Your monthly link to the latest information on the products, services, and training opportunities from the American Printing House for the Blind.
APH Products Available!
Read on to learn about these new products – now available!
146th Annual Meeting 2014: Audio & Video Sessions Now Available on Web
Steamboat Pleasure Cruise 1925
In July of 1925, the APH superintendent, E.E. Bramlette, invited all 46 employees on a steamboat excursion to celebrate the successful year of 1924-25. On our opening night cruise, we invited Annual Meeting participants to join "Superintendent Bramlette" and the staff of APH as we once again cruised the waters of the Ohio River.
Each year, APH Annual Meeting is packed with tons of helpful information. We’ve recently posted audio and video from key Annual Meeting 2014 sessions to our website. Product Input and Product Training sessions are available for streaming, as well as general sessions, such as the inspirational keynote by Joshua Miele. Our in-house and field presenters offer a wealth of information and inspiration!
The 2015 InSights Art Competition Opens!
The deadlines for the Twenty-fourth Annual Juried Art Competition and Exhibition for Artists Who Are Visually Impaired or Blind have been established.
APH invites visually impaired and blind artists of all ages to submit artwork to APH InSights 2015! This art competition and exhibition is exclusively for blind and visually impaired artists and draws entries from across the U.S. and around the world. Last year we received 315 entries from across the U.S.
Again this year, there are two deadlines: Student Preschool through High School must submit a completed entry form along with the original artwork (no digital images) by March 24, 2015; Adults must submit their complete entry package by April 1, 2015. Each artist may submit only one entry.
The competition is open to any person who meets the following definition of blindness: corrected visual acuity of 20/200 or less in the better eye (as measured on a Snellen Chart), or a visual field limited to 20 degrees or less. This includes those who function at the definition of blindness (FDB), listed above, due to brain injury or dysfunction. There is no limit on the subject or the type of materials that can be used, but the artwork must be original in concept and execution and be completed by the artist, with minimal assistance from others.
Entry forms and rules are now available on the APH website.
Seeking Field Evaluators for Expandable Plastic Braille Folders
APH is seeking field evaluators for new plastic braille folders. In an attempt to meet a need brought to our attention, these folders are designed to hold 11.5”x11” braille sheets. They will expand up to ¾” thick, and will fit into a three-ring binder designed for 11.5”x11” braille sheets.
Field evaluators will be asked to use the prototypes with students with visual impairments and blindness, preferably in middle and high school. These evaluators may also be parents of students with visual impairments. Evaluators will then complete and return a product evaluation form at the end of the testing period. Field test sites will be selected based upon geographic location, number of available students, and type of instructional setting. The number of prototypes is limited. Field testing is scheduled to begin by mid-March 2015 and should take less than a month.
SHORT SURVEY: Leveled Reading Assessments
APH has received a request to produce a general education leveled reading assessment in braille. Many school districts require the use of an approved assessment for the determination of instructional intervention and independent reading levels. We would appreciate your assistance in providing information such as: the program used by your school or district, and your thoughts regarding its effectiveness when evaluating the performance of braille readers. Feel free to share comments that you think might guide our selection.
Our review of materials has considered: quality and variety of content, thoroughness of skill assessment, and flexibility for use with tactile readers. We hope to offer an assessment that supports literacy instruction to the greatest number of students who read braille. Your input is vital to our process.
SHORT SURVEY—Braille Beads: Starter Kit
APH would like customer feedback on a recently released product, Braille Beads: Starter Kit. If you have used this product, we hope you’ll take this brief online survey to tell us what you think. Thank you.
APH CVI Web Page – Revamped-Revised-Reworked-Restored
Announcing BIG changes on the CVI Website! Susan Sullivan, APH’s CVI Project Leader has revamped the site to include new resources, literacy information, and suggestions for APH products appropriate for assessment and intervention. This website has been developed as an interactive resource with opportunities for educational team members to submit strategies that have been successful for them in working with children diagnosed with brain related visual impairments.
Seeking Field Evaluators for the Boehm-3 Test of Basic Concepts K-2
APH is seeking field evaluators for the Boehm-3 Test of Basic Concepts K-2 Tactile and Big Picture adaptations. The Boehm-3 Test of Basic Concepts is an assessment used to evaluate a student’s readiness for school. This assessment can also be used with Spanish speaking students.
