Raised Relief of Fine Artworks

Don’t get me wrong, I love exploring the options of touching masterpieces of art. My mother is a retired art teacher so art has been a part of my life since I was born. I know the raised reliefs of these works is one way to try and explore them but I also know that it does not make something three dimensional. I would think reproducing these paintings into a 3-D model would be the best.  Most of the pictures featured in the article are of people, some if various poses. Another is of a flower arrangement. Again – I love the idea but really think it still misses the mark some.

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Wine Tasters Apply Here!

I guess I never thought of wine making as a career for my students. This Spanish winery has perfected a training course for people with visual impairments to strengthen their sense of taste and smell. The courses sound interesting and I wonder if these courses might help with more than just wine. It could easily be adapted to use for other food items or perfumes. The wine labels in braille are pretty cool, too.

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Spelling Bee Champion

Blind fourth-grader spells his way into regional bee

Spelling Bees are exciting and scary all at the same time. I was terrible at them; my sister went to nationals! My mom organized the spelling bees in my school district for many years. This is a story about a young man who won his spelling bee. On top of that, he happens to be blind. This is a great article to read as motivation to your other students who might struggle with this skill.

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Comcast Campaign – Descriptive Video

Comcast kicks off a wonderful campaign about how people with disabilities enjoy entertainment. The webpage is located here: Movie Link

But there has been interesting discussion on Ability Magazine’s post on Facebook: photo and comments

Wizard of Oz is one of my favorite books- part of the problem with enjoying movies is also the lack of reading the story the movie came from. The descriptive video helps people be able to compare the two (movie to book) and see where Hollywood made changes. It would be interesting to me to see if this young lady had had the opportunity to read the book or have it read to her.

Memory Monday – Mother Hen

I have worked with a good number of paraprofessionals hired to work with my students. One student was located in a remote part of the state. I visited twice a week to provide direct services. This student was new to my caseload so I only had the previous teacher’s notes to review. When I walked in the fourth grade classroom I decided to observe for a while. I noted all I could about the student but soon found I needed to document the paraprofessional as well.

This well-meaning lady had not been given any formal training for working with a child with vision loss. The student, Kim, dropped a paper; the paraprofessional picked it up. Kim was about to start her math homework; the paraprofessional paper clipped the page in the braille book so Kim could find it. Kim was getting ready to go home; the paraprofessional handed her the mittens, coat, and scarf.  Kim was a capable young lady who wasn’t required to do anything independently. Kim didn’t know any different because this paraprofessional had been with her for the last three years. I knew I had to step in but also knew this woman was only doing what she thought was best. I proceeded to make the paraprofessional my ally for independence.

I took the paraprofessional aside and asked her what Kim could do independently. I told her I wanted to know what skills Kim needed to learn. I asked the paraprofessional to document all of the activities during the day for which Kim could do alone, with a little help, with help, or not at all. I demonstrated by verbally documenting a scenario similar to the one I had just witnessed.

I returned in few days to find a wonderful list of skills Kim performed during the day. The paraprofessional was happy to have a task to do (recording) while she let Kim show all she knew how to do. It was a win-win. I know paraprofessionals often see their job as one of helping someone. It is up to the teacher of the visually impaired to show the paraprofessional how to work themselves out of a job and into a better one – such as a braillist!

How the Blind Snowboard

An excellent blog to read when you have a moment. The great article to start with is Blind Snowboarding!

Adaptive Ski & Ride School: How the blind snowboard