Docstoc

Accessible Test

Document Sample
Accessible Test Powered By Docstoc
					American Printing House For The Blind
Research & Development Activities

Fiscal 2009
1

Table of Contents MISSION STATEMENT .............................................................................................. 10 LETTER FROM DIRECTOR OF RESEARCH ................................................................. 11 ADVISORY COMMITTEES .......................................................................................... 12 DEPARTMENT OF RESEARCH STAFF ......................................................................... 13 AGENCIES PARTICIPATING IN RESEARCH .............................................................. 14 CONSULTANTS .......................................................................................................... 16 FIELD EVALUATORS .................................................................................................. 20 ACCESSIBLE TESTS DEPARTMENT............................................................................ 29 Accessible Tests Department ............................................................................................. 30 TESTS & ASSESSMENTS ............................................................................................ 47 Accessible Answer Documents ........................................................................................... 48 Brigance Diagnostic Comprehensive Inventory of Basic Skills, Revised (CIBS-R): Student Large Print Edition A.k.a. Brigance Green ........................................................................... 49 Brigance Diagnostic Inventory of Early Development II (IED-II): Large Print Edition and Tactile Edition A.k.a. Brigance Yellow ................................................................................. 50 Collaborative Assessment DVD Series ................................................................................. 51 Kaufman Test of Educational Achievement (KTEA-II) Large Print Edition and Braille Adaptation ........................................................................................................................ 52 KeyMath – 3: Braille / Tactile Adaptation ............................................................................ 53 Test and Assessment Needs .............................................................................................. 54 Test Ready® Test Preparation Series ................................................................................. 55 Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Achievement ...................................................................... 57 Braille Adaptation .............................................................................................................. 57 RESEARCH DEPARTMENT ......................................................................................... 60 ADULT LIFE ............................................................................................................... 61 Adult Life Needs................................................................................................................ 62 Braille Financial Record Keeper .......................................................................................... 62 Functional Assessment ...................................................................................................... 64 Labeling Book and Tool Kit ................................................................................................ 65 MagneTachers for Braille Labels ......................................................................................... 66 MagneTachers for Large Print Labels: Jumbo Size ............................................................... 67 MagneTachers for Large Print Labels .................................................................................. 68 MiniBook .......................................................................................................................... 69 Money Talks ..................................................................................................................... 71 Nonverbal Communication Curriculum ................................................................................ 75 O&M for Families .............................................................................................................. 76 Parenting Book ................................................................................................................. 77 Printing Guide ................................................................................................................... 79 Step By Step: ................................................................................................................... 81 An Interactive Guide to Mobility Techniques ....................................................................... 81 Talking PC Maps ............................................................................................................... 83 Transition Tote System, Revised ........................................................................................ 84 2

Travel Tales ...................................................................................................................... 85 ART ........................................................................................................................... 87 Art Digitizing/Modernizing of On the Way to Literacy Storybooks.......................................... 88 Braille Beads ..................................................................................................................... 89 BRAILLE .................................................................................................................... 90 Alphabetic Braille and Contracted (ABC) Braille Study .......................................................... 91 Revision of Patterns: ......................................................................................................... 95 The Primary Braille Reading Program ................................................................................. 95 CORE CURRICULUM ................................................................................................ 100 Early Braille Trade Books ................................................................................................. 101 Wilson Reading System ................................................................................................... 102 EXPANDED CORE CURRICULUM ............................................................................. 104 Adventure ECC: The Hatlen Center Guide ......................................................................... 105 CORTICAL VISUAL IMPAIRMENT ........................................................................... 107 Cortical Visual Impairment (CVI) Projects and Needs......................................................... 108 CVI Assessment Kit & CVI Starter Kit ................................................................................ 110 CVI Complexity Challenges .............................................................................................. 111 CVI Complexity Sequences .............................................................................................. 111 CVI Stick & Stay Kit ......................................................................................................... 112 CVI Website.................................................................................................................... 113 EARLY CHILDHOOD ................................................................................................ 115 Classroom Calendar Kit.................................................................................................... 116 The Early O&M Guide Book .............................................................................................. 117 Experiential Learning Kit .................................................................................................. 118 Getting To Know You: A Social Skills/Ability Awareness Curriculum .................................... 120 for Students with Visual Impairments and Their Sighted Peers ........................................... 120 Preschool Attainment Through Typical Everyday Routines ................................................. 121 (PATTER) ....................................................................................................................... 121 Reach for the Stars ......................................................................................................... 123 Sound Adapted Tangle Ball .............................................................................................. 125 Teaching Puzzles for the Light Box ................................................................................... 126 The Best for a Nest ......................................................................................................... 127 The National Registry for Children with Visual Impairments, .............................................. 129 Birth to Three Years ........................................................................................................ 129 What Is IT? .................................................................................................................... 131 EDUCATIONAL GAMES ............................................................................................ 133 Sudoku Partner ............................................................................................................... 134 Touch 'em All Baseball..................................................................................................... 135 Treks ............................................................................................................................. 135 LOW VISION ........................................................................................................... 137 Address: Earth ................................................................................................................ 138 Large Format Atlas, Section 2 .......................................................................................... 138 Appropriate Intervention Techniques ................................................................................ 140 Formerly: Best Intervention Techniques ........................................................................... 140 3

Determining Appropriate Visual Reading Media ................................................................. 141 for Students with Low Vision............................................................................................ 141 Developmental Guidelines for Infants with Visual Impairments, Revision ............................ 142 Functional Vision Assessment/Learning Media Assessment................................................. 143 for Academic Students with Low Vision............................................................................. 143 Large Format Protocol Forms ........................................................................................... 143 Lighting Guide Kit ........................................................................................................... 143 Maximize Multi-Camera Video Magnifier2 .......................................................................... 145 With Cordless PenTracker™ and Joystick .......................................................................... 145 NewT: New Tools for Use with FV/LMA ............................................................................ 146 Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning .......................................................... 147 Tadpole .......................................................................................................................... 148 MATHEMATICS ........................................................................................................ 150 Consumable Number Lines Large - Print and Braille/Tactile ................................................ 151 FOCUS in Mathematics, Second Edition ............................................................................ 152 Graphic Aid for Mathematics ............................................................................................ 153 MathBuilders................................................................................................................... 154 Nemeth Across Time ....................................................................................................... 156 Talking Protractor ........................................................................................................... 157 MICRO COMPUTER APPLICATIONS & PRODUCTS ................................................. 158 APH Digital Audio Component .......................................................................................... 159 APH Speech Environment ................................................................................................ 160 Book Port ....................................................................................................................... 162 Book Wizard ................................................................................................................... 164 Book Port Plus ................................................................................................................ 168 Braille+ .......................................................................................................................... 172 Qwerty Docking Station ................................................................................................... 178 Monitoring Technological Developments and Educational Applications ................................ 179 Refreshabraille 18 ........................................................................................................... 182 (Formally Refreshable Braille Display)............................................................................... 182 Studio Recorder .............................................................................................................. 184 Talking Learn Keys .......................................................................................................... 187 Talking Typer for Windows .............................................................................................. 188 Talking Word Puzzles ...................................................................................................... 189 Teacher's Pet .................................................................................................................. 190 Verbal View of the Net and the Web ................................................................................ 191 Verbal View of the Office Ribbon Bar ................................................................................ 193 Verbal View of Online Mail ............................................................................................... 194 Verbal View of Vista ........................................................................................................ 195 Verbal View of Web Documents ....................................................................................... 196 Verbal View of Web Searches .......................................................................................... 197 Verbal View of Windows XP ............................................................................................. 199 Verbal View of Word ....................................................................................................... 200 Verbal View of Word Advanced ........................................................................................ 201 4

MULTIPLE DISABILITIES ....................................................................................... 203 Digital Light Box Artwork: Supporting Language and Literacy ............................................ 204 Child-Guided Strategies: .................................................................................................. 204 The van Dijk Approach to Assessment .............................................................................. 204 Multiple Disabilities Projects and Needs ............................................................................ 205 O&M for Wheelchair Users ............................................................................................... 206 SAM: Symbols and Meaning ............................................................................................. 207 PHYSICAL FITNESS................................................................................................. 208 Jump Rope to Fitness ...................................................................................................... 209 PE Web Site .................................................................................................................... 209 Physical Health and Education Projects and Needs ............................................................ 210 Portable Sound Source, Sport Edition ............................................................................... 211 30 Love: Guidelines for Tennis Players with Visual ............................................................ 211 Impairment or Blindness.................................................................................................. 211 Games for People With Sensory Impairments ................................................................... 212 RECREATION SECTION ........................................................................................... 214 Game of Squares ............................................................................................................ 215 SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine [Issue 6] ..................................................................... 216 SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine [Issue 7] ..................................................................... 219 Tactile Tangrams ............................................................................................................ 220 SCIENCE .................................................................................................................. 223 Life Science Tactile Graphics ............................................................................................ 224 Sense of Science: Astronomy ........................................................................................... 225 Tactile Science Posters/Puzzles ........................................................................................ 228 Self-Determination V-file.................................................................................................. 229 TACTILE GRAPHICS ................................................................................................ 230 ALL-IN-ONE Board .......................................................................................................... 231 Feel n‘ Peel Sheets: Carousel of Textures ......................................................................... 235 FirstTouch Books ............................................................................................................ 238 Flip-Over Concept Books.................................................................................................. 241 Moving Ahead: Tactile Graphic Storybooks ...................................................................... 244 Pattern Matching Cards (for Giant Textured Beads) ........................................................... 247 Picture Maker Accessories: Geometric Textured Shapes ..................................................... 250 Tactile Book Builder ........................................................................................................ 253 Tactile Graphics Research ................................................................................................ 255 Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit .............................................................................................. 257 Textured Sorting Circles and Shapes ................................................................................ 262 Tri-Fold Board ................................................................................................................. 264 U.S. & Canada Basic Atlas ............................................................................................... 265 TG TV ............................................................................................................................ 266 MODEL/PATTERN MAKER ....................................................................................... 268 Model Shop .................................................................................................................... 269 Product Involvement during FY 2009................................................................................ 269 Product Manuals Available for Free Download ................................................................... 276 5

Product modernization .................................................................................................... 277 TECHNICAL RESEARCH DIVISION ......................................................................... 280 Technical Research Division Activities ............................................................................... 281 Address Earth: Section 2 ................................................................................................. 281 Addition/Subtraction Tables ............................................................................................. 282 All Children Have Different Eyes ....................................................................................... 283 ALL-IN-ONE Board .......................................................................................................... 283 APH Alphabet Card (50-Pack) .......................................................................................... 284 APH Insights Calendar 2010 ............................................................................................ 284 Braille DateBook Calendar 2010 ....................................................................................... 285 Braille DateBook 2010 Calendar Tabs ............................................................................... 285 Braille Docking Station .................................................................................................... 285 Brigance Green: Large Print Edition .................................................................................. 285 Brigance Yellow .............................................................................................................. 286 Building on Patterns 1st Grade .......................................................................................... 286 Building on Patterns Grade 2 ........................................................................................... 286 Child Guided Strategies (Van Dijk assessment) ................................................................. 286 Consumable Number Lines, Braille/Tactile ........................................................................ 287 Consumable Number Lines, Large Print ............................................................................ 287 Cranmer Abacus Hands-On DVD ...................................................................................... 287 CVI Complexity main kit .................................................................................................. 287 CVI Complexity Challenges .............................................................................................. 287 CVI Complexity Sequencing ............................................................................................. 288 Denver the Guide Dog DVD ............................................................................................. 288 Desktop Food Pyramid, Primary Kit .................................................................................. 288 Desktop Food Pyramid, Primary (10 Pack) ........................................................................ 289 Desktop Food Pyramid, Secondary Kit .............................................................................. 289 Desktop Food Pyramid, Secondary (5 Pack) ...................................................................... 290 Desktop Stick-On Number Line – Large Print .................................................................... 290 Developmental Guidelines Print Kit w/CD .......................................................................... 290 Developmental Guidelines Braille Kit w/CD ........................................................................ 291 Developmental Summary Consumable .............................................................................. 291 Digital Light Box Artwork, Large Print w/CD ...................................................................... 291 Experiential Learning Kit .................................................................................................. 291 EZ Track Calendar 2010 .................................................................................................. 291 Feel n‘ Peel Textured Sheets ............................................................................................ 292 Flip-Over Concept Books - Line Paths ............................................................................... 292 Flip-Over Concept Books - Parts of a Whole ...................................................................... 294 Focus in Mathematics; 2nd Edition Print Kit ........................................................................ 294 Focus in Mathematics; 2nd Edition Braille Kit ..................................................................... 295 FVLMA Protocols Large Print ............................................................................................ 295 Geometro GS16 Mini Set.................................................................................................. 295 Geometro GS22 Medium Set ............................................................................................ 296 Geometro GS56 Large Set ............................................................................................... 296 6

