Visit Our House!

APH Logo

APH News

Your monthly link to the latest information on the products, services, and training opportunities from the American Printing House for the Blind.

December 2010

Exciting New APH Products Announced!

Read on to learn about these new products – now available!

Annual Meeting 2010 Photo Album

Here are additional memories of our very special celebration: Annual Meeting photo album.

Field Evaluators Needed

The EZeeCount Abacus is an alternative device to APH’s Cranmer Abacus or Beginner’s Abacus. Its 10 x 10 configuration allows basic mathematical functions such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division, as well as demonstration of math concepts related to fractions and patterning. The abacus has movable beads of two textures (smooth and wavy) and two colors (yellow and red). It is especially tailored for students with learning disabilities who need more one-to-one correspondence when performing basic math operations.

APH is currently seeking field evaluators of the EZeeCount Abacus. Ideal field evaluators will be available to use the tool with their students between January and April 2011 and complete an evaluation form. Please feel free to forward or circulate this request to teachers who might be ideal evaluators for this product. Field test prototypes are limited. Evaluation sites will be selected based upon location, type of setting, and students’ grade level, age, and primary reading medium. If you would like to be considered for participation, please contact Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader, at (502) 899-2322 or email hidden; JavaScript is required by December 15, 2010. Thank you.

Going To CSUN? Come Early for APH Training!

APH Technology Project Leader Larry Skutchan will be hosting a training event in San Diego, on March 16, 2011, at the Embassy Suites Hotel, directly across the street from the CSUN hotel. The training will be held prior to the opening day of exhibits for CSUN.

This hands-on event will feature a full-day workshop, focused on a variety of APH technology products, with emphasis on the Book Port Plus and the Braille+ suite of products, and the Refreshabraille 18. We encourage teachers, students, adult consumers and others interested in this new technology to attend.

Registration for the event will be $20. Registration information will be available soon on the APH website and in upcoming issues of the APH News. Space will be limited so please check back soon and register early!

If you would like further information regarding the content of the workshop, please contact Larry Skutchan, 800/223-1839, ext. 314 or email email hidden; JavaScript is required.

BANA Announces Update to Computer Braille Code (CBC) Special Symbols Page

December 3, 2010: The Braille Authority of North America (BANA) announces an update to the Computer Braille Code: 2000 Revision (CBC), Rule 3.3, Symbols.

Standard Computer Braille Code symbols, including any symbols that have been devised by the transcriber, should be listed on a "Special Symbols" page. These symbols must be transcribed in accordance with the rules of the Braille Formats: Principles of Print to Braille Transcription (latest edition).

In CBC, there are often paired symbols, such as the symbols that begin and end Computer Braille Code. To make the CBC section of the Special Symbols Page more user-friendly, the BANA CBC Technical Committee devised an order in which these symbols should appear on the Special Symbols page no matter what order they appear in the document. Transcribers may use this order as a checklist when creating a document, making it easier to determine which CBC symbols are included in transcribing a document.

This update, including the newly devised ordering of the CBC symbols, is posted on the website of the Braille Authority of North America at

For additional resource information, visit or contact Mary Nelle McLennan, APH Representative to BANA, at email hidden; JavaScript is required.

Download Free Magazines

APH is proud to offer free downloadable Reader’s Digest® and Newsweek® as an option to our subscribers and patrons of the National Library Service (NLS). If you are not a patron, visit the NLS website at and follow the instructions. There is no charge for this service.

To download magazines in Digital Talking Book (DTB) format visit and follow the Download Magazines link for quick facts and details on how to register.

The APH Migel Library Goes Digital!

This year, the APH Migel Library began working with the Internet Archive to make some materials available online. This means that you can read and download selected texts from the Migel Library via the internet. These materials are available in a variety of formats including DAISY and ePub. Because of copyright laws, we are not allowed to make everything available online. You will find materials published before 1924, government documents and other materials that are considered Public Domain. As of today, there are 136 items available online. We hope to add a few hundred more in the coming months.

