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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.

January 2009

Exciting New APH Products Announced!

All Children Have Different Eyes: Learn to play and make friends

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

Two Decades and 740 Products Later:
Congratulations to APH’s Technical Research Division

The APH Technical Research Division in 1989
The APH Technical Research Division in 2009

It is hard to believe but January 2009 marks the twentieth anniversary of the creation of the Technical Research Division of APH’s Research Department. The Division functions as a "bridge" between the APH project leaders’ product concepts and the concrete reality of the production floor. The division facilitates and monitors the development cycle of each new product introduced into the educational aids catalog. Its main priority is to remain faithful to the project leader’s intent and function of the product while making it as inexpensive and easily produced as possible on the manufacturing plant’s floor. Technical research is typically involved in all aspects of the product including design, materials and vendor selection, process development, tooling development, and even final packaging design considerations. In many cases, electronic products are designed at the component level in technical research. Since its inception 20 years ago the Technical Research Division has been an integral part of a company-wide team effort to design, develop, and produce some 740 new products for our blind and visually impaired customers.

The division originally consisted of Bob Phelps (Manager), Darlene Donhoff (Administrative Assistant), Frank Hayden (Manufacturing Specialist), and James Robinson (Manufacturing Specialist). When Bob retired in 2002, Frank Hayden became Manager. That same year, David McGee transferred to the division as a Manufacturing Specialist. In 2008, Darlene Donhoff was promoted to Manufacturing Specialist and Nancy Etter transferred to the division as Administrative Assistant.

For more information on the department’s role in product development and specific examples of the department’s contributions to process and product improvements as well as cost savings, please visit

Photos: APH Technical Research Division in 1989 (top):
Top Row: Phelps and Hayden
Bottom Row: Donhoff and Robinson

and 2009 (bottom)
Top Row: Hayden and McGee
Bottom Row: Etter and Donhoff (Robinson not pictured)

Visitors from Seoul

Representatives from the Siloam Center for the Visually Handicapped in Seoul, Korea visited APH on November 3 to tour and discuss issues concerning the field of blindness.

Siloam Center offers various programs and services, including vocational rehabilitation, job ability assessment, sports and leisure activities, education assistance, information education, social education, low vision rehabilitation, rehabilitation information, and development of software.

Siloam Center representatives posed in front of the new APH sign


On January 4, Louis Braille’s 200th birthday, Liane Hansen, host of National Public Radio’s Weekend Edition talked with APH museum director, Mike Hudson, about celebrations of Braille’s life.

New York Institute for Special Education and Lavelle School for the Blind Welcome APH

Joe Catavero, Bob Brasher, and Frank Simpson
Monica Turner
Tristan Pierce
Fred Otto

Monday, November 10, was an exciting day for APHers Bob Brasher, Monica Turner, Tristan Pierce, and Fred Otto as they presented APH information to approximately 300 staff members of the New York Institute (NYISE) and the Lavelle School for the Blind on the Institute’s campus. How did this happen? New York Institute Principal Joe Catavero and Lavelle Superintendent Frank Simpson decided to plan their first joint training opportunity between the two schools and contacted APH to participate. After Bob led an opening session with all staff, concurrent sessions took place throughout the day. In addition to product sessions with Monica, Tristan, and Fred, local experts met with child care staff, and APH offered a live streamed session with APH’s Elaine Kitchel and Larry Skutchan. On Wednesday morning, Monica, Tristan, and Fred had a great "hands-on" opportunity to share APH products with students of the Institute.

APH thanks NYISE Superintendent Bernadette Kappen, along with Joe and Frank, for this wonderful experience.

Photos: Inservice planners Joe Catavero and Frank Simpson flank APH’s Bob Brasher (top); Monica Turner with the APH Littlest Pumpkin Puzzle; Tristan Pierce; Fred Otto.

2009 Nomination Process for the Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is now accepting nominations for 2009 induction consideration.

Robert Irwin's Hall of Fame Plaque

If you are interested in learning more about the qualifications for nominees or the process for submitting a nominee to join the 42 inductees, please visit:
The nomination process will close Friday, March 27.

"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."

Photo: Hall of Fame plaque of AFB’s Robert Irwin.

APH Welcomes New Ex Officio Trustees

Anne Freitag, the Alaska State Department of Education, replacing Merle W. Birnbaum.

Tracey Morsek, the Iowa Department for the Blind, replacing Karen Keninger.

Lisa Butler, Vision Loss Resources in Minnesota, replacing Kelly McCrary.

Robert Hill, the Arizona State Schools for the Deaf and the Blind, replacing Dorinda Rife.

Pauline Smith, Visually Handicapped Services in Michigan, replacing Karen Arendall.

