Poland library hosts sign language camp

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Neighbors | Jessica Harker .Librarian Karen Steed discussed deaf language and culture with children gathered at the Poland library June 23.

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Neighbors | Jessica Harker .Librarian Jenni Hemphill translated for librarian Karen Steed as she talked with children gathered at the Poland library June 23 for the first day of Sign Language Camp.

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Neighbors | Jessica Harker .Librarian Karen Steed hosted a group of children at the Poland library for the annual Sign Language Camp June 23.

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Neighbors | Jessica Harker .Children gathered at the Poland library June 24 for the first day of the library's annual Sign Language Camp.

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Neighbors | Jessica Harker .Librarians Karen Steed and Jenni Hamphill, who both have a backround in deaf education, hosted a sign language camp at the Poland library starting June 23.

By JESSICA HARKER

jharker@vindy.com

Poland library hosted the annual sign language camp on June 24.

Librarians Karen Steed and Jenni Hemphill hosted the camp for school-age children.

“We have grown a lot as a camp, we have a lot of local people who are really interested,” Steed said.

Both Steed and Hemphill have a similar background in kindergarten through twelfth-grade deaf education.

Both women also are certified interpreters and full time library employees.

“I started this club over three years ago and every year it gets bigger,” Hemphill said.

During the event, Steed and Hemphill teach children the basics of sign language.

On the first day, children learn the alphabet, starting with their names.

“We have a lot of kids who are returning year after year,” Steed said. “But I also see a lot of new faces.”

Hemphill said that the group will also learn a lot about deaf culture during the camp.

“I think the program is becoming more known and recognized,” Steed said. “People are really seeing the benefits of sign language.”

She said that the library plans to grow the number of sign language programs through out the year.

For more information on upcoming programs, go to www.libraryvisit.org.

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