You can access these documents in one of two ways. When searching the APH Migel Library website,, you will see a Full Text Link on the Book Detail page if we have made the item available online. This will link to the items page at the Internet Archive. From there, you will have a variety of formats to choose from for viewing or download. (An example can be seen here:,25657.aspx?FormatFilter=7) You can search the Migel website using the search term, "Full Text" to see the items currently available online. Alternatively, if you’d like to browse the actual collection of digital materials from the APH Migel Library, go to

We hope you find this digital access to some of the APH Migel texts helpful and welcome your feedback!

2011 Nomination Process for the Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Hall of Fame plaque of Dr. Richard Welsh

The Hall of Fame is now accepting nominations for 2011 induction consideration.
If you are interested in learning more about the process for submitting a nominee to join the 44 inductees, please visit: The nomination process will close March 31, 2011.

"The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired."

COSB’s William H. English Leadership Award Presented to APH’s Ralph Bartley

The award was presented to Ralph by Dr. Phil Hatlen

In recognition of his many outstanding contributions, leadership, and service to the field and to blind and visually impaired students, the Council of Schools for the Blind presented their coveted William H. English Leadership Award to APH Director of Research, Dr. Ralph Bartley, at the annual COSB Banquet held in conjunction with the APH Annual Meeting. COSB shared that Dr. Bartley exemplifies the characteristics Mr. English demonstrated throughout his 40 year career and who, likewise, has made significant contributions to the field and to blind and visually impaired students.

The Braille Challenge Honors APH’s Janie Blome

Janie Blome and Nancy Niebrugge

Janie Blome, Director of Field Services, received a very special award from Nancy Niebrugge, Director of The Braille Challenge at Braille Institute, to acknowledge her pivotal role as an outgoing member of the Challenge’s National Advisory Committee. As one of the founding members assembled in 2002, Janie’s leadership helped guide the growth and scope of the national braille reading and writing contest, lending her expertise on issues such as appropriate contest content, equity in scoring, use of technology, building partnerships and creating a Teacher of the Year program. The Braille Challenge is now in its 11th year, and has grown from a local event in Southern California to a national program with nearly 800 contestants and 35 events across the U.S. and Canada.

Honor Someone Special this Holiday Season

A holiday tribute gift is a meaningful way to honor everyone on your gift list, from friends and family to clients and colleagues. Give a gift of Independence this holiday season. Contact email hidden; JavaScript is required or 1-888-295-2405.

Registration Now Open for The Braille Challenge

Braille Institute’s National Reading, Writing & Spelling Contest for Blind and Visually Impaired Students

Teachers—To register your students and proctor The Challenge yourself, click on the link below to go directly to our online form. Please register all your students on one form. (If you are unable to access the online form, please call 1-800-BRAILLE for assistance.) Individual registration closes December 17, 2010. Sample contests to use for practice, and a separate parental permission form are available for download on the Braille Institute website.

OR, your student may attend any one of 37 regional Preliminary Round events that will be held throughout North America in early 2011. A regional event brings kids, families and professionals together as a fun way to celebrate braille literacy. Students must register directly with the host agency. Follow this link for a complete list of sites and contact information:

Not familiar with The Challenge?

Visit our website today——to learn more. It’s a great way to motivate blind and visually impaired students to practice their braille literacy skills. Contests include reading comprehension, braille speed and accuracy, proofreading, spelling and reading tactile charts and graphs. All children are acknowledged, and students at all academic levels are encouraged to participate in the preliminary contest. In fact, nearly 800 students from first through twelfth grades participated last year. Each year, the top-scoring 60 come to Los Angeles in June for the Final Round—two days of competition, camaraderie and fun!

Gettin’ Literate in Louisville

Here’s something to put on that new calendar you’ll get for Christmas—the Tenth Biennial Getting in Touch With Literacy will take place right here in Louisville, December 7–10, 2011. You are sure to find the same great presentations, exhibits, opportunities to network, special activities and more that you’ve come to expect from this outstanding grass roots conference. The 2011 event will also herald the return of the celebrity auction, so you’ll want to be here to bid on autographed items from your favorite celebs!

