Creative Communities - BC Library Conference 2015
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Thursday, May 21 • 9:15am - 10:30am
T04 - American Sign Language / English Bilingual Family Storytime LIMITED

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Limited Capacity seats available

Research reveals that children who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing (HOH) are more likely to struggle with reading than their age peers who can hear. Children in Deaf/HOH families may need alternate, multimodal routes to literacy in their early years, yet many librarians do not know how to best support them. This session explores a family storytime model designed in partnership with Family and Community Services and Provincial Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services at the Ministry of Children and Family Development. In this model - piloted at Vancouver Public Library and recently introduced at Burnaby Public Library - stories, songs and rhymes are simultaneously presented in ASL and English. The program is lead by a Deaf storyteller from Family and Community Services and a children's librarian, along with two sign language interpreters. It celebrates linguistic and cultural diversity, and is inclusive of Deaf, Hard of Hearing and hearing families. This session will provide attendees with a compelling rationale for ASL/English storytimes, as well as practical how-tos for implementation in your own communities. We will include a demonstration with visual props, a slide show of actual programs, and handouts of sample program plans. Attendees will also have the opportunity to learn some ASL rhymes that can immediately be integrated into all kinds of storytime programs. The session will be presented in both English and American Sign Language.


Alayna Finley

Alayna Finley works as a family literacy specialist with Family Community Services Provincial Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services and has returned to school for graduate studies in Deaf Education. She recently took part in specialized parent-infant training at Gallaudet University... Read More →

Tess Prendergast

Tess Prendergast is a children's librarian at Vancouver Public Library Central Children’s Library. She has recently collaborated on several program models that respond to the early literacy needs of children with developmental differences in library settings. Tess is also completing... Read More →

Randi Robin

Randi Robin is a children’s librarian at Burnaby Public Library, where she co-leads storytimes in ASL and English. Working in a linguistically diverse community, she has a keen interest in cross-cultural understanding, and is grateful to the Deaf parents who’ve shared their language... Read More →


Thursday May 21, 2015 9:15am - 10:30am PDT
Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel, Westminster Ballroom 1 7551 Westminster Highway, Richmond, BC
  • Sponsored by: Vancouver Public Library