Graphic Aid for Math ....................................................................................................... 296 Home Grown Video: Sensory Learning Kit DVD ................................................................. 297 i-vu ................................................................................................................................ 297 Jump Rope for Fitness Kit ................................................................................................ 297 Life Science Tactile Graphics Kit ....................................................................................... 297 Lighting Guide Kit ........................................................................................................... 299 Listen and Think Level B .................................................................................................. 299 Listen and Think Level C.................................................................................................. 299 MathBuilders Unit 7 (Fractions) ........................................................................................ 300 MathBuilders Unit 8 (Data Collection, Graphing, and Probability/Statistics).......................... 300 MaximEyes Video Magnifier Version 2.0 ............................................................................ 301 MiniBook ........................................................................................................................ 301 Newt: New Tools for use with FV/LMA .............................................................................. 301 PATTER, Large Print w/CD & DVD .................................................................................... 301 PATTER, Braille w/CD & DVD ........................................................................................... 302 Pattern Matching Cards for Textured Beads ...................................................................... 302 Picture Maker Accessories: Geometric Textured Shapes ..................................................... 302 Printing Guide ................................................................................................................. 302 QWERTY Docking Station ................................................................................................ 303 RefreshaBraille 18 ........................................................................................................... 303 SAM; Symbols and Meaning ............................................................................................. 303 Sense of Science—Astronomy .......................................................................................... 304 Sense of Science: Astronomy Quick Fact Cards ................................................................. 304 Sound Adapted Tangle Balls ............................................................................................ 305 SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine Issue 6 ....................................................................... 305 SQUID, Tactile Activities Magazine Issue 7 ....................................................................... 306 Step by Step: An Interactive Guide to Mobility .................................................................. 306 Sudoku Partner 6x6......................................................................................................... 306 Super-Sized File Pocket ................................................................................................... 306 Tactile Tangrams ............................................................................................................ 307 Tactile Science Posters/Puzzles ........................................................................................ 307 Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit .............................................................................................. 307 Talking Protractor ........................................................................................................... 307 Tasha Tadpole‘s Puzzle Book ........................................................................................... 308 Tasha Tadpole Practitioner‘s Guide, Braille w/CD .............................................................. 308 Tasha Tadpole Practitioner‘s Guide, Print w/CD ................................................................. 309 Tasha Tadpole‘s Object Cards .......................................................................................... 309 Tasha Tadpole Light-Box Overlays ................................................................................... 309 TADPOLE Report of Visual Skills (10 pack) ........................................................................ 309 Test Ready ..................................................................................................................... 310 Textured Sorting Circles and Shapes ................................................................................ 310 The Best for a Nest ......................................................................................................... 311 The Boy and the Wolf Storybook, Moving Ahead Series ..................................................... 311 The Boy and the Wolf, Braille Reader‘s Guide ................................................................... 311 7

30-Love Sound Adapted Tennis ........................................................................................ 311 Transparent CCTV Ruler - Clear ....................................................................................... 312 Transparent CCTV Ruler - Yellow ..................................................................................... 312 Treks ............................................................................................................................. 313 Tri-Fold Board ................................................................................................................. 313 Turbo 6 Talking Battery Charger, English Version .............................................................. 313 Turbo 6 Talking Battery Charger, Spanish Version ............................................................. 314 Turtle and Rabbit Storybook ............................................................................................ 314 Turtle and Rabbit, Braille Reader‘s Guide .......................................................................... 314 U.S. & Canada Basic Atlas ............................................................................................... 314 Verbal View of Office 2007 .............................................................................................. 314 Verbal View of Office Ribbon Bar...................................................................................... 315 Verbal View of Web Searches ......................................... Error! Bookmark not defined.315 Verbal View of Windows Vista .......................................................................................... 315 VIPs Growing My Way Part 2 ........................................................................................... 315 v-File Vision Portfolio ....................................................................................................... 315 What Is It? ..................................................................................................................... 315 Wilson Reading System ................................................................................................... 316 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Kit One .......................................................... 316 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Reader One ................................................... 316 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook One A ............................................ 317 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook One B ............................................ 317 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Kit Two.......................................................... 317 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Reader Two ................................................... 317 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook Two A............................................ 318 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook Two B ............................................ 318 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Kit Three ....................................................... 318 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Reader Three ................................................. 318 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook Three A ......................................... 318 Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook Three B ......................................... 319 Wilson Reading System: Print/Braille Sound Cards Set ....................................................... 319 Wilson Reading System: Print/Braille Magnetic Tiles .......................................................... 319 Woodcock - Johnson III, Student Braille Edition ................................................................ 320 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books ........................................................................... 321 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine Kit 1 Contracted Braille ......................... 322 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine 1 Contracted Braille Pack ...................... 322 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine Kit 2 Uncontracted Braille ..................... 322 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine 2 Uncontracted Braille Pack .................. 322 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine Kit 2 Contracted Braille ......................... 322 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine 2 Contracted Braille Pack ...................... 323 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine Kit 2 Uncontracted Braille ..................... 323 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine 2 Uncontracted Braille Pack .................. 323 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig Kit 1 Contracted Braille ............................... 323 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig 1 Contracted Braille Pack ............................ 323 8

Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig Kit 2 Uncontracted Braille ............................ 324 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig 2 Uncontracted Braille Pack ......................... 324 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig Kit 2 Contracted Braille ............................... 324 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig 2 Contracted Braille Pack ............................ 324 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig Kit 2 Uncontracted Braille ............................ 324 Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig 2 Uncontracted Braille Pack ......................... 324 Address Earth: Section 1 ................................................................................................. 325 Azer‘s Interactive Tactile Periodic Table Study Set ............................................................. 326 Chang Kit ....................................................................................................................... 326 Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) ......................................................... 327 Department of Education Presentation ............................................................................. 328 Digital Flashcard Duplication Project ................................................................................. 328 Jump Rope for Fitness Kit ................................................................................................ 328 Lead Content in Products/Child Safety .............................................................................. 328 Light Box ........................................................................................................................ 329 Mini-Lite Box................................................................................................................... 330 Picture Maker Bag A Materials .......................................................................................... 330 Shape Board ................................................................................................................... 331 Sound Balls (Techno beat and Boing Boing) ...................................................................... 331 Stackups ........................................................................................................................ 332 All Urethane Parts—72 Items/34 kits ................................................................................ 332 U S Puzzle Map ............................................................................................................... 334 PRESENTATIONS & WORKSHOPS .......................................................................... 335 PRODUCT MATERIALS ............................................................................................ 338 PUBLICATIONS ....................................................................................................... 341 2009 NEW PRODUCTS ............................................................................................ 343 COMPLETED PROJECTS (CHART I) ......................................................................... 346 ACTIVE PROJECTS (CHART II) ............................ ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED.347 PARKING LOT PROJECTS (CHART III) ................ ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED.348 PIPELINE PROJECTS (CHART IV) ........................................................................... 349 PROJECT STATUS (CHART V) .................................................................................. 350

9

Mission Statement
Our mission is to promote the independence of blind and visually impaired persons by providing specialized materials, products, and services needed for education and life.

10

Letter from Director of Research
October 15, 2009 Dear Reader, As I wrote last year‘s letter during our sesquicentennial year, I was thinking of what could we possibly do to match the adrenaline rush that resulted in a record setting year of making available to our customers 88 new catalog items. On October 11, 2008, my question was answered. FIRE!! APH produces hundreds of educational aides and these aids require tooling, for example, dies to cut the parts out of a pattern and molds to produce plastic parts. Fortunately, we have items manufactured in a variety of locations, but unfortunately one of the locations in Southern Indiana burnt to the ground. And so began the saga of the ―Phoenix Project.‖ This could have been a catastrophe. However, the APH response gave real meaning to the old adage, ―If given lemons, make lemonade!‖ Although the burden primarily fell on our Technical Research staff, our Operations Engineering staff, our Production staff, our Model Makers, and our Tactile Graphic project leaders, the workload of many other staff was also impacted by this disaster. The APH staff response was tremendous. For more detail, please read the report by Technical Research on page 330. We immediately took this as an opportunity to carefully review, and where appropriate, update or obsolete products. There were 72 individual items and 34 kits impacted by the fire. Today we have most of the products updated and back into production, and many are on the shelves and available for purchase. What was the impact of the fire on our ability to produce new catalog items for your utilization? Before the fire, we had estimated that if everything went just right we would produce 69 new catalog items. And, although not a new record, this represented an above average new product year. When the fire occurred, we were immediately concerned about the numbers of new products. However, staff were motivated by the challenge and took the attitude of ―No Excuses.‖ As a result, you will find on page 341, a list of the 70 new catalog items. In conclusion, our sesquicentennial year may have been the record setting year for new catalog items; however, this year was a record setting year for that APH ―can‘t quit‖ attitude. As you read the report, the data can be a little cold. But this year we hope that you detect a little of the ―fire‖ in the hearts of our amazing staff. Sincerely, Ralph E Bartley, Ph.D.

11

Advisory Committees

APH especially wishes to acknowledge the superb leadership and guidance from the Ex Officio Trustees serving as members of the Educational Products Advisory and Educational Services Committees. FY 2009 committee members were: Educational Products Advisory Committee: Chair -- James Downs (GA) 2010 2010 2011 2009 2011 2009 -- Suzanne Dalton (FL) -- Stacy Grandt (WI) – Marty McKenzie (SC) -- Nancy Niebrugge (CA) – James Oldham -- Steven M. Rothstein (MA)

Alternate Dean Stenehjem (WA) Educational Services Advisory Committee: Chair -- Michael J. Bina (MD) 2009 2010 2010 2009 ----Angyln Franquemont (AR) Marjorie A. Kaiser (SD) Barbara N. McCarthy (VA) William "Frank" Simpson (NY)

Alternate Barbara L. Perkis (IL)

12

Department of Research Staff
Educational Research Aicken, John, M.B.A………………………………………………………………………………...Assistant Director Bartley, Ralph, Ph.D………………………………………………………………………………………………Director Boyer, Charles ―Burt‖, M.A………………………………………………….Project Leader (Early Childhood) Buford, Darrell, M.P.A……………………………………………..………………….Administrative Coordinator Corcoran, Katherine, B.S., B.F.A…………………………………………………………..Model/Pattern Maker Creasy, Keith, B.S……………………………………………………………………………………………Programmer Gilmore, Terri, A.S……………………………………………………………………………………Graphic Designer Hedges, John, B.S. ……………………………………………………………………………...………...Programmer Hoffmann, Rosanne, Ph.D………………………………………………………………………Research Assistant Kitchel, Elaine, M.Ed………………………………………………………………….Project Leader (Low Vision) Mason, Loana, M.A, COMS……………………………………………………Project Leader (Braille Literacy) McDonald, Michael,B.S…………………………………………………………………………………….Programmer Meredith, Rob…………………………………………………………………………………………………Programmer Otto, Fred, B.A……………………………………………………Project Leader (Tactile Graphics) part-time Perry, Ken, B.S……………………………………………………………………………………………….Programmer Pester, Eleanor, M.S………………………………………………………………………..Project Leader (Braille) Pierce, Tristan, M.I.A…………………………………………………….Project Leader (Multiple Disabilities) Poppe, Karen, B.A……………………………………………………………..Project Leader (Tactile Graphics) Poppe, Tom ……………………………………………………………………………………….Model/Pattern Maker Roderick, Carol, B.A……………………………………………………………..Research Assistant (part-time) Roman, Christine, Ph.D. ………………………..……………Project Leader (CVI Consultant; part-time) Rucker, Erica, B.A………………………………………………………………………………….Research Assistant Rutledge, Anita.................................................................Design Specialist/Process Engineer Skutchan, Larry, B.A………………………………………………………Manager, Application Programming Smith, Rodger, A.A.S………………………………………………………………………………………Programmer Terlau, Terrie, Ph.D…………………………………………………………………….Project Leader (Adult Life) Travis, Ann, B.A…………………………………………………………………………………….Research Assistant VACANT…………………………………………………………………………………………………………Programmer Vaught, Monica, M.S.S.W……………..Research Assistant (Acting Early Childhood Project Leader) Wicker, Jeanette, M.A………………………………………………………..Project Leader (Core Curriculum) Wright, Suzette, B.A…………………………………………Project Leader (Emergent Literacy) part-time Technical Research Division Donhoff, Darlene……………………………………………………………………………Manufacturing Specialist Etter, Nancy…………………………………………..………………....……….……Administrative Assistant II Hayden, Frank…………………………………………………………….………...Manager, Technical Research McGee, David………………………………………………………………………………..Manufacturing Specialist 13

Robinson, James……………………………………………………………………………Manufacturing Specialist

Agencies Participating in Research
Adams 12 Five Star Schools, Thornton, CO Affiliated Blind of Louisiana Training Center, Lafayette, LA Allegan Area Educational Service Agency, Allegan, MI Amador County Office of Education, Jackson, CA Arkansas School for the Blind, Little Rock, AR Alabama State Services for the Visually Impaired, Birmingham, AL Anchor Center for Blind Children, Denver, CO Anderson Elementary, Plano, TX Aurora Public Schools, Aurora, CO Azusa Unified School District, Azusa, CA Badger Association, Milwaukee, WI Bayes Achievement Center, Houston, TX Blue Creek Elementary School, Latham, NY Blue Valley Service Center, Overland Park, KS Boone Central Public Schools at Albion, Petersburg, NE California School for the Blind, Fremont, CA Camp Abilities, Alpine Alternatives, Inc., Anchorage, AK Camp Abilities, Brockport, NY Camp Abilities, Tucson, AZ Central Middle School, Cape Girardeau, MO Chalker Elementary School, Kennesaw, GA Cherry Creek School District, Denver, CO Children Center for the Visually Impaired, Kansas, MO Clark County Special Education Cooperative, Jeffersonville, IN Clark County Public Schools, Winchester, KY Cobb Public Schools, Smyrna, GA Collier County Public Schools, Naples, FL Colorado School for the Deaf and Blind, Colorado Springs, CO Columbus City Schools, Columbus, OH Cooperative Educational Service Agency #1, Brookfield, WI Covington Independent Schools, Covington, KY Crowley Independent School District, Crowley, TX Davis School District/University of Utah, Bountiful, UT Dawson Elementary, Corpus Christi, TX DeSoto County Schools, Southaven, MS Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO Edinburg Consolidated Independent School District, Edinburg, TX Elk Grove Unified School District, Elk Grove, CA Elmhurst Elementary School, Toledo, OH 14

