Thursday, January 28, 2010

Right to Read

Those of you who have been following me for a while know that I like to be prepared for things, even when they are a long way off in the future. This time it's about his schooling again. We went to the mall the other day and I picked up some preschool learning workbooks for Skyler. Nothing too fancy, just basically colouring pages with the alphabet and numerals, with questions on the pages like "How many apples are there in the picture? Colour the apples." Except they probably spelled colour without the U because I'm guessing it's American. Anyway it took me a long time to find a book that had letters and pictures and numbers that were big enough. It was frustrating. I want him to be able to see the print on the pages because otherwise they are useless. I couldn't even find any flash cards with big letters. They were all too small. I'm considering making my own.

I know we can (and will if we need to) blow the pages up with our scanner and make the images bigger for him, but I'd rather not have to. I am wondering why they don't have things like this that are more accessible for disabled kids. I'm sure I could find some specifically tailored to low vision children online, but I don't think it's fair that I would have to order something that other people can just pick up at a regular department store. Do they think that disabled kids don't want or need to learn? Or maybe the market just isn't there. Whatever the reason it's frustrating.

Yesterday we went to the CNIB for Skyler's little "photo shoot". Our OT chose us to give a free Victor Reader to, along with two other kids. (It's like a cd player for talking books, but for blind/visually impaired people) So the company who donated them wanted to get pictures of the children receiving them. They took a few pictures of him with me, and a few of him sitting with the other kids. He was a bit cranky, but not too bad. Afterwards we snuck into the CNIB shop and ordered a Braille labeler. It'll probably take a month to get here from Toronto, but we're so excited. We're going to be able to label all of Skyler's stuff, and do some Braille for the books we own that don't have Braille.

Which reminds me! Please please, if you live in Canada, take a few minutes to click over here and sign the CNIB Right to Read petition. It takes two minutes, costs you nothing and may save the CNIB library, giving lots of people, including my child the opportunity to read.

Right now I'm trying to fight off an awful cold, which has stolen my voice. Have you ever tried to take care of a room full of kids, with no voice whatsoever? It's not the easiest task, when they don't listen much to begin with and you can't do more than a whisper. Oh well, I will get through it, tomorrow is an inservice day and we're taking the kids swimming, hopefully my voice will have returned by then.

I hope you all are well.


Karen said...

Wow. I would also have thought that large print stuff would be readily available. I suppose it's good you were thinking ahead because you might have to end up ordering things. Bummer! But at least with the reader and the labeler, you'll be able to make some good advances on your own.

Hope you feel better soon.

Ya Chun said...

I know you will come up with something, but don't feel disparaged if you end up shopping online. First, I do almost ALL of my shopping online, because then I can compare and avoid spontaneous purchses.

Secondly, I want to teach beanie Chinese and ASL, and I am THANKFUL that I can find books and CDs online. I don't remember having much luck when I was pregnant 2 years ago (alhtough I had only just started looking), but I think it is great. I think I will end up making flashcards that have a picture, the ASL hand picture, English, Spanish and Chinese on it. Yes, beanie will get exposed to them all, and when she gets older if she wants to continue she can.

Corrie Howe said...

How exciting that you got these tools! It seems to me that there has to be Alphabet in large sizes. I know I've seen them in floor puzzles. I don't know of any American who spells color with a U. Interesting.