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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.

November 2007

139th Annual Meeting, Expanding the Core, Offers Pivotal Moments

Members of the Braille Study Group at APH Annual Meeting

As always, the APH Annual Meeting of Ex Officio Trustees and Special Guests had its own personality and character. As Ex Officio Trustee Tom Winton (NC) put it in his introduction of the long-awaited ABC Braille Study Report, "this is a pivotal moment in our history." Phil Hatlen’s keynote presentation gave us a history of pivotal moments, culminating in the field’s acceptance and use of his Expanded Core Curriculum concept.

Phl Hatlen at APH Annual Meeting

APH continues to be a company "on the move," as highlighted in Dr. Tinsley’s "State of the Company" report and by the Ex Officio Trustee Advisory Committee reports, as offered by chairs Jean Martin (MN) and Joe Catavero (NY).

This year, the Annual Meeting personality also shined through the facilitation of all general sessions by Ex Officio Trustees as well as the participation of the six APH scholars, made up of first time direct service attendees, nominated by Trustees.

Attendance was high, evaluations were good, the food was plentiful, and the networking was outstanding.

Thanks to all who made this another very special and unique event. Please make your plans now to join us October 2-4, 2008 at the beautiful Seelbach Hotel for the 140th Annual Meeting and celebration of APH’s 150th year!

The December Issue of the APH News will offer links to photos, videos, and podcasts of the Annual Meeting.

Attendees, if you completed an evaluation form while in Louisville we thank you very much for your input. If you did not, you still have an opportunity to help us by taking a couple of minutes to complete and submit the electronic version.

We thank you for your good counsel.

APH Tactile Graphic Image Library Goes LIVE!

Finding tactile graphics templates is now easier than ever. APH has launched an Image Library Database that is accessible from our website. Teachers, transcribers, students, families and paraprofessionals are now able to register to use the Image Library to find tactile graphics that can be enhanced for your needs.

The database is searchable by category or keyword. When you find the subject matter you are interested in you can view the images in a thumbnail sketch just like any other clip art software. This database will continue to be populated with new images weekly. Some areas are still under construction so pardon our dust.

Some images may be exactly what you are looking for but for the most part you will need to modify the image to be exactly what is needed by the student. You can download the image and tool your changes to the template or use drawing software to manipulate the graphic before you produce it.

If you are curious and would like to see how this database can make your life easier you are encouraged to browse the site by visiting and log in using the username of guest and use the password of password. This generic login will only last a few weeks so try it today!

If you have any questions or would like to register to use the database please contact Chris Graham at email hidden; JavaScript is required or call him at 800-223-1839.

Field Testers Needed in Recreation and Physical Education

APH seeks 12 Recreation Directors or Physical Education Teachers to field test a tennis kit. Each kit consists of two rackets, two sound-adapted tennis balls, two blindfolds, and an instruction manual. Field testing is scheduled to begin in January and prototypes will be shipped to Field Test Coordinators in December, before the winter break. Each site will have two months to learn and practice the game. This adapted tennis game is played in a gymnasium. Participating sites will need to tape string (as done for goal ball) on the floor to mark boundaries. If you are interested in participating, send your name, title, address, phone number, and the number of students you have who will be playing to Tristan Pierce at email hidden; JavaScript is required.

National Instructional Materials Access Center (NIMAC) Update

NIMAC/National Instructional Materials Access Center

In the first 10 months of operation NIMAC, has made 2,000 NIMAS files of textbooks and related core instructional materials available for download by authorized users. In the next two months, we expect to add approximately 2,000 more NIMAS files to the NIMAC.

Mary Nelle McLennan Appointed to Braille Authority of North America

Mary Nelle McLennan

Mary Nelle McLennan, Executive Advisor to the President of APH, has been appointed to represent APH on the Braille Authority of North America (BANA). She replaces Gary Mudd, Vice President of Public Affairs, in this crucial role.

The Braille Authority of North America is made up of representatives of 15 member organizations from throughout Canada and the U.S. The mission of BANA is to assure literacy for tactile readers through standardization of braille and tactile graphics. BANA is charged with promoting and facilitating the use, teaching, and production of braille. In this role, BANA publishes rules and interprets and renders opinions pertaining to braille in all existing and future codes. BANA works in collaboration with other countries using English braille.

Mary Nelle joined APH in 1982 as the Braille Editor and Field Representative. During her 25 years with APH, she served as Director of Educational and Advisory Services as well as Vice-President of Products and Services. A graduate of Peabody College vision program, her early work in the vision field included 15 years as a classroom teacher at the Tennessee School for the Blind.

