Staff Site

Plan for Accessibility

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Kids of all abilities

Your community includes children who don’t read print due to physical, visual and learning disabilities. Learn more about print disabilities.

Not all print disabilities will be obvious and their effects vary. Children with print disabilities may not identify themselves to staff when they visit your library. That’s why it’s important to plan for accessibility. There are many books, Club materials and other resources that you can share with children with print disabilities so they can participate fully in the TD Summer Reading Club.

Books

Make sure kids with print disabilities know they have access to a broad selection of books. You probably have books that they may be able to read. Someone with low vision may be able to read a regular print book using a magnifier; someone with dyslexia may read a regular ebook using a text to speech reader. You may also offer formats specifically designed for accessibility such as DAISY audio or text, braille and printbraille picture books. Learn more about making reading accessible.

Depending on your location, your library may provide access to these books through the Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA) or the National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS), or both. In Quebec, CELA service is offered through the Service québécois du livre adapté (SQLA). Please call SQLA at 1-866-410-0844 to register your eligible patrons.

CELA member libraries may download or borrow copies of books to have something for children to check out on the spot. Contact members@celalibrary.ca for more information.

Large print notebook

Display your large print notebooks, which contain key pre-reader and school-age content, as well as suggestions on how to adapt activities for kids with disabilities. All libraries will receive copies in May. Families should visit the Parents’ Corner section of the TD Summer Reading Club website to find electronic versions of the notebook in e-text, audio and braille. Use the notebook to train staff and to raise awareness among your patrons that the Club is inclusive. Most importantly, give them out to families of children with print disabilities!

Adapted pre-reader notebook

Pre-reader adapted notebook, large print text (PDF)—coming soon

Pre-reader adapted notebook, large print text (Quebec) (PDF)—coming soon

Pre-reader adapted notebook, OpenDyslexic font (PDF)—coming soon

Pre-reader adapted notebook, OpenDyslexic font (Quebec) (PDF)—coming soon

Pre-reader adapted notebook, braille (BRF[FL1] )—coming soon

Pre-reader adapted notebook, braille (Quebec) (BRF)—coming soon

Pre-reader adapted notebook, audio (MP3)—coming soon

Adapted school-age notebook

School-age adapted notebook, large print text (PDF)—coming soon

School-age adapted notebook, large print text (Quebec) (PDF)—coming soon

School-age adapted notebook, OpenDyslexic font (PDF)—coming soon

School-age adapted notebook, OpenDyslexic font (Quebec) (PDF)—coming soon

School-age adapted notebook, braille (BRF)—coming soon

School-age adapted notebook, braille (Quebec) (BRF)—coming soon

School-age adapted notebook, audio (MP3)—coming soon

Libraries may request additional copies (while supplies last) by contacting CELA at members@celalibrary.ca.

Promote accessibility

Families of kids with print disabilities may not realize they can get the Club’s program materials and books in alternative formats—you need to show and tell them!

All libraries participating in the Club will receive accessible materials and outreach tools, including:

  • four large print notebooks (two pre-reader and two school-age notebooks)
  • a bilingual tent card that says "Bounce Into Accessibility!"
  • an information sheet to help staff make their TD Summer Reading Club accessible

Tips for making your library's TD Summer Reading Club accessible

This year, libraries will receive even more support in offering families accessible library services. In addition to the accessible materials and outreach tools noted above, you can access CELA’s Accessibility Tips! (coming soon).

Some common accessibility guidelines:

  • Be sure books and other items in your displays are accessible to people using mobility devices such as wheelchairs
  • Promote audio books, ebooks and braille books alongside print books
  • Make signage clear and easy to read by using larger font sizes, standard font types (not decorative) and high contrast text and background colours—for more information read CNIB's Clear Print Accessibility Guidelines
  • Inform staff about the accessible notebooks and the needs of kids with print disabilities by using the library staff email template
  • Connect with local groups who support kids with disabilities by using the community organizations email template
  • Include information about accessibility when training staff, summer students and/or volunteers by using this PowerPoint presentation—coming soon

Planning accessible programs

Think about accessibility when planning crafts, games and activities, and when you’re buying your supplies. A good guideline to help you get started is to remember the word “POD.”

Plan activities​

  • Offer instructions in larger fonts with pictures​
  • Promote events and activities in multiple formats, e.g. online, print newsletters, email and social media
  • Include tactile craft options such as feathers, foam shapes and glitter glue
  • Choose larger brushes, markers and crayons that are easier to grip for kids with physical challenges
  • Think of the five senses when planning activities and include sound, touch and smells

Observe your audience​

  • Is someone leaning forward or squinting to see the story or activity?
  • Is someone having trouble following the instructions given with the craft?
  • Does anyone seem frustrated while trying to participate in the activity?
    o   If so, ask the child, family member or caregiver how you can help.
  • Be flexible and provide options for participation (such as working in pairs or teams)

 Describe visual elements

  • Use words to describe events in a book that are only represented in the pictures

Further Assistance

For more information about print disabilities, CELA and training opportunities available for public library staff, visit celalibrary.ca.