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Showing posts from March, 2012

Make Your Own Egg Hunt Sensory Game!

The following tip comes from http://www.WonderBaby.org. On a rainy Sunday afternoon we were looking for something fun to do.... So we grabbed some plastic easter eggs, filled a tray with rice and created our very own Egg Hunt Sensory Game! Setting up your egg hunt game couldn't be any easier. All you'll need is: A deep tray
Plastic easter eggs
Lots and lots of uncooked rice
Something to put in your eggs to make sounds And now the fun begins! Games to Play with Your Egg HuntObviously the easiest thing to do with your egg hunt is to simply burry the eggs under the rice and try to find them. But there are so many other possibilities: Shake it Up! Put something in each egg so it makes noise when you shake it. We filled ours with rice, but you could fill each egg with something different, so you have different sounds.
Matching Game: Or how about playing a matching game? Fill pairs of eggs with matching sounds, hide the eggs, then ask your child to find the two eggs with the same …

Fred Gissoni: The Legacy of a Matchless Pioneer

by Deborah Kendrick In an interview for AccessWorld two years ago, Fred Gissoni, a true legend and pioneer in the field of assistive technology, told me that he had four criteria that would determine when it was time for him to retire from the American Printing House for the Blind (APH): if the work was no longer fun, if APH no longer needed his services, if his health prevented working, or if he needed to take care of someone else. Even though he was still having fun, had some difficult health conditions under control, wasn't needed to care for another, and was definitely still useful to APH, Fred Gissoni decided to use another indicator in 2011: intuition. He just felt that it was time to retire -- and so he did. Nine days after his 82nd birthday, on December 30, 2011, Fred Gissoni spent his last day on the job. At that point, he had worked five days a week at APH for 23 years, solving technical and other issues for customers who called him at extension 309, and dispensing so…

Choosing the Right Technology

by Donna J. Jodhan In so many cases, employers need some guidance when it comes to ensuring that they choose the right technology to suit the needs of their blind and partially sighted employees. The one major factor to keep in mind is this: Each blind and/or partially sighted person is different and as a result, their needs are also different. No two blind and/or partially sighted people are exactly the same. There is a false perception that blind and partially sighted people may probably have the same needs. This is false and should be addressed. There are varying degrees of blindness. That is, one person may have a different level of vision to someone else. Being described as blind may vary from someone with absolutely no vision to someone with enough vision to read large print texts and of course there is a wide range of levels in between. Some blind people use Braille while others do not. Some blind people are able to use screen magnifiers while others are unable …

My Memory Bank

by Donna J. Jodhan Whenever I feel a bit down and am missing the vision that I lost over five years ago, and whenever I am in a mood to wish upon a star, I go to my cherished memory bank and pull out some of my most precious memories. True to form, the colors are still o so vivid in my mind. The shapes so real and I can practically reach out and touch them. Photos of my parents, brothers, granny, and dogs are highest on my list. I can practically reach out and lightly touch their faces. I can place my hands on their heads and look into their eyes. Ah! My stack of precious photos forever preserved in my memory bank. Next comes those keep sake photos of some of my heroes; Pope John Paul II, Pierre Trudeau, The Kennedy brothers, Bill Clinton, Wayne Gretzky, and others. I still find it easy to bring their faces into my unfocused eyes and remind myself as to why they are my heroes. I sit there for some time playing with all of these photos and I amaze myself at how I am stil…

Arkansas Lighthouse for the Blind Operates a 12 Seat Contact Center

Arkansas Lighthouse for the Blind recently established a Contact Center to diversify its job offerings to Arkansans who are blind or visually impaired. Their abilities are numerous and include: inbound calls, outbound calls, performing a mail merge and mass mailout, performing surveys over the phone, appointment setting, and much more. The non-profit agency began doing strictly manufacturing, but is now branching out into other areas in order to serve its approximate 80 employees and the community. If you know of anyone who could utilize their services, they can be reached at 501-492-7500, then choose extension 101 for Mr. Nathan Cook. They can also be found on the internet at: http://www.arkansaslighthouse.org.

