[blindkid] Incorporating the Expanded Core Curriculum into the lives of visually impaired children at home

Carol Castellano carol_castellano at verizon.net
Thu May 14 18:58:19 UTC 2015

Soapbox warning...

I have never liked this document very much and the NFB has for the 
most part ignored it.  I think if it had been written by NFB and 
NOPBC it would look very different than it does.  For example...
    * compensatory or functional academic skills, including 
communication modes--We would have put the focus on equal opportunity 
and alternative skills.  We would not have called them 
compensatory.  We would have taken it for granted that every child 
needs the chance to develop.  We would have said literacy, equal 
expectations, and Braille.
    * orientation and mobility--Not bad, though we would put more 
emphasis on independent movement and travel.
    * social interaction skills--We would not make the assumption 
that being blind necessarily means being socially incompetent unless 
specifically taught.
    * independent living skills--We would say this is the purview of 
the parents and doesn't belong in an IEP.  We would put our emphasis 
on empowering parents to do the job.
    * recreation and leisure skills--My objections would be a 
combination of social skills and IL skills above.
    * career education--Again, we would object to the idea that these 
things are only learned through VISUAL observation.  We would work 
toward inclusion of the blind student in all aspects of school 
training in this area.  We would empower parents to handle the usual 
parental part of the task.
    * use of assistive technology--Not bad.
    * sensory efficiency skills--Not bad.
    * self-determination--Total agreement that self-determination is 
critically important, but we take it from the position that the blind 
person is a normal person who needs to learn the skills of blindness 
in order to compete equally in the world.  We would not have the word 
"limitations" in the first sentence.
In general, I think we tend to take things from the position that 
blindness is secondary to life.  It needs to be paid attention to and 
skills need to be learned, but we don't tend to view ourselves and 
our kids as "special."  I think the other point of view begins with 
the "specialness" and then builds a big world around it.

Hope my soapbox speech was not too painful!


Carol Castellano
Parents of Blind Children-NJ
Director of Programs
National Organization of Parents of Blind Children
carol_castellano at verizon.net

At 01:00 PM 5/14/2015, you wrote:
>Dear Blkid Members,
>I am a volunteer for the Center for Distributed Learning at UCF.
>This week while I was there I had to practice my Jaws skills on the 
>computer.  I decided to read about the Expanded Core Curriculum on 
>the internet.  I have a question for all of you.
>How do you incorporate the areas of the Expanded Core Curriculum 
>into the lives of your children?
>blindkid mailing list
>blindkid at nfbnet.org
>To unsubscribe, change your list options or get your account info 
>for blindkid:

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