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.

(See the end of this page for subscribing via email, RSS, browsing articles by subject, blog archive, APH resources, writing for Fred's Head, and disclaimers.)

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Friday, May 29, 2009

Lite Brite for the Classroom

Lite Brite is one of those classic enduring childhood games that will never go out of style. Not much has changed with the Lite Brite over the years because it’s just so simple and perfect, it doesn’t need updating. Arrange the pegs, make a design and light it up.

What’s better than a single Lite Brite board? Try a four sided Lite Brite Cube!!! More sides, more fun. Now up to four of your students with low vision can play with the Lite Brite at the same time. It has two integrated storage drawers, 10 refill sheets (8 design picture sheets and 2 free form sheets), light bulb, and over 400 pegs! Ages 4 and up.

Click this link to purchase the Lite Brite Cube from ThinkGeek.

Accessible Air Travel Guide for People with Disabilities

The United Spinal Association has released an updated version of Accessible Air Travel: A Guide for People With Disabilities.

The revised edition includes expanded regulations for the Air Carrier Access Act. This is the law that mandates air travel accessibility for people with disabilities. The revised edition includes the new regulations that take affect on May 13, 2009.

This helpful booklet informs individuals with disabilities of their rights as passengers on commercial airlines and how to adequately prepare to ensure their air travel experience is enjoyable. It also provides valuable insight on a multitude of air carrier procedures, such as information about requirements for foreign airlines, what to expect in terms of equipment liability, how to file a complaint, and airport screening requirements.

Click this link to visit the United Spinal Association's website to download Accessible Air Travel: A Guide for People With Disabilities and other helpful publications.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Flexible Rulers (Braille/Large Type)

Flexible Ruler

These flexible rulers allow tactual and visual measurement of flat or curved surfaces. Recommended ages: 5 years and older. Two are offered:

18-Inch (package of five):
Catalog Number: 1-03050-00

30-Centimeter (package of five):
Catalog Number: 1-03031-00
Click this link to purchase Flexible Rulers 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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Quick Pick Counting

Quick Pick Counting

Game designed to help young children learn to count to 12 with raised-line symbols and braille numbers. Can also be used with developmentally delayed students. Game includes fifty one-sided game cards in a plastic packet and is played as described below.

The student counts the tactile symbols and then reads the correct braille number. The raised-line symbols are embossed only, the number answers are large print/braille. Cards can be subdivided into smaller groups with the raised-line symbols arranged to better match the student's skill level. Recommended ages: 4 years and up.

Quick Pick Counting:
Catalog Number: 1-03574-00
Click this link to purchase Quick Pick Counting.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Quick Pick Math

Quick Pick Math

Math game consisting of a plastic packet containing fifty large print/braille cards. The front and back of each card contains a math question and four possible answers. To play, the student inserts the included tool in one of four holes in the front of the plastic packet. If the answer is correct, the card will slide out. If the answer is incorrect, the card will not pull out, and the student should try again. Recommended ages: 5 years and up.

Addition:
Catalog Number: 1-03570-00

Subtraction:
Catalog Number: 1-03571-00

Multiplication:
Catalog Number: 1-03572-00

Division:
Catalog Number: 1-03573-00
Click this link to purchase Quick Pick Math.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Hundreds Boards and Manipulatives

Hundreds Boards and Manipulatives Kit
These two boards and included manipulative items can be used to help teach basic math concepts. Includes two desk-sized boards made of heavy-duty plastic.
-- The Grid Board has a raised-line, 10 x 10 grid outlined in black. Grid is blank and manipulatives can be attached to it.
-- The Number Board also has a raised-line 10 x 10 grid outlined in black. This grid is preprinted with the numbers 1 through 100 in large print and in Nemeth Braille. This board acts as a reference to check work placed on the Grid Board and can be used for concept demonstration.
-- Included are hundreds of manipulative pieces made of tough plastic and backed with loop material for attaching to the Grid Board. There are two kinds of manipulatives, numbers (1 through 100) and four colored shapes.
Uses include patterning, counting, ordering numbers, comparing numbers, addition, subtraction, multiplication, graphing data, or using cardinal directions. Recommended ages: 5 to 10 years. Note: Some assembly required.

Hundreds Boards and Manipulatives:
Catalog Number: 1-03105-00

Numbers only:
Catalog Number: 1-03105-01
Click this link to purchase the Hundreds Boards and Manipulatives Kit.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org

APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Easy Ways to Expand Your Hundreds Boards Kit

If you are currently using APH's Hundreds Boards and Manipulatives with your students, here are some quick and simple ways to expand its uses and sorting pieces:
Build Pictographs
'My Favorite Season' Pictograph Use the interactive, 10 x 10 raised-line Grid Board to build pictographs. The included sorting shapes (stars, squares, triangles, and circles) can be used to represent data. The photo below shows data from a survey of students' favorite seasons. Create needed print and/or braille labels for graphing purposes; affix loop VELCRO® brand material to the back of the labels to keep them in place on the grid.
Add More Sorting Shapes
Below are some suggestions for creating additional tactually discernable sorting shapes for your current Hundreds Boards collection:
Photo of Hundreds Board's stars with Feel 'n Peel stickers added
  • Apply tactile stickers to Hundreds Boards' smooth-textured stars, squares, triangles, circles. For example, "Point Symbol" or "Star" stickers from APH's Feel 'n Peel Stickers packages can be used to adapt the shapes.
  • oval rhinestones attached to the Hundreds Board with Velcro Affix loop VELCRO® brand material to the back of inexpensive objects acquired at local craft stores, such as rhinestones or buttons, to create new sorting shapes.

VELCRO®, VELTEX®, and VELCOIN® are registered trademarks of Velcro Industries B.V.





Math Drill Cards in Braille and Large Type

Math Drill Cards

Handy math skill reinforcing cards. Sold as five separate sets. The cards in the Number and Math Sign set have a math sign or number sign in braille on one side and in large type and braille on the other side. Large type/braille math operations cards have a math fact on one side and the fact with the answer on the other side. Braille on cards is Nemeth Braille Code for Mathematics. Cards measure 3 1/2 x 2 inches. On low-glare paper with black printing and an orientation corner cut. Recommended ages: 5 to 10 years. Note: Some assembly required. Storage box not included.