Never been to "the Literacy Conference"? Then be sure to join us in 2011 and find out what you’ve been missing! You’ll love the charming historic Seelbach hotel in downtown Louisville, and you’re sure to fall in love with our amazing room rates of $119 for a single room and $129 for a double!

A call for papers and other vital information will be available soon at Until then, please contact Janie Blome, email hidden; JavaScript is required, or Jane Thompson, email hidden; JavaScript is required, for more information!

NFB Youth Slam: A STEM Academy

Registration for the 2011 NFB Youth Slam has begun!

In the summer of 2011, the National Federation of the Blind will host its third NFB Youth Slam, a five-day experiential academy for blind high school students focusing on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields. Even if science or technology is not "your thing," there’s sure to be something for everyone. Learn the science behind building apps for an iPod, learn how to be a journalist, use cutting-edge equipment and technology to determine chemical reactions in chemistry labs, build robots, or learn how to use nonvisual techniques to perform a real dissection!

If you are interested in attending the NFB Youth Slam, either as a student participant or as an adult volunteer, visit to complete an online application, or call Mary Jo Hartle at (410) 659-9314, extension 2407.

Braille Initiative
Braille Readers Are Leaders Contest

Braille readers, don’t forget to sign up for the Braille Readers Are Leaders Contest! Registration began on October 1 and the contest runs November 1 through January 4, 2011—Louis Braille’s birthday. Remember there is one contest for students (K-12) and one for adults. All reading levels are encouraged to participate. Read "We Are Able!" in the October issue of the Braille Monitor to learn how one team sailed to victory in the Adult Braille Readers Are Leaders Team of the Year contest. Stay on top of your game in this year’s contest by reading the Braille Readers Are Leaders Blog—visit and follow the "Read the BRAL Blog" link. If you haven’t yet registered for the contest, you can do so at the same site.

NFB Braille Reading Pals Club

Registration is now open for the 2011 NFB Braille Reading Pals Club!

The NFB Braille Reading Pals Club is an early literacy program designed for families of blind children ages infant to seven. Participating club members will receive a print-Braille book, a plush reading pal, a monthly parent e-newsletter containing early Braille literacy tips, quarterly Braille activity sheets for young children, Braille birthday cards for child participants, and access to a network of resources devoted to serving parents of blind children. The program kicks off in January 2011. Interested families can register now at or email email hidden; JavaScript is required. Call Treva Olivero at (410) 659-9314, extension 2295, for more information, or watch a video about this exciting program.

Winter Sports Camps

  • Camp COOL Sacramento, CA
    Access Leisures AC
    Contact: Jenny Yarrow
    Phone: (916) 808-6017
    E-Mail: email hidden; JavaScript is required
    Camp Dates: January 29-30, 2011
  • National Camps for Blind Children Christian Record Services

    • Winter Camp–Snow Mt Ranch Camp
      Winter Park, CO
      Contact: Peggy Hansen
      Phone: (402) 448-0981 ext. 224
      Camp Dates: February 13-20, 2011
    • Winter Camp–Au Sable
      Grayling, MI
      Contact: Pat Page
      Phone: (905) 436-6938
      Camp Dates: February 6-11, 2011

In Memoriam
Dr. Geraldine Scholl

A legendary figure in our field, Dr. Geraldine T. Scholl of Ann Arbor, Michigan, passed away October 20 at age 90.

In 1969, Dr. Scholl became professor of Special Education, with an emphasis on the education of the blind, at the University of Michigan. She traveled extensively for the Department of Health, Education and Welfare, studying education of children and youth. She also served on the Board of Trustees for the American Foundation for the Blind and authored The School Psychologist and the Handicapped Child and Foundations of Education for Blind and Visually Handicapped Children: Theory and Practice, which has been translated into five foreign languages. In 1985 she was awarded the prestigious Migel Medal of the American Foundation for the Blind.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 20300 Civic Center Drive, Ste. 100, Southfield MI 48076; or Leader Dogs for the Blind Memorial Dept, P.O. Box 5000, Rochester MI 48308.