APH Travel Calendar

on the road with APH


January 8-11, 2009
2009 International Consumer Electronics Show;
Las Vegas, NV

January 9-14, 2009
American Correctional Association Winter Conference;
Kissimmee, FL

January 20-22, 2009
BANA ELMP Committee Meeting;
APH in Louisville, KY

January 26-28, 2009
APH Product Training for Teachers of the Visually Impaired;
Cheyenne and Casper, WY

January 27-28, 2009
NIMAS Board Meeting & NIMAS Implementation Council;
Orlando, FL

January 28-31, 2009
ATIA 2009;
Orlando, FL

January 29-30, 2009
Sutton, WV


February 12-13, 2009
New Mexico AER (NMAER) 2009;
Albuquerque, NM

February 24-27, 2009
Celebrating Connections;
Charleston, WV

February 24-28, 2009
National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) Conference;
Boston, MA


March 12-15, 2009
Burlingame, CA

March 16-21, 2009
CSUN 2009;
Los Angeles, CA

March 18-20, 2009
KAER 2009;
General Butler State Park, Carrollton, KY

March 22-26, 2009
Exhibitor 2009;
Las Vegas, NV

March 31-April 4, 2009
American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance 124th National Convention and Exposition;
Tampa, FL

APH Winter Wonderland Sale 2009

Winter Wonderland Sale

Explore an avalanche of savings on selected APH products with APH’s Winter Wonderland Sale 2009, January 1 – March 31. As always, first come, first served.

New! All Children Have Different Eyes: Learn to play and make friends

Large Print: 8-00070-00 — $18.95

Not available with Quota funds.

All Children Have Different Eyes: Learn to play and make friends

This is a beautifully illustrated hardbound storybook about two children with low vision, written for elementary age students.

All Children Have Different Eyes serves as a model for children with visual impairment on how to confidently play and make friends while facing difficult social challenges, such as answering questions about their condition, entering play groups, or handling limitations responsibly. Classmates will learn to become better friends and playmates when they discover why a classmate with a visual impairment sees and plays differently. Parents and teachers will learn how visual impairment affects social interactions.

Over 40 examples and activities transform the engaging stories into an interactive workbook for parents and teachers. A glossary for kids and resources for adults complete this valuable resource.

Learn About:

  • Making and keeping friends
  • Coping with bullies and other mean people
  • Coping with others lack of knowledge
  • Coping with mistakes and limitations because of low vision
  • Feeling confident even when seeing in different ways than peers see
  • How to enter a play group

New! Jump Rope to Fitness Kit
1-07521-00 — $129.50

Related Product:
Walk/Run for Fitness Kit: 1-07520-00 — $143.00

Jump Rope to Fitness

Improve your cardiovascular health: 10 minutes of jumping rope can be as effective as 30 minutes of jogging! The APH Jump Rope to Fitness Kit provides individuals with visual impairment the tools to jump rope independently, learn specific skills, and set goals.


  • Plastic cord jump rope
  • Short beaded jump rope
  • Medium beaded jump rope
  • Long beaded jump rope
  • Jump Snap™ talking-ropeless jump rope
  • Orientation anti-shock mat
  • Jump Rope to Fitness Guidebook, Large Print
  • Jump Rope to Fitness Guidebook, Braille

The guidebook describes the benefits of jumping rope, explains how to get started, introduces jump rope social awareness, and leads you through the progressions of jumping rope.

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.

Extreme Animals: The Toughest Creatures on Earth
by Nicola Davies, Braille: T-N1714-90 — $11.50
Presents facts about animals that thrive in conditions where humans would die. Discusses polar bears in the Arctic cold, Antarctic emperor penguins, wood frogs in frozen hibernation, desert camels and reptiles, heat-loving bacteria, deep-sea sponges, and the toughest creature of all — the tiny tardigrade, or water bear. Grades 3-6. *(AR Quiz #108315, BL 6.4, Pts. 1.0)

Hannah’s Hope: A Red Gloves Novel
by Karen Kingsbury, Braille: T-N1634-20 — $32.50
Facing another Christmas alone, fifteen-year-old Hannah Roberts, the daughter of workaholic politicians, learns that her biological father is Mike Conner, an army pilot stationed in Iraq. Hannah’s search for Mike attracts media attention, and soon everyone is praying for a holiday reunion. Fiction. Upper Grades.

Pope Benedict XVI: His Life and Mission
by Stephen Mansfield, Braille: T-N1646-80 — $35.50
Author of The Faith of George W. Bush, ponders the nature of Joseph Ratzinger and speculates about his leadership as pope. Mansfield examines the life of Pope Benedict XVI including his roles as priest, professor, and head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Biography. Upper Grades and Adult Readers.

Withering Heights: An Ellie Haskell Mystery
by Dorothy Cannell, Braille: T-N1734-50 — $78.00
Housewife Ellie Haskell, her husband Ben, and maid Mrs. Malloy are called to Yorkshire, England, to find the missing buyer of a haunted Victorian mansion. Ben’s cousin Tom won the lottery, bought the manor, and then disappeared–causing his wife and daughter to suspect former owner Lady Fiona. Mystery Fiction. Upper Grades and Adult Readers.

Our Inner Ape: A Leading Primatologist Explains Why We Are Who We Are
by Frans B.M. Waal, Braille: T-N1715-20 — $108.50
Explores the parallels between bonobo, chimpanzee, and human behaviors in expressing control, sexual attraction, violence, and kindness. Contrasts the power-hungry and brutal chimp with the peace-loving, empathetic, and erotic bonobo and examines the combination of these traits in human nature. Also discusses human ancestry. Contains descriptions of sex. Senior High and Adult Readers.

*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
  • Scott Blome, Director, Communications
  • Tony Grantz, Business Manager
  • Frank Hayden, Manager, Technical Research
  • Stephanie Lancaster, Graphic Designer, Communications
  • Gwynn Stewart, Support Specialist, Communications
  • Roberta Williams, Public Affairs and Special Projects Manager

Bob Brasher, Vice President, Advisory Services and Research

For additional recent APH News, click the following:

December Issue –
November Issue –
October 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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