Engleburg Elementary School, Milwaukee, WI Fargo Public Schools, Fargo, ND Francis Howell School District, St. Charles, MO Fruitland Elementary, Fruitland, ID Green County School District, Greensburg, KY Hampton Elementary, Hampton, TN Hardin County Schools, Elizabethtown, KY Hatlen Center for the Blind, San Pablo, CA Haywood Intermediate School, Haywood, WI Honolulu District Schools—DOE, Honolulu, HI Hunter College, New York, NY Independent School District 196, Eagan, MN Indiana School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Indianapolis, IN Intermediate District 917, Rosemount, MN Jefferson County Public Schools, Lakewood, CO Lake Forest Academy-Special Education, Wilmington, NC Lane Regional Program, Eugene, OR Lawrence Elementary, Winston Salem, NC Lewisville ISD, Lewisville, TX Lincoln Public Schools, Lincoln, NE Kentucky Deaf-Blind Project at University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY Kentucky School for the Blind, Louisville, KY Lansberry Elementary, Trinity, TX Lovin Elementary, Lawrenceville, GA Lucas Elementary, Ft. Campbell, KY Maryland School for the Blind, Baltimore, MD Medina High School, Medina, OH National Geographic, Washington, DC Minnesota State Academy for the Blind, Faribault, MN Montana School for the Deaf and Blind, Great Falls, MT North Dakota Vision Services/School for the Blind, Grand Forks, ND North Little Rock School District, North Little Rock, AR Northwest Regional Program, Portland, OR Northwestern Elementary, Poplar, WI Northwood Elementary, San Antonio, TX NW Regional Education Service District, Portland, OR Oklahoma School for the Blind, Muskogee, OK Oakland Meadow School, Lawrenceville, GA Owen County/Ohio Valley Educational Cooperative, Owenton, KY Pleasant Hill Elementary, Olive Branch, MS Pontchartrain Elementary School, Mandeville, LA Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired, Vancouver, BC, Canada Pulaski County Special School District, Roland, AR Quachita Parish Schools, West Monroe, LA Red Oak Elementary, Red Oak, TX 15

Red Oak Junior High, Red Oak, TX Region 4 Educational Service Center in Houston, TX Ridgefield Public Schools, Ridgefield, CT Ridgeview Elementary School, San Antonio, TX Saint Paul Public Schools, Vision Team, St. Paul, MN San Diego County Office of Education, Oceanside, CA San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA San Juan Unified School District, Carmichael, CA Santa Barbara County Education Office, Souza Center, Santa Maria, CA Santa Fe Junior High, Santa Fe, TX School of Optometry, University of California, Berkley, CA Shawnee Mission School District, Shawnee Mission, KS SSD/Parkway Early Childhood, Town and Country, MO St. Lucy Day School for Children with Visual Impairments, Philadelphia, PA South Dakota Rehabilitation Center for Blind and Visually Impaired Special School District of St. Louis County, Florissant, MO Spokane Public Schools, Spokane, WA State of Connecticut, Board of Education and Services for the Blind, Windsor, CT Tara Hills Elementary School, San Pablo, CA Tennessee School for the Blind, Nashville, TN Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Austin, TX Thompson School district R2-J, Loveland, CO University of Arizona, College of Education, Tucson, AZ University of Louisville, Louisville, KY University of Tennessee-Knoxville/National Consortium on Deaf-Blindness, Greenback, TN Virginia Murray Sowell Center for Research and Education in Visual Impairment, Austin, TX Virginia School for the Deaf and Blind, Staunton, VA Visually Impaired Preschool Services, Louisville, KY Washington County Public Schools, Bristol, VA Washington State School for the Blind, Vancouver, WA West Orange County Consortium for Special Education, Peterson School, Huntington Beach, CA

Consultants
Anthony, Tanni, Ph.D., State Consultant on Visual Impairment, Colorado Department of Education, Denver, CO [Developmental Guidelines] Bailey, Ian, O.D., Optometrist, University of California, Berkeley, CA [Optimizing Reading of Text] Bender, Dianne, M.A., Retired Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Nebraska Center for the Education of Children Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired, Nebraska City, NE [Functional Assessment] 16

Blaylock, Luanne, COMS, Educational Vision Specialist, Pulaski County Special School District, Little Rock, AR [Patterns Revision] Boley, Cheryl, M.Ed., Administrator of Braille Production Program, Ohio State School for the Blind, Columbus, OH [Patterns Revision] Bonenberger, Shannon, M.Ed., Teacher of the Visually Impaired/Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Ohio School for the Blind Outreach Department, Columbus, OH [Patterns Revision] Borsuk, Michael, B.S., Programmer, American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, KY [Micro Computer Applications and Products] Buckley, Wendy, M.Ed., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Boston, MA [Digital Light Box Artwork: Supporting Language and Literacy] Buhler, Kristen, M.S. in Education and M.M. in Choral Conducting, Teacher of Blind and Visually Impaired, Northwest Regional ESD, Hillsboro, OR [Patterns Revision] Carlsen, Tessa Wright, M.A., NCLVI Fellow, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN [Experiential Learning Kit] Chance, Deanne, B.S., Consultant, American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, KY [Micro Computer Applications and Products] Chen, Deborah, Ph.D., Associate Professor, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA [Developmental Guidelines for Infants with Visual Impairments, 2nd Ed.] Crawford, James Scott, COMS, CLVT, Lafayette, LA [O&M for Wheelchair Users] Croft, Jo Ellen, M.Ed., COMS, Educational Vision Specialist, Pulaski County Special School District, Little Rock, AR [Patterns Revision] Crow, Nita, M.A., COMS, California School for the Blind, Freemont, CA [Getting to Know You] Curtin, Tim, Inventor, Lafayette, IN [MaximEyes Video Magnifier] Daugherty, William, Ph.D., Superintendent, Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Austin, TX [Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning] D‘Andrea, Frances Mary, American Foundation for the Blind, Doctoral student, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA [Early Braille Trade Books] Dilworth, Kate, M.S., Special Education, Teacher of the Visually Impaired/Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Northwest Regional ESD, Hillsboro, OR [Patterns Revision] Dornbusch, Helen, O.D., Optometrist, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA, [Optimizing Reading of Text] Ethridge, Edith, M.A. Ed., CLVT, Low Vision Specialist, Kentucky School for the Blind, retired, Louisville, KY [V-File] Finley, Robin, M.Ed., Reading Specialist, Ohio State School for the Blind, Columbus, OH [Patterns Revision] Fox, Dana, Teacher, Governor Morehead Preschool, Raleigh, NC [FirstTouch Books, Tactile Book Builder] Frankel, Kathie, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Arizona State Schools for the Deaf & the Blind, Tucson, AZ [Woodcock-Johnson III: Tests of Achievement---Braille Adaptation] Goshe, Lisa, M.A. in Special Education, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Columbus City Schools, Columbus, OH [Patterns Revision] Greeley, J.C., M.A., Program Coordinator, Anchor Preschool, Denver, CO [Developmental Guidelines for Infants with Visual Impairments, 2nd Ed.; SAM: Symbols and Meaning] 17

Grisham-Brown, Jennifer, Ed.D., Associate Professor, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY [Reach for the Stars] Hagood, Linda, M.A., CCC-SLP, Seabeck, WA [SAM: Symbols and Meaning] Hall-Lueck, Amanda, Ph.D., Associate Professor, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA [Best Intervention Techniques; Developmental Guidelines for Infants with Visual Impairments, 2nd Ed.] Harrell, Lois, B.S., Pediatric Vision Consultant, Placerville, CA [What is IT?; The Best for a Nest] Haynes, Diane, Ph.D., Kentucky Deaf-Blind Project State Coordinator, Louisville, KY [Reach for the Stars; Child-Guided Strategies: The van Dijk Approach to Assessment] Heinze, Toni, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Northern Illinois University, DePauw, IL [Best Intervention Techniques] Herlich, Stephanie, M.A., COMS, San Francisco East Bay TVI Consultant, San Francisco, CA [Getting to Know You] Holbrook, Cay, Ph.D. Associate Professor, Educational and Counseling Psychology and Special Education, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada [Patterns Revision; Early Braille Trade Books] Ingber, Janet, M.A., Music Therapist and Author, New York, NY [Parenting Book] Jaffe, Lynne, Ph.D., LD Specialist and Reading Specialist, Tucson, AZ [Woodcock-Johnson III: Tests of Achievement---Braille Adaptation] Judge, Joann P., CAPE, Lancaster, PA [Tactile Food Pyramid] Kekelis, Linda, Ph.D., Associate Professor, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA [Developmental Guidelines] Kendrick, Deborah, M.A., Author and Journalist, Cincinnati OH [Parenting Book] Kielfopf, Helen, Astronomy Instructor, Louisville, KY [Sense of Science: Astronomy] Larsen Morgese, Zoe, M.A., CCC-SLP, Denver, CO [SAM: Symbols and Meaning] Lee, Donna Brostek, M.A., TVI, COMS, Assistant Professor, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI [Calendar Kit] Lewis, Sandra, Ed.D., Associate Professor, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL [PATTER] Lieberman, Lauren, Ph.D., SUNY Brockport, NY [Games for People With Sensory Impairment] Lien, Candy, B.S., Vision Specialist, North Dakota Vision Services/School for the Blind, Grand Forks, ND [Patterns Revision] Lucas, Jeffrey, Ph.D., Associate Professor, University of North Carolina at Pembroke, Pembroke, NC [Address: Earth] Lueck, Amanda Hall, Ph.D., Associate Professor, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA [Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning] Maffei, Patricia, Program Director, Hatlen Center for the Blind, San Pablo, CA [ADVENTURE ECC: The Hatlen Center Guide] McCarthy, Mary L., M.Ed., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Perkins School for the Blind, Watertown, MA [Wilson Reading System] Matsui, Ayako, Tokyo, Japan [30-Love: Tennis Guidelines for Players with Visual Impairment or Blindness]

18

McClurg, Lana, M.Ed., Teacher of the Visually Impaired (deceased), Arizona state Schools for the Deaf and Blind, Tucson, AZ [Woodcock-Johnson III: Tests of Achievement—Braille Adaptation] McCulloh, Karen, RN, B.S., Executive Director Disability Works, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, Morton Grove, IL [Nonverbal Behavioral Curriculum] Mowerson, Lisa-Anne, M.S., B.A., Certified Vision Rehabilitation Therapist, Wallingford, CT [Labeling Book and Kit] Nannen, LeAnn, M.Ed., COMS, Educational Vision Specialist, North Little Rock School District, North Little Rock, AR [Patterns Revision] Nelson, Catherine, Ph.D., University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT [Child-Guided Strategies: The van Dijk Approach to Assessment] O'Connor, Kevin, M.P.S., M.A., B.A., Marriage and Family Therapist, Arlington Heights, IL [Parenting Book] O'Donnell, Betsy, M.S., Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Philadelphia, PA [Orientation and Mobility for Families] Orel-Bixler, Deborah, O.D., Ph.D., FAAO, Berkley, CA [Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning] Perla, Fabiana, Ed.D, Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Philadelphia, PA [Orientation and Mobility for Families] Pogrund, Rona, Ph.D., Virginia Murray Sowell Center for Research and Education in Visual Impairment Austin, TX [Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning] Read, Izetta, B.A., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Santa Barbara County Education Office, Santa Maria, CA [Patterns Revision] Rines, Justine Carlone, M.S., CCC-SLP, Perkins School for the Blind, Watertown, MA [Wilson Reading System] Robinson, Cecelia, TVI, Region 4 Educational Service Center in Houston, Houston, TX [Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning] Roman-Lantzy, Christine, Ph.D., Allison Park, PA [Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning] Rosen, Sandy, Ph.D., Coordinator, Programs in Orientation & Mobility, Guide Dog Mobility, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA [Step by Step] Rosenblum, L. Penny, Ph.D., University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ [Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning] Rowley, Rosalind, M.Ed., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Perkins School for the Blind, Watertown, MA [Wilson Reading System] Sabhlok, Anu, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY [Address: Earth] Sadler, Amy, B.S., Cartographer, Louisville, KY [Address: Earth] Sanford, LaRhea, Ph.D., Consultant, Visiting Lecturer, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN [Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning] Sapp, Wendy, Ph.D., COMS, Visual Impairment Education Services, Cohutta, GA [FirstTouch Books, Tactile Book Builder] Schedlin, Haley, MS Ed., Camp Abilities, SUNY Brockport, Brockport, NY [Jump Rope to Fitness] 19

