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Signing Story Time

June 4, 2015
Audience
Children / Family
Budget
$51-100
Advance Planning

A recent survey in town revealed that parents are interested in early education classes. Sign language for toddlers and children has become extremely popular since the television show "Signing Time!" was launched in 2006. The library provides regular storytimes, but when a local parent offered to teach a pre-school signing class, we knew it was a great idea. Participants called to register in advance.

Marketing

The program was promoted in-house with posters and in the library's event newsletter. It was also publicized in local newspapers, the Suffield Chamber of Commerce website, the town community events online postings, the library's email alert, Facebook and library website.

Budget Details

The budget was spent on the instructor, Corinne Walters.

Day-of-event Activity

Set-up was easy. Chairs were set out for the adults and cushions for the kids, who sat on the floor. The children tried the signs as the instructor demonstrated them throughout the story. After the reading, kids came together for a hands-on craft. A staff member was present to oversee the program. 

Program Execution

The feedback was very positive, and we plan to repeat the program. Our only problem was that we lacked sufficient space for the program because our library is being renovated. We had to limit participants to 20.

Advice

We highly recommend the program. Many communities have access to a person who can teach sign language, but the instructor should also be able to work with young children.

Short Title
Signing Story Time

Signing Story Time brings preschool-aged children together to listen to a story and learn rudimentary sign language with their caregiver in a four-week session. American Sign Language can help nonverbal toddlers communicate more effectively and improve language and literacy skills in preschool-aged children. It is very important for young children to be introduced to sign language and made aware of the richness of the deaf culture. Sign language is also a good way for young children to communicate. After the story, tots come together to make crafts. 

Summary

Kent (Conn.) Memorial Library teaches sign language to toddlers through storytime.