“I LOVE your website. It is a good way for children with their sight to learn about blind children! I love the site and at the moment I’m learning some braille!!” (Jennifer, 11 years old)
Just Braille Fun and Games – Or Is It?
Children who are blind or visually impaired want to be seen as “just kids” by their peers. Braille Bug provides information and activities to promote the idea that children who are blind or visually impaired are more similar to their sighted peers than they are different.
Elementary students who don’t have experience with people who are blind often have misconceptions and may avoid interacting with them. On the surface, Braille Bug is designed to teach typically sighted children about the exciting braille code – but Braille Bug engages sighted children, parents, and educators in online activities that expand their knowledge of people with blindness.
“It’s important to him to fit in, to receive compliments from others, to be noticed in a positive way.” (Parent of a blind son)
Children who are blind or visually impaired also enjoy Braille Bug web activities along with their sighted classmates by using adaptive technologies. The site even provides information for teachers and parents to help them teach elementary students about braille and literacy.
Unlocking the “Secret Code” of Braille
The Braille Bug, a friendly lady bug with a six-dot braille cell on her back, guides kids through free, fun activities for learning about braille:
- What Is Braille? offers kid-friendly lessons about braille, such as Braille: Deciphering the Code, Math Code, Music Braille, Braille Trivia, and Braille Technology.
- Secret Games and Messages includes Trivia, Riddles and Rhymes, Braille Jumble, Countdown, and Secret Messages.
- Louis Braille tells the story of the kid who developed the tactile reading and writing system that carries his name – Louis was only 15 when he when he had worked out most of the system!
- Hellen Keller is popular feature of Braille Bug. The Helen Keller Kids Museum Online is a unique virtual exhibit paying tribute to Helen Keller and highlighting the importance of braille in her life.
- Parents and Teachers includes an overview of the Braille Bug site and includes classroom activities.
Braille enables people who are blind or visually impaired to develop literacy skills comparable to sighted people who read print. Sighted elementary students initially are fascinated by braille as a kind of “secret code.” As they learn more about braille and its many uses, they expand their knowledge of people with disabilities and the accommodations they use to live full lives. They begin to see the person first, not the disability.
What are you waiting for? Visit BrailleBug.org today!
“Braille Bug has been great for my granddaughter. I think we’ve exchanged messages occasionally for about a year. Believe it or not, it’s also been helpful to me in learning to use JAWS with the internet. Thanks for making this fun site possible for all of us.” (Grandma Nancy)
Braille Bug was originally developed by the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB). APH is proud to be continuing Braille Bug as a partner of AFB.