Number & Math Sign Cards:
Catalog Number: 1-03551-00

Addition Cards:
Catalog Number: 1-03552-00

Subtraction Cards:
Catalog Number: 1-03553-00

Multiplication Cards:
Catalog Number: 1-03554-00

Division Cards:
Catalog Number: 1-03555-00
Click this link to order Math Drill Cards in Braille and Large Print.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Brannan Cubarithm Slate and Cubes

Brannan Cubarithm Slate

Young students may find it easier to use this device rather than a brailler to align problems such as multiplication. A rubber frame with a 16 x 16 grid pattern of nests will hold small plastic cubes numbered 0 through 9 in braille (no print). Each cube represents one digit. Frame and cubes are sold separately. Recommended ages: 6 years and older.

Cubarithm Slate:

Catalog Number: 1-00320-00

Plastic Cubes (Set of 100):
Catalog Number: 1-00330-00
Click this link to purchase the Brannan Cubarithm Slate.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Geometric Forms

Geometric Forms

Introduces students to the circle, square, and triangle. Kit includes three plane figures, four solid figures, and a white plastic sheet illustrating the three shapes in black, raised lines. Recommended ages: 5 years and older.

Geometric Forms:
Catalog Number: 1-03410-00
Click this link to purchase the Geometric Forms from APH.

Click here to purchase these items through our Quick Order Entry page: http://shop.aph.org/quickentry.asp

If you need assistance, click this link to read the Fred's Head Companion post "Purchasing Products From The APH Website Is Easy".

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Measuring tools For The Blind: Using A Protractor

Message: I would like to know where I can purchase a click-o-matic ruler? location: illinois

There is a group in Colorado called "Community Advocates" that sells various forms of click rules. They are in either English or Metric and have extenders for added length. The phone number for the group is 303-666-8206.

There is a good chance you will reach an answering machine and it may leave you with the impression that you have a wrong number but they have been around for quite a while.

Message: Are you aware of any angle measuring tools (ex. angle rulers) for the visually impaired? (particularly for low vision 5th grade students) Thanks.

When I received your email, I immediately contacted our fantastic Customer Service Department and found a product that should be of assistance to your student.

Braille / Print Protractor

Braille-Large Print Protractor

Bold large print numbers and raised dots mark the degrees along the half circle of this 180 degree protractor. An unusual feature is the "wand" that allows for easier measurement of angles. This long, flat piece is pointed at one end and anchored on a pivot at the center of the protractor. When the pointed end is aligned with a certain degree measurement, the corresponding angle is created by the wand and the bottom edge of the protractor. Includes print and braille instructions.

Braille / Print Protractor:
Catalog Number: 1-04115-00
Click this link to purchase a Braille/Large Print Protractor.

Large Print and Tactile Protractors

Large Print Protractor 4-pack

Now students can use the same convenient measuring tools in both classroom and assessment situations. One protractor is designed for large print users, the other for braille/tactile users. Both protractors allow for the measurement and construction of angles.

Both protractors feature:
  • Lightweight, clear plastic
  • Movable, transparent yellow wand
  • Open hole where wand is attached for inserting pencil or push pin at vertex of angle
  • Notches on bottom left and right allow for pinning the protractor to surface such as a rubber mat
  • 6-inch ruler located at bottom of protractor
Large Print Protractor features:
  • Bold, sans serif, 20-point font
  • Upper labels mark every 10 degrees from 0° to 180°
  • Lower labels mark every 20 degrees from 180° to 0°
Tactile Protractor 4-pack
Tactile Protractor features:
  • Braille dot markings on upper edge: 3 dots at 0°, 45°, 90°, 135°, 180°; 2 braille dots at each 10° to 170° except 90°; a single braille dot at every 10° increment from 5° to 175°, excluding 45° and 135°.
Large Print Protractor (4-Pack):
Catalog Number: 1-04116-00
Click this link to purchase Large Print Protractor (4-pack).

Tactile Protractor (4-Pack):
Catalog Number: 1-04117-00
Click this link to purchase the Tactile Protractor (4-pack).

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

How To Use A Protractor

A protractor is a tool that allows you to measure an angle or construct an angle of a given measure.

To Measure an Angle
  1. Find the center hole on the straight edge of the protractor.

  2. Place the hole over the vertex, or point, of the angle you wish to measure.

  3. Line up the zero on the straight edge of the protractor with one of the sides of the angle.

  4. Find the point where the second side of the angle intersects the curved edge of the protractor.

  5. Read the number that is written on the protractor at the point of intersection. This is the measure of the angle in degrees.

Tips:

There are 360 degrees in a circle.

A straight line measures 180 degrees.

The corner of a square measures 90 degrees. This is called a right angle.

Angles that measure fewer than 90 degrees are called acute angles. Those measuring more than 90 degrees are called obtuse angles.

To Construct an Angle

  1. Use the straight edge of the protractor to draw a straight line. This line will form one side of your angle.

  2. Find the center hole on the straight edge of the protractor.

  3. Place the hole over one end point of the line you have drawn.

  4. Line up the zero on the straight edge of the protractor with the line.

  5. Make a mark at the number on the curved edge of the protractor that corresponds to the desired measure of your angle. For example, mark at 90 for a 90-degree angle.

  6. Use the straight edge of the protractor to connect the mark to the end point of the first line, forming an angle.

Geometry Tactile Graphics Kit

Geometry Tactile Graphics Kit

Set of thermoformed raised line drawings depicting geometry concepts, figures, and relationships. Graphics are larger and easier for students to measure than those in braille textbooks. Kit includes 26 white plastic thermoform sheets measuring 8 1/2 x 11 inches. 52 drawings total. Includes two specially adapted protractors, a teacher's guide in print and braille, and a storage binder. Recommended ages: 12 years and older.

