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, February 17, 2011

Sense of Science: Astronomy

Sense of Science is a unique series designed to make the world of science accessible, understandable, and enjoyable.

The main component in each Sense of Science kit from APH is a set of colorful, raised-line overlays designed to be used with a light box, or as stand-alone items. An accompanying guidebook suggests activities using the overlays and supplemental teacher-provided materials to enhance and extend the learning experience.

Three modules are currently available, Sense of Science: Plants, Sense of Science: Animals, and Sense of Science: Astronomy. Additional modules will be available in the future.

This is the third module in this tactile/visual science series. Unlike previous modules of this series, this set of materials is appropriate for a broader range of ages and grade levels of students with visual impairments and blindness. Activities incorporate a learning objective, a list of vocabulary and needed materials, a step-by-step procedure, extended activities, visual adaptations, math and language connections, and science tidbits. Activities are complemented by the included visual/tactile overlays and fold-out 2-dimensional displays.


  • A large print guidebook (braille edition available separately) with easy-to-follow activities, a glossary, and a list of resources and related websites.
  • A variety of visual and tactile overlays that can be used alone or with the optional APH Light Box or Mini-Lite Box (sold separately). Overlays include:
    • Cross-Section of the Sun
    • Lunar Eclipse
    • Milky Way Galaxy
    • Orbit of a Comet
    • Phases of the Moon
    • Planetary Orbits
    • Relative Sizes of the Planets
    • Solar Eclipse
    • Space Shuttle
    • Ursa Major/Ursa Minor
    • Moon Phases (small cards for sorting)
    • Galaxy Type (small cards for sorting)
    • Fold-Out Astronomy Displays:
      • Our Solar System Display (with separate print/braille labels)
      • Northern Circumpolar Dome
      • Relative Distances of the Planets
  • Two trays designed to slip under a light box ledge and provide a secure working area when using the overlays.
  • Astronomy Quick Fact Cards include print/braille "Fact Card" for each planet, the Moon, the Sun, and Pluto. These cards can be used as independent study/review, as a quiz game, or as a springboard for students to create and expand their own fact sheets.
  • Astronomy Worksheets include print, braille, and CD-ROM files of the following worksheets for student completion: Planet Fact Worksheet, Planet Ranking by Distance from the Sun, Planet Ranking by Orbital Period, Planet Ranking by Rotation Period, Planet Ranking by Size, Planet Ranking by Temperature, and Famous Astronomers. The CD-ROM contains the worksheets in these file formats: MS Word, PDF, and braille-ready (.brf).

Notes: Each overlay set is housed in its own protective and labeled clear-view folder. Braille labels are included for customer application.

Additional sets of Quick Fact Cards and Astronomy Worksheets are available for purchase separately.

Recommended ages: 8 years and up.

Catalog Number:
Click this link to purchase Sense of Science: Astronomy 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
Web site:
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