Field evaluators will be asked to use the prototypes with multiple students with visual impairments and blindness. Evaluators will then complete and return a product evaluation form at the end of the testing period. Field test sites will be selected based upon geographic location, number of available students, and type of instructional setting. The number of prototypes is limited. Field testing will begin in February 2015 and extend through the end of April 2015.
A New Way to Give Us "Your Two Cents"—Product Reviews on the Showcase Shopping Site
Announced last month, APH has launched an additional way for our credit card customers to shop for selected products: the APH Products Showcase Shopping Site! A great feature of the new shopping site is the ability to submit a detailed product review. You can rate "Value," "Price," "Quality," and add any comments you have. Another way for you to submit your thoughts via our main website is the APH Product Feedback "Your Two Cents" page. Whatever way you would like to submit it, we always welcome customer feedback!
The Unforgettable APH Star Contest Is On!
Upload a video telling us about your favorite APH product and become a star!
The first place contest winner will get $150 in cash. Other prizes include $100 cash, $75 cash, and a random drawing for Amazon.com gift cards. The Spring 2015 contest deadline is May 13, 2015, but you don’t need to wait. You can start sending your videos right now.
You can find the contest guidelines at www.aph.org/contest.
Visit this section of APH News in the months ahead to find a cross reference of available APH products helpful in the development of important tactile skills necessary for meaningful interpretation of tactile graphics by young children and students with visual impairments and blindness.
The issue’s focus is on APH products (or individual product components and activities) that reinforce Tactile Line Tracking and Discrimination Skills:
- Flip-Over Concept Books: LINE PATHS (1-08831-00)
- Moving Ahead Series:
- Goin’ on a Bear Hunt ( 6-77903-00)
- Turtle and Rabbit (6-77901-00)
- On the Way to Literacy Storybooks:
- The Longest Noodle (6-77500-01)
- Bumpy Rolls Away (6-77502-03)
- Rolling Into Place storybook (1-08450-00)
- SQUID Tactile Activities Magazine with these activities or tactile mazes:
- “Island Fun” (included in Issue 1: 1-08862-01)
- “A-Maze Me!” (included in Issue 2: 1-08862-02)
- “Stormy Weather” (included in Issue 3: 1-08862-03)
- “Magic Carpet Ride” (included in Issue 4: 1-08862-04)
- “Mouse Trap” (included in Issue 5: 1-08862-05)
- “Star Maze” (included in Issue 6: 1-08862-06)
- “Follow that Fly!” (included in Issue 7: 1-08862-07)
- Teaching Touch (1-08861-00) with line-tracking worksheets
- Web Chase (1-08460-00) Players navigate game tokens through a web of solid line spokes and dotted web strands.
The "Established" APH Product Series: WEB CHASE
Web Chase is an originally designed board game by APH that is intended to develop important tactile skills within a fun, recreational context. As players navigate their hungry spiders through an insect-laden web, they learn to trace various raised lines (that make up the web), identify point symbols (on the spider tokens), and discriminate textures and shapes (of various prey).
Other concepts and skills developed include visual and tactual scanning, directionality, one-to-one correspondence, turn taking, counting, reading, sorting/organizing, problem solving, strategic planning, interpreting legends/keys, symbolic understanding, and following directions.
Web Chase’s combined visual and tactile presentation makes it accessible to all players regardless of visual ability. Intended for ages 5+, it is a game of luck and skill and can be tailored for players’ abilities. For example, prey can be assigned equal value for young players or given different values for older players. When the last insect on the game board has been captured, the spider having the greatest number of prey or value of prey in its lunch tray is the “Master of the Web.”
2015 Hall of Fame Nominations Now Being Accepted
Who should be the next inductees into the Hall of Fame for the Blindness Field?
If you are interested in learning more about the easy (electronic) process for submitting a nominee to join the 52 inductees, please visit: www.aph.org/hall/nominate.html.
The nomination process will close Friday, March 27, 2015.
New at the Hall of Fame Website
- Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Information at “About Us.”
- New engraved stones on the Gallery of All Stones!
Hall of Fame Governing Board
- Billy Brookshire (TX), Chair
- Greg Goodrich (CA), Vice Chair
- Marje Kaiser (SD), Secretary
- George Zimmerman (PA), Treasurer
- Jim Deremeik (MD)
- BJ LeJeune (MS)
- Ann MacCuspie (CAN)
- Gary Mudd (KY)
- Rosanne Silberman (NY)
- Ann Wadsworth (CAN)
- Jane Erin (AZ), Past Chair
- Janie Blome (KY), Ex Officio Member and Curator
- Bob Brasher, (KY/AR), Ex Officio Member
APH Traveling Exhibit
Students explore a tactile map in “Child in a Strange Country.”
