Adaptations can help the individual who is blind or visually impaired move safely and efficiently through their environment. A persons need for adaptations to the environment depends on their visual impairment and any additional disabilities. It is important to understand each persons visual diagnosis and the implications with regard to functional vision to make the appropriate adaptations in order to maximize each persons use of vision.
By: Carmen Willings
Staying safe and complete activities independently is important for lifelong independence. Adaptations can help individuals who are blind or visually impaired move safely and efficiently through their environment. A persons need for adaptations to the environment depends on their visual impairment and any additional disabilities. It is important to understand each persons visual diagnosis and the implications with regard to functional vision to make the appropriate adaptations in order to maximize each persons use of vision.
There are simple adaptations you can make throughout the home that can help you or your family member achieve independence. Learning to move safely and perform tasks independently is critical to prepare your family member to either live independently or to continue to live independently following vision loss.
General Safety Tips
An excellent rule of thumb is to have a place for everything and keep everything in it's place.
Depending on your family member's visual condition, special lighting may need to be obtained. Some persons may need increased lighting, while others may find that the lighting produces too much glare. If your family member is sensitive to glare: adjust the light coming from windows by adjusting blinds or curtains, install a rheostat control (dimmer switch) on light switches, adjust mirrors so lights don't reflect off them, and avoid using high gloss finishes on furniture and especially on stairs. Night lights may be helpful to place in the bedroom, hallway and in bathrooms. Task lighting may be a good choice for close-up work. Ott Lights and Sunlight lamps provide good contrast. Learn more about lighting adaptations on this page.
If your family member has any usable vision, it will most likely be important to ensure good contrasts throughout the home. Place dark objects against light background, and light objects against dark background. Learn more strategies specific to rooms within the home adaptations section or general tips for increasing contrast on the Increase Contrast page.
The kitchen can be easily adapted to ensure independence and safety with meal storage and preparation. This page provides suggestions and strategies for increasing independence and safety in the kitchen.
As with the rest of the home, the bathroom can be easily adapted to ensure independence and safety. This page provides suggestions and strategies for increasing independence and safety in the bathroom.
Older students need to learn how to identify and take the correct medication in the prescribed dosages and at the correct time. Sometimes it is possible to identify medications by the size and shape of the container, but containers are frequently similar or identical. Sometimes, pills themselves can be identified by the shape or texture, but this isn't always the case. Use the strategies on this page to help identify medications.
Adapting the dials of washing machines and dryers is simple.
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Purchase the TVI's Guide to Teaching the ECC Complete Set and immediately unlock the pages within the ECC Complete Set Bonus including bonus printables, interactive sensory stories, interactive matching activities, interactive choice making activities, job task box activities and MORE! This is my way of continuing to support you and say "Thank you!" for choosing to purchase the Complete Set.
TVI's Guide Complete Set Bundle + BONUS Resources
Buy together and get BONUS resources!
The TVI's Guide to Teaching the ECC Complete Set includes the following:
The LOTTO Cards Grab and Go Supplement includes 37 theme related unit cards along with activity suggestions that support activities within the TVI's Guide to Teaching the ECC.
On My Way File Folder Cards
Print and use these cards to represent locations the student may visit that are related to the current thematic unit. Use these with the On My Way File Folder Game outlined in the TVI's Guide to Teaching the ECC p. 27.
NEW! Access to TVI's Guide Bonus Membership Pages
Bonus pages include tutorials, printables, interactive sensory story downloads, and interactive choice making, matching and visual discrimination computer games (PowerPoint based interactive games), and job task activities.
All products are digital pdf downloads. Once you make your purchase you will be directed to an order confirmation page where you will find the download link. This download will also be included on the receipt sent to the email address you provide. The pdf download can be found directly under the order number. If you encounter any difficulty, please let me know and I can assist you. Once you purchase the complete set you will have immediate access to the bonus pages!
*Please contact me if you need to purchase using a purchase order. I am happy to help guide you in the process of adding Teaching Students with Visual Impairments as an approved vendor for your school or program or you can visit the product support page for information on using a PO.
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