Paths to Literacy

for students who are blind or visually impaired

Blog Posts

Below are recently created blog posts.



By Daniela Gissara
This article is designed to help educators to plan strategies and accommodations to improve visual access to the environment for students with Low Vision.  Please note that this is an excerpt from a longer article on Low Vision.   Download the full...



Child doing Downward Dog Pose
By maloneyk
There has been a lot of talk about yoga lately. Many people tout the benefits of yoga, including improved energy levels, cardiovascular health, and increased flexibility. While the general public has seen dramatic results from incorporating yoga into their...



Hand reading braille
By David Pruitt
When people think dyslexia, they think vision problems.  Dyslexics see letters and numbers backwards if they can read at all.  That’s the common thought, but only one aspect of dyslexia.  Dyslexia is a reading disorder, not a seeing...



A second grade girl using a colored marker
By PennyR
Parents often wonder if their child who has a significant visual impairment should learn braille, print, or both literacy media at the same time.  They also question what role audio materials (e.g., books on CDs or downloaded to a special device) should...



Homework from a distance
By Laurie Hudson
When families and general educators are asked if their students can see something, their responses are often, “Sure!”  But  what does this mean?  In order to get a thorough, accurate sense of what students with low vision are seeing...



A young girl uses a Braille Port Plus from APH.
By Jodi Floyd
"A wise old owl sat in an oak. The more he [listened], the less he spoke; The less he spoke, the more he heard. Why aren't we like that wise old bird." --Bromley   Although listening skills are not designed to replace...



A boy stands at a bus stop.
By Joseph Harrison
Parents and Orientation and Mobility Specialists know that safe and efficient travel with the long white cane is “all about technique.” Awful technique equals awful protection and effective technique equals effective protection. How do we motivate...



A girl places Easter eggs on a grass tray.
By Liz Eagan
Event planning is a great way to incorporate literacy and the Expanded Core Curriculum (ECC) into student-led activities!  While this particular example was done at Easter, there are many opportunities throughout the year to practice reading, writing...



A worksheet with words and images
By Brenda Biernat
Novelty. Complexity of array. Sensory complexity. Preferred color. These are some of the characteristics of cortical visual impairment. More importantly, these are descriptors for my son’s vision. Such words have become a second language. At times it...



Helen Keller reading a book
By Charlotte Cushman
  Helen Keller was born on June 27, 1880 and we pause this week to salute a woman who devoted her life to the rights of people who are blind or deafblind.  She was a prolific reader and writer, and many of her original letters are housed in the...



A young girl uses a braillewriter
By PennyR
Editor's Note:  Please note that these free lessons are offered as an introduction to the braille code and are not intended to be complete. These lessons are designed to give families and other individuals who are sighted an understanding...



A student reads a braille passage during the Braille Challenge.
By Scott Baltisberger
In a nation with a large immigrant population, issues regarding bilingual education for learners with visual impairment arise on a regular basis. As children from Latin American backgrounds continue to comprise the majority of students with limited English...



Happy Birthday tag in print and braille
By Liamsmom
My son Liam recently turned eight years old!  He is a braille reader and every year for his birthday I have made him a birthday book that included pages from friends that have come to his party.  Here are some of the ideas we've done in the past...



Braille Tracking sheet and Feely Meely
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
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
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...



Two women in discussion at a table covered with papers
By Charlotte Cushman
In the five years since Paths to Literacy was launched, we have found a growing number of personnel preparation programs are using the Paths to Literacy website as part of their coursework.  There are programs around the world training people to become...



Jasper with his friend
By Brenda Biernat
On our way home from afternoon preschool, we stop at the playground. This has become our habit on these warm spring days. We were not there long before Jasper made a friend, Robin, or rather, she befriended him. “Let’s go slide together, Jasper...



Dollar bills
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
By Lisa Jacobs
Tactile baby blankets or quilts 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...



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