“Child in a Strange Country: Helen Keller and the History of Education for People Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired,” the latest traveling exhibit from our museum, is headed to Lexington, Kentucky this spring. Hosted by the Explorium of Lexington, a children’s museum, the exhibit will open February 27 and close April 10. This installation was funded with grant support from the Cralle Foundation and the Passport Health Plan, and includes free admission for students from low income schools and the production of a touch cart that will stay at the museum once the exhibit leaves.
Treasures From the APH Libraries
The APH Barr Library supports research initiatives at APH, while the Migel Library is one of the largest collections of nonmedical information related to blindness in the world. Although the collections do not circulate, arrangements can be made to use the materials on-site. In addition, an ongoing digitization effort means APH will continue to make materials available through the online catalog at http://migel.aph.org.
From the Barr Library: Ludlow, Kyra F. A Study of the Sound Discrimination Ability of Blind Children. Diss. U of Kansas, 1959.
The purpose of this thesis is to assess the aural distinction abilities of a group of children enrolled in a residential school for the blind, in comparison with a group of sighted children. Specifically, Ludlow focuses on the relationships between Templin’s Sound Discrimination Test scores and articulation scores of braille and sight-saving readers. One of the findings was that a majority of the six and seven-year-olds with blindness scored lower than sighted children on the sound discrimination test. While the author suggests that future studies might select an alternative to Templin’s assessment, a noteworthy finding of the present research is the negative correlation between sound discrimination and articulation study.
From the Migel Library: The Marvelous Musical Prodigy Blind Tom, the Negro Boy Pianist, Whose Performances at the Great St. James and Egyptian Halls, London, and Salle Hertz, Paris, Have Created Such a Profound Sensation: Anecdotes, Songs, Sketches of the Life, Testimonials of Musicians and Slaves, and Opinions of the American and English Press of "Blind Tom." Baltimore: Sun Book and Job Printing Establishment, 1867.
Now believed to have been an autistic savant, “Blind Tom” Wiggins was a pianist who was quite famous in his own time. Much has been written about his extraordinary life and his amazing abilities, even by the likes of Mark Twain. The Marvelous Musical Prodigy…is a unique artifact, though. It contains a biography, “testimonials” of witnesses to his ability, and reviews written by the English and American press. But this pamphlet also contains a “vocal programme of this evening.” Containing lists of songs that might be performed by Blind Tom, it can be assumed that this program was actually in the presence of Blind Tom Wiggins at a performance. This work has been digitized for the Internet Archive at https://archive.org/details/marvelousmusical00unse
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.
APH Prison Braille Program Recognized for Giving Back
The valuable work of the Kentucky Correctional Industries (KCI) Braille Services program is being lauded by the Louisville community. KCI Braille Services is a partnership between the Kentucky Correctional Institution for Women (KCIW), the Kentucky Correctional Industries and APH. Located just outside Pewee Valley, Kentucky, KCIW is a correctional facility in Kentucky and is a state maximum-minimum security prison. A team of female inmates at KCI Braille Services diligently work to transcribe and emboss braille textbooks and other educational materials for students who are blind. They also produce print/braille children’s books through Braille Tales, a partnership between APH and the Dolly Parton Imagination Library. These books are distributed free to young children with vision loss across the country.
The transcription work these women perform is more than a job – it is a way to give back to their community while gaining valuable job skills. As one inmate summarized it, “Everyday, I learn something new – about braille, about capabilities I never knew I had, and about deadlines. Producing braille is a challenge, but it is also rewarding. I am helping students learn, and I am grateful to have the opportunity to ‘give back’ to society for some of my mistakes.”
Last November, the women’s work at KCI was recognized on a local television news, WDRB. You can watch it at this link: (http://www.wdrb.com/story/27386206/only-on-wdrb-prison-braille-program-benefiting-inmates-and-children). Local foundations also awarded grants to help provide equipment for KCI Braille Services. The Irvin F. & Alice S. Etscorn Charitable Foundation awarded funds for the purchase of an embosser, and The King’s Daughters & Sons Foundation of Kentucky awarded funds to purchase a burster machine. These generous contributions will help the women cut their production time in half to better meet the educational needs of the people they serve who are blind and visually impaired.
