By Robert Cummings Rachel DeSpain Luella Christian How to teach Blind Students
How does the world look to the blind? Macular Degeneration Detached Retina Normal Vision Shrinkage Cataracts
Facts about Blind Children • 10% of all Blind children can read Braille • 1.5 Million Children in the world sufferer from visual impairment. • Estimated that 500,000 new cases of child blindness occur every year. That is a new case every 1.5 minutes. • 50% of blind children die with in 2 years of loosing their sight.
Audio and Visual Technology • Software and accessories benefitting visually impaired individuals allows them to have full access to today's technologies. • There is a large variety of customizable assistive technologies available for individuals with visual impairments to meet their special needs with audio technologies and visual software.
Audio Assistive Technology • Reading Machines: • Cd/MP3 Players • Plays "Talking Books" • Plays music Cds • Cost $230 • Desktop • Scanner like document readers • $2300-$3500 • Portable • Reading Pen $170 • Mobile Phone reader $1600
Audio Assistive Technology • Software • Talking Typing Tutor • $100 • Firefox add-on called “LowBrowse” • Free • Allows people to view original web pages as the author intended, but tailored to the visually impaired needs. • Thunder • Screen reader talking software • Free • http://www.screenreader.net
Audio Assistive Technology • Audio Books • Reading for the Blind and Dyslexic • Website has access to download audio books. • Membership Fees start at $100 • National Library Service for Blind and Physically handicapped • Network of state libraries offering free audio materials (books and magazines ) to eligible persons. • Kidz Zone offers materials for pre-K thru 8th grade • West Florida Public Library participates in the program.
Visual Software & Products • Laz Light • Created by Ronald Lazarus • 700 Candle Power • Glare Free • 10ft long Cord • $239 +S/h and Tax for Florida Residents • Replacement bulb $12
Visual Software & Products • Screen Magnification • MAGic 10.0 Professional • $395 • Maxim Eyes Video Magnifier • Uses a Pen Tracker which reads words automatically • $3,495
Visual Software & Products • Small Talk Ultra 02 • Based on the worlds smallest uPC (ultra personal computer) • Full featured talking Microsoft Window Vistia • $2,595 • All-in-One Board • Magnetic, Velcro, and dry erase • Can also be used for all ages • $145
Visual Software & Products • Braille Keytop Stick Ons • Doubles the size of keys on keyboard • $21.95
What is Braille? • Braille is a primary medium of reading and writing for people who are blind or have low vision. • Braille. Blind children who are familiarized with the Braille system at a young age will often become proficient in this style of reading. • Two types of Braille Fully typed out Abbreviated Figure 1: The word "braille" in Grade 1 braille. Figure 2: "brl" in Grade 2 braille.
Who invited Braille? Louis Braille • Lost vision at age 4 (1813) • Invented Braille at 15 (1824)
Production Methods for Braille • Commercial Produced • Books • Textbooks • Instructional Manuals • Test • Fiction and Non-fiction
Production Methods for Braille • Student Produced • Perkins Brailler • $715 • Allows students to type their work in Braille • Braille Slates • $24-6.95
Production Methods for Braille • Teacher Produced • Printer for Brailler • Can be connected to a computer that has the software for printing Braille • Small volume $1,800-5,000 • High volume $10,000-$80,000
Teaching Methods • 1. Be more verbal. Verbal description will help the child interpret what is going on in the classroom. • Use names when calling on children. • Explain your routine a bit to help the blind child interpret situations which he/she cannot see. "I'm so glad you're all being quiet as I get the snack ready.“ • Explain your routine a bit to help the blind child interpret situations which he/she cannot see. "I'm so glad you're all being quiet as I get the snack ready."
Teaching Methods • 2. Help the child learn the workings of the classroom. Blind children in the early grades, like all children, have much to learn about classroom routine. You may need to teach the child: • to focus on the teacher • when and where to move in the classroom • how to determine what others in the room are doing; and • to work at an appropriate pace (please see the section on pace at the end of this list).
Teaching Methods • 3. Organize the child's desk area and materials storage area for maximum independence. • 4. Adapt materials or parts of the lesson when necessary. • 5. Provide hands-on opportunities. These will make experiences more meaningful for the blind child. Use tactile 3d models.
Teaching Methods • 6. Model movements for songs, fingerplays, etc. that you want the whole class to learn by moving the blind child through the motions. Sighted children get the benefit of watching and the blind child can learn by experiencing his/her own movement. • An example is Beep Baseball • http://www.wral.com/news/local/video/3285603/
Teaching Methods • 7. Offer information instead of help. Instead of getting an object for the child, for example, give the child a chance to find it by describing its size, shape, and location. Then give the child enough time to explore and correct mistakes before you give more prompts.
Teaching Methods • 8. Understand and respect the skills of blindness. Learn the general sequence of the skills, provide opportunities in the class for the child to practice, and offer appropriate support as the child is working toward mastery. • Braille reading and writing is the equivalent of print reading and writing. • Information can be reliably perceived through the sense of touch. • The blind child should be moving about more and more independently as time goes on using orientation and mobility skills. • The child will learn to use sound, memory, mental mapping, and various special tools and will learn to ask for information when needed.
FLORIDA'S RESPONSE TO THE 2004 NATIONAL AGENDA • Goal 1: Referral Students and their families will be referred to an appropriate education program within 30 days of identification of a suspected visual impairment. Teachers of students with visual impairments and orientation and mobility (O&M) instructors will provide appropriate quality services.
FLORIDA'S RESPONSE TO THE 2004 NATIONAL AGENDA • Goal 2: Parent Participation Policies and procedures will be implemented to ensure the right of all parents to full participation and equal partnership in the education process.
FLORIDA'S RESPONSE TO THE 2004 NATIONAL AGENDA • Goal 3: Personnel Preparation Universities with a minimum of one full-time faculty member in the area of visual impairments will prepare a sufficient number of teachers and orientation and mobility (O&M) specialists for students with visual impairments to meet personnel needs throughout the country.
FLORIDA'S RESPONSE TO THE 2004 NATIONAL AGENDA • Goal 4: Provision of Educational Services Caseloads will be determined based on the assessed needs of students.
FLORIDA'S RESPONSE TO THE 2004 NATIONAL AGENDA • Goal 5: Array of Services Local education programs will ensure that all students have access to a full array of service delivery options.
FLORIDA'S RESPONSE TO THE 2004 NATIONAL AGENDA • Goal 6: Assessment All assessments and evaluations of students will be conducted by or in partnership with personnel having expertise in the education of students with visual impairments and their parents.
FLORIDA'S RESPONSE TO THE 2004 NATIONAL AGENDA • Goal 7: Access to Instructional Materials Access to developmental and educational services will include an assurance that textbooks and instructional materials are available to students in the appropriate media and at the same time as their sighted peers.
FLORIDA'S RESPONSE TO THE 2004 NATIONAL AGENDA • Goal 8: Expanded Core Curriculum All educational goals and instruction will address the academic and expanded core curricula based on the assessed needs of each student with visual impairments.
FLORIDA'S RESPONSE TO THE 2004 NATIONAL AGENDA • Goal 9: Transition Services Transition services will address developmental and educational needs (birth through high school) to assist students and their families in setting goals and implementing strategies through the life continuum commensurate with students’ aptitudes, interests, and abilities.
FLORIDA'S RESPONSE TO THE 2004 NATIONAL AGENDA • Goal 10: Ongoing Professional Development To improve students’ learning, service providers will engage in on-going local, state, and national professional development.
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