APH staff are working from home due to COVID-19, but are still available to help in any way they can! Outgoing product shipments to schools and government agencies have been halted at this time. Read our blog for current updates and ways you can learn and engage during this time of social distancing.Close
Announcing Math Robot™ for the iPhone
Great news for teachers and students! The newest version of Math Robot is now available on the iPhone. Now your students can practice math drills anywhere, anytime.
Math Robot was designed for students who are blind, visually impaired, and sighted alike, making it ideal for use by an entire class.
A flashcard format and a smart "know-it-all" math robot character provide fun drills and practices for simple math problems. The app is both self-voicing and accessible with Apple’s VoiceOver® screen reader.
Features of Math Robot include:
- Compelling interface, animations, and sounds
- Free and drill modes
- Low vision mode
- Retina graphics
- Hardware keyboard support
- VoiceOver support
- Braille support
Available on Quota at APH and at the App Store at itunes.apple.com/app/math-robot/id704570512.
Best for a Nest is an interactive print/braille storybook. Through the use of its storyboard and various objects that can be touched or moved around, learners can focus on a host of concepts including position of objects, directionality, and comparisons.
Included with the book is a set of movable pieces, including birds, nest, eggs, tree, branches, grass, and a cat, designed to assist the child in better understanding the concepts outlined in the text.
Recommended ages: 2.5 to 5 years.
WARNING: Choking Hazard — Small Parts. Not intended for children ages 5 and under without adult supervision.
These multi-use braille/print stickers are embossed on clear, durable plastic, and include capital Letters A-Z. Feel ‘n Peel Stickers are intended for the creation and adaptation of print capital letter materials for individuals who are blind and visually impaired.
Each Pack Includes
- 4 sheets: 676 stickers total
- Suggested Uses Insert, in Large Print and in Braille
Recommended ages: Preschool and up.
WARNING: Choking Hazard—Small Parts. Not intended for children ages 5 and under without adult supervision.
This new and improved Tactile World Globe offers more tactile and braille information than previous APH tactile globes.
Tactile Information (on a clear plastic overlay) includes:
- Raised, topographical land area with all continents labeled in braille
- Major oceans labeled in braille
- Raised latitude and longitude lines labeled in braille, and
- Discernible, contrasting raised lines for the Equator, International Date Line, Prime Meridian, Tropic of Cancer, and Tropic of Capricorn
Includes a braille/print “Key” that defines the various line types encountered on the tactile overlay. Sits on non-skid wood base.
Recommended ages: 10 years and up.
Practice2Master Fractions is designed to help students become proficient in fraction calculations. It supplements teachers’ instructions by providing students with an unlimited number of problems to practice.
This app is fully accessible for all users, especially for students who are blind and visually impaired. It works with devices running iOS 9 or later and is compatible with VoiceOver™. Practice2Master Fractions is an accessible app that every elementary school math teacher should have in their teaching toolbox.
Recommended ages: 9 years and up.
Field Testing Opportunities
APH will be discontinuing the Tactile Graphics Starter Kit (1-08839-00), Crafty Graphics: Stencil Embossing Kit (1-08844-00), and Crafty Graphics II Kit (1-08852-00). We will be taking the best and most useful items from these products, as well as those from the Tactile Graphics Kit (1-08851-00), to create a new and improved tactile graphics tool kit.
Please take a moment to tell us which tactile graphics tools make your greatest hits list by completing the survey. Deadline is June 30, 2018 for participation.
APH is seeking summer field evaluators for Finger Walks, a set of tactile/print labyrinth images. Evaluators will be asked to share the images with students, clients, consumers, campers, or other groups of people with blindness or visual impairments and complete a brief electronic survey form.
The labyrinths in this collection range from simple to complex, but there is always just one path to trace. The activity calls on the user’s attention and tactile tracking skills and introduces rhythmic hand movements.
The evaluation will run from June through August, 2018. Please follow the link below to apply as an evaluator, and help spread the word by sharing the link with other groups you know. If you have questions, contact Fred Otto by e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org.
We encourage all customers, including EOTs, to place their orders online at shop.aph.org. It’s the fast and easy way to ensure your order is accurate and is processed in a timely manner.
Effective immediately, APH will no longer be repairing VisioBooks and Refreshabrailles. The manufacturer has ceased operations and we are unable to acquire the necessary parts for repairs. Customers are being informed to contact Customer Relations if they have questions about the repair of any unit that is still under warranty.
Some Free Matter for the Blind packages have been reported as missing or arriving much later than expected over the past several months. We are currently monitoring the situation and are working with the United States Postal Service to resolve the matter.
Load up a world of savings on selected APH products with APH’s Spring Fever Sale 2018, April 1—June 30. As always, first come, first served.
We love comments and appreciate the time that our readers spend to share ideas and give feedback. We also want our online community to be a safe place where meaningful dialog is exchanged.
Effective May 29, APH introduced new guidelines for our social platforms. The below statement will appear on, or be linked to, all of our APH associated social platforms as a reminder for those posting on our pages.
