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Hi there. We will be presenting to you setting the stage for sensory stories. Sensory stories are very important for children who are blind or visually impaired but they are also important for Child Development, various types of learners, and for children who have multi needs. Getting set up to present a sensory story can be as important as the story itself. First, we would like to talk about the backdrop. When you are setting up your story it is important that there be no visual clutter if possible. Here you can see Cindy is setting up her room to avoid visual clutter. The first thing she is doing is spreading out a black tablecloth. Now she is covering her colourful blouse with a black sweater. At this point Cindy is showing how to use a stand from within your home. Maybe a picture stand or your iPad stand can hold the book or the iPad that you will be using. Oh, and one last thing Cindy is removing the picture from her wall in order to once again reduce the visual clutter of her room. Second, we would like to talk about lighting. For most children, good overhead lighting will help them to see their targets best. However, for many children, it could be helpful to use a task lamp. Here, Nancy is setting up a task lamp that attaches to the stand that she found in her home. Another option is to use a lamp that stands right on the table and illuminates the book or object from the front. An important thing to remember when setting up a task lamp is to reduce glare. So, if necessary, adjust the lamp accordingly. Third, we would like to talk about the child. In order for your child to concentrate on the story and the props that will be presented, they will need to be comfortable. That includes at least two things. One, be sure they are in a position that they are secure in and does not take excessive amount of effort for them to be in. And two,  choose a good time of day when your child is rested, fed, and happy. This way they will be able to use their senses to the best of their abilities. Fourth, and finally, we would like to talk about the materials you will be using for your story. You can select a commercial book that is already in your home or you could make a sensory book for this activity, but that’s another session altogether. Here you can see Charity laying out a shoe, a mug, a pencil, toothbrush and toothpaste, some crackers in a baggie, and some cubes. For this part of setting the stage, Charity has selected the book Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten. She has also gone through the book and figured out which props she would like to use to illustrate the book. She has found these props from around her home. Be sure that these items are ready ahead of time before reading the story to your child. As you read you will be able to hand your child the different objects or perform the actions with your child in the manner that best suits the story. When you are done the story, have a container or bag that you can store the book and all the objects in so that you can read it together again very soon. Enjoy this time with your child. This is a wonderful way of having a shared experience with your child, as well as expanding their world with sensory stories.

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