[blindkid] 5year old with low vision (again)

Arielle Silverman arielle71 at gmail.com
Sat May 12 18:59:54 UTC 2012

Hi Jill,
That's great that you have a cane for him to use. I would keep
fighting for O&M but if they won't budge, you can teach him the basics
yourself. Holding your hand in unfamiliar places might be fine when
he's 5, but in a few years when his friends are running around it'll
be important for him to be able to keep up with them. With a cane
he'll be able to combine that tactile information with the info he
gets from vision and he'll be much safer, and won't need to hold on to
someone or be told when there are steps or how many steps there are,
because his cane will pick up on that.
Regarding reading, you wrote,
He has nystagmus and so I know reading will become a problem when he is older.
Reading should not become a problem, ever, and it won't if he knows
how to read Braille! Low vision is never an excuse for reading
difficulties because nonvisual methods, like Braille, exist.
However, your school officials might not be concerned enough about his
future reading needs to provide Braille. Have you thought about
exposing him to at least the Braille alphabet at home?

On 5/12/12, Arielle Silverman <arielle71 at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Jill,
> I would suggest getting him a white cane and teaching him the basics
> of using it if your commission won't do it themselves. You can order
> free white canes from the National Federation of the Blind by calling
> 410-659-9314
> The website
> www.blindchildren.org
> has some great articles about how to teach your child basic mobility.
> I know vision with albinism does tend to be stable, but even if you
> think he doesn't "need" a cane all the time, it really won't hurt him
> to learn, and he will likely find himself in situations where using a
> cane will allow him to be much more safe and independent. Also it's
> much much easier to teach a 5-year-old to use a cane, especially in
> public places and school, than it is to teach a 10-year-old or
> 15-year-old. Older kids will feel self-conscious about appearing in
> public with a cane, and will likely be more resistant to it.
> Also, if you have any doubt about your son's ability to keep up in
> print with his peers-whether now or in college-insist on Braille
> instruction at your IEP meetings. If his vision is 20/200 he is
> considered legally blind and he qualifies for whatever specialized
> services the IEP team-including you-decides are most appropriate.
> Again, learning Braille won't hurt him, even if he doesn't end up
> using it much, and if his vision is such that he won't be able to keep
> up with larger print-reading demands, he will benefit a great deal
> from knowing Braille.
> Arielle
> On 5/12/12, Jill Fass <jillfass at gmail.com> wrote:
>> I had sent this to from my work email by accident!!! This is my correct
>> email
>> Hi All!
>> I am new to this blind kid thing so I hope I am doing this right.
>> I have a 5 year old boy with albinism. He has low vision. His vision
>> is about 20/200.  Outside in the sun much worse. What can an O and M
>> person do for my child. It seem like since my son has sight our state
>> Commission (not for) the blind does not do much for my son. He has not
>> had any O and M services since he was 3. They were in the backyard for
>> maybe 20 minutes and said he is fine. Then she has him at his
>> preschool and said he is fine. Call when he goes to elem. school. I
>> feel stupid, is my son missing something?
>> Also, can anyone give any insight on Low Vision evals. I want my son
>> to have a cctv and a monocular for kindergarten. Are there specific
>> questions I should ask? When should he start keyboarding? They will
>> not give him Braille because he has too much sight for that. He does
>> seem ok with large print. Then again he is only 5. He has nystagmus so
>> I know reading will become a problem when he is older. I am sorry with
>> so many question..
>> Mrs. Jill Fass
>> Hamilton, NJ
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