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APH News

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

February 2008

Exciting New APH Products Announced!

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

New APH Braille+ Mobile Manager Tutorials

Braille Plus

Maria Delgado reports that the first three step-by-step tutorials for the Braille Plus are now available on our webcast archives page at:

Each brief tutorial is presented in an audio-visual format. For your convenience, you will also find for each presentation, a PowerPoint only link, an MP3 only link, and a Word document with the transcript for the PowerPoint.

APH plans to release several step-by-step tutorials every month, and host live discussion webcasts where we can address your questions or comments on previously released tutorials. There is now a link to the frequently Asked questions, with answers, for the month of January.
The next live discussions are scheduled for March 7 and March 14 from 2:00 to 3:00 P.M. Eastern Time.

To take part in the live discussion and/or if you wish to be notified throughout the month when a tutorial is out, please send an e-mail to: email hidden; JavaScript is required

Also, Chase, our young student from Nebraska, has several additional lessons on the Braille+ available on YouTube. See an index of all eight lessons (to date) at

Order THE BEST QUALITY Large Print and Enlarged Print Textbooks AT VERY REASONABLE PRICES from APH!

Accessible Textbooks Department

It’s time to begin ordering your large print textbooks for 2008-2009! To ensure timely delivery, with the highest quality color and binding available, APH is your best bet. Large print and enlarged print textbooks in full color are still just fifty cents per page!

Click here to see how easy it is to Order Accessible Textbooks (print AND braille).

Upcoming Survey: Test Answer Documents Needed

The Accessible Tests Department is creating a survey on types of answer sheets needed in instructional and standardized test settings. Currently, many types of question and answer formats are used on assessments. The purpose of this research is to address requests the department receives for accessible answer documents for students who are blind or visually impaired.

The survey is for regular education teachers, teachers of visually impaired students (TVIs), school psychologists, test administrators (TAs), and other educators and assessment professionals. It will be posted soon on the Accessible Tests page of the APH website, and will be open for approximately six weeks. Your input is valuable and will be extremely useful in determining the most common formats needed.

For further information about this study or to request copies of the form in accessible media, please contact Kerry Isham at email hidden; JavaScript is required.

New On the Website This Month

Videos! Videos! Videos!

2008 Nomination Process for the Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Dr. Arnall Patz's Hall of Fame Plaque

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is accepting nominations for 2008 induction consideration.

To learn more about the qualifications and process for submitting a nominee to join the 40 inductees, please visit:

The nomination process will close Friday, March 21. Nominees who were first submitted in 2007 will remain active.

"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."

APH Reaches 150th Year!

APH employees (l-r) Ron Gadson, Phyllis Williams, and Jim Hill, each of whom have worked at APH for over 40 years, prepared to speak to colleagues at the January 4th Employee Kick-Off event.

Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson congratulated APH Board and staff members on 150 years of service to people who are blind and visually impaired. APH President Tuck Tinsley is in the back left of photo.

Kentucky Senator Gerald Neal (right, rear) introduced Tuck Tinsley and Gary Mudd to the Kentucky Senate before presenting the Senate resolution recognizing APH.

Founding Day Luncheon guest speaker, Mike May (right) with dog guide Miguel, spoke with Rick Ricks, Dean of Students at the Kentucky School for the Blind.

The 150th year of the founding of APH began with a flurry of activities, several official proclamations, and lots of great publicity.

On January 4, an employee kick-off program included a 5-minute film produced at APH by Reader’s Digest in 1958 on the occasion of our 100th anniversary. This priceless film, entitled "America’s House of Braille and Talking Books," will soon be streamed on our website.

On January 16, Louisville’s Mayor Jerry Abramson visited APH and presented a proclamation to Tuck Tinsley, President, and Jim Lintner, Chairman of the APH Board of Trustees, in recognition of APH’s 150th anniversary. APH employees gathered in the braille production plant for the Mayor’s presentation, and several local television stations covered the event.

On January 23, the official date of the founding of APH by the Kentucky General Assembly in 1858, Tuck Tinsley, Gary Mudd, Vice President of Public Affairs, and Nancy Lacewell, Director of Government and Community Affairs, traveled to Frankfort (Kentucky’s capitol) to accept proclamations from both the Kentucky Senate and the Kentucky House of Representatives.

Also on January 23, resolutions were offered in Washington, D. C. by the Kentucky delegation. U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell gave a 4-minute speech about APH history on the Senate floor. Congressman John Yarmuth, in whose district APH is located, presented a similar resolution on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.

The APH Board of Trustees hosted a Founding Day Luncheon in Louisville on January 25. Approximately 160 corporate leaders, APH donors, and professionals in the field of vision gathered at the Olmsted, an historic building near APH, to hear guest speaker Mike May, Co-founder and CEO of Sendero Group. May lost his vision at three years of age as the result of a chemical explosion. When he was 46, revolutionary stem cell transplant surgery restored some of his vision. May spoke to the group about his experience of shifting from totally blind to partially sighted, and showed a video highlighting his life’s journey, including footage of his many years as a downhill snow skier. A recently published book on his life, "Crashing Through," is being prepared as a feature film.