Dr. Scholl’s full obituary may be found at:

Holiday Gift Guide 2010

Our 2010 Holiday Gift Guide is here,
With lots of ideas to spread winter cheer!

Send the APH elves your order quick,
Receive your goodies in time to help out St. Nick!

Note: Order these items on or before December 10 to receive prior to December 25.

"Like" APH at Our New Facebook Page, Now with More Features!

We invite you to visit our brand new Facebook page and "Like" us! The previous APH Facebook page has been removed. The new page has added features, such as better integration with Twitter and Flickr photo sharing! You can find APH at these social media sites: Twitter, YouTube, Flickr, and at our blog, Fred’s Head from APH.

APH Welcomes New Ex Officio Trustee

Victor A. Arbulu, the Greater Detroit Agency for the Blind and Visually Impaired replacing Gail McEntee.

APH Travel Calendar

on the road with APH


December 1-4, 2010
TAHPERD’S 87th Annual Convention (Texas AHPERD);
Galveston, Texas

December 6-10, 2010
APH Appropriation: Various Legislators as Scheduled;
Washington, DC

December 10, 2010
ISAVE Training;
Escondido, CA


January 27-29, 2011
ATIA 2011 Orlando;
Orlando, FL


February 18, 2010
Braille Plus Mobile Manager and FVLMA Product Training for TVIs;
Charlotte, NC

February 22-25, 2011
Celebrating Connections;
Charleston Civic Center in Charleston, WV


March 10-13, 2011
CTEVBI 52nd Annual Conference;
Oakland Marriott City Center in Oakland, CA

March 16, 2011
Focus on Vision Impairment & Blindness;
Four Points by Sheraton in Norwood, MA

March 22-28, 2011
Celebrating Connections;
Charleston, WV

March 29-April 2, 2011
National AAHPERD 2011;
San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, CA

Fall Harvest Sale

Load up a world of savings on selected APH products with APH’s Fall Harvest Sale 2010, October 1—December 31. As always, first come, first served.

Refreshabraille 18 SPECIAL OFFER! Your Choice of FREE Case with Purchase of Refreshabraille 18 Unit

For a limited time, purchase APH’s popular Refreshabraille 18 at the regular price and receive a carrying case absolutely FREE!

Order using catalog number 1-07445-05 and receive the Refreshabraille 18 along with a FREE genuine leather Carrying Case. A $32.00 value.

Order using catalog number 1-07445-06 and receive the Refreshabraille 18 along with a FREE durable leather Combo Case that holds both the Braille+ Mobile Manager and the Refreshabraille 18 units in a single convenient case. A $45.00 value.

Offer valid from December 1, 2010 to March 31, 2011.

NEW! Feel ‘n Peel Sheets: Carousel of Textures

1-08863-00 — $85.00

Replacement Item

Sticky Dots Adhesive: 1-08452-00 — $8.00

Related Products

Light Box: 1-08660-00 — $460.00
Mini-Lite Box: 1-088661-00 — $135.00
Feel ‘n Peel Assorted Stickers Kit: 1-08843-00 — $77.00
Feel ‘n Peel Assorted Stickers II Kit: 1-08864-00 — $96.00

Carousel of Textures sheets, a part of APH’s Feel ‘n Peel series, can be used in numerous ways by teachers, parents, students, and adults. This kit provides an assortment of sheets in a variety of textures and colors.