Welcome to the APH Online Community! We appreciate the time that our readers take to share ideas and give feedback. We are dedicated to maintaining a respectful community that actively engages in lively discussions about topics of interest to our community and those who serve them. Therefore, we strongly believe that the APH Online Community should be a safe space where the ideas of everyone are welcome. Please keep the following in mind when writing your comments:
- Be polite to all the members of our Community, including other commenters, authors and the subjects of articles.
- Post topics that are relevant to the American Printing House for the Blinds’ mission statement.
- Keep our community commercial and promotion free.
- Share positive thoughts and ideas – we won’t allow rudeness, insults, hate, hostility, profanity or unsupported accusations.
- Identify yourself when you post your comments; however, don’t include your personal information (like address or phone number) in your comments for your own safety.
In order to provide a safe space for our Community, comments may be pre-moderated by our team before posting to the site. Your comment may be removed at any time, at our Moderator’s discretion, in the best interest of the Community.
If you have any questions on our policy, or if you want to share comments with us privately that you feel may violate these public posting guidelines, please let us know.
Thank you to everyone who comments on our blog and/or social media pages.
June 30-July 1, 2018
Portland State University Presentations
June 1-3, 2018
Montana Family Conference
Great Falls, MT
June 16-17, 2018
National Braille Challenge, 2018
University of Southern California, LA
June 21-23, 2018
Visions Conference 2018
San Diego, CA
June 29-July 6, 2018
American Council for the Blind (ACB)
St Louis, MO
July 3-8, 2018
NFB Conference 2018
July 16, 2018
July 25-29, 2018
AER International Conference 2018
August 1-2, 2018
Iowa Summer Institute
Des Moines, IA
August 13-17, 2018
August 22-25, 2018
June 11-13, 2018
June 20-23, 2018
June 23-27, 2018
June 27-29, 2018
CCSSO/NCSA Conference 2018
San Diego, CA
July 20-23, 2018;
International Literacy Association
Snatoms for Teaching Chemical Bonding!
You may be familiar with Veritasium, the YouTube channel featuring science and engineering videos. The creator of this series, Derek Muller, came up with a great model set to help teach chemical bonding called Snatoms. A set comprises plastic magnetic spheres with flat sides corresponding to the number of bonds an atom of an element can make. The spheres are attracted to each other and connect with an audible snap! Check this product out to see the multitude of molecules and compounds your students can make with this affordable and instructive kit!
Frank H. Hall and Susan J. Spungin to be Inducted into the Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field – 2018
The Hall of Fame is dedicated to preserving the tradition of excellence manifested by specific individuals through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired in North America. Although housed at the American Printing House for the Blind (APH) in Louisville, Kentucky, it belongs to the entire field.
The ceremony to induct Hall and Spungin will take place October 5, 2018, in conjunction with APH’s 150th Annual Meeting of Ex Officio Trustees and Special Guests, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Louisville, Kentucky. Joining the sixty outstanding legends previously inducted are these two remarkable figures whose work and innovations have changed lives. Their stories of accomplishment are powerful.
The Class of 2018
Frank H. Hall, 1841-1911
Frank Hall was appointed as Superintendent of the Illinois School for the Blind in 1890 where he focused his efforts on braille. Observing that the use of the slate and stylus to produce braille was a slow process, Hall conceived the idea to invent a typewriter-like machine that would make the production of braille more efficient. Hall’s machine was the first to be mass-produced and by 1911, over two thousand machines were being used. By January, 1893, he had also developed the stereotyper, producing stereotypes that could impress braille on a thin brass plate. Hall exhibited the stereotyper at the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893. One of the visitors to Hall’s booth was thirteen-year-old Helen Keller.
Hall’s leadership as superintendent was marked by his belief that persons who were blind should be trained and work competitively with individuals who were sighted. He promoted the application of abstract knowledge to real life situations and introduced manual training classes. He also strongly promoted physical education for his students.
In 1900, Hall lobbied the Chicago Board of Education to equip public schools so that children who were blind could attend regular classes with children who were sighted in their own neighborhood. His plan was adopted and for the first time in the United States, children who were blind were integrated into regular public school classrooms on a large scale.
Susan J. Spungin, 1941-
An internationally renowned expert in the education and rehabilitation of individuals who are blind or visually impaired, Dr. Spungin joined AFB in 1972 as a national specialist in education. Through her years of leadership, she identified nationwide issues affecting children and youth who were blind and severely visually impaired, and worked in partnership with schools, agencies, state departments of education, universities, the federal government, and other organizations to help resolve those issues.
In addition to her education work, Dr. Spungin was instrumental in shaping AFB’s research and policy work, and its national programs in such areas as early childhood development, aging, employment, low vision, and career education. She also coordinated AFB’s international activities and was an active force in many organizations including AER, NAPVI, and the World Blind Union. She retired from AFB as Vice President, International Programs and Special Projects in 2008.