APH has many more exciting events planned during 2008, so stay tuned for frequent updates on our sesquicentennial celebration!

Join Our Birthday Celebration!

American Printing House for the Blind 150 years 1858-2008 Building Independence

Deadlines are a little like birthdays–they can take you by surprise even when you know they’re coming. The April 1 deadline to enter the APH 150th Anniversary Essay Contest is just around the corner, and we need your help spreading the word about this opportunity to compete for prizes!

Need a nudge to get those writer’s wheels turning? Maybe you have either given or received an APH product as a present. We’d love to hear about the role it played in building independence for someone who is blind or visually impaired. That personal memoir could become part of our commemorative celebration and the collective APH history!

The guidelines for eligibility and entry are posted on the APH web site at: For additional copies of the entry form or more information, contact Becky Snider in the Public Affairs Department. Phone: 800-223-1839 or 502-895-2405, ext. 356
Fax: 502-899-2363 or email: email hidden; JavaScript is required

Exciting Louis News!

Louis Database and APH File Repository

Resource Services is delighted to announce that we are working with Quality Solutions, Inc. to improve the functionality and features of the Louis database and to provide better integration of Louis with other APH systems and NIMAC. We are excited to be partnering with a company that has extensive experience and key competencies in many areas related to APH’s core activities as a producer of accessible materials. We are confident that this new software platform will enable us to provide superior service and new features that will make Louis a more flexible and robust database.

APH Travel Calendar


on the road with APH

February 9, 2008
Northeast Regional Braille Challenge;
Newton, MA

February 11, 2008
National Accessible Reading Assessment Project (NARAP) Principles Committee Meeting;
Washington, DC

February 12-13, 2008
NIP Event: Learning to Use the Sensory Learning Kit;
Muskogee, OK

February 20-22, 2008
New Mexico AER 2008 Conference;
Albuquerque, NM

February 20-23, 2008
International Conference on Aging, Disability, and Independence;
St. Petersburg, FL

February 28-March 2, 2008
Los Angeles, CA

February 29-March 1, 2008
2008 National Transition Network Forum;
Austin, TX


March 3-5, 2008
Association of Test Publishers: Innovations in Testing Conference;
Dallas, TX

March 5-6, 2008
ATP Test Security Summit (post-ATP Conference);
Grapevine, TX

March 7-8, 2008
Board Meeting of Midwest Conference of Rehabilitation Teachers;
St. Louis, MO

March 9-13, 2008
Exhibitor 2008;
Las Vegas, NV

March 10-15, 2008
Los Angeles, CA

March 12, 2008
"Focus" On Vision Impairment & Blindness;
Taunton, MA

March 13-15, 2008
Pacific NW AER;
Tacoma, WA

March 26-28, 2008
KAER (Kentucky AER);
General Butler State Park

March 27-28, 2008
Carroll Center Braille Plus Training;
Boston, MA

March 29, 2008
Perkins School Braille Plus Presentation;
Watertown, MA


April 2-5, 2008
CEC 2008;
Boston, MA

April 4-5, 2008
Jo Taylor Leadership Institute;
Burlingame, CA

April 9-10, 2008
NIP Event: CVI – A Further Look at Assessment and Intervention;
Kansas City, KS

April 17, 2008
NBA Spring PDC;
Dallas, TX

April 21-22, 2008
Power Up 2008 Conference and Expo;
Osage Beach, MO

April 23-25, 2008
Penn-Del AER Conference;
Grantville, PA

Fred’s Head Companion Voted Best Blindness-Related Blog of 2007

Fred's Head Database

After hundreds of votes, has announced the winners of the first-ever Blind Bargains Access Awards. These awards are presented to companies and individuals who represent the best in accessible hardware, software, and design. The winners are selected by readers.

APH’s Fred’s Head Companion was the winner of the Best Blindness-Related Blog of 2007. The Fred’s Head blog contains tips, techniques, tutorials, in-depth articles, and resources for and by blind or visually impaired people. features news, deals, and articles relevant to people who are blind or visually impaired. For a complete list of winners and nominations, visit

Close Out Sale! 2008 APH Calendars

Note: All sale items available while supplies last.

Product Number Description List Price Sale Price
1-07899-08 Braille DateBook Calendar 2008 $63.00 $53.00
1-07898-08 Braille DateBook Calendar Tabs 2008 $15.00 $13.00
1-07900-08 EZ Track Calendar 2008 $29.75 $24.75
1-07901-08 EZ Track Calendar Insert Pages 2008 $25.75 $21.75
5-18971-08 APH InSights Calendar 2008 $7.50 $5.50

NEW! Wilson Reading System® Braille Student Readers 1, 2, and 3

Wilson Reading System Braille Readers:
Student Reader One: 6-79502-00 — $17.00
Student Reader Two: 6-79503-00 — $17.00
Student Reader Three: 6-79504-00 — $17.00

Wilson System Readers 1, 2, and 3

The Wilson Reading System (WRS) is a research-based reading and writing program. WRS is a complete curriculum for teaching decoding and encoding (spelling), beginning with phoneme segmentation. Unlike other programs that overwhelm the student with rules, the language system of English is presented in a systematic and cumulative manner so that it is manageable.