Geometry Tactile Graphics Kit:
Catalog Number: 1-08841-00
Click this link to purchase the Geometry Tactile Graphics Kit.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

CBBC Accessible Newsreader

CBBC has launched its Accessible Newsreader service, an alternative interface to the Newsround website. It's been created to help fill the gap in good quality content available on the web for older disabled children or teenagers who use computers operated by switches.

The CBBC team behind the Newsreader worked closely with industry experts and special needs schools to produce a greatly simplified interface, which is capable of being controlled by a single switch.

Computer access for these children is achieved through Switch technology - a small piece of hardware that accepts input from one or more custom devices, such as a large button, motion sensor or even a tube to blow into, and then maps this input to a key on the keyboard.

The Accessible Newsreader caters to other needs too, with features such as full speech synthesis for the menus and stories, and fully configurable fonts and colour schemes. There have already been some interesting findings during CBBC's testing, in particular with users on the autistic spectrum, who found the site especially usable due to its combination of a simple interface, simultaneous text and audio, and the content having a strong link to the real world.

Click this link to visit the CBBC's Accessible News Reading site: http://www.bbc.co.uk/cbbc/newsreader.

Sudoku for the Blind

I received the following "Ask Fred" question:

Message: Dear Fred,

Have you any ideas about adapting Sudoku for blind puzzle people?
location: California

Yes, there are some accessible versions both for computer users and for those who like the more traditional game play. First, for those who don't know, let me say a little about the game.

Sudoku is a logic-based placement puzzle. The goal is to enter a numerical digit from 1 through 9 in each cel of a 9x9 grid starting with various digits in various cells. Each row, column, and region must contain only one instance of each numeral. Completing the puzzle requires patience and logical ability.

Sudoku attained a huge international popularity in 2005 and has already been called the "Rubik's cube of the 21st century". This may seem a bit late when you know that the foundation for the Sudoku was already established by an 18th century blind mathematician called Leonhard Euler, who lost his eyesight in early middle age. It was only after he lost his eyesight that he developed his famous latin squares (and latin square puzzles for that matter). You can read more about his story and Sudoku by clicking this link.

Sudo-San is the first online accessible Sudoku that features a graphical interface and an extensive auditory interface, enabling blind players as well as sighted players to play Sudoku. Click this link to play Sudo-San online.

Marburg Braille Sudoku is the Sudoku-game for both blind and seeing people with Braille on the chips and sheets. The board consists of an aluminum plate laminated with a magnetic foil. Metallic parts may be fixed easily to the board. You can put a sheet with the Sudoku task on it.. The sheet will be fixed with the chip box and it's cover. The chips are made of thin metal plates, 18 mm in square, embossed with the numbers 1 to 9. The chips can be placed on the empty fields of the Sudoku sheet. .

Click this link to learn more and to order Marburg Braille Sudoku from Brailletec.

Azabat Talking Games Volume 3 is a bundle of four games designed specifically for blind and visually impaired people, requiring greater memory skills than Volumes 1 and 2. The bundle includes:

  • Sudoku
  • Battleships
  • UXB
  • Memory

All four games run from one CD, no installation required. Click this link to purchase Azabat Talking Games Volume 3 from the Adapt-IT website.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Aids To Use In Telling Time: Clocks, Watches And Timers

There are several methods that blind and low vision people may use for telling time. A common method is the use of talking clocks, watches or timers. These products may be purchased in stores that sell products for the blind, or stores that sell novelty electronic gadgetts like Radio Shack.

Talking clocks come in a variety of sizes, shapes and with different voices and alarm sounds. Some are as little as a pack of gum and can be used as key chains. Some are larger and have additional features such as radio, thermometer, CD player, or calendar. Many of these talking products are available in English as well as in other languages like Spanish and French.

For people who prefer to read the time, or for those who don't want to be caught listening to their watch during a boring meeting or a church service, a great option are the braille watches and tactile clocks.

An alternative to a loud alarm clock or time announcement is the vibrating sort of watches, clocks and timers. They are very useful in instances when you need a silent reminder of the time. Such instances may include times when you are giving a presentation and need to be reminded of your time limit. Or when taking a test and need to be reminded that the time is almost over.

Finally, for people with low vision, some of these stores carry a variety of clocks and watches with large numbers and/or time displays.

Analog Clock Model

Analog Clock Model

Helps teach about time-telling concepts. Has braille and raised large print markings and hands that are easily rotated. The hands are synchronized like those of an actual clock (the Model has no motor). Recommended ages: 6 to 10 years.

Analog Clock Model:
Catalog Number: 1-03125-00
Click this link to purchase the Analog Clock Model.

Clock Face Sheets in Braille

Clock Face Sheets in Braille

Each sheet contains four embossed braille clock faces. Hands can be added to these blank clock faces. Embossed on manila transcribing paper measuring 11 1/2 x 11 inches. 3-hole punched. 25 per package. Recommended ages: 6 to 10 years.<

Clock Face Sheets:
Catalog Number: 1-03111-00
Click this link to purchase Clock Face Sheets in Braille.

ZeitGeist; Talking Time Machine

Zeitgeist

This portable electronic device combines a number of time-related functions and speaks through either its integrated speaker or headphones (not included). Comes with instructions on audiocassette as well as a braille and large print quick-start sheet.

Features

  • Tells time (including dual time zone) in hours, minutes, and seconds
  • Automatically adjusts to Daylight Savings Time and leap years
  • Calendar tells the current day of the week, date, calendar week, number of days passed and remaining in the year, and the current zodiac sign
  • 10 different alarms are possible, each with a separate signal, along with a stopwatch, two count-down timers (seven day and one hour)
  • Manages up to 10 non-recurring or recurring appointments
  • Calculates age in years, months, days, minutes, and seconds or the day of the week for any date
  • 4.5 x 1.25 x 1 inches, fits in pocket or carry around neck on attached lanyard
  • Uses 2 AAA batteries (included)
ZeitGeist:

English Version:
Catalog Number: 1-03974-00

Spanish version:
Catalog Number: 1-03974-SP
Click this link to purchase the Zeitgeist Talking Time Machine.

