Your monthly link to the latest information on the products, services, and training opportunities of the American Printing House for the Blind.
National Family Conference is Getting Closer!
August 12 -14, 2005 – Galt House – Louisville, KY
To date 50 families have registered for the National Family Conference. There are strong indications that many additional families from across the country will be registering soon. Sixteen product exhibitors have indicated their plans to participate as well.
PLEASE continue to:
- Notify families of the conference and encourage their attendance.
- Encourage exhibitors to participate so that families will know what is available for their children.
- CALL if you have any questions!
Together we can make this an event to remember!
For full information on this exiting opportunity visit: www.aph.org/advisory/nfc.html
APH Adds Annual Meeting Information to Web Site
October 13-15, 2005
Want to see a photo of our 137th Annual Meeting Keynote Speaker Elton Moore? Click the following link for that as well as information on our new home for the next three years, the Louisville Downtown Marriott Hotel. The registration form and additional program information will appear there soon!
APH and COMA
APH was well-represented at the Central Orientation and Mobility Association (COMA) conference held at the Western Pennsylvania School for Blind Children in Pittsburgh, June 23-24. Tactile Graphics Project Leader Karen Poppe presented a session on the ‘Picture Maker: Wheatley Tactile Diagramming Kit’; Field Service Representatives Maria Delgado and Sandi Baker displayed many APH products, including the K-Sonar, at the APH booth in the vendor hall; and a presentation from Executive Advisor to the President Mary Nelle McLennan and Rick Welsh–Laughing Matters: Developing and Supporting Humor as a Skill for Learners Who Are Visually Impaired and the Professionals Who Work with Them–highlighted the event. More than 150 O&M instructors were in attendance!
Photo: Maria Delgado with Mary Nelle McLennan and Rick Welsh.
Summer Book Port Webcast Series to Begin July 12
This summer, APH Field Representative Maria Delgado wants you to become a "Book Port pro" by participating in an interactive series of webcasts from the comfort of your school, home, or office.
The Book Port series, previously scheduled to begin July 5, has been moved forward a week to accommodate those individuals attending the NFB and ACB conferences.
The webcast presentations will take place once a week during the months of July and August. Each webcast will cover a different topic, and will run from 30 to 45 minutes, depending on the number of questions each topic generates.
Overview of the Book Port
Sending Files and organizing them
All about text files and navigation within the files
All about digital audio and navigation within the files
Options and settings
Bookmarks, Find feature, Digital recorder and Help
Using the BP as a note taker
Sources for books and converting other formats
For more information on web casting, visit the following page on our site: www.aph.org/advisory/webcast.html
Field Testers for APH’s Revised Patterns (Kindergarten Level)
As the new school year begins, APH offers another exciting field testing opportunity as we strive to improve the popular product, Patterns. The new curriculum prototype for Building on Patterns: The Primary Braille Literacy Program-Kindergarten Level includes many new features that make the series more user friendly, more appropriate for an integrated setting, more accurately geared toward building an appropriate vocabulary, and improve testing readiness by the conclusion of third grade. The kindergarten level introduces all letter words, all consonant sounds, all short vowel sounds, and alphabet contractions. Curriculum additions include:
- Braille writing instruction from the beginning
- Color word introductions with an embossed coloring book
- Word banks for home practice and personalization
- Sections on braille knowledge
- More detailed instructions on strategies for teaching tactile skills
- Practice tests serving as a checkpoints for continuing readiness
The additions and the retained concepts are showcased in a colorful, exciting text which more closely resembles the textbooks of sighted peers.
For this field test, we hope to find 50 braille-reading students with varying reading abilities from beginning kindergarten, beginning first grade, or somewhere between. Field testing will begin shortly after the new school year begins, with an evaluation due prior to winter break. We will request that participants continue using the materials throughout the year and provide further feedback at the end.
University of Louisville Students Visit APH
APH recently hosted the University of Louisville Teacher Preparation Program for Students who are Blind/VI. The Distance Education Program requires students to participate in certain activities in Louisville in cooperation with local service providers, including the Kentucky School for the Blind. This summer, the U of L students are from Kentucky, Maryland, Wisconsin, Indiana, and New York. The class of 20 students is participating in "O&M and Daily Living Skills for Teachers". Interns from the U of L Orientation and Mobility program are assisting the faculty with this beginning class for future teachers. Full-time faculty includes Mary Ann McConnell and Dr. William Penrod.
"Making It Count: Math Skills for Students who are Blind and Visually Impaired"
Math teacher extraordinare, Susan Osterhaus, from the Texas School for the Blind, made it count in Hartford, Connecticut on June 14 and 15 when she partnered with APH to present the National Instructional Partnership (NIP) event ‘Making It Count: Math Skills for Students who are Blind and Visually Impaired’.
