One in every classroom
How colour vision deficiency affects
At least one pupil in every
classroom sees the world
and you don’t know which one it
and neither do they….
What is Colour Vision Deficiency (CVD)?
o Inability to distinguish colours, for example red,
green, orange, brown.
o 1 in 12 boys and 1 in 200 girls.
o Mild to moderate. Of these, 25% are severe.
o Not currently recognised as special educational need
o Not routinely tested for in UK, or in many parts of
o By secondary school, less than 50% of children with
mild colour blindness are aware of it.
o It is estimated that 20 – 30% of severe are unaware
that they see the world differently.
What problems could a colour
blind pupil have in your
How can Colour Vision Deficiency
(CVD) limit potential?
Some examples from the Science Department
o Reading litmus paper accurately
o Undertaking chemical titrations in practical
o Identification of metals by the colour of the
flame produced when the metal is burnt
o Accurately reading stained slides under a
o Carrying out dissections in biology
o Identification of species of plants or insects
o Fully understanding coloured diagrams in
textbooks, particularly in biology
o Use of prisms in physics.
How can Colour Vision Deficiency (CVD)
How can it affect attainment in your subject?
o Picking up a red ball from the green floor in PE
o Identifying fresh food in DT
o Practical activities in Science
o Reading graphs and maps
How can it affect behaviour in your
o Copies from others
o Makes ‘silly’ mistakes
o Doesn’t listen properly
o Doesn’t try or rushes work
o Has poor presentation
o Shows frustration
o Doesn’t take part
o Will assume they are stupid at the subject
o May have developed their own strategy
e.g. coloured pencils in order/dislike
working with others
But……..this can vary depending on the classroom/levels of natural light outside.
How can we support CDV students?
How we are inadvertently making life more difficult:
o Use a traffic light system for assessment?
o Place pots of mixed unlabelled coloured pencil crayons on tables?
o Have coloured labels on library books to indicate different reading levels?
o Use games e.g. counting games with coloured counters?
o Use worksheets/software which rely on colour?
o Use books which highlight familiar sounds using colours?
o Highlight teaching points in red and green on the white board?
o Colour coded marking
What can I do straight away?
(pupils and staff)
Audit learning environments
with the app! Label pencils, have a colour buddy
Use natural light
Use a strong colour contrast
(blue is good)
How are we supporting CDV at Angmering?
Interviews/lesson observations with CVD students.
Identification project with year 7 in Science.
Specsavers eye health screening for year 7 and 9.
Awareness/routine in all classrooms.
Share good practice/feedback to departments.
Next time on the under appreciated SEN club:
MORE THAN One in every classroom:
Irlen syndrome vs Dyslexia
Head of Psychology: firstname.lastname@example.org