Some children with visual impairments may learn to write braille before they are fluent braille readers. As a mom and homeschool teacher, I sometimes felt frustrated by the fact that my daughter could write much better than she could read, making it harder to find appropriate curriculum and materials without having to adapt them. However, that did not stop me from taking the time to help her continue to advance her writing skills. Now that she has more experience in the basics of writing sentences and began catching her own mistakes, I decided to make her a checklist we could use to go over her writing once she was finished. After we did that for some time, I gave her the list in braille so that she could take responsbility of checking over her work herself. It has proven to be a great motivator for her and has increased her awareness of what she is writing.
- Perkins Brailler or other writing device
- Writing Self-Check Sheets in print/braille
- Reward Stickers (optional)
- After completing a writing activity deemed appropriate by the teacher, have the student review his/her work by checking for common mistakes.
- Read the first reminder on the self-check sheet and encourage the student to go through his work to ensure that he used capitals at the beginning of every sentence and in proper nouns (i.e. names, specific places, etc.).
- The student will continue to review his writing until he has checked off every reminder on the list. For students new to the writing process, please check my ideas for variations and adaptations below.
- Laminate the braille checklist to re-use with the student at each writing session.
- Make the checkmark boxes tactile so the student may mark-off the traits of good writing as he/she completes each reminder.
Use removable circle stickers to mark the boxes, then remove them before the next lesson.
If the student is new to writing, work on just one checklist reminder at a time for that certain task to become the student’s responsibility. Once he is proficient with that task, continue to add on another task until he is proficient in every reminder on the checklist.
If the student is using a digital braille device, make a digital checklist using the Notes app on iDevices or similar notetaker.