Jewelry in Braille

braille alphabet braceletbraille alphabet braceletbraille alphabet braceletBraille diffuser necklaceDiffuser necklace with braille Inner Peace

Whenever I get a chance to get braille jewelry I do. It can be so challenging to find and at a price I can afford. Kelly Fehr has done both! Her jewelry at Jewelry in Braille is amazing, both in quality and individuality. I was lucky enough to visit her booth at the Florida AER conference at the beginning of the month. I have been happily wearing her jewelry almost every day. I love that she also sells online so my student and friend holiday shopping will be so easy this year!

My favorite piece is the silver diffuser necklace. With so many colored pad choices, it goes with any outfit. I love that I can place scents in and enjoy them all day, so calming! My second favorite is the stainless steel alphabet bracelet — this thing is built to last and so pretty at the same time.

Check out her amazing work on her website and Facebook page.

Jewelry in Braille Website

Jewelry in Braille Facebook


International Council on English Braille 6th General Assembly Call for Papers

 Embed from Getty Images

International Council on English Braille Sixth General Assembly will be in Maryland in May 2016!

International Council on English Braille 

Sixth General Assembly 

Call for papers

Date: 15 October 2015

The International Council on English Braille (ICEB) is holding its Sixth General Assembly from Sunday, May 22, 2016 through Thursday, May 26, 2016 in Baltimore, Maryland which is near Washington, D.C., USA. We are delighted to invite friends of braille to submit papers for presentation at the General Assembly. Details about the papers and the process are as follows:

  1. The papers should be related to Unified English Braille (UEB) or braille in general. Some suggestions are:
  • UEB research and results of UEB implementation.
  • Research, education and teaching of braille and technical codes to children.
  • Teaching braille to blind adults, including issues related to the computer-assisted environments.
  • Technological developments in braille production.
  • Tactile graphics: research into readability and cost-effective production techniques.
  • Methods and issues surrounding braille writing.
  • Challenges facing developing countries in the production and teaching of braille.
  • The future of braille code monitoring and maintenance: what international organizational structures would best suit this role?
  1. Closing date for submission of Abstracts of up to 400 words: Monday, November 16, 2015. Late abstracts will only be considered if there are insufficient suitable abstracts received by the due date. Please provide the abstracts as Microsoft Word or text (.txt) attachments to Dr. Sandra Ruconich, email
  1. Abstracts will be assessed and selected by the Papers Subcommittee of the ICEB, who will advise submitters of the acceptance (or non-acceptance) of their papers by December 1, 2015.
  1. What to include in your abstract: To assist the Committee in assessing your proposal, please ensure that you address the following five points as part of your abstract of up to 400 words:

*  Title of paper;

*  Name(s) of author(s), including organizational or corporate affiliations;

*  Contact details of author(s) (address, telephone and email);

*  Key objectives of paper – up to five key points;

*  Outline of paper.

  1. Papers should be a maximum of 6,000 words in length, exclusive of abstract, footnotes and appendices.
  1. A paper may be written by two or more co-authors, or by an individual. Authors or co-authors need not be delegates to the General Assembly.
  1. Completed papers are due by March 1, 2016 as Microsoft Word files to be sent to the ICEB secretary, Dr Judith M. Dixon, email
  1. All accepted papers will be emailed to ICEB member countries by April 1, 2016 to circulate to all delegates. This deadline is so that delegates may read and discuss the papers with others prior to their attending the General Assembly.
  1. Presentations: As delegates are expected to have read the papers, each presenter will be asked to give a summary of their paper in up to 25 minutes, allowing time for questions and discussion to follow. A presenter is not required to be a paper’s author/co-author nor to be a delegate to the Assembly. The person emailing the abstract to Dr. Ruconich should indicate who is going to be the paper’s presenter.
  1. All accepted papers will be published in the proceedings of the General Assembly and will be posted on the ICEB website after the Assembly. Presenters will be expected to register and pay for attendance at the General Assembly.

Summary of due dates:

Monday, 16 November, 2015: Abstracts Due

Tuesday, 1 December, 2015: Abstracts selected and submitters contacted via email

Tuesday, 1 March, 2016: Completed papers due

Friday, 1 April, 2016: Accepted papers distributed to ICEB delegations via email


Reading Vows in Braille

Reading Vows in Braille

I love the hot pink card stock used for her vows. Beautiful picture.

The person in the photo is Deja Marie Powell and she wrote the following yesterday, on her Facebook page.

For some reason (unknown to me) this photo has been circulating the web today (in honor of Meet the Blind Month I suspect), and has captured my heart once again. This singular image tells a BIG story which I hope you don’t mind me sharing…
This is me reading my vows on my wedding day. I am also wearing a Live Strong bracelet on my right wrist in honor of my hero, my dad, who I lost to brain cancer. The tiny ring on my right pinky finger is my mom’s wedding ring from my dad. The braille however, was the best gift of all. I grew up blind but was never taught braille, I was basically illiterate until age 23. My dad, in the last days of his life, made me promise to go get blindness training, which included his desire for me to learn braille. I did just that and was able to read my vows to my husband, a recent Iraqi war veteran, and although my hands trembled and I sobbed, I read slowly and methodically and was able to pour my heart out to the second man who showed me what I was worth (my husband). This photo captures such a precious moment in my life, but also expresses how important braille literacy is…and was the most important braille document I’ve read to date. (P.S. What’s not showing is my hot pink cane to match). Photo credit to:Donna Young

Braille in the Court

braille court order
There was a district court decision filed August of 2015 against the Las Vegas Public Schools regarding
a student with a significant visual impairment​ whose IEP called for 20 hrs per week of specialized services from a TVI, including braille instruction. ​
During instruction of the student, the school district teacher of the visually impaired quit. The district substituted with reading the materials to the student instead of finding someone to continue braille instruction.
 The ruling was for the family. What is really interesting is the decision has some words in simbraille. For those of you who can’t read the words in the picture (I have yet to find a link with the actual document):
“…There is no question that change would be fundamental change in, or elimination of, a basic element of that sighted child’s educational program [to not teach letters or reading]. While reading aloud to a child is beneficial to a child’s education, teaching a child letters and words is fundamental to a child’s ability to read, write, and learn independently.
Likewise, learning Braille is fundamental to a visually impaired child’s ability to read, write, and learn independently. Yet the District would have this Court find that: (braille) reading outloud does not constitute a funddamental change from providing material and instruction in Braille. (end Braille) Without the benefit of a qualified instructor, A.R. was unable to progress in his ability to read, write, and learn independently using Braille. Therefore, unlike the students in Erickson and Sherri, the District’s failure to hire a qualified TVI during Spring of 2013 created a fundamental change in, or elimination of, a basic element of A.R.’s educational program and the District thereby failed to maintain the student’s educational placement.”