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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Sunday, July 06, 2008

Resources For Teaching A Blind Student with Learning Disabilities

Message: Where can I find activities for visually impaired preschool children with learning disabilities?

Here are some online resources that should be of assistance:

Parent/Child Activities from the Iowa Braille School: has several links that may be of interest.

Our Favorite Toys from the Overbrook School for the Blind: is a list of toys for the blind and other disabilities.

The Blind Children's Fund: provides parents and professionals information, materials, and resources that will help them successfully teach and nurture infants and children who are blind, visually, and multi-impaired. This website has lots of articles, activities and links for parents.

Blindness and Low Vision Resources Page from The University of South Carolina: has books on activities for children with multiple disabilities.

KidSource OnLine: has printed materials that can be ordered from their site.

Are you looking for some new ideas for activities for your learners who have low vision or are blind? Here is a website with some great photos of tactual activities you can make. Click this link to visit the Professional Development Program in Victoria, Australia.


The following books are available from a variety of websites:

Early Learning Step by Step: Children with Visual Impairment and Multiple Disabilities
L. Nielsen. (1993). SIKON, Copenhagen, Denmark. 168 pp.

This book reviews certain sequences of learning to help identify "the next step" in development and to determine "missing links" in sequences. Approaches and environmental adaptations that may facilitate learning are suggested.

Subjects Covered:

  • Active learning
  • The development of movement in fetuses, newborns, and infants without disabilities
  • Combining movement with tactual, visual, auditory, and other sensory experiences
  • Movements used as emotional responses
  • Comparison of the development of movement in infants with and without vision
  • Materials and toys
  • Learning to chew, eat, dress, undress, manipulate objects, and develop basic concepts through comparison
  • Combining movement with tactual, visual, auditory, and other sensory experiences
  • Movements used as emotional responses

Here are some additional, currently available, titles (from The American Foundation for the Blind:

Reach Out and Teach: Meeting the Training Needs of Parents of Visually and Multiple Handicapped Young Children
K. Ferrell. (1985). American Foundation for the Blind, New York.

Reach Out and Teach was written to give parents the information they need to raise their children with visual or multiple impairments. The materials consist of four parts: a parent handbook containing information on early child development with activities and ideas to be used in the home, a Reachbook or workbook to help parents keep track of their child's growth, a set of slide presentations, and a teacher's manual. The Parent Handbook (257 pp.) and the Reachbook (171 pp.) are companion volumes.

Subjects Covered:

  • Learning basics for parents
  • Understanding your child's vision
  • Behavior and self-concept
  • Family interactions
  • Skill development: Motor, daily living, communication, sensory development, cognition
  • The school years and beyond

When You Have a Visually Impaired Student with Multiple Disabilities in Your Classroom:
A Guide for Teachers
By Jane N. Erin, Ph.D.
Format: Paperback (also available in: ASCII Disk)
Pages: 111 pp.
ISBN: 0-89128-873-2
Publisher: AFB Press
Year of publication: 2004

Collaborative Assessment:
Working with Students Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired, Including Those with Additional Disabilities

Edited by Stephen A. Goodman, M.A., M.S., Stuart H. Wittenstein, Ed.D.
Proven, successful techniques at your fingertips!
Format: Paperback (also available in: ASCII Disk)
Pages: 430 pp.
ISBN: 0-89128-869-4
Publisher: AFB Press
Year of publication: 2003<

Parenting Children with Multiple Disabilities

If you have - or someone you know has - a child who is blind or visually impaired along with one or more other disabilities, Hadley School for the Blind has a new course just for you, Parenting Children with Multiple Disabilities. "This course is designed for family members of children with visual impairment and one or more other disabilities."

Hadley courses are all done by correspondence and are all free of charge if you are visually impaired, a family member of a visually impaired person or a person who works in the blindness field. You can check out this new course by going here and scrolling down to For Family Education Students.

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