, the ability to sit still and concentrate. Helps removes anxiety.
    Breathe in, then touch fingertips sequentially (or tap fingertips together) and say, on each fingertip:
    “Free to be me.” Breathe. Repeat 5 times.
  • Requesting multiple copies, may repeat book from beginning of stoytime, board books
  • All children are musical. They are instinctively drawn to musical sounds and rhythm.
    Non-verbal children will frequently attempt to vocalize while playing an instrument with music.
  • Good way to transition to playtime.
  • Easel painting; play-dough; water/sand table
    Sample toys = balls, tubes, dog house, puzzles, etc.
    Parents have an opportunity to support each other.
  • Considerations – group size, funding,
  • I have formally solicited feedback twice. I used Survey Monkey, and also encouraged families to comment via email.
    I send out “registration is open” emails two weeks prior to the program.
    For the first year, I sent to everyone who ever attended or registered for the program. After the first year mark, I “weeded” the list – removed the families who had not attended in the last six months.
  • Nov 12 open door special needs storytime conversation sparks

    1. 1.  Heather Ketron Interim Branch Manager Sterling Library Loudoun County Public Library, Virginia 1
    2. 2. BACKGROUND  Autism Spectrum Disorder is estimated to affect more than 2 million individuals in the U.S. and tens of millions worldwide.  Loudoun County Public Schools – 742 students are identified as autistic.  In response, Loudoun County Public Library developed a storytime program designed for children who have developmental disorders on the autism spectrum. 2
    3. 3. BACKGROUND (2)  Autism is also known as ASD, Autism Spectrum Disorder. “A child may not have the same symptoms and may seem very different from another child with the same diagnosis. It is sometimes said, that if you know one person with autism; you know one person with autism.” Source: Autism Speaks 3
    4. 4. BACKGROUND (3) These are sensory storytimes vs. “regular” storytimes.  Includes sensory activities but this is not therapy.  4
    5. 5. BACKGROUND (4)  What do we mean when we say “sensory?”  External Tactile  Auditory  Visual  Taste & Smell   Internal Proprioception – muscles & joints  Vestibular – movement, balance, & coordination  5
    6. 6. PROGRAM RESOURCES Library collection (books and CD’s)  Local organizations & agencies  Staff!  Websites  Vendors/Suppliers  Boardmaker software  Weighted Snakes “Fidgets” 6
    7. 7. ROLE OF LIBRARY STAFF  We are supplementing, enriching , and extending children’s literacy development  We complement school instruction, we do not provide instruction, remediation, or therapy.  Our role is to facilitate and support children’s learning.  Our role is also to create a setting where children have a positive, life-enhancing experience in the library. 7
    8. 8. SOME KEYS TO SUCCESS  Positive, Supportive, Encouraging  Predictable and Structured (for the children)  Flexibility (for the staff)  FOCUS =Children vs. “teaching”  Community partnerships  The parents  Having a reasonably sized group 8
    9. 9. OPEN DOOR COMPONENTS              Books! Visual Schedule Use the same opening and closing routines Breathing Weighted lap snakes, “fidgets”, carpet squares Big Mack switch Flannel board Props Music & Rhymes Movement “Meditation” Unison Reading – “read along” Social Time 9
    10. 10. SAMPLE STORYTIME 10
    11. 11. VISUAL SCHEDULE 11
    12. 12. • • We sing the same song each storytime. Children say their names while seeing their reflection in the unbreakable mirror. 12
    13. 13. “Balloon Breath” Breathing Use “toys” •Cotton balls/pompoms/feathers/ping pong balls •Straws •Scarves •Tissue paper Use resistance: Beanie Baby or other objects on belly Use imagery: “Blow up like a balloon.” “Smell a hot cookie, blow to cool it off.” “Smell a flower, blow away a bug.” 13
    14. 14. • Parents help pass the switch. • Use a book with a repeating phrase or word. “Not by the skin of my finny fin fin!” 14
    15. 15. Rain From Head to Toe 15
    16. 16. 16
    17. 17. Props – puppets; beanie babies; inflatable animals; etc. 17
    18. 18. 18
    19. 19. Sung to : “Skip to My Lou” Fish, fish, swim up high, Fish, fish, swim down low, Fish, fish, swim so fast, Fish, fish, swim so slow. Using a song on a CD: Walking, Walking Walking, walking, walking, walking Hop, hop, hop. Hop, hop, hop Running, running, running. Running, running, running. Now let’s stop. Now let’s stop! 19
    20. 20. Two little black birds Sitting on a hill. One named Jack, One named Jill. Fly away Jack, Fly away Jill. Come back Jack, Come back Jill. Gray squirrel, gray squirrel, Swish your fluffy tail. Gray squirrel, gray squirrel, Swish your fluffy tail. Wrinkle up your little nose Hold a nut between your toes. Gray squirrel, gray squirrel, Swish your fluffy tail. 20
    21. 21. 21
    22. 22. Vestibular Movement: Simple Yoga poses 22
    23. 23. “Meditation”/Relaxation 23
    24. 24. This is a nice way to share a story. Especially for the kids who have visual impairments. They can have the book close to them so they can see the illustrations. 24
    25. 25. • • Utilizing instruments provides a way to reinforce the musical experience and help make it lots of fun! A wonderful way to express themselves non-verbally. 25
    26. 26. Our ending routine includes a “goodbye song”, a with a walk on the sensory beam and some bubble popping. 26
    27. 27. Toys, painting, coloring, books, blocks, balls, etc. 27
    28. 28. INCORPORATING SENSORY ELEMENTS INTO ANY STORYTIME Make specific items/elements a regular part of every storytime. • Use the BIGmack switch in your opening/closing song. • Reread a book in unison • Repeat a book as a flannel • Seating - Use carpet squares; rug; or Educubes • Breathing for transitions • Tactile items – cotton balls; sandpaper • Add a visual schedule • Use the sensory beam at the end of every storytime as your closing activity. If time allows, have “stay-n-play” at the end of your storytimes. Bring out the toys, puzzles, soft balls, etc. 28
    29. 29. PROGRAM FEEDBACK “I’m so glad the library is doing this for our special kids.” “What a wonderful, much needed service for our area!” “It is nice to have a place where people don’t look at us funny for the odd way my daughter behaves.” “We really enjoy coming to the library!” 29
    30. 30. Thank you!  Your Questions Contact :  30