Talking Watch from APH

Talking Watch with Stretch Band Talking Watch with Leather Band

This inexpensive talking watch is easy to use and to understand. Press the single button and the time is announced in clear speech. Other features:

  • Mode switch and settings are recessed and cannot be accidentally changed
  • Three alarms available: cuckoo, rooster, beeps
  • Can set to announce time on hour
  • Two band styles offered: leather or stretch band

NOTE: talking watches are NOT available with Federal Quota funds

Talking Watch, Stretch Band:
Catalog Number: 1-03976-00
Click this link to purchase the Talking Watch with Stretch Band.

Talking Watch, Leather Band:
Catalog Number: 1-03977-00
Click this link to purchase the Talking Watch with Leather Band.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Huge Digital Wall Clock

When I say big, I mean HUGE! Now you can have loads of time with these absolutely HUGE Digital Wall Clocks! Available in Red, Blue, Green, and White these clocks will take up a whole wall on their own and are easily visible even in bright light. They are virtually flat and flexible, which means you can just roll them up to transport or store them. They make a great stylish statement, and would be perfect for anyone who needs a BIG clock.

Click this link to purchase the Huge Digital Wall Clock from Gadgets.co.uk.

The following is a brief list of some of the many stores that carry a variety of aids for telling time:

White Cane Repair Service for the Blind

Who hasn't had a cane that lost it's grip? You know, the band inside your folding cane decides to break, right in the middle of a walk or while you're heading to work? What do you do with it now?

I received the following information in an email and wanted to share it with all of you. Now, we finally have some place to send that broken cane!

"We can fix your broken cane! We replace grips, reflective tape, elastic cords, tips, tubes, and more!"

"Our mission is to repair the widest variety of white canes at the lowest costs on behalf of low-income persons. Just call and we will make arrangements to have your cane refurbished. Our team will work hard to have your cane sent back to you as quickly as possible."

"We also recycle used canes and donate them to people in need. Personal Checks and money orders are accepted. Please don’t send cash."

"When you're ready, please send your cane to the address below. Remember, it can be sent Free Matter for the Blind. Call us for additional information."

WHITE CANE REPAIR SERVICE
PO BOX 812174
LOS ANGELES, CA 90081
Phone: 213-448-2365
Email: whitecane911@gmail.com
Web: http://www.whitecane.net

CDs and DVDs

Have you sat down and tried to count the number of CDs you have at home? I have tons of disks around. Music CDs are in my CD spinners, the kids have their Playstation CDs, I have a large collection of MP3 CDs, and of course all the software I save for the computer. You may use CDs and DVDs to backup your computer information. Just how long will they last?

You may think that once you store music, documents, or photos on a CD or DVD that it will last virtually forever. That is not the case, however, as CDs and DVDs have a definite shelf life. How long CDs and DVDs will last in storage or in normal use, however, is a matter of much debate, and you cannot always trust manufacturer claims.

One organization that has studied this issue is the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The Government Information Preservation Working Group, released on December 9, 2004 a Stability Study of Optical disks that may help shed light on this issue. Please note that this document is in PDF format.

Usage Tips for Longer Life

Since CDs and DVDs don't last forever, what can you do to help prolong their life?

  • Hold CDs and DVDs by their outer edge or the middle ring. NEVER touch the bottom!
  • Don't jam media into a CD or DVD player/burner; insert it very carefully.
  • Store media in hard plastic cases; avoid wallets or sleeves.
  • Store in a room temperature environment free from moisture. Avoid keeping CDs and DVDs in extremely hot or cold temperatures for long periods of time.
  • Keep CDs and DVDs away from sunlight.

For more information, DataRecoveryLabs.com has created Archiving CD CDRW DVD DVDRW Disc.

Media Speed and Cheaper CDs and DVDs

Here's another tip for insuring that the information you save to a CD or DVD stays there.

Make sure to purchase CDs and DVDs that are rated the same or higher speed as that of your CD or DVD burner, or you will not be able to accurately burn using that media unless you manually slow down your CD or DVD burner through hardware or software.

For example, if your CD burner has a write-speed of 24X, and you purchase blank CD-Rs that are rated 16X, you will probably not be able to use those with your CD burner unless you manually slow it down. Thus, sometimes those bargain basement CDs that are being offered for pennies per media (after rebate) may not be such a bargain after all.

There are several speeds for DVDs as well. 2.4x, 4x, 8x, 16x. You should get the same speed as your DVD Burner supports. Again, if you get slower than what it supports, you will probably end up with a coaster. For example, a burner at 4x trying to burn to a disk at 2.4x. Same goes for burning a 4x disc at 2.4x. That strangely could still cause you to get a coaster.

What is -R Versus -RW?

While we're on the subject of purchasing CDs, what is the difference between these two types of CDs?

When you purchase CD-Rs or DVD-Rs, you are purchasing media that you can write to only once; you cannot erase information once it has been written to the CD or DVD. Depending on your CD software, you may be able to create multi-session CDs or DVDs where you can write to the CD or DVD once, not filling it up, then add more information to it later. However, previously written information cannot be erased.

With CD-RWs and DVD-RWs, however, provided that you have drives that support this media, you can erase information previously written to the media. You may not be able to erase and rewrite information an infinite number of times; however, it should be enough for most purposes.

To add to this confusion, there is a format called DVD-RAM that supposedly allows you to rewrite information many more times than on DVD-RWs. However, these are only compatible with a select number of drives. Plus, with DVDs there is DVD-R, DVD+R, DVD-RW, and DVD+RW, and you may not be able to use one particular DVD with a different unit that doesn't support the same standard.

The DVD Differences

DVD-R

DVD-R is the most compatible of the formats. This format will play in about 90% of DVD Players, DVD-Roms etc. It was the first recordable DVD format. These disks support up to 4.37GB of data. You can also get this disc double sided and expand its space to 8.75GB. This disc can be written on once and only once. Basically if it screws up, you get a nice, shiny coaster.

