As part of our on-going coverage of National Literacy Month, we're talking about ways to engage our kids with autism in literacy. Today we'd like to give a shout-out to some of the programs and funding being offered to support making public libraries inclusive for every child and every family:

Autism Programs and Libraries

Here in Illinois, the Institute of Museum and Library Sciences awarded the Illinois State Library a $100,000 grant to host two forums focused on increasing autism programming and training. The second forum is coming up in Spring 2016.

Libraries and Autism is a website that offers printable resources and training opportunities for libraries. In addition, they just opened up a grant opportunity for library programs and services to receive up to $5000 towards autism programming. Applications due by December 1 – apply here!

Project PALS

Project PALS, an effort being led through Florida State University, has developed a training specific for librarians and educators. The training consists of 4 self-paced modules that cover topics ranging from making the library environment autism friendly to using technology with individuals with ASD.

Sensory Storytime Programs

With more libraries developing their own autism-friendly programming, we've seen Sensory Storytime programs popping up across the country. For some ideas on how to get your own sensory program started, check out this tip sheet from Tulsa City-County Library.

And, of course, we're advocating for adapting books to meet the needs and being engaging for all learners! Be sure to check out our blog series for tips and ideas on how to create your own interactive books or attend one of our upcoming trainings!

What other tips or programs do you know that should be shared?!

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