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  1. 1. Low Vision or Blindness Chapter 11
  2. 2. “ Vision is a distance sense that provides us with information from outside our bodies. When vision is limited, it affects the individual in significant ways, limiting mobility, access to printed information, and independent living. Visual disabilities (low vision and blindness) in children is a low incidence disability, affecting about 0.05% of all schoolchildren.” p.384
  3. 3. How Vision Works <ul><li>Four elements present and operating to see </li></ul><ul><li>1. Light </li></ul><ul><li>2. Something to reflect the light </li></ul><ul><li>3. An eye processing the reflected image into electrical pulses </li></ul><ul><li>4. A brain receiving and giving meaning to those pulses </li></ul><ul><li>Figure 11.1 p. 386 </li></ul>
  4. 4. What are the different types of visual disabilities? <ul><li>LOW VISION </li></ul><ul><li>Use sight to learn </li></ul><ul><li>VD interferes with daily functioning </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ legally blind” criteria: central visual acuity of 20/200 or less (p. 389) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>BLINDNESS </li></ul><ul><li>Uses touch or hearing to learn and does not have any functional use of sight </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Congenitally blind - at birth or during infancy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Adventitiously blind - after the age of two </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Table 11.1 p.388 to see a complete list of Visual Disabilities </li></ul></ul></ul>
  5. 5. How are these disabilities identified? <ul><li>20/70 - 20/200 in better eye considered low vision </li></ul><ul><li>20/200 or lower considered legally blind </li></ul><ul><li>Snellen Chart </li></ul><ul><li>Diagnosticians, affected children, parents, educators, school nurse and eye specialists </li></ul><ul><li>Ophthalmologists and Optometrists </li></ul><ul><li>Possible signs of Visual Disabilities table 11.2 p.390 </li></ul>
  6. 6. Bit-O-History <ul><li>Homer, Greek poet who composed the Odyssey and the Iliad, was blind </li></ul><ul><li>1784 Valentin Hauy opened first school for blind; The Institution for Blind Youth & raised letters </li></ul><ul><li>1800 Louis Braille designed embossed six dot system </li></ul><ul><li>1821 New England Asylum for the Blind </li></ul><ul><li>1900 Chicago, mainstreaming </li></ul><ul><li>1913 Boston, partially sighted </li></ul><ul><li>1915-1965 “sight saving classes” </li></ul><ul><li>1964 Natalie Barraga- vision more limited when not used </li></ul><ul><li>1918-1925 guide dogs for French & German soldiers </li></ul><ul><li>1928 Seeing Eye dogs introduced in USA </li></ul><ul><li>1960s Rubella epidemic </li></ul><ul><li>1970s Kurzweil Reader first print-to-voice translator </li></ul>
  7. 7. Prevalence, Causes & Prevention <ul><li>According to the American Foundation for the Blind: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1.3 million Americans legally blind </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Worldwide only 4% of all blind are children </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>4 in 10,000 schoolchildren have VD </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>14,546 6-17 receiving special education because of low vision or blindness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Of that, 1/3 legally blind </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ROP retinopathy of prematurity and rubella </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Congenital or Aquired </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Characteristics <ul><li>Develop relationships in the first 2 years </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of understanding social cues </li></ul><ul><li>Low self esteem, socially immature, egocentric, self conscience, isolated, passive, withdrawn, and dependent </li></ul><ul><li>What can sighted peers, parents and teachers do to help? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide social opportunites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Model appropriate behavior </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Encourage full participation in all school activities </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Educational Needs <ul><li>Allow and encourage increased initiations from the child to reduce adult reliance </li></ul><ul><li>Long cane for orientation and mobility </li></ul><ul><li>Life skills </li></ul><ul><li>Direct Instruction to master reading and achieve literacy </li></ul><ul><li>Classroom modifications p.398-399 </li></ul><ul><li>Braille, enlarged print, magnifying glass, telescope, audio versions of texbooks, personal readers, </li></ul><ul><li>IDEA now requires Braille consideration in IEP’s </li></ul><ul><li>Orientation & Mobility </li></ul><ul><li>Extented Time and Computer use </li></ul><ul><li>Careful use of language “go get it, it’s over there” </li></ul>
  10. 10. Successful Transition <ul><li>VD students have the highest high school graduation rate of disabled students </li></ul><ul><li>Only 30% can find competitive jobs </li></ul><ul><li>College Success Program </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Organization, social and study skill </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Being assertive and advocating for oneself </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gaining access to printed materials </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hire a reader </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Visual, Audio & Tactile aids cost table 11.4 p.408 </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. In Conclusion <ul><li>As teachers we can: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Eliminate dangerous & hazardous obstacles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide consistent organization, expectations and consequences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Position low vision students where they benefit most from activity (close to board) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Oral summaries, printed information, handouts of lectures </li></ul></ul>
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