Teaching Students with Vision Problems
Carol Farrenkopf, Low Vision Consultant with the Toronto District School Board has provided the following activities teachers can do when teaching children with vision problems.
- When providing written feedback to students, print or write neatly in a dark pen or marker
- Use descriptive language whenever referring to something in a book or to something on the board
- Allow the student to sit closer to the front of the classroom, if it suits his/her needs
- Allow the student to sit with his/her back to the light source (e.g., windows in the classroom) to avoid glare
- Use bold colours to highlight certain aspects of maps and graphs
- Say aloud what you are writing
- Print or write with neat, large, well-spaced words
- Try to keep the chalkboard clean so the chalk is easier for all children to see
- White chalk on a green or black board provides the best contrast for visibility
- Black and blue markers are more visible on an overhead than are red and orange markers
- Use a pointer to help direct the students' attention to specific details on the chalkboard
- Give the child his/her own printed copy of material presented on the blackboard
- Provide verbal descriptions of what you are doing and what is happening
- Allow a hands-on demonstration whenever possible.
- Allow students to move closer to you during a demonstration
- Make sure the child’s glasses have plastic or polycarbonate lenses and a sturdy frame with an elastic band to secure the glasses on the child’s head. If not, request that the child’s parents provide safety/sports goggles for physical education activities.
- Some students may wear contact lenses. If so, they should wear protective sports goggles over them for sports activities.
- Do not suggest that the child remove his/her glasses or contact lenses and participate in physical activities without correction.