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Museum Workshops For K-12 Schools in Indiana

Grades K-5

What Does It Mean to be Blind?

Through simulations and hands-on activities, students explore the needs and abilities of people with visual impairments. They try out several of our inventive products to help children succeed in school. They will find out that children who are blind learn about geography from tactile maps, study science in tactile diagrams, and read and write using braille. Most important of all, they will discover that people who are blind are not disabled; they are differently-abled. This workshop works equally well as an introduction to physical disabilities or as part of a unit on inventions.
GUIDANCE (K-2) 3.4, (3-5) 3.16; E K-5.2

Connect the Dots

This workshop focuses on the braille code as a system for communication. Students will learn the basics of the braille alphabet and practice writing on a braillewriter. Each student receives a magazine written in braille and a card for decoding it.
GUIDANCE (K-2) 3.4, (3-5) 3.16; E K-5.1

Louis Braille and the Braille Code

Louis Braille was only twelve years old when he began work on the system of reading and writing now used worldwide by the blind. Students will be inspired by his amazing story. They’ll also learn the basics of the braille alphabet and practice writing on a braille slate and a braillewriter.
GUIDANCE (K-2) 3.4, (3-5) 3.16; E K-5.1

Pictures for Your Fingertips

Students explore the various ways people who are blind and visually impaired "see" with their fingertips through tactile illustrations. Then they are given the opportunity to create their own tactile illustrations—as a picture, a card, or a mask. (Requires a $3.00 per student materials fee.)
Fine Arts: Visual Arts K-5.5, K-5.6, K-5.7

Meet Mary Ingalls

Students learn all about the richly rewarding life of Mary Ingalls, blind since the age of fourteen. Mary, sister of the celebrated children’s author Laura Ingalls Wilder, is featured in several of her sister’s books. As a young teen, Laura was her sister’s "eyes," describing everything she saw around her.
GUIDANCE (K-2) 3.4, (3-5) 3.16; E K-5.2

Helen Keller’s Story

This workshop targets students who are reading about Helen Keller or The Miracle Worker. Ms. Keller played a leading role in most of the significant political, social, and cultural movements of the 20th century. Throughout her lifetime she worked unceasingly to improve the lives of people who, like herself, were both blind and deaf.
E 5-9.2; E 5-9.3; SS 8.2.7, 8.2.8, 8.2.9, 8.2.10; USG 1.1. 2.3, 2.6; USH 6.2, 7.1, 7.3, I.5

Grades 5-9 (Indiana)

Blindness 101

What should you do if you meet a person who is blind? Should you offer to help? What do you say? If the person has a dog guide, can you pat the dog? The best way of dealing with people is always with courtesy and understanding of their needs. In this workshop, students receive frank answers to their questions about blindness and demonstrations of when and how best to help. The purpose of the workshop is to put young people more at ease when they are around people who are blind.
GUIDANCE (3-5) 3.16, (6-8) 3.6, (9-12) 3.1

Louis Braille and the Braille Code

An accomplished musician and respected teacher, Louis Braille was only 12 years old when he began work on the system of reading and writing now used worldwide by the blind. Students will be inspired by his story. They’ll also learn the basics of his alphabet and practice writing on both a braille slate and a braillewriter.
GUIDANCE (3-5) 3.16, (6-8) 3.6, (9-12) 3.1; E 5-8.1

Doing it with Numbers

People who are blind are scientists, engineers, business owners—all occupations that involve lots of math. But how do you do math if you can’t see? With the right tools, it’s as easy as 1-2-3. Students will also pick up some tips on doing mental math, that is, how to solve math problems in their heads.
M 5-9.1, 5-9.2

The History of Printing

Students learn about the change in printing technology over time, beginning with Guttenberg’s invention of moveable type. In a powerful demonstration of the importance of literacy, students will also learn about the adaptation of printing technology to produce books and materials for the blind and visually impaired.
AE 2:20; SS-06/07.3.4.1/2; T-1-SESI-U-4 (T-I-SESI-S-S14/15); T-1-SESI-U-5 (T-I-SESI-S-S13); T-MS-SESI-U-4 (T-MS-SESI-S-H14/16); T-MS-SESI-U-5 (T-MS-SESI-S-H18); T-H-ICP-U-1 (T-H-ICP-S-14); T-H-SESI-U-6 (T-H-SESI-S-S16)

Grades 8-12 (Indiana)

Civil Rights for the Blind

In the eighteenth century, the blind were considered uneducable. That’s no longer the case, of course, but even in our own century, despite considerable improvements in equal opportunity for disabled individuals, discrimination in employment, public accommodation, transportation, and access to public services continues to be a problem. Although the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 was intended to ensure equal opportunity for all Americans, the limits of the law are continually tested.

In this lesson, students play the roles of plaintiffs, defendants, lawyers, judge, and jury in a contemporary court case concerning the interpretation of the law. They will learn that making decisions about issues in a democracy is not easy, and that the process is designed to clarify the problems involved. They will also become aware of the challenges blind and visually impaired people must overcome and gain respect for their abilities. Requires some preparation by the classroom teacher.
SS 8.2.7, 8.2.8, 8.2.9, 8.2.10; USG 1.1. 2.3, 2.6; USH 6.2, 7.1, 7.3, I.5

Blindness 101

What should you do if you meet a person who is blind? Should you offer to help? What do you say? If the person has a dog guide, can you pat the dog? The best way of dealing with people is always with courtesy and understanding of their needs. Frank answers to students’ questions about blindness and demonstrations of when and how best to help will put young people more at ease when they are around people who are blind.
GUIDANCE (6-8) 3.6, (9-12) 3/1

Industrial Louisville

The American Printing House for the Blind is one of the oldest and most successful industrial businesses in Louisville; in the factory today, because of the nature of the business, nineteenth century technology and twenty-first century technology still operate side-by-side.

In this lesson, students expand their understanding of industrialization in the United States by focusing on how industrialization in the 19th century transformed Louisville and how that industrial landscape changed in the twentieth and twenty-first century. A multi-media presentation is followed by a guided tour of the factory.
SS 8.1.25, 8.1.27; USH 2.1, 3.7