Schimmelpfennig, Sue, M.A., Teacher of the Blind and Visually Impaired, Northwest Regional ESD, Hillsboro, OR [Patterns Revision] Scoggins, Deanna, M.A.T., M.S.S.W., Teacher of the Visually Impaired (Retired), Kentucky School for the Blind, Louisville, KY [Patterns Revision] Sell, Michael A., B.A., Independent Consultant, New Orleans, LA [Test Ready Test Prep Series] Smith, Derrick W., Ed.D. University of Alabama in Huntsville, Huntsville, AL [MathBuilders: Units 5, 7, & 8] Smith, Millie J., M.Ed., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Consultant, Farmersville, TX [SAM: Symbols and Meaning; Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning; TADPOLE] Steele, Nancy, Ph.D., University of Tennessee-Knoxville, National Consortium on DeafBlindness, Greenback, TN [Child-Guided Strategies: The van Dijk Approach to Assessment] Stocker, Jennifer, M.H.S., OTR/L, Kentucky School for the Blind, Louisville, KY [SAM: Symbols and Meaning] Swenson, Anna, M. Ed., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Fairfax Co. Public Schools, Dunn Loring, VA [Early Braille Trade Books] Topper, Irene, Ph.D., University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ [Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning] Truan, Mila, Ed.D. Reading Specialist, Tennessee School for the Blind, Nashville, TN [Patterns Revision] Van Dijk, Jan, Ph.D., Haaren, The Netherlands [Child-Guided Strategies: The van Dijk Approach to Assessment] Ward, Marjorie E., Ph.D., Associate Professor, Emeritus, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH [Patterns Revision] Williams, Patricia, Executive Director, Hatlen Center for the Blind, San Pablo, CA [ADVENTURE ECC: The Hatlen Center Guide] Wingell, Robin, B.S. Ed., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Santa Barbara County Education Office, Santa Maria, CA [Patterns Revision]

Field Evaluators

The Best for a Nest Bickford, Sarah, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Anchor Center for Blind Children, Denver, CO Brasher, Jean A., 1st Grade Teacher, Kentucky School for the Blind, Louisville, KY Driscoll, Pamela, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Azusa Unified School District, Azusa, CA Estes, Mary Jane, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, West Orange County Consortium for Special Education, Peterson School, Huntington Beach, CA Gordon, Beth, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Clark County Special Education Cooperative, Jeffersonville, IN Greeley, J.C., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Anchor Center for Blind Children, Denver, CO 20

Haynes, Diane, Instructor, State Coordinator of the Kentucky Deaf-Blind Project at University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY Kahn, Amber Rundle, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Aurora Public Schools, Aurora, CO Kelley, Barbara, Preschool Teacher/Coordinator Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Visually Impaired Preschool Services, Louisville, KY McGlone, Barbara, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Elk Grove Unified School District, Elk Grove, CA Newhart-Lawson, Sue, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Orientation & Mobility Specialist, Jefferson County Public Schools, Lakewood, CO Rahn, Julie, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Santa Barbara County Education Office, Souza Center, Santa Maria, CA Reynolds, Mary Anne, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Owen County/Ohio Valley Educational Cooperative Trueblood, John, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Clark County Special Education Coop, Jeffersonville, IN Braille+ Ballard, Cory, B.A., Adaptive Products Specialist, Badger Association of the Blind and Visually Impaired Cavallaro, Rich, Student, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY Corona, Guido D., B.A., Accessibility Consultant Company, Assistive Technologist, Austin, TX Crispin, Chase, Middle School Student, Gerald Otte Blair Middle School, Blair, NE Gissoni, Fred, M.A., Product Support Specialist, American Printing House For The Blind, Louisville, KY Glass, John, B.S., Customer Support Manager, Bookshare, Department of Education, Washington, D.C. Henrichsen, Paul, M.A., Technical Support Specialist, Cambium Learning, Inc., Natick, MA Hill, Chris, B.S., Computer Technician, Jeffcoat, Clay, M.A., Access Technology Specialist, South Carolina School for the Deaf and Blind Vision Outreach Program, Spartanburg, SC McCarty, Michael, B.S., Social Network Coordinator, American Printing House For The Blind, Louisville, KY Miele, Joshua A., Ph.D., Research Scientist, The Smith-Kettlewell Eye Research Institute, San Francisco, CA Pratik Patel, M.S., Executive Management, Patel EZFire Enterprises LLC, Fresh Meadows, NY Pyyhkala, Mika, B.S., Systems Analyst, Neighborhood Health Plan Rader, Pamela, Product Support Specialist, American Printing House For The Blind, Louisville, KY Schlank, Alan, M.S., Software Engineer, New Editions Consulting Smith, Roger, M.S., Retired Special Education Teacher Szinnyey, Kathy, Library Assistant, Louisville Free Public Library, Louisville, KY Tanner, David, M.A., Assistive Technology Specialist & Rehabilitation Program Specialist 3, Minnesota State Services for the Blind, St. Paul, MN

21

Turner, Richard, M.S.W., Rehabilitation Instructor, Oregon Commission for the Blind Education, Salem, OR Wells, Richard, B.S., Quality Assurance & Software Tester, Serotek Corporation, Minneapolis, MN Building on Patterns First Grade Level Aaron, Cynthia, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, CESA #1, Brookfield, WI Anderson, Julie M., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Fargo Public Schools, Fargo, ND Bales, Terri, Vision Teacher, Francis Howell School District, St. Charles, MO Barclay, Liz, Vision Teacher, California School for the Blind, Fremont, CA Barnes, Ginger, Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments, Hardin County Schools, Elizabethtown, KY Berman, Steve, Vision Teacher, Special School District of St. Louis County, Florissant, MO Blaylock, Luanne, COMS, Educational Vision Specialist, Pulaski County Special School District, Little Rock, AR Cragg, Lynn, Vision Teacher, Oklahoma School for the Blind, Muskogee, OK Crankshaw, Vickie, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Clark County Public Schools, Winchester, KY Croft, Jo Ellen, Vision Teacher, Pulaski County Special School District, Roland, AR Darko, Geri, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Montana School for the Deaf and Blind, Great Falls, MT Dilworth, Kate, Vision Teacher, NW Regional Education Service District, Portland, OR Eagan, Sharon, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Lewisville Independent School District, Lewisville, TX Gamble, Carol, Braille Teacher, Maryland School for the Blind, Baltimore, MD Gately, Lonna, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Spokane Public Schools, Spokane, WA Guillory, Krystal, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Ouachita Parish Schools, West Monroe, LA Harmon, Marilyn, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Engleburg Elementary School, Milwaukee, WI Krusinski, Darcy, Vision Specialist, Washington State School for the Blind, Vancouver, WA Leidich, Cheryl, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO Lien, Candy, Vision Specialist, North Dakota Vision Services/School for the Blind, Grand Forks, ND Limmer, Darlene, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Toledo Public Schools, Toledo, OH Lumpkin, Cindy, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Oklahoma School for the Blind, Muskogee, OK Mangis, Susan, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, San Juan Unified School District, Carmichael, CA Masters, Judith, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Chalker Elementary School, Kennesaw, GA McGlothlin, Claire, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Ridgeview Elementary School, San Antonio, TX Minkler, Barbara, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Lane Regional Program, Eugene, OR Molenda, Margaret, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Covington Independent Schools, Covington, KY 22

Morgan, Lynn, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Collier County Public Schools, Naples, FL Nannen, LeAnn, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, North Little Rock School District, North Little Rock, AR Passarieu, Shawn, Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments, San Diego County Office of Education, Oceanside, CA Petersen, Merrilee, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Davis School District, Bountiful, UT Plansker, Mike, Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments, Adams 12 Five Star Schools, Thornton, CO Ramirez, Amanda, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Edinburg Consolidated Independent School District, Edinburg, TX Shelnutt, Sandra, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Cobb County Schools, Smyrna, GA Sitar, Debbie, Vision Outreach Coordinator, Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired, Vancouver, BC, CANADA Smith, Carrie, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Pontchartrain Elementary School, Mandeville, LA Starr, Darla, Vision Teacher, Lincoln Public Schools, Lincoln, NE Stroeing, Jennifer, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Independent School District 196, Eagan, MN Trief, Ellen, Professor of Blind & Visually Impaired and Severe & Multiple Disabilities, Hunter College/City University of New York, New York, NY Truan, Mila, Reading Specialist, Tennessee School for the Blind, Nashville, TN Weisner, Scott, Teacher of Children with Visual Impairments, Ridgefield Public Schools, Ridgefield, CT Wethington, Sheila, Teacher of the Visually Impaired and Blind, Green County School District, Greensburg, KY Wiepert, Judy, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Cherry Creek School District, Denver, CO Wood, Janet, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Thompson School District R2-J, Loveland, CO Woodson, Jerilyn, Librarian/Educational Consultant, Baton Rouge, LA Child-guided Strategies: The van Dijk Approach to Assessment Anonymous, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Latham, NY Angeli, Sanja, Parent, Teaneck, NJ Dilworth, Kate, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Portland, OR Gieseke, Nancy, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, COMS, Overland Park, KS Herder, Jane, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, St. Louis, MO Rapp, Cinda, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, San Pablo CA Timms, Mirella, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Wilmington, NC CVI Complexity Sequences Bailey, Karel, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Prince Edward School District, Richmond, VA Bieri, Lisa, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Missouri School for the Blind, St. Louis, MO Clyne, Michelle, Coordinator, Project Reach, Illinois Deaf Blind Services, Phillip Rock Center & School, Glen Ellyn, IL

23

Farrenkoph, Carol, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Coordinator, Vision Program, Toronto District School Board, Toronto Ontario, Canada Flohr, Abi, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Maryland Schol for the Blind, Baltimore, MD Husman, Carol, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Idaho Schools for the Deaf & Blind, Middleton, ID Johnson, Nancy, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Early Childhood, Tuolumne County SELPA, Sonora, CA Klein, Karen, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Ackerman Special Education School, Florissant, MO Kregger, Cathy, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Chicago Public Schools, Chicago, IL Lloyd, Melinda, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Early Childhood Division, Acker Special Programs Center, Frisco, TX Mumford, Judy, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Vision Program, Academy District Twenty, Colorado Springs, CO Nielsen, Anne, Ph.D., Statewide Visual Impairment Support Project Coordinator, Kansas State School for the Blind, Kansas City, KS Rutherford, Ann, Early Childhood Director, Children‘s Center for the Visually Impaired, Kansas City, MO Soriano, Franchesca, Program Coordinator, Nevada Early Intervention Services, Las Vegas, NV Trettel, Michele, Teacher of the Visually Impaired & Program Director, The Watson Education Center, Leetsdale, PA Tyrrell, Lisa, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Canadian National Institute for the Blind, Central Weat Region, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada Whitford, Gigi, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, CVI Advisor, Windsor, CT Woods, Sharon, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Low Vision Rehabilitation, Maryland School for the Blind, Baltimore, MD Early Braille Trade Books Albright, Rita, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Boulder Valley School District, Broomfield, CO Deal, Erica, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Kentucky School for the Blind, Louisville, KY Fields, Sarah, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, The Children‘s Center for the Visually Impaired, Kansas City, MO Herder, Jane, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, St. Louis Public Schools, St. Louis, MO Hlosek, Lori, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Cleveland Metropolitan School District, Cleveland, OH Justice, Paula, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Alamance Burlington School System, Burlington, NC Kemp, Martha, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Bridgeport Public Schools, Bridgeport, CT Leidich, Cheryl, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO Newsome, Teri, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Kate Sullivan Elementary, Tallahassee, FL Reid, Marci, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO Schimmelpfennig, Sue, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Northwest Regional ESD, Hillsboro, OR Sigel, Jamie, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Tussey Mountain School District, Defiance, PA 24

Thompson, Priscillia, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, San Antonio Independent School District, San Antonio, TX Underwood, Melinda, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Vermont Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Brattleboro, VT Weipert, Judith, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Cherry Creek Schools, Aurora, CO FOCUS in Mathematics Durst, Leslie, Director, Indiana Education Resource Center, Indianapolis, IN Kapperman, Gaylen, Professor and Coordinator, Visual Disabilities Program, Department of Teaching and Learning, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL Osterhaus, Susan, Statewide Mathematics Consultant Outreach Department, Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Austin, TX Pruitt, Shannon, Graduate Research Assistant, Visual Disabilities Program, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL Smith, Derrick, Assistant Professor in Special Education at the University of Alabama, Huntsville, AL Tinsley, Tuck, President, American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, KY MathBuilders Unit 7: Fractions, Mixed Numbers, and Decimals Brown, Stephanie, Primary Teacher, Kentucky School for the Blind, Louisville, KY Cope, Denise, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Poplar Bluff R-1 Schools, Poplar Bluff, MO Fields, Sarah, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, The Children‘s Center for the Visually Impaired, Kansas City, MO Gieseke, Nancy, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Blue Valley USD 229, Overland Park, KS Grillot, Leanne, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Flagler County Schools, Bunnell, FL Johnson, Patti Jo, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Bay District Schools, Panama City, FL Jones, Rachel, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Washington Elementary School District #6, Phoenix, AZ Lamb, Morina, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Harrisonburg City Schools, Harrisonburg, VA Lawrence, Roxanne, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, North Colonie School District, Latham, NY Smith, Lynette, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Galveston, La Marque, Texas City ISDs, La Marque, TX Steckler, Jeanie, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Wahpeton Schools, Wahpeton, ND Zink, Karen, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Erie 1 BOCES, West Seneca, NY MiniBook Brannan, Buddy, Adult Braille User, Erie, PA Chavez, Olivia, Adult Braille user, El Paso, TX Chuha, Louise, Adult Braille user, Braddock, PA Cohen, Peter, Adult Braille User, Ellenville, NY Courcelles, Martin, Adult Braille User, Toronto, Ontario, Canada Dixon, Judy, Adult Braille User, Arlington, VA Eccles, Jim, Adult Braille User, Vancouver, WA 25