Tactile Town: A 3-D O&M Kit from APH

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Tactile Town provides an extensive interactive, three-dimensional model to help teach spatial concepts and environmental layouts.
This kit assists in the development of cognitive mapping skills by helping students who are visually impaired and blind perceive and organize their physical environment specific to concepts such as street layouts, intersections, route patterns, city block arrangements, etc. It encourages active participation and interaction with displayed map layouts so that concepts and skills, not conveniently accessed through real-life exploration, can be learned and practiced.
Tactile Town is designed to be inviting to both tactile and visual learners, with attractive pieces incorporating contrasting colors, textures, and recognizable features. By providing a wide variety of fun, colorful components that can be easily customized or extended, Tactile Town is an ideal starter kit for instruction and reinforcement of mapping skills and concepts.
The included large print T…

New Way to Order: Periodic Table Reference Chart and Booklet

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This frequently requested reference chart is available in a durable and colorful print-braille version. The chart comes with either a reference booklet in print or in braille that contains additional tables listing the elements by name, atomic number, electron configurations, etc. Chart measures approximately 22 1/2 x 13 inches.New Way to Order: This handy chart is now being sold in a new way. The chart is no longer sold under its previous catalog number, 1-08855-00. Customers now have a choice of purchasing the chart with either a braille or a print manual. Please use the catalog numbers listed below to order the version that fits your needs.

Chart with Braille Booklet
Catalog Number: 5-08855-00

Chart with Print Booklet
Catalog Number: 7-08855-00
Click this link to purchase Periodic Table of the Elements Reference Chart and Booklet

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

Accessible NCAA Tournament Bracket

From the website: Welcome to the Accessible NCAA Tournament Bracket. This site is an experiment in making March Madness more accessible to the full spectrum of college hoops fans, including those using non-visual interfaces such as screen readers and those who are physically unable to use a mouse. The main feature of this site is the bracket. It's an accessible bracket because it uses well-structured, standards-based markup that makes it easy for non-visual users to navigate and understand the relationships between games.

Click this link to visit the Accessible NCAA Tournament Bracket website.

Where Is Our Classroom?

by Donna J. Jodhan As a blind person who has been fortunate to have had the opportunity to take all kinds of courses and complete all kinds of degrees, I have been able to attend classes in person as well as take them online. The question for me as a blind person is this: Where exactly is my classroom? Where would be the best place for me? Of course, I probably will not be able to give you a definitive answer but instead I’ll give you my thoughts on both settings. I like attending classes in person because it gives me the chance to meet my fellow students and to interact directly with my professors and instructors. I would normally tape my classes with a digital recorder and then come home to listen and take notes. I would take notes using my computer. I find that if I try to take notes in the classroom using my computer, I soon get confused listening to the voice of my screen reading software along with listening to the voice of my lecturer. It’s funny though that I can t…

Remembering My Dad

by Donna J. Jodhan Dad left me a little over 21 years ago and to this day I miss him as if it were only yesterday when he left. At his funeral, I eulogized him as someone who was not just my dad, he was my friend. He left me an invaluable legacy, knowledge. He understood my needs and never failed to come through for me. I was the unexpected baby; born eight hours after my twin brother. Mom never knew that she was having twins and when she and dad were told that I was on the way, just imagine their surprise and then they discovered that I was blind! They never faltered as parents and my dad remained a constant source of knowledge for me. As early as I can remember, he would read to me; story books, newspapers, and selected articles of interest. He taught me all about Religion, politics, economics, plus much more. He helped me to become a passionate and compassionate Human Being. He taught me respect, how to treat others, but most of all, he instilled courage and motivation…

NCAA March Madness on Demand

NCAA March Madness on Demand allows you to watch LIVE game broadcasts of CBS Sports television coverage of the NCAA Championship on your computer for FREE! This year, you'll be able to watch every game of the NCAA Championship live online for free. All 63 games, from the First Round through the Final Four including the Championship Game, will be available with NCAA March Madness on Demand, so you'll never have to miss a single shot. NCAA March Madness on Demand is 100% free
Live games streaming on your broadband-connected computer
Enjoy Championship highlights, recaps, and archived video
640x360 widescreen video player
Exclusive halftime show
Includes The NCAA Basketball Championship Selection Show
Can't see the video? Listen to live streaming audio from Westwood One's radio broadcasts of every game.

