Paths to Literacy

for students who are blind or visually impaired

Kermit and Katrina Stories

Young woman kissing Kermit the frog

Background

Katrina is an 18-year-old student who has very low vision due to Leber Congenital Amaurosis, and also has high functioning autism. She has had many passionate interests over the years, including Disney Princesses, Lego construction, Winnie the Pooh, Disney's Handy Agents. Her current interest in Kermit the Frog from Sesame Street grew out of her interest in biology, especially frogs. In her imaginary creative stories, Kermit serves as her "husband, best friend, social coach and spirit guide." I have used her strong interest to guide her creative writing, and have found it fascinating to see the ways that she weaves her own social emotional issues into these stories.

She moved quickly from co-creating stories with me for a few weeks to brailling her own stories on the Braille Note Touch in the evening before she goes to bed, usually sending me two or three stories per week. A year after beginning her Kermit epic, she has written several hundred pages of stories about her imaginary life as Kermit's wife, and I have found that story writing has served as an excellent tool for her self-regulation and processing new information. When concepts like love, interdependence, jealousy, or the value of working for a living appear in her stories, I know she has processed the information that we are giving her. It is important that I read the stories she sends me and be prepared to discuss them in our next meeting. She has learned some formatting conventions, such as using paragraphs to mark dialogue, but the real value in her charming stories is in the domains of social communication and self-regulation. I have pulled a few stories from her collection here, and will introduce them with notes to discuss the social communication issues discussed. All are unedited, just as she sent them to me.

Katrina with Kermit sitting on her lap

Chapters of Epic Story

Katrina and Kermit Epic

Download the story (Word document).