Susan featured APH products such as the Geometry Tactile Graphics Kit; Braille Transcribers’ Kit: Math; Graphic Aid for Mathematics; Abacus; Braille/Print Protractor, and many others as she discussed Math instruction with more than 40 teachers of the visually impaired at this ‘sold-out’ training event.
EOT Jeanette Haines at the Connecticut Board of Education and Services for the Blind organized this NIP event and is to be congratulated for planning such a successful training.
Product Tip of the Month:
Picture Maker: Wheatley Tactile Diagramming Kit
Are you scrunched on space to store all 100 VELCRO® brand pieces included with your Picture Maker (as well as your own handmade pieces) on the board itself? Inexpensively add some more storage area by attaching a narrow strip of hook/loop material (included with the kit) to a re-sealable plastic bag (also included with the kit). Place the strip directly above the "zipper" portion of the bag. Fasten the hook/loop material-ed bag to either side of the board where you usually store your pieces, leaving the other side of the board available as the "drawing area." Fill the re-sealable bag with pieces you may not use often or pieces you just want to keep on hand as you work with a student or adult. Merely flip the bag over the top of the panel, out of the way, as you are working with pre-selected pieces. Remember that the variety of textures and shapes is always more important than the number of pieces available, therefore don’t clutter your working area with too many items.
VELCRO®, VELTEX®, and VELCOIN® are registered trademarks of Velcro Industries B.V.
From Product to Child, the Michigan Way
More than 160 VI professionals shared their enthusiasm about their work and excitement about the high-quality programming at Michigan’s annual AER conference held at the Marriott Hotel in Lavonia on April 21 and 22. APH’s conference presentation and hands-on test-drives of the ‘K’ Sonar, conducted by Adult Life Project Leader Terrie Terlau, were well received. Susan Langendonk, state chapter president, and other MAER members went the extra mile to make sure that presentation and one-on-one demonstration facilities for the ‘K’ Sonar were excellent.
There is not enough space to say all the good things about this conference, however, one unanticipated highlight cannot be overlooked. When Terrie Terlau arrived at the exhibit booth of the Michigan School for the Deaf and Blind’s Outreach Center to do ‘K’ Sonar demonstrations, she was pleasantly surprised to find herself in the midst of an APH product display. The skirted exhibit table held APH products released during the past six months with boxes of extra products peaking out from beneath the tables. Throughout the conference, teachers browsed, took APH catalogs, and ordered and received products to take back with them to their students.
"Wow," said one teacher as she carefully examined an insect tactile graphic from the newly released Sense of Science, Animals, "I have a student in fifth grade who could really use this."
"Just complete the order form and give it to me," answered Virginia Sutherland, APH Federal Quota Coordinator at the Materials’ Center.
"This is like Christmas," another teacher laughed as she maneuvered her bulging bag of APH products away from the display table. "I can’t wait to get these home to my students."
The display table of APH products, with order and delivery service, is the brain child of APH Ex Officio Trustee Kathleen Brown, who is responsible for providing Federal Quota materials to teachers for all K-12 visually impaired students in the far flung regions of Michigan. The display shows teachers what is new and the extra product supplies let teachers take home what they need, eliminating the one to two week lag-time needed for teachers to mail in an order form and receive their product shipment. Moreover, with this system, Kathy and Virginia can field questions and provide information about new APH products to teachers face-to-face. The connections fostered at this exhibit help the Materials Center operate more effectively throughout the year. We salute Kathy Brown, Virginia Southerland, and all the staff at the Materials’ Center for their work in getting APH products in to the hands of the children who need them.
Welcome to New Resource Services Staff Member
Linda Turner joined APH on June 20 in the Resource Services Department as the Technical Services Manager. Linda brings more than 10 years of professional experience to her position here, having worked as a librarian at both university libraries and health science libraries in North Carolina and in Kentucky. Linda earned her MSLS from the University of Kentucky. Welcome Linda!
Just Search Louis!
No need to log in first to search Louis! Before the new Louis interface was introduced in 2003, the only way users could download files was to log in before searching. This is no longer necessary. Simply choose the first ‘search Louis’ option from the ‘Welcome to Louis!‘ page: "Search Louis & the APH File Repository" (www.aph.org/louis.htm)
You are prompted to log in at the appropriate time if shopping on Louis or downloading files from the APH File Repository, so you do not need to log in until you have made a decision to buy. Therefore, we are removing this option from the Welcome to Louis page. This is a first step to simplify the Welcome page and make it easier to use.
Remember: you are always welcome to search Louis free of charge; you do not need a password to search Louis. You only need an account to make purchases from APH.
Four Giants to Enter the Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field
The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field, founded in 2001 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. New inductees are selected through a nationwide nomination process.
