On October 15, 1964, White Cane Day became a national observation in the United States to celebrate the achievements of people who are blind or visually impaired. White Cane Day also brings awareness to motorists to identify and yield to people using a white cane or guide dog.
So, what do students think about the white cane? Jessica McDowell, TVI and O&M, shared that she recently gave a first grader a long cane and the student's response was, "This is amazing!" This inspired Jessica to write the following poem:
My White Cane
This is my cane and it’s my trusted friend.
From the strap on the top to the tip on the end.
I take it with me when I start my day.
I use it to find things that are in my way.
Tap! I found a pole and I go around,
Moving my cane smoothly to scan the ground.
Whoops! What’s that? I stop in my tracks.
Oh! I just found some really big cracks.
I can step carefully I don’t want to fall.
With my cane in hand, I’m walking tall.
Hey! Did I just find something new?
The cane tip went down, I think that’s a clue,
Oh, there’s a curb but no big deal,
I know it’s there, I know by feel.
So it’s a happy white cane day!
And we’ll have many more,
My white cane and I
are off to explore!
The White Cane poem is attached as a Word document. You can use this poem as a reading activity, as content to teach tech skills such as learning the screen reader commands to navigate to and open the document, read and pause commands, or to increase reading/listening speeds!
To Make a Swell Graphic with Large Print/Braille
Activity created and shared by Jessica McDowell.
- Pring page 3 cane only in color on swell paper.
- Run through Swell Machine.
- Put it through the printer again and print page 2 the large print labels (or just write the large print labels directly on the page)
- Create Braille labels using a Perkins Brailler and add to the page.
Looking for more ways to celebrate White Cane Day? Try these cane songs!