World Braille Day…. Grateful

Hello Everyone,

Today is World Braille Day. We celebrate the birthday of Louis Braille on this day January 4th every year because Braille is literacy for people who are blind or partially sighted.

Growing up partially sighted and losing all of my vision later in life I have been beyond grateful that I had the opportunity to learn braille in high school. My transition to life as a totally blind person would have been very different without it. With the skill of reading braille I have every option open to me to access literature. Access to literacy is the key for so many young children who are blind or partially sighted. I truly believe in giving our children all the tools that they may need and letting them choose which ones will work best for them. Sometimes there is a misperception that only people who are totally blind use braille and that is just not the case. I used to use braille even when I could read large print somewhat because it was not so straining on my eyes and it was faster than trying to use my vision, and I did not get headaches from reading with my fingers. And not to mention when you are light sensitive being able to read in the dark is great.

I use braille in my every day life and thought today on world braille day 2018 I would share some of the times that I use braille in my life.

At work I use a braille display hooked up to my computer and use this for when I just want a break from the computer talking to me constantly, imagine listening to every key stroke and all the information on your computer and phone for a 8 hour work day plus anything you do in your time, it will drive you nuts sometimes. I use braille for lots of my presentation notes, as well as studying for courses that I take to enhance my skills in my job, I use it for phone lists on my desk and to communicate to the participants in some of the programs I run.

In my home I use it for grocery lists, cook books, general reading, labels on things in my kitchen, Landry room and bathroom on things like makeup. I also love braille for being able to read books to my children, this was essential in me being a part of them learning to read. I do braille the kids spelling tests so that we can practice and I can remember all the words for the week.

I am grateful for Braille and the opportunities it has given me as well as the access to literature throughout my life.

Until Next Time,

Ashley and Rick

3 thoughts on “World Braille Day…. Grateful

  1. Ashley, you mentioned 2 important things that apply to Braille and also to ourselves. Braille is, and will continue to be, an important tool.
    You are so right in reminding us that we need alternatives. Just as you need a break from the steady stream of audio words, I find myself in need of getting out of my wheelchair. I need to stretch, relax, or meditate, and 16 hours a day of my chair is just too much.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Solution Seeker

    Ashley, I definitely agree that braille is an essential part of our lives. From the moment I began to learn how to read braille in kindergarten, it has always been the main tool that I used to increase my understanding of all the material given to me through out my academic career. I still continue to use it today at my university. Ever since I began using braille, I always found that I could understand everything that I read if I feel the braille with my fingers. This is true whether I’m reading something on braille paper or a braille display. Although I’ve tried having someone read a book or a piece of paper to me when I didn’t have the necessary materials needed to be successful in my classes in middle and high school, I immediately knew that method wouldn’t work for me because there was no way I could go back to the material and read it as many times as I needed. Also, aside from grasping the hidden definitions and messages of the concepts in my books, I wanted to make sure that I understood how to spell every word that I came across to enrich my vocabulary. Spelling was something that I noticed audio books couldn’t do. Surthermore, materials in this format were often difficult for me to comprehend because I always had to pause and restart the audio. As a result, braille was the only format that really allowed me to absorb everyth bit of information in a book or handout. So when my books and devices weren’t being given to me in a timely manner during most of my secondary education years, I felt like I had lost a lot of information. So, when I finally got a braille note during my senior year of high school, I immediately logged in to BookShare and downloaded the books that I didn’t get to read back then. Now, like you, I’m very grateful to have access to such a vast amount of information and braille certainly plays a huge role in that. Aside from alternative methods and technologies, I believe that anyone and everyone who can benefit from braile should have access to it, especially young children. It can really give them access to so much information, just like how sighted people use print on a daily basis or how ancient civilizations used stones to get their messages across those around them.

    Liked by 1 person

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