Example Uses

  • Adapt games, puzzles, or storybooks
  • Make textured worksheets, bar graphs, pie charts, etc., for math, science, or social studies
  • Use as areal/fill patterns in collage tactile graphic displays and maps
  • Use for classroom art activities
  • Construct tactile shapes, numbers, or letters
  • Use as tactile marking mats for coloring activities


  • Translucent "Rough" Vinyl Sheets (non-adhesive backed) in blue, red, green, yellow, clear
  • Translucent "Bumpy" Vinyl Sheets (non-adhesive backed) in blue, red, green, yellow, clear
  • Corrugated Sheets (non-adhesive backed) in red, blue, purple, dark green, light green, orange, yellow, and pink
  • Craft Foam Sheets (adhesive backed) in red, white, black, yellow, green, and blue
  • Foam Glitter Sheets (non-adhesive backed) in gold and silver
  • Velour Sheets (adhesive backed) in green, blue, white, black, and red
  • Vivelle® Sheets (adhesive backed) in gray, lilac, blue, green, yellow, brown, orange, pink, and red
  • Double-Backed Adhesive Sheets (apply to back of non-adhesive backed sheets)
  • 1 Package of Sticky Dots™ Adhesive
  • Storage/Carrying Box
  • Suggested Uses Sheet, Large Print
  • Suggested Uses Sheet, Braille

Sheet sizes are as follows:
Translucent "Rough" Vinyl, "Bumpy" Vinyl, Corrugated, and Velour Sheets are 8 1/2 x 11 inches; Craft Foam and Foam Glitter Sheets are 9 x 12 inches; and Vivelle Sheets are 8.26 x 11.69 inches (A4 size).

Recommended ages: Preschool and up.

WARNING: Choking Hazard — Small Parts (if cut from full size sheets). Not intended for children ages 5 and under without adult supervision.

Note: The textured sheets included in Carousel of Textures are not intended for thermoforming purposes.

NEW! Inkjet Hook Paper

1-04970-00 — $15.00

Related Products

Braillable Labels
Assorted Label Pack: 1-08871-00 — $46.00
Small Label Pack: 1-08872-00 — $13.00
Large Label Pack: 1-08873-00 — $13.00

Braillable Label Sheets
Full Size: 1-08874-00 — $16.00
Continuous: 1-08875-00 — $33.00

All-in-One Board: 1-08836-00 — $145.00

Invisiboard: 1-08541-00 — $140.00

Storage Panel: 1-08838-03 — $18.00

Tri-fold Board: 1-08859-00 — $56.00

Picture Maker Kit: 1-08838-00 — $112.00

Use this "grippy" paper in combination with APH’s Braillable Labels and Sheets to create custom print/braille labels. Hook Paper is similar to the "rough" side of VELCRO® brand that grips to the soft "loop" side of VELCRO® brand.

Step 1: Print images using an inkjet printer.
Step 2: Cut out print images or labels.
Step 3: Use in combination with a VELCRO® brand hook-compatible surface (a soft "loop" surface).

Note: Use only with inkjet printers. DO NOT USE HOOK PAPER WITH LASER PRINTERS OR PHOTOCOPIERS — to do so can cause the Inkjet Hook Paper to melt and damage the laser printer/copier.

Example Uses

  • Creating print/braille labels of street names and landmarks
  • Creating movable pieces for interactive games and puzzles
  • Creating tactile communication symbols/cards
  • Creating interactive tactile/print storybooks or sequencing stories


  • 10 sheets of Inkjet Hook Paper
  • APH Product Instructions, Print
  • APH Product Instructions, Braille
  • Vendor Product Instructions, Print
  • Vendor Product Instructions, Braille

Recommended ages: Preschool and up.

WARNING: Choking Hazard — Small Parts (if cut from full size sheet). Not intended for children ages 5 and under without adult supervision.

New Downloadable Product Manuals Added

Get the manual you need instantly! APH offers a selected list of product manuals available for free download ( You may print or emboss these as needed. We will continue to package hard copies of these manuals with their products and sell hard copy replacements.

Newly added manuals include

7-08750-00 Tangle Toy: Guidebook, Large Print
7-08842-00 Tactile Treasures: Guidebook, Print
7-08850-00 Basic Science Tactile Graphics: Guidebook, Large Print
7-08990-00 Sense of Science: Animals: Guidebook, Large Print
7-30006-00 Good Tactile Graphics: Guidelines, Resources, and Samples Booklet
7-52210-00 HANDS ON: Guidebook, Print

APH Braille Book Corner

APH offers a number of recreational books in braille (Quota funds can be used). 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.

