What's new

Date: 
Friday, 10 June, 2016

Friday June 10th marks the launch of an Autism Friendly Libraries training film for library staff. Following research showing that more than 9 in 10 people with autism would use their library more if some autism friendly adjustments were made, the Association of Senior Children’s and Education Librarians (ASCEL) is to offer training and support to all 3000 of the nation’s public libraries.

The research, conducted by social care organisation Dimensions, showed that whilst people with autism are already more likely than other people to use a library, a few changes could lead to 92% increasing their use of their local library. 

The film commissioned by ASCEL and developed by Dimensions and accompanied by fact sheets, signage and social stories, has been made possible thanks to public funding by Arts Council England. It will receive its first screening today at the Society of Chief Librarians annual seminar in Warwickshire.

View the training film

 

There are a range of support documents to download:

*NEW* 

  • Solihull Libraries  have been working with Autism West Midlands (AWM) to create a Google Earth style walk through of Chelmsley Wood Library. AWM worked with the managers in Chelmsley Wood to set-up autism friendly drop-in sessions and commissioned a filmmaker to create a walk through from the library entrance to all public areas of the library to help people with autism pre-visit the library and know what to see and where to go. There is a link to the walk through from the Library’s web page. (04/07/2016)
  • Social Story for the Big Friendly Read  A Word document that can be adapted for your library. (30/6/2016)

 Autism Friendly Libraries Sharing Good Practice

 

Full press release

 

With thanks to our partners Dimensions who worked so hard to create the film and supporting documents;  Arts Council England for making funding available; to Essex Libraries and Coventry Libraries for providing film venues; to all library services who shared their good practice with us; to the Society of Chief Librarians for their support and to the four young people and their families for giving us their time and sharing their thoughts.

Dimensions website

Date: 
Thursday, 26 May, 2016

Philip Ardagh has written an open letter to Simon Cowell in response to his comments that the books he is reading to his son are “quite boring”. Philip said “A good librarian can point you in the direction of some amazing books for your son. There really are some wonderful children’s books waiting to be shared, and a professional librarian can help you access them”. 

ASCEL never can resist a challenge and we’ve enlisted librarians across the country to provide a list of stories which have been tried, tested and loved by two year olds.

We love to see dads sharing books with their young children. Books for two year olds need to be immediately appealing. They also need to offer reassurance and familiarity, as well as new experiences. They should feature strong, memorable characters to help children build their emotional skills and support speech and language development. Above all they should be fun for children and their parents.
 
We hope Simon and Eric enjoy some of the great books in this list –available of course -from local libraries.

Sarah Mears
Chair ASCEL: The Association of Senior Children’s and Education Librarians

Books to read with a two year old

Philip Ardagh's original letter 

Date: 
Monday, 25 April, 2016

ASCEL welcomes the Cultural Education Challenge. We believe a coherent wrap-around cultural education offer that connects schools and communities and links them with arts and cultural organisations will ignite curiosity, remove barriers, and enable children and young children to pursue their dreams.

The Cultural Education Challenge is the Arts Council's call for the art, culture and education sectors to work together in offering a consistent, and high quality, art and cultural education for all children and young people.

Download full ASCEL statement

ACE Cultural Education Challenge

Date: 
Monday, 18 April, 2016

During the last year we’ve been working with Arts Council England to identify the library journey children should experience from the time they are born onwards. We’ve identified key points in the journey where public libraries should have some kind of special offer to children - for example Rhymes Times for the under-fives, Summer Reading Challenge for primary age children.  One of the areas that we have not tackled nationally is the pre-natal time - and engaging with parents to be around the importance of sharing books with tiny babies, singing to your bump etc. These are the presentations and notes from the one day workshop held on 21 March 2016, aiming to discuss and help shape the library offer to parents-to-be.

Our next steps are to draw together all  the thoughts from the day and make some recommendations about how we develop the offer for the first stage of the journey.

 

Kate Freeman Lead Communication Advisor for Early Development, ICAN - the children’s communication charity. Engaging with children and parents pre-birth

Kelly Walsh, Head of Research, Booktrust. Bookstart Bump

Katherine Hodges, Digital Lead, Baby Buddy App, Team Best Beginnings. Baby Buddy app 

Margaret Street, Early Years Librarian, Hertfordshire Libraries. Case Study: Black and white book-making 

Annabel Gittins, Library Commissioning Manager for Children and Young People, Shropshire Libraries. Case Study: Baby Shower

Notes from discussion sessions

Further information from Bookstart:

Bookstart Bump case studies

Bookstart bump evaluation executive summary

Bookstart Bump Research handout

Brain Development Review, executive summary

Saloni Krishnan Presentation

 

Date: 
Tuesday, 12 April, 2016

Public libraries across England are today launching a scheme to support them with expert endorsed books available to borrow for free.

