Props, toys and tactile objects will help children process the information being presented.Photo courtesy St. Louis County Library.
St. Louis County Library will launch a new program this month designed to provide a soothing environment for children on the autism spectrum and those with other multi-sensory needs.
Sensory Story Time, geared to children ages 3-9, will be offered at 6:30 p.m. at Library Headquarters on the first and third Monday of the month beginning Feb. 6, and at 6:30 p.m. at the Weber Road Branch on the second and fourth Monday of the month beginning Jan. 9.
The program will use props, toys and tactile objects to help children process the information being presented. The library will also provide noise canceling head phones and blue light covers to reduce sensory stimulation.
The program is designed to help make the library a welcoming place for the growing number of children who are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. SLCL reports that according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of kids diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder has increased from 1 in 80 kids in 2010 to 1 in 45 kids in 2015.
“We want our library to be more welcoming, inclusive, and comfortable for all of our patrons,” said Sandy Anderson, SLCL’s early literacy coordinator. “Sensory Story Time allows the library to work with families that might not attend library story times otherwise.”
For more information or to register for the program, call 314-994-3300 or visit slcl.org.