APH Quick Tip Videos!
The Best Things Come in Quick Packages!
Want to be on the APH cutting edge, but just don’t seem to have much time? APH Quick Tips Videos provide a great, fun way to stay in the APH loop. Every week a new short video is posted, and old ones are archived.
Trying to find out how to order accessible textbooks? The answer’s here! Need help understanding the Federal Quota Program? There’s a Quick Tip for that! Looking for information on what APH’s nearly 300 employees do? Have we got a tip for you!
Now, here’s a trivia question: Since the inception of Quick Tips over a year ago, which of these short, informative videos have garnered the most clicks?
Drum roll, please! The all-time most popular Quick Tip is How to Print from the Orion TI-84 Plus Talking Graphing Calculator, with 1,388 views as of this writing!
Rounding out the top five most watched Quick Tips are the following:
- Using GeoBeam on the Nearby Explore App
- Touch ‘em All Baseball and Real-Life Experience
- APH’s UEB Timeline
- A Few Assistive Technology Products
And here are our latest Quick Tips from January:
APH Quick Tips are forever current because fresh ones are posted every Wednesday. Keep coming back to www.aph.org/quick-tips to learn something new every week!
APH on the Road
Dr. Carlos Rodriguez-Beltran, Assistant Secretary of Special Education, and Luz Robles Bermudez, Ex Officio Trustee representing the Puerto Rico Department of Education.
Melissa De Jesus Mendez (right), Ex Officio Trustee representing the Rehabilitation Center for the Blind of Puerto Rico, along with staff members Dennisse and Francisco.
Wonderful Site Visits and Conference in Puerto Rico!
Several APH staffers recently visited Puerto Rico for agency site visits and to participate in the AER-PR conference. We had a great exchange of information with two of our Ex Officio Trustees when we visited their agencies. We also participated in the AER-PR conference with a large booth and a general session presentation. Talking to teachers, rehab professionals, administrators, and parents about their needs was very helpful. We would like to thank everyone in Puerto Rico who made our visit so productive and enjoyable!
Federal Quota Status of Outlying Areas: Did you know that eligible students in U.S. Outlying Areas (territories) can be registered for the Federal Quota program? Outlying areas include American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and U.S. Virgin Islands. For information about Federal Quota, please visit www.aph.org/advisory/#federal-quota-reference
Around the House:
Tactile Graphics Image Library: Did You Know?
…that 350 graphics were added to the Tactile Graphic Image Library (TGIL) last year?
…that over 6,000 graphic templates were downloaded from the Tactile Graphic Image Library last year?
…that the TGIL has over 1,000 graphic templates available to download, free of charge?
…that you can sign up to receive emails whenever new graphic templates are added to the TGIL? Check the box at the bottom of the page when you register and we’ll keep you up to date.
Visit the TGIL at imagelibrary.aph.org and see what’s new!
Executive in Residence
Dr. Diane Wormsley began her 3 months Executive in Residence stint this February. She will be involved with many of the behind the scenes activities that go into developing and researching APH products. Among other activities, Dr. Wormsley as the Chair of the ABC Braille Study, will be assisting APH with archiving these valuable research materials. We are particularly excited about her research work on the I-M-ABLE (The Individualised Meaning-centered Approach to Braille Literacy Education) project.
The Executive in Residence page on our website gives the history of the program, including information on, and insights from, the former Executives which include Dr. Cay Holbrook, Dr. Phil Hatlen, Dr. Kay Ferrell, and Dr. Jane Erin.
Social Media Spotlight
Share Your Story!
"Like" APH at Our Facebook Page!
APH Welcomes New Ex Officio Trustees
Renee Charleswell, the U.S. Virgin Islands, replacing Jill Singer.
Nancy Moulton, the Maine Division for the Blind and Visually Impaired, replacing Jean Small.
Jim Oldham, the Tennessee School for the Blind, replacing Martin Monson.
Dennis Gilliam, the Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind, replacing Charlotte Lowry.
Carmen Lopez, the Instituto Loaiza Cordero Para Ninos Ciegos, replacing Celia Vasquez Lugo.
Bruce Davis, the World Services for the Blind, replacing Tony Woodell.