Emmons, Betty, Adult Braille User, Anthony, KS Giesbrecht, Kerri, Adult Braille User, British Columbia, Canada Hoerber, Robin, Adult Braille User, Midlothian, VA Jackson, Dezman, Adult Braille User, Mobile, AL Larson, Ann, Adult Braille User, Muskogee, OK Lieberg, Marlaina, Adult Braille User, Burien, WA Lien, Candy, Adult Braille User, Fargo, ND Mervis, Allison, Adult Braille User, Munhall, PA Morrow, Kimberly, Adult Braille User, Overland Park, KS Neal, Olga, Adult Braille User, Grand Forks, ND O‘Brien, Sherill, Adult Braille User, Tampa, FL Piscitello, Charlie, Adult Braille User, Batavia, NY Porter, Anna, Adult Braille User, Lancaster, PA Sherman, Becky, Adult Braille User, Kent, WA Sorter, Judi, Adult Braille User, Vancouver, WA Thompson, Corietta, Adult Braille User, Silver Springs, MD Turner, Richard, Adult Braille User, Portland, OR Walsh, Kate, Adult Braille User, Springfield, PA Ward, Jean, Adult Braille User, Smyrna, TN Werner, Greg, Adult Braille User, Snyder, NY Wiglesworth, Keith, Adult Braille User, Rockingham, NC SAM: Symbols and Meaning Anonymous, Teacher and Speech Language Pathologist, Huntsville, TX Daniels, Leslie, Special Education Teacher, Fruitland, ID Eswein, Patti, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Braselton, GA Hoisington, Yvette, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Alvin, TX Lee, Ramona, Special Education Director, Fruitland, Idaho Loyd, Melinda, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Sherman, TX McElyea, Barbara, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Johnson City, TN Medley, Anita, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, COMS, Olive Branch, MO Olson, Joyce, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Genoa, NE Patillo, Suzan, Itinerant Visually Impaired Program Chairperson, Grayson, GA Presley, David, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Clarksville, TN White, Gina, Special Education Teacher, Caldwell, ID Step by Step Ambrose Zaken, Grace, Ed.D. Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Project Coordinator RT and O&M Programs, Hunter College CUNY, Department of Special Education, Wappinger‘s Falls, NY Griffin-Shirley, Nora, Associate Professor, Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Virginia Murray Sowell Center for Research and Education in Visual Impairment, Texas Tech University, Lubbock TX Hapeman, Julie, Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Milwaukee WI 26

Lee, Donna Brostek, Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Independent Contractor, Laurenceberg, KY Long, Richard, Associate Professor, Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo MI Sudoku Partner 6 x 6 Bird, Maylene, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Austin, TX Chamberlain, Merry-Noel, Braille Teacher/Orientation and Mobility Instructor, Virginia School for the Deaf and the Blind, Staunton, VA Geoghegan, Lis, Middle School Teacher, Arkansas School for the Blind, Little Rock, AR George, Sister Elaine, IHM, Materials Assistant, St. Lucy Day School for Children with Visual Impairments, Philadelphia, PA Jacob, Kate, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Bristol and Washington County, VA Public Schools, Bristol, VA Mack, Shelley, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Medina High School, Medina, OH Medley, Anita, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, DeSoto County Schools, Southaven, MS Megard, Laurie, Communications Instructor, SD Rehabilitation Center for the Blind, Sioux Falls, SD Svendsen, Kathryn, Vision Resource Teacher, SD42 Maple Ridge, BC, Canada Sound Adapted Tangle Ball Daniels, Amanda, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Kansas City, KS Greeley, J.C., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Denver, CO Vinsel, Margaret, Developmental Interventionist, Louisville, KY Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit Brown, Jill, Certified Teacher of the Visually Impaired/Certified Orientation and Mobility Instructor, Crowley, TX Camacho, Jeannie, Teacher of the Visually Impaired/Orientation and Mobility Instructor, Honolulu District Office, Honolulu, HI Downard, Amy, Visual Impairment Teacher/Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Honolulu District Schools—DOE, Honolulu, HI Jolly, Debra, Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Columbus City Schools, Columbus, OH Klein, Lori, Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist/Teacher of the Blind and Visually Impaired, Intermediate District 917, Rosemount, MN Morris, Judy, Orientation and Mobility Instructor, Tennessee School for the Blind, Nashville, TN Nichols, Felicia, Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Allegan Area Educational Service Agency, Allegan, MI Pawlowski, Mary, Orientation and Mobility Instructor, Kentucky School for the Blind, Louisville, KY Peterson, Lydia, Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Saint Paul Public Schools, St. Paul, MN

27

Phillips, Craig, Orientation and Mobility Specialist/Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Shawnee Mission School District, Shawnee Mission, KS Roeth, Anne, Orientation and Mobility Instructor/Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Amador County Office of Education, Jackson, CA Tabb, Christopher, Orientation and Mobility Specialist, State of Connecticut, Board of Education and Services for the Blind, Windsor, CT Telschow, Connie, Teacher of the Visually Impaired/Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Minnesota State Academy for the Blind, Faribault, MN Theryoung, Robin, Certified Orientation and Mobility Instructor, Colorado School for the Deaf and Blind, Colorado Springs, CO Tadpole Bruegger, Tammy, Occupational Therapist/Special Educator, Children‘s Center for the Visually Impaired, Kansas City, MO Clyne, Michelle, Developmental Therapist/ Vision Specialist & Deaf-blind Specialist, Philip J. Rock Center and School, Glen Ellyn, IL Dunn, Gayla, Early Childhood Special Education/Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Children‘s Center for the Visually Impaired, Kansas City, MO Proctor, Suzanne, Teacher for the Visually Impaired and Deaf-Blind, Newport News Public Schools, Newport News, VA Stoltman, Wendy, Teacher for Visually Impaired/Certified O&M Specialist/Certified Low Vision Therapist, Brighton School District 27J, Brighton, CO What is IT? Gordon, Beth, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Clark County Special Education Coop, Jeffersonville, IN Haynes, Diane, Instructor, State Coordinator of the Kentucky Deaf-Blind Project at University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY Holland, Heather, Teacher, Indiana School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Indianapolis, IN Kelley, Barbara, Preschool Teacher/Coordinator Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Visually Impaired Preschool Services, Louisville, KY Reynolds, Mary Anne, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Owen County/Ohio Valley Educational Cooperative, Owenton, KY Trueblood, John, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Clark County Special Education Coop, Jeffersonville, IN

28

Accessible Tests Department
Deborah H. Willis Director

29

Accessible Tests Department Staff Allman, Carol Ph.D………………………..………………………………………………………………Consultant Garrett, Dena Accessible Media Editor (part-time) Henderson, Barbara, M.A Project Leader (Test & Assessment) Isham, Kerry, M.A. Accessible Test Editor Livingston, Tina………………………….…………………..........…Temporary Administrative Assistant Sell, Michael, B.A..............................................................................................Consultant Scott, Kristopher, M.A ……Accessible Test Editor Willis, Deborah, M.A Director, Accessible Tests Department Accessible Tests Department (Formerly: Test Central) Purpose In response to recommendations by APH‘s Advisory Committees and members of the Second Test Central Council, the charge of the Accessible Tests Department was expanded in August 2003. The updated goal is to provide tests, practice tests, test administration manuals, and other test-related materials in high quality accessible media in a timely manner, to promote the inclusion of visual impairment professionals as well as individuals with visual impairments during test development, and to enhance the test performance of blind and visually impaired individuals through research, education, and communication. Background During a brainstorming session concerning important projects to pursue, an initiative to develop a central location dedicated to developing standardized guidelines, processes and procedures related to test adaptation and production of tests in alternative media was proposed. This initiative was presented to the U.S. Department of Education (DOE). In February 2001, APH received confirmation from the U.S. DOE that Test Central was awarded some startup funding for FY 2001. At a meeting with APH‘s Advisory Committees, members of the two committees commended APH for conceptualizing Test Central, recognized the leadership role APH could play with regard to tests and assessments, and strongly encouraged continued efforts in this area. An in-house Core Team was formed, and Test Central‘s five tracks were identified:  Education and relationship building;  Test adaptation;  Adaptation and development of test-related tools and materials;  Identification and development of new tests; and  Research into test-related issues. 30

A Test Central Council was formed; council members met in 2002 and again in 2003 at APH. Three major test developers and publishers, Harcourt, CTB McGraw-Hill, and Data Recognition Corporation were represented at this meeting. Several discussions focused on common problems involved in testing students with disabilities. Recommendations of the Council included:  Develop, use, and share standard guidelines for adapting tests into braille, tactile graphic, large print, recorded, and electronic formats  Develop, use, and share concepts of universal design  Address, convey, and facilitate best practices and appropriate accommodations when testing or assessing blind and visually impaired individuals  Foster professional development in the test and assessment area  Conduct research on various ―key‖ aspects of testing and the test-taking environment  Conduct research on tactile graphics, large print and universal design issues  related to tests and assessments.  Determine the best way to present different graphics in accessible media  Recommend language and points for states to consider in establishing test contracts  Develop and maintain an adapted test item data bank  Utilize standard symbols determined by BANA for tactile graphics in tests  Determine best way for blind and visually impaired students to accomplish performance items  Promote availability of practice materials in accessible media  Promote the need for blind and visually impaired students to be included in the pilot test phase of test development In spring 2003, the initiative called ―Test Central‖ which started in the Research Department became APH‘s new Accessible Tests Department. The Accessible Tests Department‘s charge was expanded as a result of recommendations received by Council members during their meeting in February 2003 and APH‘s two Advisory Committees that met in spring 2003. In order to begin addressing the expanded charge of the Accessible Tests Department to provide practice test and test prep materials in accessible media, a short online survey was posted on APH‘s Web site. The survey, ―Let‘s Get Ready for Testing,‖ asked trustees and vision teachers which practice materials and test prep materials they were using and what materials were needed. Results showed overwhelmingly that test prep materials for use by students who 31

are blind or visually impaired was a very high priority need and that each state used different materials to help prepare their students for taking state assessments. Based on the results of this survey, generic test preparation materials were selected for adaptation into accessible media. (See the project report on ―Test Ready‖ in the Tests and Assessments section of this document.) Two new position papers on Use of Extended Time and Use of Testing Accommodations were drafted. TEST ACCESS: Making Tests Accessible for Visually Impaired Students, Second Edition, the second publication in the Test Access series, was finalized and presented at the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) Conference, June 20-23, 2004, in Boston, Massachusetts. It was also used as a teaching tool with participants of the Accessible Tests Department‘s first two training workshops on ―Making Tests Accessible for Students with Visual Impairments.‖ Contract work for various states continued at a steady pace, with Kristopher Scott and Monica Coffey editing and facilitating production of over 60 individual test titles in braille and recorded formats. Consultation work by Accessible Tests staff included advising Measured Progress, a test publisher, and the Michigan State Department of Education, on development of accessible versions of their alternate assessments. The department collaborated on research efforts by several university groups: Jane Erin of the University of Arizona on Effects of Test Medium, the ABC Braille Study by Anne Corn at Vanderbilt, et al., Gaylen Kapperman at Northern Illinois University on Results of Math Items for Visually Impaired Students, and the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) at the University of Minnesota, which sought and were awarded additional funding for their study to examine the Use of Multiple Modalities for the Achievement of Literacy Standards by Students with Disabilities. An in-service on guidelines for tactile graphics design was presented on June 8, 2004. Accessible tests staff, graphic artists, transcribers, and proofreaders from the braille department participated in this event. Karen Poppe and Fred Otto, APH tactile graphics project leaders, led a group analysis of sample test items toward improving our presentation of tactile graphics. In April 2004 the Accessible Tests Department was fortunate to gain Dena Garrett‘s valuable braille expertise on a part-time basis. Dena, an Accessible Media Editor in the Accessible Textbooks Department, is a 30-year veteran braille transcriber who has worked on state, local, and commercial tests for ten years. Dena also served on the Braille Authority of North America‘s (BANA) Braille Formats Technical Committee. A third Accessible Tests Workshop was presented in the last quarter of FY 2004. This ―Workshop for State Assessment Personnel: Making Tests Accessible to Students with Visual Impairments‖ was held at APH on September 15-16, 2004. It was attended by representatives from 11 state departments of education, a braille transcribing group, one university professor, 32

one research organization, and two test publishers. Workshop evaluations indicated a very high level of satisfaction. Key endeavors in FY 2005 included promoting education of issues regarding making test items truly accessible, contributing to universal design elements, networking and building important relationships, reviewing and editing tests, promoting research, participating in collaborative efforts, serving on relevant committees, and continuing professional development of Accessible Tests staff in order to be more informed and knowledgeable when working on state and alternate assessments. While three Accessible Tests Workshops were envisioned for FY 2005, resources which enabled a fourth workshop were available and utilized. The first was a special one-day event sponsored by Educational Testing Service (ETS) in Princeton, New Jersey, November 9, 2004. ETS staff learned general information about challenges in assessing persons who are blind or visually impaired. Carol Allman and Barbara Henderson facilitated this session. The second workshop was coordinated with CTEVH in San Francisco, California, March 3, 2005. The oneday workshop targeted Department of Education staff, teachers, test developers and publishers. A third was held at Harcourt for their assessment staff in San Antonio, Texas. Finally, a fourth workshop was presented as a pre-conference session in conjunction with the CCSSO Large Scale Assessment Conference in San Antonio, Texas on June 18, 2005. This event was of particular interest to test publishers and department of education personnel and assessment staff planning to attend the CCSSO conference. Members of Accessible Tests participated on Item Bias Review Committees at the requests of WestEd and CTB McGraw-Hill in order to assist and collaborate with them to create unbiased, accessible test items on state assessments under development. The main factors considered were bias and sensitivity. Potential test items were rejected based on three primary elements. These were ―opportunity and access,‖ ―portrayal of groups represented,‖ and ―protecting privacy and avoiding offensive content.‖ Through the process of bias and sensitivity reviews, test validity is enhanced, fairness of test items for all students is increased, and educational initiatives are supported. It is essential that professionals in visual impairment participate on such committees during the development phase of high-stakes tests. The National Center for Accessible Media (NCAM) was awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) 3-year grant to develop ―best practices‖ for audio description of higher level science and mathematics material. Beginning in FY 2005, Accessible Tests staff and APH studio staff served as ―advisors‖ alongside staff from American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) and Recordings for the Blind and Dyslexic (RFB&D) in this collaborative research effort. The National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) also secured additional funding for their study called An Examination of the Use of Multiple Modalities for the Achievement of Literacy Standards by Students with Disabilities. Accessible Tests staff collaborated on phase two of this study.

