Fred’s Head from APH, a Blindness Blog

Fred’s Head, offered by the American Printing House for the Blind, contains tips, techniques, tutorials, in-depth articles, and resources for and by blind or visually impaired people. Our blog is named after the legendary Fred Gissoni, renowned for answering a seemingly infinite variety of questions on every aspect of blindness.

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Thursday, April 15, 2010

Labeling Controls On Household Appliances Using Braille

Labeling the controls on some household appliances may prove helpful. Many modern microwaves have no tactilely detectable buttons. Here Braille labels can serve a dual purpose: not only do they help to locate the function keys, they also identify them. Even if appliances have tactile controls, it may still prove useful to label some of them, especially if you do not want to make the effort to remember many different settings. Thus you may wish to attach Dymo tape labels to your dishwasher, your washing machine, and your dryer. These labels are especially helpful with the type of washing machines, which use a dial to select different wash cycles. You can use little triangle-shaped Dymo tape arrows to point to the beginnings of various stages and place some identifying letters or words nearby.

You will probably not need or want to label every single appliance in your home, especially those that you are already familiar with or others, which are simple to use. But, on the other hand, do not be shy about labeling anything; after all, the manufacturers always include print labels for sighted consumers.

Some complex appliances such as videocassette recorders may require a different approach. In addition to labeling some buttons, you may wish to make note of the layout of the control panel since there may not be enough room to label all keys. You may also want to write down the sequence of steps for operating your machine. As you are programming the VCR, you can then refer to your notes on the procedure. If you have a remote control device with a complicated layout, you may again wish to take notes on the function of each key. After all you will want to take full advantage of the power of your remote control when you are lounging in your recliner, zapping through TV channels.

This excerpt is from "101 Ways To Use Braille" by Ellen Waechtler. The article first appeared in the Summer, 1998, issue of the Braille Spectator, a publication of the NFB of Maryland, and is reprinted with special permission from the author.

Braillable Labels and Sheets from APH

Braillable Labels and Sheets

These clear, blank self-adhesive labels can be brailled and used to label items around the home, school, and office, such as: household appliances; canned goods; greeting cards; books; CDs; folders. The labels come in a variety of packages and sizes for convenience. The pre-cut, peel-off Large and Small labels accommodate braille lines that are 15 cells wide, with four lines fitting on the large and two on the small labels. Full-Size and Pin-Fed Sheets offer more room for brailling and can be cut to the desired size. A printed SimBraille sheet is included with each package to assist in determining size and placement.

Assorted Label Pack (5 Large Sheets, 5 Small Sheets, 10 Full-Size Sheets, 30 Pin-Fed Sheets):
Catalog Number: 1-08871-00

Small Label Pack (10 Sheets, 18 labels (3.87 x 0.95) per Sheet):
Catalog Number: 1-08872-00

Large Label Pack (10 Sheets, 10 Labels (3.875 x 1.75) per Sheet):
Catalog Number: 1-08873-00

Braillable Sheets

15 Sheets (8 1/2 x 11, full-size):
Catalog Number: 1-08874-00

30 Continuous Sheets (8 1/2 x 11, pin-fed):
Catalog Number: 1-08875-00
Click this link to purchase Braillable Labels and Sheets from APH.

American Printing House for the Blind, Inc.
1839 Frankfort Avenue
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 6085
Louisville, Kentucky 40206-0085
Toll Free: 800-223-1839
Phone: 502-895-2405
Fax: 502-899-2274
E-mail: info@aph.org
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