APH Travel Calendar
February 4-6, 2015
MS CEC Conference
February 12, 2015
Kansas Braille Challenge
Kansas City, KS
February 12, 2015
Transforming Braille Project Meeting
Palo Alto, CA
February 17-20, 2015
Celebrating Connection Early Childhood Conference
February 18-20, 2015
February 19, 2015
CISAM Presentation of APH Products for Early Childhood
February 23-27, 2015
Visits on Capitol Hill
February 25-26, 2015
DC/MD AER Conference 2015
February 26-27, 2015
EduPub Summit 2015
February 27-28, 2015
Pacific Northwest AER Conference
March 1-4, 2015
Association of Test Publishers: Innovations in Testing 2015
March 2-7, 2015
San Diego, CA
March 11-13, 2015
March 16-20, 2015
Visits on Capitol Hill
March 18-21, 2015
March 19-20, 2015
North Carolina Conference on Visual Impairment & Blindness
April 8-11, 2015
San Diego, CA
April 9-11, 2015
2015 AFB Leadership Conference & Arizona AER Annual Conference
April 14-15, 2015
Perkins School for the Blind
April 16-18, 2015
NBA Spring Professional Development Conference 2015
April 16-19, 2015
AOTA 2015-95th Annual Conference & Expo
April 22-24, 2015
Penn-Del AER 2015 Conference
APH Winter Wonderland Sale
Load up a world of savings on selected APH products with APH’s Winter Wonderland Sale 2015, January 1—March 31. As always, first come, first served.
New Downloadable Manuals Available
Get the manual you need instantly! APH offers a selected list of product manuals available for free download (www.aph.org/manuals/). 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:
- Boehm-3 Preschool
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.
Leo the Snow Leopard: The True Story of an Amazing Rescue
by Craig Hatkoff: T-N1960-80 — $18.50
Account of a baby snow leopard named Leo and his global journey from being orphaned in the Pakistan mountains to becoming a star in the Bronx Zoo. Includes facts about the Wildlife Conservation Society, zoos, captive breeding, and laws about endangered species. Grades K-3. *(AR Quiz No. 140647, BL 7.2 Pts 1.0)
Losers in Space
by John Barnes: T-N1971-00 — $146.50
In 2129, Susan, Derlock, and seven fellow students stow away on a Mars-bound ship, hoping the media attention will lead to fame and fortune. But the others are unaware that Derlock is a sociopath with bigger plans. Some adult content. Grades 10-12. *(AR Quiz No. 151311, BL 6.8 Pts 18.0)
God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions that Run the World
by Stephen Prothero: T-N1946-00 — $161.00
Scholar Stephen Prothero argues that each religion attempts to solve a different human problem, and examines each of these traditions on its own terms to create an indispensable guide for anyone who wants to better understand the big questions.
Somebody Please Tell Me Who I Am
by Harry Mazer: T-N1957-90 — $51.50
When Ben delays college to enlist in the army reserve, his family, girlfriend, and best friend are shocked. After deployment to Iraq Ben returns home with a traumatic brain injury and finds nothing is the same. Some adult content. Grades 9-12. *(AR Quiz No. 150156, BL 4.1 Pts 4.0)
Something on the Side
by Carl Weber: T-N1950-30 — $148.00
New Yorkers Tammy, Nikki, Coco, Tiny, Egypt, and Egypt’s sister Isis start a Big Girls Book Club. But Tammy’s affair causes problems in her marriage, Isis is torn between two lovers, and the others wrestle with trouble in their own love lives. Some adult content.
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
- Justin Gardner, Special Collections Librarian, Resource Services
- Kate Herndon, Director, Educational Product Research
- Micheal Hudson, Director, APH Museum
- Kerry Isham, Field Services Representative
- Cecilia Peredo, Director of Grants, Development
- Karen Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader, Research
- Matthew Poppe, Graphic Designer, Accessible Textbooks
- Mary Robinson, Assistant, Field Services
- Susan Spicknall, Braille Project Leader, Research
- Susan Sullivan, CVI Project Leader, Research
- Monica Turner, Field Services Representative
- Jeanette Wicker, CORE Curriculum Consultant, Research
- Carolyn Zierer, Test and Assessment Project Leader, Research
- Laura Zierer, Research Assistant, Research
Bob Brasher, Vice President, Advisory Services and Research
Read our blog: Fred’s Head from APH.
For additional recent APH News, click the following:
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.
Subscribe to the APH News!
Get convenient email reminders every month when a new issue of the APH News is released.
- Leave the subject blank
- Type the word ‘subscribe’ (without any quote marks) in the body of the message
- Send it.