Speaker: Susan Ostrowski, Co-Founder, Reading2Connect
In this talk, we shake up conventional notions about what it means to read and what adult text should look like. We outline practical, feasible ways to melt away the barriers to reading that many elders encounter, reviving their preserved, latent reading skills. We will view and analyze videos of people living with dementia independently interacting with books and sharing the reading experience with their peers.
With accessible, meaningful reading, we see long-term care residents exercising agency and initiation, demonstrating creativity and imagination, and connecting authentically with others, all without staff assistance.
Susan Ostrowski holds master’s degrees in remedial reading and in speech pathology from Columbia University. With a deep concern for the unmet socialemotional needs of older adults and a passion for innovation, Susan co-created an organization called Reading2Connect®. Reading2Connect’s mission is to bring back the joy of leisurely reading to adults living with dementia.
Susan is an active speaker on the topic of reading and dementia, presenting at a variety of events and conferences. She has contributed to multiple publications, including the American Speech and Hearing Association Perspectives Journal and the Thieme Medical Publishers Communication Sciences Case Study Textbook. She is the 2020 recipient of the American Speech and Hearing Association Recent Clinical Achievement Award and a 2021 Mather Institute “Promising Practices” Award Winner.