There are many different ways to modify books for children who are blind or visually impaired to make them both more meaningful and more accessible. For children with Cortical Visual Impairment (CVI), picture books are often too visually cluttered and it may be difficult for the child to pick out the important information on a page.
Decrease visual clutter
1. The first step in adapting the pictures is decrease the visual clutter and visual complexity. Simplify a picture by choosing the key element of the picture and blocking out or deleting the background. For example, the book Mouse Mess by Linnia Riley is popular with many young readers, but is very busy visually.
The visual clutter can be reduced by selecting a key item (such as Oreo cookies) and putting them on a contrasting background.
Use child’s preferred color
2. You can also use the child’s preferred color (often red or yellow for children with CVI, although it may be any color) to outline key details or to highlight a picture.
Increase contrast with background
3. Increase the contrast with the background.
Use familiar items
4. Children who have not had much experience with picture books may benefit from books created using pictures of familiar items, pairing them with the actual object
For other ideas, see also Beginning Books for Children with CVI. Let us know what your ideas are!