Click this link to visit the NCAA's March Madness on Demand website: http://www.ncaasports.com/mmod. NCAA On Your iPhoneWatch every game of NCAA March Madness LIVE on your…

Accessible NCAA News at the Double-A-Zone

Do you like college sports? Living in Kentucky, I love basketball, U of L or U of K, that's for another article. This NCAA blog will appeal to anyone who cares about student athletics and governance. Searchable, and browsable by categories like individual sports, graduation success rate, alcohol policies, pay-for-play, Title IX, performance-enhancing drugs, etc. There are some podcasts listed on the site, and naturally, they have an RSS feed. This looks like a great accessible place for college sports news. Click this link to visit http://www.doubleazone.com. Accessible NCAA Tournament BracketLooking for an Accessible NCAA Tournament Bracket? Here's a site that you'll want to visit!

Accessible NCAA Tournament Bracket: http://terrillthompson.com/ncaa/bracket.html.

Follow Your Favorite Sports Teams with RSS

Yahoo! Sports delivers feeds for professional baseball, football, hockey and basketball. You can also receive the latest news on your favorite NCAA basketball teams like the University of Kentucky Wildcats or the University of Louisville Cardinals. RSS (Real Simple Syndication) is technology that allows certain programs called RSS readers to download new content from an RSS feed to your computer. RSS feeds are often found on blogs or forums and contain the latest posts to that blog or forum. An RSS feed can also be found on news sites and contains the latest articles found on that site. Just like an email program such as Microsoft Outlook saves you time by checking for new mail for you and downloading it so that you can view it, the RSS reader checks for updates for you and as soon as it sees an update, it will download it to your computer and can notify you by a popup message or dialog, etc.

Classic Radio Show Downloads for Free

On OldRadioWorld.com, you'll find some of the most popular radio programs of the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s. Before television, radio provided entertainment by presenting radio plays and programs of mystery, intrigue, and comedy. Of course, news was present as were many soap operas. Radio has been around for a long time and although there are more commercial radio stations on the air than ever before, there isn't really much worth listening to unless you like lots of commercials and little creativity. This site will give you plenty to listen to with your favorite MP3 player.

Click this link to visit http://www.oldradioworld.com.

How to Cope With Pregnancy Discomforts

How to Cope With Pregnancy Discomfortsfrom wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit
Carrying a growing fetus in the womb can bring about an onslaught of uncomfortable physical pains and irritations. Knowing how to alleviate many of these pains can make this part of the pregnancy process less of a burden, and help make your pregnancy as successful as possible. Steps Learn to control and eliminate morning sickness. Morning sickness can be a difficult aspect of pregnancy, as the associated nausea and vomiting is both unpredictable and unpleasant. However, learning about ways to control it can help pregnant women better manage morning sickness for a more comfortable pregnancy. Try eating smaller, more frequent snacks. Avoid anywhere there are extremes of odors, such as the butcher's, the perfume counter, the fish market, a smoky room, moldy areas, etc. Keep healthy nibbles with you at all times. Some women find it best to eat a piece of toast or similar bland item before gett…

Hadley Course Gives a Voice to Braille Music

The Hadley School for the Blind's course "Braille Music Basics" offers an introduction to the fundamentals of braille music for sighted users who want to learn about transcribing print music into braille, teach braille music, or simply support someone who is interested in learning the braille music code.The information in this introductory course does not enable students to professionally transcribe print music, teach music, or teach braille. However, after completing the course, students can enthusiastically support and encourage a music student who is blind and learning to read music independently."Learning the basics of braille music is a great opportunity for music teachers working with students who are blind. Reading braille music can open many doors toward self-confidence and further independence," says instructor Linn Sorge.APH is proud to have provided part of the funding to help Hadley develop this valuable course.For more information or to enroll, ple…

Leader Dogs Has a Summer Program for you!

