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So many people ask, “How fast should my child be reading?” Here are the national standards as presented by Jerry Johns, a leading reading specialist in the country. Click on the link to download your copy Reading Speeds.
For an another extensive list of information on Braille standards go to California Reading Standards
I use these same standards for my blind and low vision students. If you set high standards then children will meet those standards. I have taken on beginner students and told them how fast they would be reading braille in a couple months, even in middle and high school. Just remember the older you start the longer it will take for them to gain speed. At the end of the 2 months, as their fingers would fly across the page reading braille, as I timed them, at the end I would ask, “So did you really think you would be able to read that fast?” They would reply, “Of course, you told me I would be able to.”
So tell them, they can, and they will.
Tricks to use
Time them every week, so they see their progress
Have them reread the same material to get flow and fluency
Have them braille the material first using contractions, then read what they wrote
All of his music-education career Bill Brown has been teaching his students to play songs “by ear.” In the early 1990’s he started recording his “by ear” lessons so that his students could take the lessons home and learn more songs at a faster pace. He noticed that this style of learning was of a particular advantage to his visually impaired students.
As these “Guitar by Ear” and “Piano by Ear” song lessons became available through mail-order, he added two beginner courses to his line up of “by ear” offerings – ”Intro to the Guitar for the Visually Impaired,” and “Intro to the Piano for the Visually Impaired.” Through the use of these “Intro to” courses a beginning student could learn the basics needed to enter Bill Brown’s “by ear” world, even if this student was visually impaired.
Discover what Emily, a little girl who is blind, sees when she watches hers – The Wizard of Oz™. Now, with the first talking guide from XFINITY, millions of people like Emily can enjoy the magic of TV shows and movies independently.
Watch the beautiful documentary of Emily explaining her OZ
Macular Degeneration images—the black spot can be small and grow larger
Age-related macular degeneration, often called AMD or ARMD, is the leading cause of vision loss and blindness among Americans who are age 65 and older. Because people in this group are an increasingly larger percentage of the general population, vision loss from macular degeneration is a growing problem. (http://www.allaboutvision.com/conditions/amd.htm)
Stargardts is very similar to Macular Degeneration but occurs in younger ages…
While macular degeneration generally is associated with aging eyes, an inherited form known as Stargardt's disease can affect children and young adults.
Stargardt's disease — also called fundus flavimaculatus or Stargardt's macular dystrophy (SMD) — affects approximately one in 10,000 people and is characterized by central vision loss early in life. (Some researchers believe a distinction should be made between Stargardt's disease and fundus flavimaculatus, because they say each describes a different variant of the eye disease.) http://www.allaboutvision.com/conditions/stargardts.htm
See images here: Macular Degeneration and Stargardts
Low Vision children are especially vulnerable to neck and back problems but any of us who lean over work will eventually pay a very high cost.
Slumping over a phone adds extra pressure on the cervical spine- the part above the shoulders – researchers found. Bending the head to a 60 degree angle adds 60 lbs – or more than four stone- worth of pressure