Blind and Visually Impaired By Alaina Larson
BLIND - WHAT IS IT??? • Blindness is the condition of lacking visual perception due to physiological or neurological factors. • Visual perception is the ability to interpret information and surroundings from visible light reaching the eye is a medical specialty dealing with disorders of the nervous system. • Neurology is a medical specialty dealing with disorders of the nervous system.
WHAT IS VISUALLY IMPAIRED • "Visually impaired" means a medically verified visual impairment accompanied by limitations in sight that interfere with acquiring information or interaction with the environment to the extent that special education instruction and related services may be needed.
Causes of Blindness or Visually Impaired • cataracts (47.9%), • glaucoma (12.3%), • age-related macular degeneration (8.7%), • corneal opacity (5.1%), and • diabetic retinopathy (4.8%), among other causes • Abnormalities and injuries • Genetic defects such as Albinsm
WHAT IS ALBINSM • Lack of pigment, sensitive to exposure to sun, eyes sensitive to light and reflections
Retinal Detachment • Parts of the retina pulls away from the eye structure
FACTS ABOUT BLINDNESS • Every seven minutes someone in America loses their sight, often as part of the aging process. • There are an estimated 15 million blind or visually impaired people in the United States. Nationally, among persons ages 21 to 64 who are visually impaired, only 41.5% are employed. • Among individuals unable to see words and letters, this figure decreases to 29.9%. • Visually impaired is defined as any difficulty or inability to see words and letters even when wearing glasses or contact lenses.
How Many Blind or Visually Impaired People Are There? • Twenty-one percent of people age 65 and over report some form of vision impairment. This represents 7.3 million people. • There are 15 million blind and visually impaired people in the United States, according to Research to Prevent Blindness.
What Is Legally Blind? • Formally, a person is legally blind if their central vision acuity is 20/200 or less in the better eye, even with corrective lenses; or if they have central vision acuity of more than 20/200 if the peripheral field is restricted to a diameter of 20 degrees or less. Informally, those who, even with corrective lenses, cannot read the biggest letter on an eye chart are considered to be legally blind.
Who Typically Becomes Blind? • Vision problems affect one in 20 (nearly 5 million) preschool-age children, ages 3-5, and 25 percent (12.1 million) of school-age children, ages 6-17. • Seventy percent of severely visually impaired persons are age 65 or older. Fifty percent of that group are legally blind.
Safety Concerns for Blind of Visually Impaired Students in Physical Education • If students wear glasses, consider having them wear eyeglass protectors during activities using balls. • Assign a peer to provide protection during ball activities. • When possible, replace hard balls with Nerf balls. • When changing the environment, take time to show the student where the equipment is, what it is used for, and how it feels. • When locomotor movements use a scattered formation.
Accommodations in Physical Education Class • Many students who are blind want to participate in the same activities as their peers. • Give explicit feedback regarding the student’s movement pattern. • Verbal cues and physical guidance will help with success. • Physically assist the student through the motor learning pattern. • Use tactile or auditory boundaries (beeper cones, bright colored cones, music, and mark floor with tape so student can feel with his toes or hands.
Special Equipment for Physical Education • Attach a string to balls and to the student’s hand so that balls don’t roll away. • Students who are blind can throw the ball , then retrieve it by pulling the string toward them. • Use a guide rope or beeper cones when running. • Put bells or beepers inside of balls when appropriate. • Dangle crepe paper as reference points throughout the gym.
Disability Organizations • American Council of the Blind 1155 15th Street NW, Suite 1004, Washington, DC 20005 Phone: 800-424-8666; 202-467-5087 http://www.acb.org Email: email@example.com • National Federation of the Blind 1800 Johnson Street, Baltimore, MD 21230 Phone: 410-659-9314 http://www.nfb.org Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sport and Recreational Sites • The National Beep Baseball Association 5568 Boulder Crest Street, Columbus, OH 43235 Phone: 614-442-1444 http://www.nbba.org Email: email@example.com • United States Association of Blind Athletes 33 North Institute Street, Colorado Springs, CO 80903 Phone: 719-630-0616 http://usaba.org Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bibliography • Braille Institute, http://brailleinstitute.org/docs/Facts_About_Blindness.pdf • National Beep Ball Association,http://www.nbba.org/ • Worthen, Ben(August 18, 2009). In Beep Ball, Umpires Aren't Blind, But the Players Are. Wall Street Journal. • American Foundation for the Blind, http://www.afb.org/