33

A wide variety of state assessments and commercially available tests were edited and produced in accessible media on a contract basis during FY 2005. These included approximately 265 unique state assessments provided in some combination of braille, tactile graphics, enlarged print, and audio formats. Accompanying test administration notes were provided in accessible media when specified in the contract. Items such as braille paper, rulers, bold line writing paper, and protractors were included with tests as per specific contractual agreements. State assessments were for grades three through high school and covered some or all of the following areas: math, language arts, reading, science, and social studies. One state contacted the Accessible Tests Department for assistance in putting their released items into braille and audio formats. These items were used as practice tests prior to the spring and fall 2005 testing seasons. All of the requested copies were delivered on time to the states in need of them. The second book in the Test Access series by Accessible Tests staff was printed just in time for unveiling at the Accessible Tests Workshop at APH in September 2004 and at APH Annual Meeting 2004. TEST ACCESS: Making Tests Accessible for Visually Impaired Students, Second Edition was made available on the APH Web site and was used for training purposes during workshops and conferences. The spring 2005 edition of EnVision was dedicated to assessment of students with visual impairments. Accessible Tests staff, Carol Allman and Barbara Henderson, contributed featured articles to this edition of Lighthouse International‘s EnVision, an online publication for parents and educators of children with impaired vision. In addition, Jane Erin of the University of Arizona contributed an article on research in collaboration with APH on the effects of media on test performance. The spring 2005 edition of EnVision is available at: http://www.lighthouse.org At the request of Chairperson Jean Martin, Barbara and Debbie joined the state vision consultants‘ related meeting held during the 2004 Annual Meeting. Information on what states are doing to include visually impaired students in state assessments and specific considerations for making tests accessible were presented and discussed. Mary Ann Siller, Director of the National Education Program with AFB, disseminated copies of the 2004 Jo Taylor Leadership Institute (JTLI) Education Summary. Participants were interested in the Summary‘s article on Work Group Report: High-Stakes Assessments and Alternate Assessments. Next steps included a phone conference with AFB, APH, and TSBVI staff to determine key test-related issues that need to be addressed. To build assessment initiatives for schools, AFB, APH, and Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI) collaborated to create three articles with checklists. These were developed in response to the top assessment priorities identified during the 2004 JTLI. They are Model Accommodations and Procedures: A Guide for Parents; Guidelines to Support the Contract Development Process between Test Publishers and States; and Checklist for Administration of Tests to Students with Visual Impairments. The checklists provide concrete steps that can be readily used in programs to build accountability through assessments. These 34

documents were used as the basis for presentations to attendees at the 2005 JTLI. Final articles with checklists can be viewed and downloaded from the AFB Web site at: http://www.afb.org/Section.asp?SectionID=58&TopicID=264 Barbara Henderson worked with Consultant Lynne Jaffe, a learning disabilities specialist, to create a presentation on Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Achievement in Braille. Jaffe provided this presentation at the Arizona Association for the Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired Conference held in Prescott in October 2004. Carol Allman presented Accommodations to Help Maximize Test Performance of Students with Visual Impairments at the National Family Conference. The audience included parents, students, educators, and psychologists. While Carol was in Louisville for this conference, members of Accessible Tests took the opportunity to discuss some department plans for FY2006. More test publishers started providing test items in color. Test publishers, test administrators, and educators asked questions and sought expertise regarding access to these items by low vision and/or colorblind individuals. Accessible Tests staff attended a training session offered by Elaine Kitchel, Low Vision Project Leader in the Research Department, on editing test items presented in color for individuals with color blindness. Test and Assessment Project Leader Barbara Henderson attended the first annual Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Summer Institute sponsored by the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE). The main guest speaker was David Rose of CAST, Inc. and Harvard University. David, who is co-author of Teaching Every Child in the Digital Age, spoke on the topic of The Future of UDL in Education. Six model UDL schools reported on how they used grant-funded activities to integrate UDL into their school‘s curricula and testing. Barbara also furnished updated information on APH tests and test-related materials for the winter 2005 revision of Lighthouse International‘s Assessment Compendium: Instruments for Assessing the Skills and Interests of Individuals with Visual Impairments. The free, online document was made available through VisionConnection at: http://www.visionconnection.org/Content/ForProfessionals/PatientManagement/Pediatrics/Asse ssmentCompendium.htm In FY 2006, the goal of the Accessible Tests Department as it relates to the APH mission continued to be addressed. To further the education of test developers, publishers, and assessment personnel, as well as our own education and professional development, members of Accessible Tests continued to provide presentations and workshops, participate in various collaborative efforts and meetings, serve as focus group, task force, and committee members, and attend relevant classes, workshops, and events. Additional handouts, documents, and surveys were authored and disseminated. More information, resources, and related links were added to the Accessible Tests web page, and discussion regarding development of some ―Test‖ webcasts and APH‘s first Test and Assessment catalog got underway. Carol Allman provided an ―On the Road‖ workshop at the New York AER and an in-service to the New York Department of Education and state assessment staff on testing students who 35

are blind or visually impaired. Surveys and networking with the field and with our customers continued as a means to determine customer satisfaction and specific needs for products, services, and information. Test-related contract work to review and edit state assessment and alternate assessment items, and prepare test notes for administering the alternate media editions, was accomplished throughout the fiscal year. Early in FY 2006, staff from Accessible Textbooks Initiative & Collaboration (ATIC) and the Accessible Tests Department moved into a newly renovated area of APH. Discussions on effectively working together to provide instructional and test materials in high quality, accessible media in a timely manner ensued. Some ATIC staff was shared on a part-time basis with Accessible Tests and provided project support. Guidelines and ways of providing more consistent presentation of instruction and test materials were explored. Dena Garrett, Accessible Media Editor for ATIC, provided copies of test guidelines developed through Accessible Tests to each member of BANA‘s committee that is reworking Braille Formats: Principles of Print to Braille Transcription 1997. Since transcribers across the country adhere to BANA guidelines, Dena and Accessible Tests staff will work with BANA committee members to adopt test guidelines so that future test materials will be formatted and transcribed in a more consistent manner. In order to provide education, information, training, and resources on making test items accessible in various media for test-takers who are blind or visually impaired, Accessible Tests staff, along with Research Staff and a guest speaker from the National Alternate Assessment Center at the University of Kentucky, provided four major workshops during FY 2006; two at APH and two on-the-road in connection with other scheduled conferences. During these workshops, well over 100 professionals and students from across the country received training, information, and resources; some of these individuals returned to their school systems or companies and provided training to their colleagues. Numerous state departments of education personnel from across the country participated in the FY 2006 workshops. Test publishers attending these workshops included representatives from ACT, Inc., Data Recognition Corporation, Educational Testing Service, Pearson Assessments, Measured Progress, and ThinkLink Learning. Some major agencies represented included Association of Test Publishers, ATECH Services, and Design Science, Inc. More information and features were added to the Accessible Tests Department web page in the third quarter of FY 2006. Items added include How to Contact Test Publishers and Hot Links. Hot Links include a link to APH‘s Louis Database as well as the Accessible Media Producers (AMP) Database, and the National Agenda website. To add educational value, awareness of accommodations, and interest, a photo montage showing children taking tests using various accommodations and in various accessible media has been added to the main page. Finally, easier navigation and updated links are features of the new and improved page. Development of a Test and Assessment catalog was initiated; it was made available in the third quarter of FY 2007. Results of assessment survey 2007: New Directions were posted in the second quarter. Plans are to repeat this survey approximately every two years in order to stay in touch with test-related needs of individuals who are blind or visually impaired. 36

Accessible Tests staff continued a collaborative effort begun in 2005 with the National Center for Accessible Media (NCAM), AFB, and RFB&D staff to research most promising practices in narration of math and science content for Digital Talking Books and materials. Staff helped to identify Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) professionals and students to participate in a survey which is currently underway in the second year of the project. In FY 2006, approximately 345 unique tests and assessments, answer documents, and testrelated reference sheets were reviewed, edited, and produced in accessible media. This represents a 30% increase over a one-year period in the number of unique test materials produced on a contract basis. These tests were requested by various test publishers and state department of education staff from states that included Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Nevada, New York, South Carolina, Tennessee, and West Virginia. Though varying in content, these tests generally assessed mathematics, science, social science, reading, and writing. Accessible Tests staff also edited and produced the Ballard & Tighe IDEA English Language Proficiency tests which are used by several states for all grades in both contracted and uncontracted braille. Of the tests prepared, seven forms were alternate assessments reviewed and edited for West Virginia, and 12 forms were alternate assessments for Michigan. Test administration notes were written and provided, as requested, for about 80% of these tests. Additional city and state assessments and alternate assessments continued to be reviewed and edited by the Accessible Test Editors, and/or produced at APH in accessible media, as requested and as resources were available to provide high quality tests in accessible media and timely delivery of test materials. For two or three decades, there has been discussion and debate as to the benefit of intelligence or cognitive tests administered to individuals who are blind or visually impaired. At the Spring 2007 Advisory Committee Meetings, members of the Educational Services Advisory Committee recommended that APH‘s Accessible Tests staff consider the following question: Are the results of an intelligence or cognitive test meaningful to individuals with visual impairments, and useful to their instructors, families, and decision makers? An Intelligence Testing Committee made up of APH staff and field experts had been formed in January 2007 so APH was prepared to examine and respond to this concern. Intelligence Testing Committee members include: Stephen A. Goodman, M. A., M. S., California School for the Blind Carol Anne Evans, Ph.D., Davis School District, Utah Marnee Loftin, M. A., Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired Will Evans, M. A., Products and Services Advisor, APH Barbara Henderson, M. A., Test and Assessment Project Leader, Accessible Tests Department, APH Michael Sell, B. A., Test Editor, Accessible Tests Department, APH Debbie Willis, M. A., Director of Accessible Tests Department, APH

37

During the initial meeting of the IQ Test Group, committee members determined that the priority was to develop and disseminate ―key points‖ in a position paper regarding intelligence testing of individuals who are blind or visually impaired. After careful consideration and discussion, the following position statement was drafted, ―If appropriate guidelines are followed, cognitive or intelligence testing of individuals who are blind or VI will provide useful and valuable information to test-takers, their families, instructors, and other decision makers.‖ Nine key points and guidelines were initially formulated. These were presented as a panel session at the 2008 International AER held in Chicago. Feedback received from the audience who attended the panel presentation on intelligence testing of individuals with visual impairments was positive. Additional presentations at the 2008 International AER Conference included ―The Journey of a Test: how it Becomes Accessible to Students Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired‖ by Test Editor Kerry Isham, ―Striped Lands and Dotted Seas: Editing Tactile Graphics‖ by Test Editor Michael Sell. Accessible Tests staff met with Dena Garrett in order to develop a list of test rules or guidelines, along with examples, of items not covered by current BANA code. Department staff also met with Diane Spence at APH to discuss the list of test guidelines and the need for BANA transcription rules/guidelines. BANA formed a Test Committee to develop rules/guidelines for transcribing high stakes tests; members include APH Accessible Media Editor and certified braille transcriptionist Dena Garrett and Dr. Carol Allman. Their first meeting was held via teleconference in August 2008; a timeline of approximately two years to undertake and complete this work was discussed. Teleconferences will continue throughout FY 2009 and a face-to-face meeting was tentatively planned at that time for summer 2009. At the request of the test publisher, Barbara reviewed KeyMath 3 pre-publication test items for low vision and color deficient vision issues. Barbara and Low Vision Project Leader Elaine Kitchel provided reviews on the pre-publication test items. These reviews were used by the test publisher‘s project staff to finalize test items in the new KeyMath 3. Accessible Tests staff is also pursuing permission from the test publisher to make a braille/tactile version of KeyMath 3 available. This and other catalog items under development by the department‘s Test and Assessment Project Leader are in various phases. See the ―Test and Assessment‖ section of this document for status reports on individual test-related projects which were either completed in FY 2009, underway, on hold awaiting test publisher‘s permission to make accessible versions available, or under consideration as future projects. In late winter 2008, Debbie Willis participated as a member of NCEO‘s National Accessible Reading Assessment Projects (NARAP) Principles and Guidelines Committee. The purpose of the meeting held in Washington, DC was to bring together a diverse panel of experts and stakeholders to provide project staff with feedback on the draft of the Principles and Guidelines, to provide advice on establishing levels of support for the Guidelines, and to help design a dissemination plan once the Principles and Guidelines are finalized. A group of APH staff was instrumental in prepping Debbie for this meeting, and for compiling significant edits, suggestions and questions for the NARAP project staff to consider.