DVD-RW

This format is the same as DVD-R but can be rewritten several times. This format is compatible with about 80% of DVD Players, drives, etc.

DVD+R

DVD+R is very simlar to DVD-R but supports a few more features, thus sacrificing compatibility. It supports lossless linking and both CAV and CLV writing. (Newbies dont worry about these features). This format is compatible on about 80% of DVD Players, drives, etc. Supports the same amount of data DVD-R does, 4.37GB and 8.75 GB Double Sided. This disc can be written on once and only once. Basically if it screws up, you get a nice, shiny coaster.

DVD+RW

DVD+RW is the same as DVD+R but can be written to several times. It is compatible with about 70% of DVD Players, drives, etc.

DVD+R Dual-Layer

DVD+R is the same as DVD+R but supports 7.95GB on one disc. This disc achieves this by having two seperate recordable layers. This disc is the most expensive of the formats. This disc is also available in double sided format supporting up to 15.9GB of data. It is compatible in about 75% of DVD Players, drives, etc.

DVD-RAM

DVD-RAM is the least supported format. DVD-RAM usually comes in a cartridge and will not fit in most DVD-ROM drives and Players. It is compatible with about 20% of DVD Players. To my knowledge, no DVD-ROM drives support this format. Think of this format as a slow harddrive. This format is not recommended.

Which DVD is Right for Me?

Now you know about the formats but which is right for you? Well that is up to your DVD-Player. It is best to buy 1 or 2 of each format and try them out. Sometimes a DVD-Player will read DVD+R but not DVD-R. Same goes for other formats. Some DVD-Players will not read any recordable format and that's just no fun now is it. Most computer DVD drives are not picky about the disk format. They can play or record on just about any type of disk.

Generally speaking, -R media is more compatible than -RW and +RW media; for example, you may not be able to play a music CD written on -RW media on your home stereo. Also, -RW, +RW, and -RAM media may not last as long as -R media; thus, RW, +RW, and -RAM are usually used for temporary backups, working files, and the like.

Music CDs

I've never had a problem using regular data CD-R's to make music CD's. Some brands work better than others and I have heard of people that can't get them to play in their stereos.

I did some checking around and found out that the CD-R's specified for music are mainly for stand-alone CD recorders that you can hook up to your home stereo system. The recorder requires Music CD-R's because they have an extra application code built in that tells the recorder how to act.

Data and Music CD-R's use the same recording dye as data CD's so there is no difference in audio quality. Oh, and while we are on the subject of making music CD's, you can't use a CD-RW to make an audio CD to play in a regular CD player.

So, save some money and buy the regular data disks to burn music CD's for your stereo. Find a brand that works with your stereo and stick with it.

The Mini CD

Have you ever used a mini CD before? You know, they look just like a normal sized CD, but they are much smaller. They're becoming more and more popular these days and more companies are starting to use them for their software. They're also used for a lot of the computer games that are available today.

They may look cool, but have you wondered how you're supposed to use them? How can they work in your computer's CD ROM drive if they're so small?

Most CD trays have an indentation where mini CDs are placed. You just line the mini CD up and push the tray in. It will work just the same as it would if it were the bigger size. Mini CDs come in various formats as well. The normal is an 80 mm disc, which can hold about 21 minutes of music or 180 MB of data. There are also some enhanced density versions that will hold about 34 minutes of music and 300 MB of data.

Definitions

  • Double Sided DVD: Both sides of the disc have a recordable surface.
  • Coaster: An object you use to place cups or beverages on.
  • Dual-Layer DVD: A disc with two recordable layers. Almost doubling the discs capacity.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Expanded Dolch Word Cards

Expanded Dolch Word Cards

These flashcards, consisting of 220 sight vocabulary words and 95 words with pictures, can be used for reading practice or an informal assessment of a student's ability to read words in contracted braille and to spell words in uncontracted braille. Cards measure 3 1/2 x 2 inches, with an orientation corner cut. Words are shown in contracted braille on one side and uncontracted braille on the other, with large print on both sides. Picture word cards contain a picture corresponding to the word. 30 blank cards allow for adding words. Indexing tabs and storage box included. Recommended ages: 5+

Expanded Dolch Word Cards:

Catalog Number: 1-03560-00
Click this link to purchase the Expanded Dolch Word Cards.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Play FLV Movies with Applian

Looking for an easy way to play FLV (Flash Video) files downloaded from YouTube and other video sites? Get the free Applian FLV Player. It's easy to use, and you can view videos at 1x, 2x or even full screen, perfect for people with low vision. Features include:

  • Play FLV files on any Windows PC.
  • Double-click files in File Explorer to play them automatically.
  • Zoom 50% - 100% - 200% and full screen.
  • Double click video view-port to toggle full screen.
  • Drag-and-drop multiple files.
  • Play URL's, Streams and Local Files.
  • Remember position on screen at next launch.
  • Remember audio settings at next launch
  • Optional video smoothing for fast CPU's.

NOTE: May not be compatible with screen readers and some screen magnification programs.

Click this link to download the the Applian FLV Player.

Vodcast and Podcast Interviews for Healthy Eyes

Nearly 14 million Americans experience vision problems, ranging from the need for glasses to blindness. The National Eye Institute (NEI), part of the National Institutes of Health, supports vision research that leads to sight-saving treatments for these conditions.

Many vision problems can go undetected without regular, comprehensive dilated eye exams. In vodcast and podcast interviews for the Healthy Eyes Web page, NEI's Dr. Janine Austin Clayton explains that nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, and presbyopia are common vision problems that are easily corrected once diagnosed. Visitors can also use the Web page to send free e-cards to encourage family and friends to get their vision checked.

Click this link to visit the Healthy Eyes Vodcast and Podcast page of the National Eye Institute's website: http://www.nei.nih.gov/healthyeyes.