Are You Looking For Something To Do This Summer? Are you a teenager who could use a week of fun, outdoor activity and friendship this summer? Does kayaking, rock wall climbing and tandem biking sound good to you? Would you enjoy the challenge of developing new travel skills and stretching your independence? If so, the Leader Dogs for the Blind Summer Experience was designed with you in mind. The Summer Experience program combines outdoor camp activities with things exclusively Leader Dog—audible pedestrian GPS training and the opportunity to try-out the guide dog lifestyle. The combination will help you increase the skills you need to live independently! The Leader Dog Summer Experience is for boys and girls ages 16 and 17 who are legally blind. The program is completely free including airfare—and everyone receives a free Kapten PLUS audible pedestrian GPS device to keep. The Leader Dog Summer Experience is scheduled for June 22—June 29, 2012, so now is the time to complete and sub…

Circadian Sleep Disorder in the Blind Affects Thousands

“You can fall asleep while you’re walking. You can fall asleep while you’re talking. You can be in the middle of a sentence and fall asleep for 30 seconds or so just because your body needs that time so badly because it’s not sleeping at night." Mindy Jacobsen has a rare circadian rhythm disorder called Non-24-Hour Sleep-Wake Disorder that affects a majority of totally blind people. It is estimated that approximately 65,000 – 95,000 people in the US suffer from Non-24, a condition in which a person's sleep period can delay by about 15 minutes to an hour every night. Patients suffering from Non-24 experience severe nighttime sleeplessness and excessive daytime sleepiness, and the condition may also interfere with their social, family and work obligations. Since many doctors are unaware of it, people can go undiagnosed for years, living in a permanent state similar to severe jet lag. Currently, there are clinical trials underway evaluating a possible treatment. Blind people …

Difference Between APH's Color Test 2 and Colorino

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ColorTest II
Colorino by Monica Turner The ColorTest II: Talking Color Analyzer is a hand-held device that can help users who are blind or colorblind distinguish colors independently. It has hundreds of potential uses at home, work, or school. This device can be used by both adults and children and can provide increased self-confidence as they obtain the ability to independently do things, such as organize their own wardrobes, sort colored office or school supplies, etc.The ColorTest II senses over 1,000 nuances of color, is able to detect patterns, and is able to provide color analysis with specific values for brightness, hue, and saturation. It uses a clear human voice to announce information through either its built-in speaker or through earphones that can be plugged into the earphone jack. Additional features include a talking clock, timer, calendar, and thermometer. The ColorTest II has a rechargeable battery and comes with a battery charger, as well as a c…

Two Treasures from the APH Libraries

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The APH Barr Library supports research initiatives at APH, while the Migel Library is the largest collection of nonmedical information related to blindness in the world. Although the collections do not circulate, arrangements can be made to use the materials on site. In addition, an ongoing digitization effort means APH will continue to make materials available through the online catalog at http://migel.aph.org.Two of the many "Treasures from the APH Libraries" are described below.From the Migel Library: The Industrial Home for the Blind, Light Buoy Industries Chair Caning and Press Seating Department, the Industrial Home for the Blind More than a book, this is a professionally bound photo album containing twenty-five 8x10 photographs. On the back of each photo-page is a typewritten index card describing the subject of the photo. The album begins with a history of the buildings that have housed the Industrial Home for the Blind. The last of these shows the "new H…

APH Makes Tactile Graphics Available for the Books You Emboss

APH braille textbooks can be downloaded from the APH File Repository! Not only are the braille files available for local embossing but you can also order the accompanying tactile graphics! Search Louis for the tactile graphics by using the books ISBN or APH catalog number. The graphics package ends in –GR (Example: A-B0644-GR). The graphics are produced and shipped to you to insert into the book you embossed. Search Louis today!http://louis.aph.org/catalog/CategoryInfo.aspx?cid=152

The APH News Celebrates 10 Years!