This appointment continues a long and respected history of APH’s commitment to the refinement and accessibility of braille. Her predecessors in this work include APH Editors Marjorie Hooper and later Ralph McCracken, two internationally respected braille advocates, who played critical roles in the work of the AAWB – AAIB Braille Authority, the body that preceded BANA.

Be on the lookout for Mary Nelle’s BANA reports in future issues of APH News.

Hall of Fame and Wall of Tribute News

Charles Campbell's Hall of Fame Plaque
Butch Hill's Hall of Fame Plaque

Bas Relief Plaques of the 2007 Hall of Fame Inductees Charles Campbell and Everett "Butch" Hill.

Biographies of these legends, written by Dean and Naomi Tuttle with material provided by Rick Welsh and George Zimmerman, can be found on the Hall website at

Jeff Johnson holding the Robert Irwin Hall of Fame Plaque

Jeff Johnson, great nephew of Hall of Famer Robert Irwin, stopped by the Hall recently to see his uncle’s plaque and the artifacts relating to his remarkable life.

Another recent visitor was Bonnie Inkster, daughter of inductee Douglas Inkster, who brought some of her dad’s awards for future display. As Bonnie held her dad’s plaque she shared with us that the artist really captured him well.

Judy Cernkovich Respected as Teacher * Friend * Wife * Mother AER Superstar
The latest engraved stone to be placed on the Wall of Tribute honors Judy Cernkovich who passed away recently.

To learn how you can honor a special person or organization, please visit Support the Hall: Wall of Tribute.

2008 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 2008 induction consideration.

If you are interested in learning more about the qualifications for nominees or the 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 Welcomes New Ex Officio Trustees

Todd S. Reeves, Western Pennsylvania School for Blind Children, replacing L. Van V. Dauler, Jr.

Christian Yates, Hawaii Center for the Deaf and the Blind and Hawaii Department of Education, replacing Susan Hokama.

APH Travel Calendar

on the road with APH


November 2-3, 2007
KSB Kentucky Family Conference;
Louisville, KY

November 3, 2007
Third Biennial CASMA-ACT Invitational Conference On "Current Challenges in Educational Testing";
Iowa City, IA

November 3-4, 2007
California State University Fall Conference-Los Angeles Training for Pre-Service Teachers;
Los Angeles, CA

November 5-9, 2007
Legislative Visits on Capitol Hill;
Washington, DC

November 8, 2007
Kansas AER Product Training;
Wichita, KS

November 8, 2007
Preconference Workshop for MACRT-ASERT;
Las Vegas, NV

November 9-10, 2007
KCB State Convention;
KSB in Louisville, KY

November 9-11, 2007
Las Vegas, NV

November 12, 2007
Digital Text Accessibility and DRMs (Digital Rights Management) – A Technology and Policy Summit;
Baltimore, MD

November 13, 2007
EnVISIONing the Future Day (Big East Co-Op);
Ashland, KY

November 14-15, 2007
NIP Event: Learning to Use the Sensory Learning Kit;
Los Angeles, CA

November 16, 2007
Indiana AER;
Nashville, IN

November 28-29, 2007
Florida AER;
St. Pete’s Beach, FL

November 29-December 2, 2007
Getting in Touch with Literacy Conference;
St. Petersburg, FL


January 5, 2008
New York Regional Braille Challenge

January 16-17, 2008
NIP Event: Learning to Use the SLK;
North Mankato, MN

January 23-24, 2008
NIMAS-NIMAC Development Committee Meeting;
Orlando, FL

January 30 – February 2, 2008
ATIA 2008;
Orlando, FL


February 28-March 2, 2008
Los Angeles, CA

Looking for Great Holiday Gifts? Think APH!

APH has many items that would be perfect for holiday gift-giving (or put these on your own wish list!).

Children’s Books

Curious George

  • Curious George by H.A. Rey, (9-16363-00 — $25.00) Chrissy’s Collection print/braille book. In the classic Curious George series, the monkey George comes to live with the man in the yellow hat, where his curiosity gets him into a number of adventures.
  • Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak (9-16352-00 — $25.00) Chrissy’s Collection print/braille book, full-color hard-cover picture book.
  • Dear Santa, Please Come to the 19th Floor (9-15015-00 — $25.00) print/braille full-color hardcover.
  • SQUID Tactile Activities Magazine (Issue 1: 1-08862-01 — $48.00, Issue 2: 1-08862-02 — $45.00, Issue 3: 1-08862-03 — $56.00, Issue 4: 1-08862-04 — $54.00) fun activities in a variety of tactile methods.