38

Presentations in FY 2008 included a poster session by Test Editor Kerry Isham on ―Test Accommodations for Students Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired‖ provided to Ex Officio Trustees and invited guests attending our October 2007 Annual Meeting. Test and Assessment Project Leader Barbara Henderson teamed with Linnie Lee of the KY Department of Education and Chloe Torres of Measured Progress to present a regular conference session at the Association of Test Publishers (ATP) Conference on Innovations in Testing. Their presentation on ―Making Online Tests Accessible for Students with Visual Impairments‖ included video clips of students who are blind and some with low vision taking the KY online pilot test during spring 2008. Challenges and positive outcomes of the online testing experience were presented from three different viewpoints. Professional development opportunities for members of Accessible Tests continued throughout FY 2008. Some Accessible Tests staff was involved in a conference call on alternate assessments with staff from the National Alternate Assessment Center (NAAC) housed at the University of KY in Lexington. NAAC staff spoke on alignment methods and models, dealing with how academic performance and grade level are significant points of alignment and what sort of criteria are used for measurement. New Test Editors Michael Sell and Kerry Isham were provided several opportunities during the school year to observe students in a variety of classes at the KY School for the Blind as well as observing students who are blind or visually impaired in classrooms in Jefferson County KY Public Schools. Michael Sell successfully completed his lessons on literary braille, submitted his transcribed manuscript and received his certification in literary braille transcription from the National Library Service. Some additional activities this fiscal year included a review of Tests of Adult Basic Education for English Language Learners (TABE CLAS-E) for CTB/McGraw-Hill publishers. The object was to discover any biases toward English Language Learners who have visual impairments. Barbara Henderson and Debbie Willis worked with NCEO staff to review and provide feedback on ―Case Studies of English Language Learners (ELLs) with Visual Impairments.‖ Test Editor Kris Scott participated as a member of KY‘s Bias Review Committee. Test Editor Kerry Isham reviewed hundreds of potential test items in the areas of mathematics, science, and reading for bias and access by students with visual impairments. Numerous phone conferences and some in-person meetings were held by APH staff, test publishers, state and local assessment staff, and accessible media producers. Barbara Henderson and Kerry Isham edited and reviewed last year‘s West Virginia alternate assessment items and provided feedback to WV alternate assessment staff. A survey about types of answer documents needed for marking answer choices on classroom tests and standardized tests was developed, finalized, and posted on the APH Web site. Announcement of the survey for prospective participants was circulated on various listserves as well as included in two monthly editions of the APH News. Data were received from 230 respondents. These data are in the process of being reviewed, compiled, and categorized in order to make decisions regarding types of accessible answer documents that need to be designed and produced. A report on the survey results will be posted on the APH Web site during the first quarter of FY 2009. Design, development, and field testing of various tactile 39

and large print answer documents were considered and discussed in FY 2009. Samples will be designed and developed, and field tested in FY 2010. Accessible Tests staff sponsored its first webcast in FY 2008. Fred Otto and Karen Poppe, Tactile Graphics Specialists in the Research Department, provided a webcast on ―Tactile Graphics: Touching on the Basics.‖ Eighty individuals/groups logged onto the webcast that was viewed by over 200 participants. Tactile graphics packets containing samples of released test items and a graphic produced in four different formats had been prepared and shipped to webcast registrants prior to the live, interactive presentation. Additional packets which were requested were made available to about 20 people who viewed the archived tactile graphics presentation via our APH Web site. Forty-six members of the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) division on Assessment of Special Education Students (ASES) visited APH for an exciting and informative half-day workshop during their two-day CCSSO ASES Meeting in Louisville. It was this group‘s first time meeting in Louisville and first time visiting APH. Construction on APH‘s new front yard and building had just been completed and opened days before their visit so they were able to see, enjoy, and appreciate our newly remodeled site. Members of the CCSSO ASES Group toured the facilities and were offered presentations which included an overview of assessment issues, some braille basics, an explanation of the roles of the Test Editor, Transcriber and Proofreader, enhanced print as well as tactile graphics issues and guidelines. The workshop concluded with demonstrations of editing regular print test items for presentation in braille, tactile graphics, enhanced print, and audio formats. Some of the thoughtful questions and concerns expressed by ASES members included the readability of tactile graphics, what can be used when sighted students are using their graphing calculators, and use of color and grayscale for students with color blindness or low vision. Members left with numerous handouts and resources available to them, with some questions answered as well as some new ones. In preparation for the August 2008 workshop, Dr. Carol Allman, and members of APH‘s Accessible Tests and Research staff reviewed, edited and updated the second edition of TEST ACCESS: Making Tests Accessible for Students Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired, and produced the third edition of this document. The new edition was freely disseminated to interested parties and made available on the Accessible Tests Department‘s web page. The original selection of released sample test items from the states of Illinois and Ohio which had been used for previous workshops was reviewed and edited, and prepared introductory information which had not been included in previous editions of the sample test items, was prepared. The Ohio and Illinois sample test items were reproduced with permission as 2008 APH Sample Test Items in braille with tactile graphics, large print, and on audio CD. In addition, a second set of released sample test items used with permission from the states of Florida, Maine, and Texas were selected and produced in the same media as the above mentioned original sample test items. The second set was produced as a Supplement: APH

40

Sample Test Items ©2008. The supplement covers sample test items for math, science and
writing for grades 4-11. These sample test items, along with the new third edition of TEST ACCESS: Making Tests Accessible, were used for training purposes during the August 2008 workshop on Making Test Items Accessible for Students Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired; 30 individuals representing test publishers, state departments of education, and various assessment personnel from across the country participated and received training during this workshop. Both sets of sample test items will be used for similar purposes at future workshops and presentations. This was the first workshop at APH to be audio-video recorded by APH staff, Maria Delgado and Michael Sell; plans are to make the recorded presentations, PowerPoint presentations, handouts and additional resources available in late FY 2008 or very early in FY 2009 via the Accessible Tests Department web page on the APH Web site (http://www.aph.org). FY 2008 was a very busy and productive year with regard to test-related contract work. Over 600 state and local assessments as well as some alternate assessments, commercially available assessments such as the WIAT II and TerraNova, and related materials such as parent/teach guides, manuals, reference sheets and charts were produced and shipped this fiscal year. Tests were reviewed and edited for presentation in braille, tactile graphics, large print, enlarged print, and/or audio formats; some of the tests were produced in both contracted and uncontracted braille. Test Administration Notes were prepared for about 75% of these tests, according to customer specifications. The majority of this work was undertaken by the Test Editors and various production staff throughout APH. Accessible Tests staff continue to gratefully acknowledge the direction and support of Executive Committee members and Ex Officio Trustees, and all the wonderful partners within APH and with individuals, agencies, schools, and organizations outside of APH who worked together to help make instructional materials and tests available in accessible media for individuals with visual impairments, who promoted the inclusion of individuals with visual impairments during test development, and who were actively engaged in improving the test performance of blind and visually impaired individuals through research, education, and communication. As Helen Keller said, ―Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.‖ Together, we have accomplished much, and there is still much to be done. For a more detailed history and report of activities of Test Central and the Accessible Tests Department from FY 2001 through FY 2008, please see the specific Annual Report of Research and Development Activities for each of these fiscal years. Worked planned for FY 2009 included the following: Accessible Tests staff will work closely with APH‘s Contract Administration, Production, Research, ATIC, Field Services, and Communications staff, and will engage in discussions and seek direction from Executive Committee members and Ex Officio Trustees, particularly members of the Educational Products Advisory Committee and Educational Services Advisory Committee. Additional city and state assessments and alternate assessments will continue to 41

be reviewed and edited by Accessible Tests Editors, and/or produced at APH in accessible media, as requested and as resources are available to provide high quality tests in a timely manner. Test Administration Notes will be provided for accessible media as specified by each contract or agreement. Research and development efforts that result in test-related catalog products will continue. The needs of the field will be surveyed, high priority needs identified, products completed, product-related services provided, and customer satisfaction gauged. Accessible Tests staff will offer leadership through services, collaborative efforts and partnerships, and product-related research and development. Workshops at APH, ―on the road‖ workshops in connection with other conferences, presentations, and webcasts on test topics and issues will be developed and made available on the APH Website. Training sessions on accessible versions of the Woodcock-Johnson III: Tests of Achievement will be planned Collaborative efforts, networking and partnering with test publishers, item developers, and assessment personnel across the country will be pursued. Research and cooperative efforts with universities and agencies such as the Association of Test Publishers, the American Psychological Association, the National Center on Educational Outcomes at the University of Minnesota, the National Alternate Assessment Center at the University of Kentucky, the Braille Authority of North America, American Foundation for the Blind, and others will be engaged in order to continue addressing the tracks identified at the outset of Test Central (now APH‘s Accessible Tests Department). The resources and guidelines for making test items accessible in various media and the special issues with regard to testing students with visual impairments will be reviewed, revised, updated, and freely shared. Test-related information and links to resources will continue to be provided and updated on the Accessible Tests web page. Test guidelines will be discussed with members of BANA, and efforts will be made to encourage BANA to adopt guidelines so that tests and assessments will be produced in braille according to standard guidelines. Activities and accomplishments in FY 2009 include the following: The large print edition of the Brigance Diagnostic Comprehensive Inventory of Basic Skills, Revised was completed and made available. The test publisher/copyright holder, upon receiving a copy, wrote: ―(Copy) received today. And it looks GREAT. Congratulations on a superb job.‖ At our request, Dr. Carol Allman drafted a set of guidelines for developing or adapting test items for students who are blind or visually impaired, and who are also severely cognitively impaired; part of these guidelines will address a growing segment of this population who are nonreaders. The 4th edition of ―Test Access: Making Tests Accessible for Students with Visual Impairments…‖ was drafted and the new section on alternate assessments developed by Dr. Carol Allman was incorporated into the recent edition of this document; copies were produced and the document was made available on the APH Web site.

42

Test and Assessment Project Leader, Barbara Henderson, continued to work with Dr. Virginia Posey, Sr. Research Scientist, CASAS, toward publication of an article about their research collaboration which involved a test in the ―Life and Work‖ series that was transcribed into braille and field-tested with 65 adults and teenagers who met the criteria. Barb and Test Editor Kerry Isham consulted with Jared Wright and West VA on their alternate assessments; Jared visited APH for two days to work with Accessible Tests staff. Barb consulted on South Carolina‘s Alternate Assessments; she also consulted on Michigan‘s and Utah‘s computer-based testing development projects. In addition, Barb served as a member of a KY Bias Review Committee. This is the first time a member of Accessible Tests has served on a Bias Review Committee for the development of alternate assessment items. Students in the visual impairment program at Middle Tennessee University visited APH in June 2009. Among other departments, Accessible Tests was asked to present an overview of testrelated products and services available from APH. Students were given information about the Accessible Tests Department web page, other online resources, products available and upcoming product releases. In response to Advisory Committee members‘ and IQ Group members‘ recommendations to help educate and become more involved with the National Association of School Psychologists, Barbara Henderson and consultant Dr. Lynne Jaffe presented a session entitled, ―Issues in Translating Tests into Braille: Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Achievement-Braille Adaptation,‖ at the 2009 NASP Conference held in Boston. While there, Barbara and Lynne attended a meeting and banquet of the Board of Directors of the Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation. At the dinner, Barbara had the honor of meeting Dr. Richard Woodcock and Kevin McGrew, two of the WJ III authors, as well as Dr. Fred Schrank who is the Director of the Woodcock-Munoz Foundation (WMF). A letter of appreciation for the extensive and historic work accomplished by Dr. Richard Woodcock, Dr. Fred Schrank, and a number of WMF staff to develop/adapt various components of the WJ III ACH: Braille Adaptation was sent to the WMF Board of Trustees c/o Dr. Fred Schrank. (See the project report on Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Achievement: Braille Adaptation in the Tests and Assessments segment of this document.) Consultant Dr. Lynne Jaffe and Debbie Willis provided presentations at the 2009 Council for Exceptional Children Conference in Seattle, Washington. Lynne presented a conference session on issues in brailling standardized tests; and Debbie presented a conference session on guidelines for assessing the intellectual/cognitive abilities of individuals who are blind or visually impaired. For professional development, Debbie was able to participate in a workshop on ―Training School Psychologists and Clinical Psychologists to Work with Children with Visual Impairments‖ provided by Perkins Training Center and the Vermont Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired. Debbie also had the opportunity to participate in the 2009 Council of Chief State 43