The National Eye Institute (NEI), a component of the National Institutes of Health, is the federal government's lead agency for vision research that leads to sight-saving treatments and plays a key role in reducing visual impairment and blindness. For more information, visit the NEI Website at http://www.nei.nih.gov.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) -- The Nation's Medical Research Agency -- includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the US Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit http://www.nih.gov.

Interactive Timeline Details the Research Path Toward Gene Therapy Treatment for Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA)

Nearly 14 million Americans experience vision problems, ranging from the need for glasses to blindness. The National Eye Institute (NEI), part of the National Institutes of Health, supports vision research that leads to sight-saving treatments for these conditions.

This interactive timeline details the research path toward gene therapy treatment for Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA), a blinding genetic condition that affects the eye's retinal tissue. In a recent NEI-supported study, three young adults with LCA experienced improvements in day and night vision after undergoing gene therapy. The timeline incorporates video interviews with researchers, scientists, and medical experts to trace the scientific process from the laboratory bench to the patient's bedside.

Click this link to view the interactive timeline: http://www.nei.nih.gov/lca/nei_timeline.

The National Eye Institute (NEI), a component of the National Institutes of Health, is the federal government's lead agency for vision research that leads to sight-saving treatments and plays a key role in reducing visual impairment and blindness. For more information, visit the NEI Website at http://www.nei.nih.gov.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) -- The Nation's Medical Research Agency -- includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the US Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit http://www.nih.gov.

Online Newsmagazine from the National Eye Institute

Nearly 14 million Americans experience vision problems, ranging from the need for glasses to blindness. The National Eye Institute (NEI), part of the National Institutes of Health, supports vision research that leads to sight-saving treatments for these conditions.

Eye on NEI features in-depth stories, interviews with researchers, vision science images, and answers to eye health questions. The first biweekly edition included a profile of Erik Weihenmayer, the only blind man to reach the summit of Mount Everest. Weihenmayer recounts his experiences with testing a breakthrough vision device known as BrainPort. The device, developed with NEI support, allows visually impaired people to "see" objects and words by relaying electrical signals from the tongue to the brain.

Click this link to read Eye on NEI: http://www.nei.nih.gov/EYEonNEI.

The National Eye Institute (NEI), a component of the National Institutes of Health, is the federal government's lead agency for vision research that leads to sight-saving treatments and plays a key role in reducing visual impairment and blindness. For more information, visit the NEI Website at http://www.nei.nih.gov.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) -- The Nation's Medical Research Agency -- includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the US Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit http://www.nih.gov.

Accessible Brain Quest

Brain Quest

APH has published four large type/braille editions of the popular Workman Publishing quiz game series Brain Quest: 1000 Questions and Answers. Recommended ages: 9 years and up.

American History:
Catalog Number: 6-17001-00

English:
Catalog Number: 6-17002-00

Geography:
Catalog Number: 6-17003-00

Science:
Catalog Number: 6-17000-00
Click this link to purchase Brain Quest from APH.

Score Card Set

Score Card Set

APH's Score Card Set consists of two reusable, brightly colored, tactile and audible plastic score keeping devices.

Score Card Set:
Catalog Number: 1-17001-00
Click this link to purchase APH's Score Card Set.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Tactile Graphics Projects Are Easier with Sticky Dots

Sticky Dots

Sticky Dots Adhesive, included in APH's Rolling Right Along Construction Kit, is available separately. Sticky Dots Adhesive is a convenient and quick solution to the slow glue-drying time often needed for creating collage graphics, tactile books, worksheets, maps, adapted game boards, etc. These sheets of self-adhesive dots allow teachers, transcribers, and parents to create multi-textured tactile displays by transferring the dots to a wide range of materials, e.g., felt, craft foam, textured paper, etc. Just press a pre-cut shape onto the Sticky Dots sheet, lift to transfer dots to the back of the shape, and then permanently affix the shape onto the page. Sticky Dots allows for smooth adhesive application to a variety of materials without adding the tactile distraction of unevenly applied glue.

Package includes eight 8.5" x 11" sheets in a tear-off pad. Note: Sticky Dots not available on Quota.

Sticky Dots Adhesive:
Catalog Number: 1-08452-00
Click this link to purchase Sticky Dots Adhesive.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Rolling Right Along Construction Kit

Rolling Right Along Construction Kit
Rolling Right Along Construction Kit allows teachers and parents to construct books similar to APH's Rolling Into Place, an interactive storybook.
Using provided accordion-folded panels, hook/loop material pathways, and accessory items (e.g., braillable sheets and a package of Sticky Dots Adhesive, self-designed books can be tailored to the interests and needs of a particular child with a visual impairment or blindness. The construction materials are accompanied by a full-color User's Guide that provides story suggestions, tips for adding tactile embellishments, and sample book layouts. Enjoy designing your own tactile books with this starter kit. If possible, involve your student/child in the construction fun.
Rolling Right Along Construction Kit:
Catalog Number: 1-08451-00
Click this link to purchase the Rolling Right Along Construction Kit.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Rolling Into Place

Rolling Into Place
Although Rolling Into Place is an interactive storybook intended primarily for children with visual impairments, any young child can enjoy its unique, fun design. As the hook/loop material ball is rolled to its final "surprise" destination, important hand skills and basic directional concepts are learned and reinforced. The book's simultaneous visual, tactile, and auditory feedback help the child attend to the path traveled by the ball. Also included are an assortment of interactive hook/loop material face pieces and an accompanying Author's Letter detailing suggested activities. Not intended for children ages 3 and under without adult supervision.
Rolling Into Place:
Catalog Number: 1-08450-00
Click this link to purchase Rolling Into Place.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

APH Sound Matching Boards

Sound Matching Board I

Sound Matching Board I

Develops fine motor skills and auditory matching and discrimination, with the capability of introducing sequential order. Included are: 12 cylinders (four loud-and eight soft-sounding), and a circular, 12-hole board. Cylinders and board are of contrasting colors. Print instructions. Recommended ages: 3 years and older.

Sound Matching Board I:
Catalog Number: 1-08710-00
Click this link to purchase the Sound Matching Board I.