Daily Living Products

EZ Test Battery Tester

  • Talking Watch (Stretch band: 1-03976-00 — $19.95, Leather: 1-03977-00 — $19.95). No Quota.
  • Wireless Personal Pager (1-03975-00 — $32.00) send signal to the portable receiver up to 100 feet away. No Quota.
  • Colorino (English: 1-03955-00 — $195.00 , Spanish: 1-03955-SP ) small hand-held talking unit that detects more than 100 nuances of color. No Quota.
  • "Kelvin" Talking Thermostat (1-03973-00 — $129.95) change temperature "hands-free" after programming. No Quota.
  • Talking Calculator (1-03971-00 — $17.95). No Quota.
  • EZ Test Battery Tester (Audio Feedback Version: 1-03968-00 — $56.00, Audio/Tactile Feedback Version: 1-03969-00 — $78.00) Available for purchase with Quota Funds.
  • Push Button Padlock (1-03990-00 — $12.50)you can now have a combination that is known only to you. Each lock comes with large print and braille instructions, plus two large print/braille combination cards. No Quota.
  • ZeitGeist® Talking Time Machine (1-03974-00 — $99.00) Tells time (including dual time zone) in hours, minutes, and seconds; Automatically adjusts to Daylight Savings Time and leap years; Calendar tells the current day of the week, date, calendar week, number of days passed and remaining in the year, 4.5 x 1.25 x 1 inches, to fit in a pocket or carry around your neck on its attached lanyard. Uses 2 AAA batteries (included).

Recreational Items

Rib-It-Balls and the Mini Rib-It-Ball

  • Rib-It-Balls (14": 1-07513-00 — $23.00, 18": 1-07514-00 — $39.00, 30": 1-07515-00 — $68.00)
  • Mini Rib-It-Ball (1-07512-00 — $14.00) No Quota.
  • Quick Pick Games (Counting, Math, and Braille Contractions) — self-correcting flashcards
  • Sound Balls (Boing Boing Ball yellow: 1-07510-00 — $95.00, Techno Beat Ball red: 1-07516-00 — $95.00)
    • the electronic ball features dual speakers, dual volume, and two-tone sounds to accommodate children who wear hearing aids.
  • Talking GlowDice (1-07500-00 — $30.00) Push the "Roll" button on this hand-held unit, and a randomly generated number between one an six is announced in digitized human speech, and the corresponding number is displayed in bright blue LEDs.

Computer games designed especially for low vision players

Screen shot from the Armadillo Army game

  • Armadillo Army™ (D-03400-00 — $49.00) navigate successive mazes while avoiding the armadillos
  • Termite Torpedo™ (D-03470-00 — $39.00) rid Woodville of the invading termites by clearing all 12 playing fields
  • Talking Word Puzzles™ (D-03440-00 — $49.00) solve and create your own crossword puzzles
  • Toodle Tiles™ (D-00300-00 — $49.00) matching game based on Mahjong

Note: These games include sound cues and can be enjoyed by players who are totally blind.


Money Talks

  • Book Wizard Reader™ (D-03531-00 — $49.00; D-03531-ED — $39.00) PC Software for reading electronic text files including digital recorded books
  • Money Talks™ (D-03560-00 — $49.00; D-03560-ED — $39.00) Accessible bank account management software package.
  • Verbal View Series ($50.00 per tutorial) tutorials that emphasize keyboard commands and descriptions of graphic components learn how to send emails, search the web. Available for Windows XP, Word, and the internet.


  • APH T-Shirts ($10.00) No Quota.
  • APH Sweat Shirts ($17.00) No Quota.

Holiday Cards (10 cards and envelopes)

Winter Solace Artwork

  • May Your Light Shine (W-HDCD-AA — $7.00) message: "May your light shine." No Quota.
  • Evergreen (W-HDCD-AB — $7.00) message: "May the joy of your holidays be Evergreen." No Quota.
  • Winter Solace (W-HDCD-AD — $10.00) message: "Wishing you a beautiful holiday season." No Quota.
  • Snow Walker (1-05201-99 — $10.00) message: "Happy holidays." No Quota.

For complete descriptions or more suggestions, look on our website:

To order any of these gifts, call toll-free 1-800-223-1839, Monday-Friday, 8:00am – 4:30pm Eastern time.

APH News Credits

Dr. Tuck Tinsley

Malcolm Turner, APH Web Site Coordinator

Thanks to the following APH staff:

  • Cindy Amback, Support Specialist, Field Services
  • Scott Blome, Director, Communications
  • Stephanie Chaney, Graphic Designer, Communications
  • Mary Nelle McLennan, Executive Advisor to the President
  • Julia Myers, Director, Resource Services and NIMAC
  • Tristan Pierce, Multiple Disabilities Project Leader, Research
  • 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:

October Issue –
September Issue –
August 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.

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