In 2002, thirty-two outstanding professionals, who made significant contributions to the field of blindness in the recent and distant past, became the first group to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Now joining those legends is the class of 2005; four remarkable individuals who will be inducted in October at a ceremony that will be held in conjunction with APH’s 137th Annual Meeting.
The Class of 2005:
William H. English (1929 – ) served as Superintendent of the Wisconsin School for the Visually Handicapped from 1970 – 1994, culminating a career as a teacher, coach, and administrator that included stints at the Kentucky, Ohio, and Virginia Schools for the Blind.
William A. Hadley (1860 – 1941), after losing his sight at age 55, founded the Hadley School for the Blind to provide the opportunity for others who are blind to learn braille and other subjects through correspondence.
Abraham Nemeth (1918 – ) is a life-long professor of mathematics who created a unique and revolutionary braille code that is used world-wide for mathematical and scientific notation.
J. Max Woolly (1914 – 1997) served as teacher, principal, and Superintendent of the Arkansas School for the Blind. Joining the school in 1939 as a math teacher, he served as superintendent from 1947 – 1982.
For additional information on these legends, and how you can support the Hall of Fame, visit:
Celebrating the Life of Woodrow "Buck" L. Schrotberger
Former Ex Officio Trustee Representing the Colorado Department of Education and Chair of the Publications Committee (1993), Buck Schrotberger, 62, passed away June 8, 2005. He is survived by his wife of 37 years, Theresa.
Buck was a fine and generous fellow, IRC innovator, and founding member of the Rooster Chowder Marching Band Society. A celebration of his life was held Monday, June 13 at the East Middle School auditorium in Aurora, CO. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to Special Olympics Colorado, 410 17th St., Ste. 200, Denver, CO 80202.
APH Welcomes New Ex Officio Trustees
Virginia A. Jackal, Miami Lighthouse for the Blind & Visually Impaired, replacing Roxann Mayros
APH Travel Calendar
July 1-8, 2005
Galt House, Louisville, KY
July 2-9, 2005
ACB National Convention 2005;
Las Vegas, NV
July 5-7, 2005
RRTC Conf. on Technology, "Technology That Works in the Real World";
Las Vegas, NV
July 11-12, 2005
"Workshop with the Experts" New Mexico State Univ. Training for VI Teachers;
Las Cruces, NM
July 11-12, 2005
Home-Based Early Interventionists;
July 20, 2005
Western Michigan University In-Service;
July 30-August 5, 2005
August 12-14, 2005
National Parent & Family Conference;
August 23-26, 2005
Early Intervention Training, Kansas Dept. of Health & Environment;
various sites in Kansas
REMINDER! Summer Promotional Prices on Popular Products
You have through Friday, July 15 to order these popular products at reduced prices:
- Handi-Cassette Tape Recorder/Player
- Table-Top Tape Recorder/Player
- Colorino Talking Color Identifier (not available with Quota funds)
Summer 2005 APH Demo Disc Now Available!
The new edition of our popular APH Demo Disc is now available. This free-of-charge CD-ROM is jam-packed with software demos and accessible product information.
A few of the many items on the disc are:
- The new Money TalksTM software info and demo (see description below)
- Armadillo ArmyTM educational computer game info and demo
- Talking Word PuzzlesTM software info and demo
- APH Products Catalog 2005-2006, Text File Edition, HTML Edition, PDF Edition
APH Flea Market Updated
A new listing of overstocked and discontinued APH products is now available at the APH Flea Market. All reduced pricing runs from July 1 through September 30, 2005. These inventories are available while supplies last. Take advantage of these savings today!
A Set of Labels and Tags Is Included with Sherlock
Last month we introduced the Sherlock Talking Label Identifier kit, a digital voice recorder with each recorded message keyed to an adhesive label or plastic disk tag. Labels or tags can be attached to clothing, medications, packaged products, frozen foods, documents, books, CDs, anything you wish to identify.
The Sherlock unit, does not come alone! It includes 25 adhesive labels and 10 disk tags. We’ve noticed that some customers who buy the Sherlock kits in quantity buy as many sets of labels and tags as are already included in the kit. While we don’t want to discourage sales, we certainly don’t want to sell something that customers really do not need. If you do need additional labels and tags, we offer an extra set of 25 adhesive labels or you can purchase a set of 10 disk tags.
Sherlock Kit: 1-07410-00 — $229.00
If you want MORE tags (pack of 10): 1-07411-00 — $24.00
If you want MORE labels (pack of 25): 1-07412-00 — $29.00
We are continuing to upgrade our Activity Guides and have now added Light Box Materials Level III Activity Guide, with a section on Cortical Visual Impairment (CVI). As you have found in Levels I and II, references to the old APH Bright Sights training materials have been replaced with newer materials from APH’s Let’s See kit. Additionally, this version is now produced in large print and includes a CD version for speech access to the guide.
