Early Childhood Resources

Because a great deal of an infant's learning is through the visual mode, it's important to understand the effect of visual impairment on child development. Find out what types of intervention are most effective during these crucial formative years. Materials for older students can be found under the appropriate categories.

Contributing author and copy editor Danika Taylor addresses the history of the rehabilitation movement in this article from 2005's Braille Monitor.

Source: National Federation of the Blind (NFB)

Written by an Occupational Therapist (OT), this 80-page document includes an overview of CVI, and information on the evaluation and education of children with CVI.

Created by a man with deafblindness, this information site is mostly for other people who are deafblind, but includes material for family members and service providers.

The author describes her passionate advocacy for her daughter and all blind children, particularly for braille literacy.

Source: National Federation of the Blind (NFB)

This website matches job seekers with disabilities with employers in all types of work settings throughout the United States. It includes sections for those seeking jobs and for employers, as well as employment services, such as writing resumes and cover letters, career counseling, job placement, and job coaching.

ABLEDATA has a searchable datable of AT products and manufacturers, both domestic and international. The category AT Resources allows one to search for assistive technology grants and loans.

Toy evaluations by an independent nonprofit agency that fosters play for children with disabilities. The online database rates the toys for suitability for children with cognitive, physical, sensory, or communicative disabilities (searchers may combine two categories).

This NLS Factsheet describes the braille system and its history, introduces the alphabet, and includes a brief biography of Louis Braille.

Source: National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled

Some of the visual skills that need to be evaluated as part of a child's comprehensive vision examination.

Source: Optometrists Network

An overview of Sensory Processing Disorder. There are numerous links to other aspects of SPD on this site.

Source: Sensory Processing Disorder Foundation

This overview of Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) includes information about sensory-avoiding children and sensory-seeking children, as well a list of common motor skill problems. There are numerous links to other aspects of SPD on this site.

Source: Sensory Processing Disorder Foundation

Up-to-date, reliable information on the most common eye diseases and disorders; research on new treatments and diagnostic tools.

Source: Schepens Eye Research Institute

Bookmark this page for job listings, many of which ask for experience within the blindness community, or services to people with disabilities.

Source: American Council of the Blind (ACB)
  • Use contrasting equipment in bright colours where possible. Use bright colour paint to highlight the edges of equipment.
  • A set of scratch free equipment kept specifically on a tray for the child’s use, ensures access is as good as possible. Also this saves time in child collecting all the equipment and enables a prompt start to the exercise.
  • An empty tray with lip for child to work on, also makes equipment location eas-ier.
  • Equipment can be blu-tacked or taped down to the table to prevent it from be-ing tipped over.
  • Food colouring can be added to water to make it stand out in clear container.
  • Placement of a piece of coloured or white card behind the beaker can make the measurements easier to see.
  • Use models, 2D representation, adapted diagrams to explain processes and understand concepts, reinforced with verbal explanation.
  • Mark scales using large print/braille labels.
  • Use wikki stix and bump ons to make highly visible, tactile markings on scales.
  • Standard tape measures can be marked by sticking plastic strips to the scale.
  • String can be knotted at known distances apart and painted bright colours to provide a cheap measuring string.

Shared by Positive Eye

 

Access tips for Science.
Positive Eye Ltd 2009 © www.positiveeye.co.uk
 

Access World is an AFB publication with product comparisons and reviews of assistive technology for people with visual impairments; archives are fully searchable.

Source: American Foundation for the Blind

This is a catalog of audio-described videos available for purchase.

Source: Media Access Group at WGBH

A selected list of museums with exhibit consideration for people who are blind or visually impaired, such as touch-tours and multi-sensory exhibits

Source: New York Public Library

R.G. Baldwin shares ideas about making physics concepts accessible to students who are blind or visually impaired.  He is a Professor of Computer Information Technology at Austin Community College in Austin, TX and is interested in helping students with visual impairments overcome barriers when studying science.  The materials on this site are intended to supplement an introductory Physics class in high school or college.  Topics include:

  • Motion
  • Force
  • Energy
  • Angular Momentum

The site also includes information about creating tactile graphics and links to using supplemental materials, such as a graphing board, protractor, etc.

Students who are blind should not be excluded from physics courses because of inaccessible textbooks. The modules in this collection present physics concepts in a format that students with visual impairments can read using accessibility tools, such as an audio screen reader and an electronic line-by-line braille display. These modules are intended to supplement and not to replace the physics textbook.

Source: Richard Baldwin

This interactive website is full of practical ideas for hands-on lessons, resources, materials, and more. Subscribe to the blog, ask questions, and share your ideas with an online community of practice of educators interested in making science accessible to students with visual impairments.

Source: Perkins eLearning

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