Dr. Spungin’s prestigious awards include the NAPVI Founders Award, the APH Wings of Freedom Award, the AER Mary K. Bauman Award, the Mary E. Switzer Scholars award, the CEC-DVI Distinguished Service Award, the AFB Equality of Access & Opportunity Award for her work in braille literacy, the Josephine L. Taylor Award from the University Division of AER and AFB’s Migel Medal. In 1991, Dr. Spungin also became the first sighted woman to receive the Russian Medal from the Byelorussian Association of the Blind.
Additional information regarding the 2018 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will soon appear on the APH website, www.aph.org.
New Feature for Cycling at Home
Are you an enthusiastic cyclist looking for a way to keep training, even on days when the weather absolutely refuses to cooperate? If so, check out APH’s latest feature on the Physical Education, Recreation, and Health website: Bike Trainers.
Treasures from the APH Libraries
Rubery, M. (2016). The Untold Story of the Talking Book. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Matthew Rubery’s The Untold Story of the Talking Book, researched with the help of APH, sheds light on the 150 year history of talking books, from Edison’s 1877 recitation of “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” through spoken novels produced for blinded World War I veterans, to the billion-dollar audiobook industry of today. The book is a testament to both the complex and at times serendipitous evolution of the medium. Rubery artfully balances both the technological and social histories of spoken books, recounting the conflicts, controversies, and the debates between written and spoken texts and what defines a reader.
Rubery retraces arguments over book and material selections, the portrayal of class and ethnicity, and whether some topics were to be purposefully avoid for particular audiences, such as blind individuals and veterans. Underlining the book’s historical narration, The Untold Story of the Talking Book challenges the reader to consider what reading really means, in both its literal and figurative contexts, and concludes that spoken books have become a distinctively modern art form within the literary tree whose social impact has and will remain profound and influential.
Carpenter, Katie. Movies About Blindness: Illuminating the Human Experience. Louisville, Kentucky: Museum of the American Printing House for the Blind.
Film and television portrayals of people who are visually impaired range from positive to negative, accurate to ridiculous. This annotated filmography describes 60 movies about blindness, encompassing a broad spectrum of fictional and documentary work. Each of the movies described in this pamphlet is held in the Migel Library, along with other videos including 1921’s Love Light and the current series Game of Thrones. Movies About Blindness has been digitized for Internet Archive. Contact library staff to view any of the videos listed in the filmography or the many others in the Migel Collection.
APH is working with the Internet Archive to digitize portions of the M.C. Migel Library. Search the phrase “full text” to find these items at http://migel.aph.org. The digitized texts are available in a variety of formats, including DAISY, Kindle, EPUB, PDF, etc.
Contact Library staff: email@example.com, 800-223-1839, ext. 705
APH Braille Book Corner
APH offers a number of recreational books in braille available with Quota funds. Each of these titles was originally transcribed and produced by APH for the National Library Service which has graciously granted permission for this offering. As usual, these titles have been added to the APH Louis Database where you can find thousands of titles produced in accessible formats.
By: Janette Oke and Laurel Oke Logan
T-N2178-50 – $168.50
When Beth Thatcher returns to Coal Valley, she has much to be excited about. She anticipates Jarrick’s proposal of marriage and perhaps a spring wedding. The mine is expanding, and there are more schoolchildren than ever. But the town’s rapid growth brings many challenges. A second teacher is assigned, and Beth finds herself going head-to-head with a very different philosophy of education–one that dismisses religion and rejects God. Fearful for the children who sit under the influence of Robert Harris Hughes, Beth struggles to know how to respond. At the same time, Beth wonders if Jarrick is considering a position at her father’s company simply for her sake. Should she admit her feelings on the matter? Or keep silent and allow Jarrick to make up his own mind?
By: John Brandt
T-N2178-40 – $169.50
In the tradition of Uzodinma Iweala’s Beasts of No Nation, by way of Christopher McDougall’s Born to Run, this is the inspirational true story of the Ugandan boy soldier who became a world-renowned runner, then found his calling as director of a world-renowned African children’s charity.
T-N2178-00 – $89.50
Why are books so very powerful? What do the books we’ve read over our lives – our own personal libraries – make of us? What does the unravelling of our tradition of public libraries, so hard-won but now in jeopardy, say about us? The stories in Ali Smith’s new collection are about what we do with books and what they do with us: how they travel with us; how they shock us, change us, challenge us, banish time while making us older, wiser and ageless all at once; how they coax us endlessly to unexpected blossom; how they remind us to pay attention to the world we make.
By: Joe Hill
T-N2165-40 – $400.00
A pandemic known as Dragonscale has swept the planet, causing the afflicted to develop markings on their skin and then burst into flame. A nurse who contracts Dragonscale wants to avoid quarantine long enough to give birth to her child.
By: Tana French
T-N2169-10 – $311.50
Detective Rob Ryan and his partner, Cassie Maddox, investigate the murder of a 12-year-old girl near a Dublin suburb. The case resonates with similarities to a murder committed twenty years before that involved two children and the young Ryan.