Paths to Literacy

for students who are blind or visually impaired

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Baby on tactile blanket
Posted by Lisa Jacobs
Tactile baby blankets are a wonderful way to encourage exploration among our youngest children who are blind or visually impaired, including those with multiple disabilities or deafblindness.  Presenting the child with a variety of tactile elements...



a young woman is sitting on a swing with a child in her lap, facing her
Posted by Wendy Miller
By TVIs Krista Papish and Wendy Miller, with support from Cindy White-Botello   How does learning occur?  While many of us do this with very little effort, for children with visual impairments and additional disabilities it is an ongoing...



Object symbols with braille of grocery items
Posted by Liamsmom
I am the mother of two sweet boys.  My oldest, Liam, is 7 years old and is deafblind.  His first language is American Sign Language.   My youngest, Finn, is 4 years old and has typical vision and hearing.  Going to the grocery store...



Gluing tactile materials onto the page of a book.
Posted by laceyjo22
As an itinerant TVI/COMS for a multi-district special education unit, it can be difficult to provide quality professional development for teachers specifically for students with visual impairments. One area that I felt was necessary to provide training for...



A young child touches a yellow flower
Posted by gwyn52
Daniel Downes, Teacher of Vision Impairments, has developed a programme called SEE (Sensory Enriched Experiences) which puts rich literacy experiences at its heart. In the first of a 3-part series, Gwyn, Director of Positive Eye writes about the importance...



Yellow duck and red ladybug
Posted by Deena Recker
Using information obtained from Christine Roman-Lantzy’s book, Cortical Visual Impairment, An Approach to Assessment and Intervention, these books are designed to help bring literacy to students who are diagnosed with or demonstrating the...



A boy holds a bowl while using tactile sign.
Posted by Liamsmom
Storyboxes are a great way to make stories come alive for our children with vision impairments.  Storyboxes are also a way to make pictures in a children's story accessible.  A story box is simply a way to use objects to represent parts of a...



A boy hugging a horse
Posted by Keveny Glynn
One of my students participated in an 11-week therapeutic riding program this fall and we wanted to find a way to incorporate literacy, communication, social interaction, and other skills.  He kept a weekly "journal" of his experience, which is...



Hands on a braille writer
Posted by Charlotte Cushman
A member of our community asked if we had any activities or resources for teaching braille mechanics to students with Cerebral Palsy (CP) or decreased tactile sensitivity.  We have included tips for both reading and writing braille. There are many...



Boy reads braille on his Christmas stocking
Posted by Charlotte Cushman
The holidays are an exciting time of year for children and there are lots of opportunities to incorporate literacy into the fun!  The ideas here include suggestions to make Christmas and Hanukkah more accessible to children with visual impairments or...



Cloth book with textures
Posted by Holly Cooper
Leer en Español.     People often wonder what to get as a gift for a child who has a visual impairment.  Every child is unique and has their own interests, preferences, and abilities, so any advice must be considered with the...



A child's hand reads braille about fall leaves
Posted by Liamsmom
It's all about the experience!  We have been using experiences to teach concepts or new ideas and vocabulary.    It is so important, especially for our children with vision impairments, to have real-life tangible experiences!...



Writing alphabet letters
Posted by Roxana Cziker
This is the first of five parts created by Low Vision Therapist, Dr. Roxana Elena Cziker, focusing on the needs of students with Cerebral Visual Impairment (CVI)   The series is designed to address challenges for children with CVI who...



An intervener and student are identifying a sink using tactile sign
Posted by Liamsmom
Taking purposeful trips to places in the community can be prove to be a motivating and meaningful way to focus on language goals.     My son, Liam, is 7 years old and happens to be deafblind. American Sign Language (ASL) is his first...



A girl participates in a science lesson using a HOPSA dress.
Posted by Kate Hurst
One of the issues often raised by instructors related to Active Learning is that it looks like “play”.  This makes it difficult to explain how the child is actually focused on the same important “work” that engages the time of...



Accessible bins in classroom
Posted by Charlotte Cushman
It’s that time of the year again!  The start of a new school year always brings a range of emotions: excitement, worry, anticipation, wistfulness to say goodbye to summer…  We hope that these ideas and resources will help to get the...



Tack-Tiles
Posted by Liamsmom
My son Liam is 7 years old and will be starting 2nd grade this school year.  He is deafblind, uses tactile American Sign Language and is a braille reader.     I love Tack-Tiles.  I have often been asked how we used Tack-Tiles...



A boy writes a letter on a braillewriter.
Posted by Liamsmom
My son Liam is 7 years old and he is deafblind.  Liam loves reading and writing braille.  I thought a great activity for summer break would be to learn about writing letters to our friends and family.  It was my hope that it would be fun and...



pictures shows student matching tactile shapes on a Velcro strip
Posted by Tracy Fitch
How many of us serve students who have both a severe visual impairment and multiple disabilities, including intellectual disabilities? How many of us have attempted literacy instruction or braille with this population of students? And, if you have, how...



Man parachuting
Posted by Kristie Smith
The other day when I was working with one of my students with multiple disabilities and a visual impairment, I heard heartbreaking words from a grieving parent, “Why are they still coming?” he asked with sadness.    Supporting...



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