Both Levels II and III of the Light Box Materials Activity Guide include a number of activity sheets. These are no longer provided as printed pages, but are incorporated into one CD in PDF format (Go to www.adobe.com for a free download copy of Acrobat® Reader to open PDF files and print them from any printer). You may select the activity sheets you require and produce excellent quality print pages each time.
Light Box Materials, Level III Kit: 1-08690-00 — $750.00
Note: Light Box Level III is now shipping with the revised English Activity Guide. The Light Box Level III Kit materials have not changed, only the guide. The kit price remains the same as before.
REVISED! Light Box Materials Level III Activity Guide, Large Print/CD, English version: 7-08690-00 — $59.00
This new guide can replace the guide in your current Level III kit.
New Audio Feedback Products for Daily Living
APH introduces three new products designed to make every-day tasks easier. Each of these easy-to-use items provides audio information, and the calculator provides large print numbers as well.
This talking calculator provides audio feedback to the user, and also has an oversized LCD display. This desktop model has the standard operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. In addition, it has a memory function. A "repeat" key will speak the last result.
Audio result is adjustable based on the user’s needs:
- By unit or digit
- Two volume levels
- Result only or all keys pressed
Uses two "AA" batteries, not included.
Talking Calculator: 1-03971-00 — $17.95
Not Available on Quota.
EZ Fill is a device that aids in filling containers, such as a glass or cup. The aid hangs on the edge of the container, and when liquid fills to about one inch from the top, the device produces a signal, alerting the user.
Uses three included LR44 button-type batteries, with an expected life span of about one year. The sliding front cover facilitates easy battery replacement.
EZ Fill Pouring Aid: 1-03970-00 — $12.95
Not Available on Quota.
The Talking Thermometer’s pleasant human voice automatically reports the user’s measured temperature, along with a standard-size LCD readout. Features include:
- "Talking" button to report temperature at any time
- Periodic "beep" signal during measurement as a reminder
- Fast response time
- Same accuracy as conventional non-talking digital clinical thermometer
- Auto power-off after eight minutes
- Memory of last measured temperature
- Battery included
Talking Thermometer: 1-03972-00 — $12.95
Not Available on Quota.
‘K’ Sonar Headphones Are Now Also Available Separately
The ‘K’ Sonar is a small, affordable, electronic travel device that can be used independently or attached to a standard long cane. By listening to the sounds produced by the unit, the user can determine the distance, location, and features of an object.
The included headphones provide audio feedback, as the pitch from the ‘K’ Sonar changes to indicate distance to the object being scanned. Different objects create different sounds, which in many cases can be identified as a specific item.
These headphones can also be purchased separately as a replacement item or for use in a classroom or agency setting with one ‘K’ Sonar unit for multiple students.
The ‘K’ Sonar comes with:
- Rechargeable battery
- Power adapter
‘K’ Sonar: 1-07000-00 — $710.00
‘K’ Sonar Headphones: 1-07001-00 — $43.00
New! Money TalksTM Bank Account Management Software
Money Talks is a completely accessible bank account management software package offering the user a simple and effective means of recording and maintaining accurate information for a variety of accounts.
Money Talks can import and use electronic banking information to reconcile accounts, remember and repeat categories and recurring transactions, remember the last workspace used in the program, emboss or print the check register in a variety of formats, and print many types of bank checks. Money Talks can be used with a screen reader or with its own self-voicing feature.
Money Talks Software (CD-ROM, includes high-quality synthetic speech): D-03560-00 — $49.00
Money Talks Software (Electronic Distribution, standard synthetic speech): D-03560-ED — $39.00
Two Ways to Order APH Software Products
APH offers two convenient ways to order our software products.
- Order the CD-ROM via mail, toll-free phone, or web site.
- Purchase the program through Electronic Distribution. Download the demonstration version of the program from our Web site (www.aph.org/tech). Then phone our toll free number (1-800-223-1839) and give us your credit card number. Within 24 hours, we will give you a code key that transforms your demo copy of the program into a full copy.
APH News Credits
Dr. Tuck Tinsley
Malcolm Turner, APH Web Site Coordinator
Thanks to the following APH staff:
- Sandi Baker, Field Services Representative
- Ralph Bartley, Director, Research
- Scott Blome, Director, Communications
- Cindy Amback, Assistant, Products and Services
- Burt Boyer, Early Childhood Project Leader, Research
- Maria Delgado, Field Services Representative
- Tony Grantz, Business Development Director, Finance
- Julia Myers, Director, Resource Services
- Karen Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader, Research
- Artina Paris-Jones, Assistant, Field Services
- Terrie Terlau, Adult Life Project Leader, Research
- Tessa Wright, Consultant, Research
Bob Brasher, Vice President, Advisory Services and Research
For additional recent APH News, click the following:
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