Note: all books are produced upon receipt of orders, therefore, please allow several weeks for delivery.

Good Enough
by Paula Yoo: T-N1774-90 — $44.00
High school senior Patti Yoon is busy living up to her Korean parents’ expectations for her to attend an Ivy League college when she befriends transfer student Ben Wheeler. Ben encourages her to apply to Juilliard and pursue her own interests. Fiction, Senior High readers. *(AR Quiz #121142, BL 5.1, Pts. 7.0)

The Autoimmune Epidemic: Bodies Gone Haywire in a World Out of Balance and the Cutting-Edge Science that Promises Hope
by Donna Jackson Nakazawa: T-N1771-00 — $101.50
Journalist analyzes the growing prevalence of autoimmune diseases such as Type 1 diabetes, Crohn’s disease, lupus, multiple sclerosis, and rheumatoid arthritis. Posits that the environment–full of industrial chemicals, heavy metals, and toxins–has accelerated such illnesses. Reports patients’ first-person accounts, evidence of cluster epidemics, and relevant medical research. Non-Fiction.

My Dearest Friend: Letters of Abigail and John Adams
by John Adams: T-N1771-30 — $136.50
The editors selected 289 entries from the voluminous correspondence between the man who became the second president and Abigail–his wife, advisor, and friend. The couple, who endured many separations until John’s presidency ended in 1801, began writing in 1762 and discussed the war, John’s political career, and their family. Non-Fiction.

Easier to Kill: A Tamara Hayle Mystery
by Valerie Wilson Wesley: T-N1774-70 — $51.00
Radio star Mandy Magic hires private investigator Tamara Hayle to look into the murder of Mandy’s stylist, who was also her second cousin. Vandalism and an anonymous note that reads "movin’ on up" may be ominous clues that Mandy is also a target. Some violence and some strong language. Fiction.

The Tenth Muse: My Life in Food
by Judith Jones: T-N1775-40 — $60.00
Memoir of longtime food editor at Knopf. Jones reminisces about her childhood in New York City and in Vermont and her post-World War II cooking adventures in Paris. Describes her work with chefs Julia Child and James Beard and her efforts to introduce Americans to international cuisine. Includes recipes. Biography/Cookbook.

*Accelerated Reader quiz number, book level, and point value. For more information on the Accelerated Reader program, see the January 2006 APH News or

APH News Credits

Dr. Tuck Tinsley

Malcolm Turner, APH Website Coordinator

Thanks to the following APH staff:

  • Cindy Amback, Support Specialist, Field Services
  • Ralph Bartley, Director, Research
  • Kristin Binkowski, Director, Planned Giving
  • Janie Blome, Director, Field Services
  • Scott Blome, Director, Communications
  • Kate Herndon, Technical Services Librarian, Resource Services
  • Stephanie Lancaster, Graphic Designer, Communications
  • Mary Nelle McLennan, APH Representative to BANA
  • Tristan Pierce, Multiple Disabilities Project Leader, Research
  • Karen Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader, Research
  • Gwynn Stewart, Administrative Assistant, Communications
  • Jane Thompson, Director, Accessible Textbooks

Bob Brasher, Vice President, Advisory Services and Research

Visit APH on

Read our blog: Fred’s Head from APH.

For additional recent APH News, click the following:

November Issue –
October Issue –
September Issue –

Archive of all previous issues –

The APH News is a monthly publication from the American Printing House for the Blind:
1839 Frankfort Avenue
Louisville, KY 40206

Please share this web link or any items that appear in this publication with anyone who might benefit.

Thank you.

Subscribe to the APH News!
Get convenient email reminders every month when a new issue of the APH News is released.

It’s Easy!

  1. Create an email to email hidden; JavaScript is required
  2. Leave the subject blank
  3. Type the word ‘subscribe’ (without any quote marks) in the body of the message
  4. Send it.