Sound Matching Board II

Sound Matching Board II

Helps develop concepts of a series, directions, positions, matching, and discrimination. Includes eight shakers of four different sounds, and an 8-nest base. Print instructions. Recommended ages: 3 years and older.

Sound Matching Board II:
Catalog Number: 1-08720-00
Click this link to purchase the Sound Matching Board II.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Small, Medium, and Large Circles

Set I

Small, Medium, and Large Circles, Set I

Introduces the concept of fine size discrimination. A frame contains three recessed nests for holding six foam circles of various sizes. Print instructions. Recommended ages: 1 to 6 years.

Circles, Set I:
Catalog Number: 1-08590-00
Click this link to purchase Small, Medium, and Large Circles, Set I.

Set II

Small, Medium, and Large Circles, Set II

Facilitates perception of three dimensions, while strengthening manipulative, matching, and discrimination skills. A base has three pegs for sorting three sets of four circles with holes in their centers. Circles are in four different colors, and as circle diameter increases, thickness decreases. Print instructions. Recommended ages: 3 to 6 years. Circles, Set II:
Catalog Number: 1-08600-00
Click this link to purchase Small, Medium, and Large Circles, Set II.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Sensory Cylinder Set

Sensory Cylinder Set

Develops skills in manipulation; number and language concepts; and tactual, color, and weight discrimination. Contains six cylinders, two each of three different weights. Ends of the cylinders have six different texture matches. No two matches of weight, texture, or color can be made simultaneously. Recommended ages: 3 years and older.

Sensory Cylinder Set:
Catalog Number: 1-03670-00
Click this link to purchase the Sensory Cylinder Set.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Peg Kit from APH

Peg Kit

Helps children develop skills in manipulation; number and language concepts; and color, size, and tactual discrimination. Contains nine pegs of varying sizes, colors, and textures; a manipulation/storage container; and six inset frames with holes of varying number and size. Frames fit into the top of the container and provide for manipulating the pegs. Recommended ages: 3 to 8 years.

Peg Kit:
Catalog Number: 1-03420-00
Click this link to purchase the Peg Kit 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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Access on Main Street

Don't you love finding a mainstream product that can be used by someone who is blind or visually impaired? Teachers have always had a knack for finding things like that. Well, now there's a website that will help all of us find these gems.

From the website:

"Welcome to Access on Main Street. We cover mainstream products that, by chance or design, make life easier for an elder or a person with a disability. We want to inform consumers, inspire designers, and wake up marketers to opportunities with these underserved customers. Please comment on our articles, and point us to your own mainstream nuggets."

You can browse by category if you’re interested in certain product types or disability category. If you're looking for a specific product, you can use the standard search box, or visit their Advanced Category Search page. You can also subscribe and they’ll notify you of new posts via email or RSS feed.

Click this link to visit http://www.accessonmainstreet.net.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Peg-A-Circle Set

Peg-A-Circle Set

Assists in teaching concepts of next, sequence, clockwise, and counterclockwise. Consists of a 12 inch square board containing 16 holes in a circular pattern, and 16 pegs. Print instructions. Recommended ages: 3 years and older.

Peg-A-Circle Set:
Catalog Number: 1-08550-00
Click this link to purchase the Peg-A-Circle Set.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Puzzle Form Board Kit

Puzzle Form Board: Circle Tray

The Puzzle Form Board Kit is a supplementary aid for teaching basic concepts such as shape, texture, color, size, and matching. This kit includes five different puzzle shapes with puzzle frames: circle, diamond, square, rectangle, and triangle. There are three variations of each of the five shapes. Recommended ages: 3 years and older.

Puzzle Form Board Kit:
Catalog Number: 1-03721-00
Click this link to purchase any of the Puzzle Form Boards.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Scan N Talk

If you can switch on a light, you can operate Scan N Talk. Simply place your printed sheet or book on the scanner and push 1 button. It scans and talks back the printed text and shows it on your monitor in highlighted large type at speeds faster than other Scan programs.

Affordable, and the only reading platform to come with its own scanner. Not only is Scan N Talk a reading machine, but it will scan and save to ANY software resident on your computer!

  • Braille
  • DAISY
  • Large Print
  • Audio
  • Accessible PDF

Greater accessibility with PaperPort.

  • Quickly Scan Paper
  • Share Photos as JPEG or PDF
  • Manage and convert PDF Documents
  • View and Print over 150 File Formats
  • Fill Out Forms Electronically
  • Batch Scanning
  • Capture Web Pages

Call or email for further information:
Phone: 509-239-9815
Email: info@colligo.us
Click this link to watch a video of book being scanned.
Click this link to learn more about Scan N Talk.

Horseshoe Pitching for the Blind and Visually Impaired

The Midnite Ringers

Whether you are a preteen or a senior, you can benefit from the competition, exercise, and social contact that the sport of pitching horseshoes provides.

Dr. Dennis R. Wyant, President, U. S. Blind Horseshoe Pitchers Association, tells everyone who will listen what a great sport horseshoe pitching is for the blind and visually impaired. It is inexpensive, easy to learn and you can pitch in your own backyard. Unlike other sports with moving targets or changing locations, horseshoes provides consistency because you pitch the shoe the same distance from the same position each time.

The USBHPA is a non-profit association that plans to build horseshoe courts at V A Blind Rehabilitation centers, as well as at schools and summer camps for children with visual disabilities.

Eventually, all Midnite Ringers will have the chance to compete in local tournaments and at a national championship for all ages, genders, and skill levels.

Become a Midnite Ringer. There are no membership fees.

U.S. Blind Horseshoe Pitchers Assoc.
395 Baytree Dr.
Melbourne, FL 32940
Phone: 321-757-6824
Web: http://www.midniteringers.org

LED Illuminated Horseshoe Set

Don't want to be too official with your game? The Impact International Light n' Play Horseshoe Set is a great family game that offers day- or night-time fun! The LED-illuminated horseshoe set includes two neon pink and two neon green official-size lighted horseshoes, matching LED target stakes and batteries. NOTE: CHOKING HAZARD -- Small parts. Not for children under three years.

