Hca Aspergers2

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Libraries: A Winning Place for Kids with Aspergers:

Libraries: A Winning Place for Kids with Aspergers Heather C. Barlow

Libraries: An Underutilized Opportunity for AS:

Libraries: An Underutilized Opportunity for AS A good book is the best of friends. 
- English Proverb

Libraries: An Underutilized Opportunity for AS (cont’d.):

Libraries: An Underutilized Opportunity for AS ( cont’d.)

Asperger’s Syndrome:

Asperger’s Syndrome Asperger’s Syndrome (AS): Broad spectrum psychological disorder Difficulty with social interaction Fidgety behavior Literal thinking leading to social problems Difficulty reading emotions can translate to “trouble making” behavior Frustration with stimuli Hans Asperger, MD

Library environments: well-suited for kids with AS:

Library environments: well -suited for kids with AS Windows and natural light (Farmer et al., 2008) Low stimuli and noise Predictability Regular schedules, immutable layout, low employee turnover

Library environments: well-suited for kids with AS:

Library environments: well -suited for kids with AS People with AS often would rather read than interact Reading carrels provide seclusion Categorizing and linear organization of information is pleasing to people with AS

Library as a Resource for Families coping with Asperger’s Syndrome:

Library as a Resource for Families coping with Asperger’s Syndrome Librarians are educators Know best practices with challenged kids Libraries contain references, books, and materials on AS to help families (Jordon, 2010) Many libraries have special programs for kids with AS Separate reading and story hours Picture cards for clarity, content repetition

Gaming in Libraries:

Gaming in Libraries Gaming centers are increasingly common in today’s libraries Xbox, PC, role playing, multiplayer, avatars Provides practice and simulation of social interaction (e.g., avatars) Kids with AS excel at computer games leading to a sense of pride (Moore et al., 2005) Facilitates structured interaction with other children

Library Employment Opportunities:

Library Employment Opportunities Most libraries have volunteer opportunities for AS teenagers High number of AS employees compared to other professions Ability to focus intensely on a specific subjects Opportunity for solitary work and predictable tasks Favorable physical environment (Crewdon, 2006)

Conclusions:

Conclusions L ibraries are well -suited for educating and serving children with Asperger’s Syndrome F our components that contribute to the success of AS children in the library: a static physical environment with low stimuli special programs and reference sections on AS gaming, which helps simulate social interactions volunteer and career opportunities appropriate for persons with AS Future research quantifying the impact of the factors may reveal the importance of libraries in the lives of families struggling with Asperger’s Syndrome

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