[Nfbmo] employment, education, are you ar Braille or Print Reader

Susan Ford johnsusanford at earthlink.net
Mon Apr 13 03:12:12 UTC 2009


I think you know most of this stuff about me, but you will have it for your 

I am a Braille reader.  I know the print letters, bot in manuscript and most 
of them in cursive, but I can't see them.  I have learned to write them in 
print, and so can write a note to someone if I have no computer or 
typewriter and need to write something.  I am, however, not confident enough 
of writing small to be able to write checks.  I sign them, but have someone 
else write them out for me.  I have labeled my microwave in Braille for 
convenience.  I have a Braille-labeled pillbox in which I sort my 
medications on a weekly basis.  That is easier than carrying several pill 
bottles with me every day.  I identify my medications by touch, and can, 
therefore, sort them myself without assistance.  My grocery lists are 
written in Braille, and then I go to the store with someone who can see so 
that they can locate the items that I tell them.  That also makes them 
available to write the check that I sign at the store.  I hire a reader to 
assist me with bill-paying on a regular basis, preferrably every two weeks. 
I use Braille to copy words or choir music, because I sing in the church 
choir.  I also have a hymnal, a Bible, and a collection of words to music, 
so that if we have every sung the song before, it is done.  I have a Braille 
printer, and if there is new music, a friend can type the words into the 
computer, e-mail it to me, and then I can make a copy for both my son and 
me, (he also sings in the choir.) I use Braille at work on a daily basis.  I 
teach Braille to perhaps as many as fifteen students at a time.  I label my 
clothing paryt of the time so that I know what color garments are.  This is 
particularly true if I buy two blouses alike except for their color---the 
same for slacks.  I take Braille notes in many circumstances, although I 
take notes on the computer when I am interviewing clients.  My computer has 
speech access, but my pac-mate also has a Braille display.  This permits me 
to read back what I have written without causing disruption during a client 

I suspect I have missed many ways that I use Braille, but it is sufficient 
to tell you that Braille is an essential tool to me.  I first learned it 
when I was in kindergarten.  I have used it all through grade school, high 
school, and both a bachelor's degree and master's degree study.  I read 
about 200 words per minute aloud.  This is not amazingly fast, but it is 
faster than many Braille users read.  I think it is a reasonable 
expectation, if a child is taught Braille at a young age and permitted to 
use it continuously throughout his formative years.  We don't develop skill 
in reading without doing so.  Think of how it was, parents, when you learned 
print.  It did not come without practice.  You did not read as well as you 
do now until you were perhaps in 7th grade, and after that, your vocabulary 
continued to develop.  This is added to explain why it is so important to 
encourage your children to learn Braille early, and not be too eager to 
insist that they use a computer or Braille notetaker before their Braille 
skills are fully developed.

What else can I say?

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Debbie Wunder" <debbiewunder at earthlink.net>
To: <nfbmo at nfbnet.org>
Sent: Thursday, April 09, 2009 8:21 AM
Subject: [Nfbmo] employment, education, are you ar Braille or Print Reader

>I would be interested in hearing from all of you , sharing what type of 
>employment you do? How di you obtain your goals? Do you read Braille, Large 
>Print, both or do you use another medium? If you are a Braille reader 
>please tell at what age you learned Braille, and how it impacts your life. 
>Do you use Braille to label your medicine, CD's, DVD's, microwavewwave? If 
>you use another alternative technique please share that as well.
> I am hoping to get lots of imput to share with our Parents of Blind 
> Children.
> Debbie Wunder
> debbiewunder at earthlink.net
> _______________________________________________
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