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In March, 2002, APH requested beta testers for the new low vision computer game, Termite Torpedo.
In 2003, Gary Mudd and Bob Brasher hobnobbed with Connie Stevens, noted entertainer and business woman, at a vision conference.
In 2004, The APH Callahan Museum unveiled its newest traveling exhibit, BUILDING A FUTURE: U.S. Residential Schools for Blind and Visually Impaired Students Editor Bob: "We're slightly late to the party but it's not too late to celebrate!"It was way back in December of 2001 when the first APH News hit cyberspace and here’s the link to that fledgling effort: http://www.aph.org/advisory/advdec01.html.How and why was the APH News created? By late 2001 email and website connections to the field were getting stronger and it seemed like the right time to try communicating using this new technology.The root of the APH News can be traced to the quarterly letters written by APH President Tuck Tinsley to the Ex Officio Trustees beginning in 1…

Celebrate Kentucky: The American Printing House For The Blind

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A local television station made a short feature about APH. Click this link to watch it on YouTube or click below.

Two APH Library Treasures!

The APH Barr Library supports research initiatives at APH, while the Migel Library is the largest collection of nonmedical information related to blindness in the world. Although the collections do not circulate, arrangements can be made to use the materials on site. In addition, an ongoing digitization effort means APH will continue to make materials available through the online catalog at http://migel.aph.org.Two of the many "Treasures from the APH Libraries" are described below.Migel Library TreasureJames Holman, A Voyage Round the World: Including Travels in Africa, Asia, Australia, America etc. London: Smith, Elder, and Co., 1834.Beginning in 1819, James Holman, also known as the “Blind Traveler,” set out on a series of unprecedented adventures, the accounts of which are published in this multi-volume set. While serving in the British Royal Navy, Holman contracted an illness that rendered him blind at the age of 25. Although the illness additionally caused him to suffer…

Most Affordable E-Book Reader for the Blind Hits the Market

Now, blind Readers Can Access eText for Less than the Cost of an Evening Out In the age of technology, when most people turn to the Internet for information, and a laptop is practically a necessity in the workplace or at school, the e-book is rapidly becoming as common and important to daily life as its paper-bound counterpart. Access to printed information for the Blind is more important now than ever, and though there is a variety of software available to make electronic books and documents accessible, it either comes complete with a price only few could afford without assistance from a school or rehab agency, or does not allow the reader to open even a minority of the various eText formats.Christopher Toth, a blind software developer, aims to change that with QRead, the first e-reader for the blind that is affordable even to the average college student. QRead is a program that provides blind users with fast and efficient screen-reader access to most common e-book formats, includi…

Those Treasured Story Books

by Donna J. Jodhan Ah! To be a kid once more or I should say it like this! To dream of when I was a kid! Those happy times when my dad and my older brother Robert used to read to me. What fun I used to have; imagining as they read to me. Dad and Robert have since passed away but their voices reading to me when I was a kid will always live on in my mind. When I was a kid, I was unable to read print because of being blind and true to form my family came through for me. Dad and Robert would read to me; from those treasured story books and fairy tales. As they read, fairies came to life in my mind. I was the little princess going off with the handsome prince. I was the little girl getting into all kinds of trouble. I was the little fairy waving my wand and carrying out acts of magic and good deeds. When they were finished reading and long after the lights were out, I would lie in bed and imagine the stories all over again. Some times I would day dream in class and even ima…

The Workplace Syndrome

by Donna J. Jodhan For lack of a better term, this is what I call it; the workplace syndrome. The workplace has now taken on so many new meanings and dimensions and we need to keep this in mind as we attempt to add the needs and demands of blind and partially sighted people. Today we find that it can apply to any of the following: The workplace in an office environment
The workplace in one’s home
The workplace on the road For blind and partially sighted people, these changes can both be a challenge as well as an exciting time but it all depends on certain factors. Factors such as having the right type of technology to meet the requirements of the environment of the workplace. There is no reason why blind and partially sighted people cannot be a part of any of these types of workplaces. All it takes is a bit of patience, research and a willingness on both sides to make it happen. Blind and partially sighted people need to ensure that they can access their environment in an effic…