ERIC Number: ED107293
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1974-Mar
Reference Count: 0
The Mentally Retarded Enjoy Libraries Too.
Illinois Libraries, Mar 74
A two-year federally funded project was designed to improve library service to the Bowen Children's Center, a State Department of Mental Health facility for the mentally retarded in Harrisburg, Illinois. The majority of the residents are 14 to 20 years of age. Visual and sound filmstrips, games, puzzles, visual and tactile materials, cassettes, and records which would interest and entertain while reinforcing skills were purchased. The book collection ranged in difficulty from touch-and-feel and manipulative books and easy books with simple pictures of everyday objects to high-interest/low-vocabulary books. Nonfiction books proved more popular than fiction. At first the library was kept open 8 hours a day, Tuesday through Saturday, and was available to residents whenever they received permission from their aides. Within 6 months an outreach program was developed where the librarian would visit children who were unable to come to the library. Volunteers were used extensively. The hope is that it has been demonstrated that a library is more than a collection of books and that the library and library staff have been accepted by the Bowen Children Center's staff and residents as a necessary and integral part of their institution. (Author/KKC)
Descriptors: Books, Childrens Games, Childrens Literature, Emotional Disturbances, Exceptional Persons, Handicapped Children, Institutional Libraries, Institutionalized Persons, Library Acquisition, Library Collections, Library Material Selection, Library Planning, Library Services, Media Selection, Mental Retardation, Mild Mental Retardation, Moderate Mental Retardation, Special Libraries, Volunteers
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Bowen (A.L.) Children's Center, Harrisburg, IL.