Click this link to purchase the Impact LED Illuminated Horseshoe Set from Amazon.com.

How to Adjust Color Contrast in Windows

Using contrast settings on your computer can heighten the color contrast of both text and images on your monitor. Increasing the contrast of colors can reduce eyestrain and make items easier to read by people with vision impairments.

Here are instructions to adjust the color contrast settings for the Windows operating system.

Adjusting Color Contrast using the Mouse

  1. Select Start and navigate to the Control Panel.
  2. Open the Ease of Access Center.
  3. Under Quick access to common tools, select - "Set up High Contrast".
  4. Under High Contrast, select - "Choose a High Contrast color scheme".
  5. Under Color scheme, select - One of the High Contrast options from the list - Then press OK.
  6. Under High Contrast: to turn High Contrast on or off, select - "Turn on High Contrast when left ALT + left SHIFT + PRINT SCREEN" is pressed.
  7. When using keyboard shortcuts to turn Ease of Access settings on, select one or both of these notification options:

    Display a warning message when turning a setting on for a visual notification.
    Make a sound when turning a setting on or off, for a sound notification.

  8. Select the "Save" button.

Adjusting Color Contrast using the Keyboard

  1. Press the Windows logo key+U.
  2. Under Quick access to common tools, select - Set up High Contrast by pressing ALT+U.
  3. Under High Contrast, select - Choose a High Contrast color scheme by pressing ENTER.
  4. Select a Color scheme by pressing ALT+C.
  5. Choose a color scheme from the list by pressing the arrow keys, then ENTER.
  6. Under High Contrast: to turn High Contrast on or off, select - Turn on High Contrast when left ALT + left SHIFT + PRINT SCREEN is pressed by pressing ALT+L.
  7. When using keyboard shortcuts to turn Ease of Access settings on, select one or both of these notification options:

    Display a warning message when turning a setting on for a visual notification, by pressing ALT+A.
    Make a sound when turning a setting on or off by pressing ALT+M.

  8. Select Save by pressing ALT+S.
Article Source:
Disabled World

Monday, May 18, 2009

Textured Matching Blocks

Textured Matching Blocks

Encourages recognition of textures, identification of textures by name, and tactual matching, while reinforcing directional and positional concepts. Includes six blocks of different textures and a board with identically textured nests for block matching. Print instructions. Recommended ages: 3 to 6 years.

Textured Matching Blocks:
Catalog Number: 1-08950-00
Click this link to purchase Textured Matching Blocks 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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Giant Textured Beads

photo of the giant textured beads

Introduces a variety of concepts, including shape, color, and texture. Also assists in the development of muscular and eye-hand coordination. Set includes 12 brightly colored plastic beads in three shapes: cube, rectangular solid, cylinder. Shapes have three textures: smooth, striped, and a grid. A bead stringer and instructions in print are included. Recommended ages: 3 to 6 years.

Giant Textured Beads:
Catalog Number: 1-03780-00

Stringer only:
Catalog Number: 1-03790-00
Click this link to purchase Giant Textured Beads 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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Effective Use of Objects: A Process Centered Intervention

Effective Use of Objects

Helps learners with multiple disabilities develop task-oriented behavior that is self-regulating. Focuses on the kinds of problem-solving skills that encourage the functional use of objects. The first section stresses task orientation and exploration of the physical properties of objects. Section two addresses skills related to using objects in work sequences at a more advanced level. Recommended ages: functional ages 2 to 7 years, for parents and professionals.

Effective Use of Objects:
Catalog Number: 7-35500-00
Click this link to purchase Effective Use of Objects: A Process Centered Intervention.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Friday, May 15, 2009

Fine Motor Development Materials: Twist, Turn, and Learn

Fine Motor Development Materials Kit

Helps young children with visual and with multiple disabilities develop and enhance fine motor skills. Kit assists in developing reaching, grasping, raking, pincer grasp, wrist rotation, searching technique, palmar grasp, and visual-motor/visual-perceptual coordination. Includes eight modules with bright colors and ringing bells; a set of straps that allow the modules to be hung on playpens or cribs; a carrying bag; and a print teacher's guidebook. Recommended ages: birth to 36 months, primarily for professionals.

Fine Motor Complete Set:
Catalog Number: 1-08420-00

Teacher's Guidebook only:
Catalog Number: 7-40400-00
Click this link to purchase the Fine Motor Development Materials Kit: Twist, Turn, and Learn.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

Parent Early Childhood Education Series

Parent Early Childhood Education Series

These activity sheets describe techniques parents can use to help their blind or visually impaired child grow in key developmental areas: cognitive, communication, eating, motor, and play skills; emotional and sensory development; and orientation and mobility. Recommended ages: birth through 5 years, for parents and professionals.

Teacher, English Edition, Print in binder:
Catalog Number: 7-96201-00

Parent/Caregiver, English Edition, Loose Leaf Print:
Catalog Number: 7-96200-00

English Edition, Braille:
Catalog Number: 5-96201-00

Spanish Edition, Loose Leaf Print:
Catalog Number: 7-96202-00
Click this link to purchase the Parent Early Childhood Education Series.

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
Web site: http://www.aph.org
APH Shopping Home: http://shop.aph.org

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The American Printing House for the Blind (APH) makes every attempt to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the data contained in the Fred's Head articles; however, APH makes no warranty, guarantee, or promise, expressed or implied, concerning the content or accuracy of the information provided in Fred's Head. APH does not endorse any technique, product, device, service, organization, or other information presented in Fred's Head, other than products and services directly offered by APH.



The products produced by the American Printing House for the Blind are instructional/teaching materials and are intended to be used by trained professionals, parents, and other adults with children who are blind and visually impaired. These materials are not intended as toys for use by children in unstructured play or in an unsupervised environment.





The information and techniques contained in Fred's Head are provided without legal consideration (free-of-charge) and are not warranted by APH to be safe or effective. All users of this service assume the risk of any injury or damage that may result from the use of the information provided.





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