Paths to Literacy

for students who are blind or visually impaired

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Multiple Disabilities

Two young girls outside holding hands
Posted by Debra Goodsir
I’m a TVI in NSW, Australia, and started working with a girl named Sarah halfway through her first year of Kindergarten. She is in a regular class with a class teacher and a wonderful teacher aid, Leanne Prior, who has been working with her since...



Two boys hanging ornaments on Christmas tree
Posted by Liamsmom
I am a mother of two sweet boys.  My oldest, Liam, is 6 years old.  He is deafblind.  My youngest, Finn, is 3 years old.  He has typical vision and hearing.  I really look forward to the Christmas season.  I enjoy finding...



Noisy items
Posted by Charlotte Cushman
The holidays present a challenge each year to families and friends who wish to give presents to children who are blind or visually impaired, especially if they are very young or have deafblindness or multiple disabilities.  You want it to be FUN and...



A boy with glasses holds his hands over his ears
Posted by Peg Palmer
Recently I had yet another conversation with a distraught parent from another state, who was upset that her child who has cortical visual impairment (CVI) was not being included in the story/circle time at preschool. “He doesn’t need to see the...



Young girl uses a switch while looking at the computer
Posted by Jbrown
Write accurate information It is critical that when you are writing about the student’s medical condition(s) that you are accurate and reliable.  Refrain from copying from last year’s report or IEP.  Errors could be in the previous...



Braille tracking sheet
Posted by elsierao
Struggling braille readers may easily become frustrated or discouraged, so it's critical to find ways to ensure success whenever possible.  Here are some strategies to promote tactile skills with struggling braille readers: Implement a...



A child scoops the seeds out of a pumpkin
Posted by Megan Mogan
Around 4 pm every day, something wonderful happens to me.  I get to reunite with my 3 children after school/work and find out how their days went.  I get to hear about spelling tests, lunchbox trades, science experiments, and playground drama....



Braille Tracking sheet and Feely Meely
Posted by Mary McCarthy
I am currently working with a child who has decreased sensitivity. Below are a few suggestions. I try to keep each activity to five minutes or less and provide lots of praise.   First I had the OT do a sensitivity test and she was able to...



Adult seated with child on Resonance Board
Posted by Kate Hurst
One of the least flashy pieces of equipment or “perceptualizing aids” created by Dr. Lilli Nielsen is the Resonance Board.  For all of its lack of flash, in my opinion it is one of the most valuable and versatile pieces of equipment ever...



Clifford the Big Red Dog against black background
Posted by Diane Sheline
Children with cortical visual impairment (CVI) present a unique challenge to educators and families, and many wonder what the impact is on the development of literacy skills.  The information presented here is designed to be an overview of some of the...



Dollar bills
Posted by Lisa Pruner
By Lisa Pruner and Catherine Summ, State of Connecticut, DORS-Bureau of Education and Services for the Blind, Windsor, CT   Over the past few years, we have created a collection of literacy skills kits for children with blindness or...



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...



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