  • WRS directly teaches the structure of words so that students master the coding system for reading and spelling.
  • Many students who benefit from WRS have deficiencies in phonologic awareness and/or orthographic processing which makes it challenging for them to learn to read and spell without a systematic, multi-sensory approach.
  • The WRS was developed for students in grade three and beyond. It is widely used with upper elementary students, adolescents, and adults.

The Wilson Reading System is authored by Barbara A. Wilson and published by Wilson Language Training Corporation. Permission has been granted to APH to publish the braille and large print version.

NOTE: Braille and large print editions of the complete program will be available in the future.

NEW! Picture Maker Accessories: Textured Strips
1-08838-02 — $72.00

Also Available:
Picture Maker: Wheatley Tactile Diagramming Kit (complete kit): 1-08838-00 — $110.00
Guidebook only (large print/braille): 6-08838-00 — $16.00
Storage Panel for Picture Maker: Wheatley Tactile Diagramming Kit 1-08838-03 — $15.00

Picture Maker is a fun, colorful tactile kit that can be used for numerous educational activities. Includes a felt covered board and a wide variety of colored/textured VELCRO® brand-backed pieces that attach to the board in an infinite number of patterns.

This new accessory provides additional textured diagramming strips for use with Picture Maker. These strips are different in texture, number, color, and size from the VELCRO® brand-backed pieces included in the original kit. The new strips can represent roads, railroad tracks, curved paths, sidewalks, and other map features.

As in the original kit, these Picture Maker accessories can also be used for a variety of purposes such as conveying concepts related to math, science, flowcharts, creating art, tactile discrimination, and more.

Note: Do not allow children ages 3 and under to use Picture Maker without adult supervision. This product contains small parts, which could cause choking.

NEW! Embossed XY Axis 20×20 Grid Graph Sheets
1-04045-00 — $5.45

Sheets contain 0.5 inch squares in a 20 x 20 grid, suitable for transcribers to use for preparing mathematical graphics. Grid is embossed on 80 lb. braille paper measuring 11.5 x 11 inches with margins. 25 sheets.

APH offers a number of other styles of both embossed and bold-line graph sheets, see our Products Catalog for more information.

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 approximately 8 weeks for delivery.

Mariel of Redwall
by Brian Jacques, Braille: T-N1657-20 — $100.00
Mousemaid Mariel undertakes a quest for vengeance against the searat Gabool and his Rodent Corsairs, who imprisoned her father and left her to drown at sea. She journeys to Redwall Abbey and finds stalwart companions to accompany her through the Mossflower woods back to Gabool’s stronghold. Grades 5-8. *(AR Quiz #7168, BL 5.7, Pts. 16)

The Fledgling
by Jane Langton, Braille: T-N1647-20 — $35.50
Young Georgie’s fondest wish is to be able to fly. When she meets a Canadian goose, the Goose Prince, her dreams come true for a while. Newbery Honor Award Winner. Grades 3-6. *(AR Quiz #114, BL 5, Pt. 6)

by Polly Shulman, Braille: T-N1668-90 — $52.50
Julie and Ashleigh are high school sophomores, best friends, and Jane Austen fans. Looking for their own Mr. Darcy, both girls fall for the same boy and hide their feelings while rehearsing for a school play. Despite comic errors, everyone experiences a happy ending. Senior High School. *(AR Quiz #105009, BL 5.4, Pts. 8)

Star Wars: Outbound Flight
by Timothy Zahn, Braille: T-N1646-30 — $109.00
Jedi Master Jorus C’baoth heads an ambitious intergalactic expedition to the Unknown Regions. Fearing C’baoth’s hidden agenda and the involvement of the Sith, the Jedi Council orders Obi-Wan Kenobi and his Padawan learner, Anakin Skywalker, to join the ill-fated mission. Companion to Survivor’s Quest. Bestseller. Senior High School to Adult. *(AR Quiz #108725, BL 6.2, Pts. 19)

Riding Gain: A Talk Radio Mystery
by Joyce Krieg, Braille: T-N1657-70 — $72.00
Sacramento radio talk show host Shauna Bogart struggles with work problems when her boss forces her to give air time to a psychic. Then someone kills Shauna’s former intern during a drug deal, and the grandmother of the accused killer asks Shauna to prove the grandson’s innocence. Violence. Adult.

*Accelerated Reader number, reading 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
  • Janie Blome, Director, Field Services
  • Scott Blome, Director, Communications
  • Maria Delgado, Field Services Representative
  • Tony Grantz, Business Manager, Finance
  • Kerry Isham, Editor, Accessible Tests
  • Nancy Lacewell, Director, Gov’t and Community Affairs
  • Julia Myers, Director, Resource Services and NIMAC
  • Becky Snider, Administrative Assistant, Public Affairs
  • Gwynn Stewart, Support Specialist, Communications
  • Jane Thompson, Director, Accessible Textbooks

Bob Brasher, Vice President, Advisory Services and Research

For additional recent APH News, click the following:

January Issue –
December Issue –
November 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

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