Reading Well for young people is part of the hugely successful Reading Well Books on Prescription scheme and will provide 13-18 year-olds with high-quality information, support and advice on a wide-range of mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, eating disorders and self-harm, and difficult life pressures, like bullying and exams.

Download the resource pack  from The Reading Agency website

Further details from the Reading Agency

Date: 
Saturday, 2 April, 2016

Today is not only World Autism Awareness Day but also International Children’s Book Day. And following research showing that more than 9 in 10 people with autism would use their library more if some autism friendly adjustments were made, the Association of Senior Children’s and Education Librarians (ASCEL) is to offer training and support to all 3000 of the nation’s public libraries.

The research, conducted by social care organisation Dimensions, showed that whilst people with autism are already more likely than other people to use a library, a few changes could lead to 92% increasing their use of their local library.

Lisa Hopkins, Managing Director of Dimensions, said, “Dimensions already works in partnership with the UK’s 4 major cinema chains to offer autism friendly cinema screenings every month and we are delighted to be able to extend our expertise to the libraries network through the partnership which we are announcing today.”

Sarah Mears, Chair of ASCEL, said, “Libraries are at the heart of our communities and I am deeply proud that this initiative will encourage individual libraries to help more people to visit by adopting autism friendly approaches.”

The project, which was supported using public funding by Arts Council England, will lead to a training video for librarians, fact sheets, signage and social stories. The training will be launched at the Society of Chief Librarians seminar in June.

Hopkins added, “The research told us clearly that the major barrier is awareness of autism, amongst library staff and library users alike. Respondents didn’t want much: a little kindness, to be not judged, and for a few simple adaptations to allow for sensory sensitivities. All parts of the community could learn something from that.”

Download full press release

ENDS

Notes to the Editor

For more information, interviews, and case studies contact Duncan Bell, PR Manager at Dimensions, on (e) Duncan.bell@dimensions-uk.org (t) 0300 303 9062 or (m) 07506 663 793.

Dimensions is a specialist provider of a wide range of services for people with learning disabilities and people who experience autism. We are a not-for-profit organisation, supporting around 3,500 people and their families throughout England and Wales.

We have been providing support packages for families for almost 40 years. We offer a range of support services to adults of all ages, including those with complex needs or challenging behaviour. We enable people to be part of their community and make their own choices and decisions about their lives.

We are proud to be a not-for-profit organisation, not here for commercial gain. This means we're able to invest all our efforts and resources into helping us achieve person-centred processes with positive outcomes for everyone we work with.

Date: 
Wednesday, 23 March, 2016

ASCEL and the Schools Library Services UK will be exhibiting at Peters Books, Love Literacy 2016.  Please come and see the full range of value for money resources and services that Schools Library Services across the country can offer.

Love Literacy 2016         #/loveliteracy2016

Downloadable SLS resources

Your School Library

Reading Skills

Curriculum Resources

Digital Information Skills

Aretfact Resources

SLS Bookmark

Date: 
Friday, 11 March, 2016

 

ASCEL and the Schools Library Services UK will be exhibiting at the Education Show.  Please come and visit Stand B89 to see the full range of value for money resources and services that Schools Library Services across the country can offer.     Education Show website

Downloadable Schools Library Services leaflets and information

Your School Library
Reading for Pleasure

Curriculum Resources
Digital Information Skills

Aretfact Resources
SLS Bookmark

 

Date: 
Wednesday, 3 February, 2016

Join us to shape and develop the library offer for parents-to-be

During the last year we’ve been working with Arts Council England to identify the library journey children should experience from the time they are born onwards. We’ve identified key points in the journey where public libraries should have some kind of special offer to children - for example Rhymes Times for the under-fives, Summer Reading Challenge for primary age children.

One of the areas that we have not tackled nationally is the pre-natal time - and engaging with parents to be around the importance of sharing books with tiny babies, singing to your bump etc. 

We think there is a lot we could do, so join us on 21st March at our free, one-day workshop to shape and develop the library offer for parents-to-be.

Programme

Date: 21/03/2016

Location: CILIP, 7 Ridgmount Street, London WC1E 7AE

This event is open to open to all library staff who have experience of managing children’s library services. Contact Sarah Gregory for booking information.

The event is now fully booked, but we are keeping a waiting list if you wish to be added.

Date: 
Monday, 1 February, 2016

To celebrate National Libraries Day 2016, the ASCEL committee have chosen their favourite books about libraries, old and new!

NLD ASCEL Booklist

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