Paths to Literacy

for students who are blind or visually impaired

Blog Posts

Below are recently created blog posts.



A girl participates in a science lesson using a HOPSA dress.
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
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
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.
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
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
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...



Tactile and visual morning schedule
By Jbrown
It won't be long now before a new school year begins.  This brings excitement for parents, as well as children, but it can also bring worry about the transition, especially for young children who are blind or visually impaired.  The tips here...



A girl uses an iPad with colored patterns on it.
By Jbrown
The iPad is an incredible tool for all students, including those with CVI (cortical visual impairment).  There are amazing accessibility features that enhance the experience.  The iPad can be used to teach visual skills and to conduct vision...



Teacher and student
By Kristie Smith
“There is no 'i' in 'team', but there is in 'win'.” -- Michael Jordan (American retired pro basketball player and current businessman)    Recently, I posted a blog on learning how to teach a...



Reading braille labels on playground
By Liamsmom
I am the mother of two young busy boys.  My oldest Liam just turned 7 and is deafblind.  My youngest Finn just turned 4 and has typical vision and hearing.  A few years back I wrote about an accessible playground we made for the boys. I just...



Tactile map of cities
By Liamsmom
I have two boys.  My oldest is 7 years old, deafblind, and an early braille reader.  My youngest is 4 years old and has typical vision and hearing.  We recently went on a road trip to visit family out of state.  Planning for the trip...



Caterpillar and strawberry Images on black background
By Tracy Fitch
Introduction: For my Cortical Visual Impairment mentor training we were assigned to adapt a book for all three phases of CVI. I chose The Very Hungry Caterpillar because I have several classes reading this book through the end of the school year. I...



Portable communication choice board
By gwyn52
Are you a teacher of students with visual impairments thinking about what belongs in your "toolbox" for the new school year?  Or perhaps you're a parent wondering what materials to use during the summer holidays with your child who is blind...



Happy Birthday page
By Liamsmom
My son Liam just turned 7 and we celebrated his birthday at our home with family and friends from school. Liam happens to be deafblind and attends first grade in a mainstream setting.  I wanted Liam's birthday party to be accessible and include...



Girl with her hand in a tub of water
By ScarlettsEyes
As I have discussed previously in other blog posts my daughter Scarlett is a massive lover of music.  My mini maestro is literally music mad and, although it is great to see such a burning passion in that area, it is also very important to develop a...



Girl using Ballyland
By Kristie Smith
A few months ago, our vision department changed our student caseload and I was blessed to be given a bright, funny young student who has become a dual learner.  Enter my new first grade student who carries a small red and white cane, but who...



Police Literacy Skills Kit
By catherinesumm
By Lisa Pruner and Catherine Summ Education Consultants, CT DORS- Bureau of Education and Services for the Blind   Overview: Officer Buckle and Gloria share everyday safety tips in ways which are engaging and funny for young...



Here are my hands for catching and throwing
By Holly Cooper
By Holly Cooper, Ph.D., Early Childhood Specialist, Texas Deafblind Project, Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired    Approaches to Literacy Experiences for Infants When should braille be introduced in books?...



Hands reading braille fork label on silverware drawer
By Liamsmom
My son Liam is 6 years old (almost 7!!) and he is deafblind.  He enjoys helping me around the house.  One of his chores is to unload the dishwasher (see Accessible Job Chart for the Home).  When he first started helping with this, he...



Shoppers in a mall
By JennieO
What can you do with your students who are visually impaired in the middle of winter in the state of Maine (or anywhere else)? Mountain biking? I don’t think so! High cliff diving? Not a chance! Cross country skiing? Well yes, that of course, but...



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