School Officers Conference held in Los Angeles. Major topics presented included common state standards to be developed and voluntarily adopted, a potential move toward increased computer-based testing, alternate assessments, English language learners, and a variety of research results that impact instruction, assessment, and accessibility. Barbara met with Frank Ferguson, retired President of Curriculum Associates, at the NASP convention. Their discussion involved updates on the Brigance products planned for fall 2009. In addition, Curriculum Associates is the publisher of the Test Ready® Test Prep Series. (See the project reports on Brigance ® Diagnostic Inventory of Early Development II: Large Print Edition and Tactile Edition and the Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Achievement: Braille Adaptation in the Tests and Assessments section of this document.) While in Boston, Barbara hosted a luncheon meeting that had been planned by Debbie Willis, with Massachusetts Ex Officio Trustees. Topics of discussion were the Federal Quota Program, Assessment Needs, and the NIMAC and APH file repository, and how to utilize the NIMAS files for students with visual impairments. Barbara was invited to visit the Carroll Center for the Blind in Newton, MA, which she did the day following the luncheon meeting. Barbara‘s participation as a panelist for the 3-year study on ―Best Practices in Narration of Digital Talking Books‖ helped lead to publication of guidelines in FY 2009. Effective Practices for Description of Science Content within Digital Talking Books can be found at http://ncam.wgbh.org/publications/stemdx/index.html APH, NFB, RFB & D, and NCAM partnered to do the background research funded by a National Science Foundation grant. In FY 2010, APH will be the site of a training workshop on use of these guidelines. In FY 2008, the Braille Authority of North America (BANA) developed a Test Committee that has been meeting via teleconference. Dena Garrett continues to serve as APH‘s representative on this committee. The committee charge from Judy Dixon is to review existing guidelines and develop new guidelines that can be used by BANA. Existing guidelines reviewed and considered include APH‘s Guidelines for Making Tests Accessible. BANA members have begun to draft their document titled, Guidelines for Braille Test Production. Accessible Tests staff reviewed parts of BANA‘s drafted guidelines for designing and producing tactile graphics and provided feedback as requested. These documents will be an invaluable tool in setting up guidelines and standards and providing samples for tactile graphics designers across the country. The guidelines, standards, and samples will also assist with training new tactile graphics designers and can be used as a training tool to help other groups such as test developers/publishers understand design and readability concerns with regard to tactile graphics. The workshop conducted at APH in August 2008 was recorded and edited by Maria Delgado and Michael Sell. Thanks to the efforts and expertise of web master Malcolm Turner, the presentations, Power Points, resources, and guidelines were made available in FY 2009 as an archive webcast on the APH Web site. 44

Consultant Carol Allman provided a 2-day workshop on ―Test Access for Students with Visual Impairments‖ which was planned and coordinated by Debbie Willis for 24 Questar staff in Brewster, NY. Debbie and Kerry Isham prepared 25 sets of training materials which included the new 4th edition of Making Tests Accessible for Students with Visual Impairments, sets of sample test items in regular print, large print, braille with tactile graphics, and audio formats, the Power Point presentation, lists of resources, and more. Questar staff expressed appreciation and a strong degree of satisfaction with the instruction and materials they received. As a member of our IQ Test Group, Dr. Carol Evans presented a paper (in FY 2009) at the 2008 Utah AER on the guidelines developed by the group. In FY 2009, the 2008 International AER audience input as well as the 2008 Utah AER audience input was used to revise the next draft of the position paper which includes ten guidelines at this time. As of July 2009, members of the IQ Test Group met a total of 22 times via teleconference at which point a final draft in need of expert field review was prepared. In FY 2010, the final paper will be reviewed by about a half-dozen experts in the field. Their reviews will be used to finalize the full-length position paper. Both the full-length paper as well as a short version will be freely disseminated through various organizations and interested individuals. A version will be submitted for publication, as well as being made available on APH and other relevant web sites. During the 2008 APH Annual Meeting (in FY 2009), Test Editor Kerry Isham provided a poster session on ―150 Fun Facts.‖ Test Editor Michael Sell participated in the National Braille Association Conference held in Lexington, KY in late October to early November 2008 (FY 2009) to reinforce his braille skills and knowledge, and to learn more about format issues and the Nemeth Code. Debbie Willis assisted with an electronic blackboard course offered to National Center for Leadership in Visual Impairment (NCLVI) fellows on alternate assessments. Debbie also worked with Educational Testing Service staff to develop a guidebook on making test items accessible for students who are blind or visually impaired; this guidebook is for internal use by ETS staff. Debbie continues to participate as a member of CTB McGraw-Hill‘s team to develop their guidelines for making test items accessible to students with visual impairments. The results of an exercise in which team members ranked the impact of various factors on the accessibility of test items for students with visual impairments, the APH document on Making

Tests Accessible for Students with Visual Impairments: A Guide for Test Publishers, Test Developers, and State Assessment Personnel was ranked number one.

In FY 2009, Test Editors Kris Scott and Kerry Isham reviewed and edited 800+ state assessments, alternate assessments, commercially available tests, local or district assessments, reference sheets, study guides and manuals. Production, Contract Administration, and Accessible Tests staff are working together to develop a test-tracking database to ensure all tests and related components are completed in a timely manner. 45

Activities in FY 2009 have included requesting permissions and holding teleconference discussions on making components of KeyMath 3, KTEA-II, and Boehm 3 available in accessible media. If permission is received on one or more of these, Accessible Tests staff plans to work on these projects in FY 2010. (See individual project reports in the Tests and Assessments section of this document.) Work planned for FY 2010: In FY 2010 Accessible Tests staff will work with Advisory and Field Services to offer four National Instructional Partnership Training Events on ―Administering and Scoring the Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Achievement for Braille Readers.‖ The first four training workshops of this type are tentatively planned to be held in Arizona, Texas, Utah and California. Accessible Tests staff will continue to work closely with test publishers and state assessment personnel to review and make accessible versions of state, local/district, alternate and commercial assessments available. Test and Assessment Project Leader Barbara Henderson plans to develop an assessment-related needs survey in FY 2010. Your feedback on this survey is vital to identify and address high priority test-related needs across the country. Survey results will be used to identify and set new goals for product development in the area of Tests and Assessments. Additional workshops, presentations, and webcasts will be provided in FY 2010. Members of Accessible Tests will continue to participate on Bias Review Committees and as members of other panels and committees as time allows. Additional position papers will be developed as needed. A fifth edition of Making Tests Accessible for Students with Visual Impairments will get underway which will include a new section of guidelines on English Language Learners who are visually impaired. The position paper and guidelines on intelligence testing of individuals who are visually impaired will be reviewed, revised, submitted for publication, and made available. Debbie Willis plans to participate in a four-part e-workshop offered by WestEd on young children who are English Language Learners.

46

Tests & Assessments

47

Accessible Answer Documents (Continued) Purpose To provide well-designed, accessible answer documents in braille and large print for use in curricular activities, test preparation, and in actual testing situations Project Staff Barbara W. Henderson, Project Leader Kerry Isham, Accessible Tests Editor, Co-Project Leader Elaine Kitchel, Low Vision Project Leader, Project Consultant Eleanor Pester, Braille Project Leader, Project Consultant Debbie Willis, Director of Accessible Tests, Project Advisor Background As states moved toward No Child Left Behind (NCLB) compliance, materials such as accessible answer documents must be supplied if students with visual impairments are to take the test independently and successfully. The original goal was to collaborate with a major test publisher on development of a machine scorable, accessible ―scannable answer sheet‖ or ―bubble sheet,‖ for use by braille or large print readers. Such sheets are now totally inaccessible to blind and low vision students, preventing them from full participation in assessment opportunities alongside their peers. A proposed timeline was submitted but the project leader was unable to bring this project into active status during FY 2006 due to prior commitments. No additional work was done on the project during that time frame. In FY 2007, it was decided that finding a partner for research into necessary design considerations for accessible answer documents was more important than ever. Many states were moving to computerized scoring of their achievement tests and current scannable answer documents were still not usable by test takers with visual impairments. The project leader made several contacts with test publishers and research entities, but a committed partner could not be identified. Therefore, the project remained on the PARCing Lot throughout FY 2007. In the first quarter of FY 2008, the project leader pulled this project into active development. A survey about kinds of answer documents needed by teachers and other service providers was developed, and in March 2008, it was posted on the APH Web site. The survey was also mailed and/or emailed to test publishers, education agencies, and individuals listed in the departmental database. Over one hundred and twenty three people from twenty-four states and numerous agencies submitted a survey. The project leaders analyzed survey results in the last quarter of FY 2008. 48

Work during FY 2009 Results of the survey were gathered into a report. A review questionnaire was developed in preparation for field-testing. A poster session was created for presentation at annual meeting in October 2009. Work planned for FY 2010 The survey results will be posted to the web site. Co-project leader Kerry Isham will present a poster session at APH Annual Meeting in October 2009. Prototypes will be developed, and field testing sites and expert reviewers will be identified. Brigance Diagnostic Comprehensive Inventory of Basic Skills, Revised (CIBS-R): Student Large Print Edition A.k.a. Brigance Green (Continued) Purpose To fill the need, expressed by the field, for a large print version of this trusted and widely used criterion-referenced test Project Staff Barbara W. Henderson, Project Leader BISIG Impact Group, Graphic Art & Layout David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Background Based upon feedback from the field, it was determined that a student large print edition of this popular criterion-based assessment was needed as a companion piece to the student braille edition, which is already available. Numerous phone calls from teachers as well as personal requests from ex officio trustees informed the PL of this need. Access to the publisher‘s files and a new process at APH for production of full-color large print made this project much more feasible than had been originally thought; subsequently, the PL brought the idea forward to the appropriate committees in FY 2005. Publisher‘s files were requested and received in the third quarter of FY 2006, and file conversion began. The project leader worked with BISIG Impact Group staff to set specifications for the large print format, and a PDC meeting was held at APH to determine product structure and timelines. Work with BISIG Impact Group staff on reformatting each of the eleven subtests continued, until a proof of the two-volume large print set was ready for the project leader to review. This review was completed in the last quarter of FY 2007. Work during FY 2008 BISIG finalized the electronic files from January to April 2008, according to the project leader‘s reviews. A specifications meeting was held in April and a production target date established, 49

leading to final production masters in July 2008 and product availability in the last quarter of FY 2008. This project is complete. Brigance Diagnostic Inventory of Early Development II (IED-II): Large Print Edition and Tactile Edition A.k.a. Brigance Yellow (Continued) Purpose To provide accessible versions of this early educational skills inventory, to be utilized by early interventionists and diagnosticians who work with infants and preschoolers with visual impairments. Assessment of very young children is difficult without specific materials, protocols, and rationales. Project Staff Barbara Henderson, Co-Project Leader Rosanne Hoffmann, Research Assistant BISIG, Graphic Art & Layout David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Background In keeping with an APH tradition, a tactile supplement to the Brigance Yellow tests was planned before the new print edition was released. The PL and the Director proposed adding a large print edition of the updated assessment. The project idea was brought before the appropriate APH committees and approved. In FY 2005, permissions were sought. The electronic files were also requested. The publisher, Curriculum Associates, was very cooperative in providing these materials quickly and free of charge. The project staff was assigned within a few months and preliminary designs for product structure were documented. In the first quarter of FY 2006 a PDC meeting was called in order to brainstorm methods of presentation of manipulative items and a time line was developed. BISIG worked with the publisher‘s files to create a working document for editing the examiner‘s manual. A separate document was created for layout of the large print examinee‘s pages and for the braille transcription. The project co-leader began revising the examiner‘s manual. Work on the large print reformatting and on the braille transcription continued toward a prototype. Field review and field testing at six sites was initiated in the last quarter of FY 2007. Field-testing continued through the first two quarters of FY 2008. Monica Turner left the department, so the PL assumed role of project leader. With a new assistant, the project leader worked to compile field test results and summarize findings. The PL categorized types of

50

revisions needed. It was determined that an updated and annotated bibliography of resources was to be supplied along with the tactile and large print test materials. Work during FY 2009 An annotated bibliography and updated resource list were developed by the project leader beginning in the new year. An additional field test site and expert reviewer were identified in order to address issues found with tactile materials for younger children. Results from that site were received in February 2009 and analyzed. Work on the bibliography continued. Communications with the publisher revealed that updates to the IED II will consist of graphical changes to update the ―look‖ and will not involve changes in content. Work planned for FY 2010 Revisions will be made to the prototypes, the bibliography and product manuals will be completed, and product specifications put in place toward production.

Collaborative Assessment DVD Series (Discontinued)

Purpose To fill the need for teacher-training materials on the topic of assessment and to provide a series of DVDs to accompany and support use of the book from American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) Press, entitled Collaborative Assessment: Working with Students Who Are Blind or

Visually Impaired Including Those with Additional Disabilities

Project Staff Barbara W. Henderson, Project Leader Michael Sell, Accessible Test Editor, Co Project-Leader California School for the Blind Assessment Team, Project Consultants Background The project leader determined that a new and updated assessment video or DVD would be an appropriate addition to our product line. In the meantime, requests increased from the field for teacher-training materials in all areas of assessment. The Collaborative Assessment DVD series was selected because it will provide materials for that area of college study, as well as promote the collaborative approach to assessment of visually impaired students in existing K12 programs. In the second quarter of FY 2005, the project leader met with project consultants from California School for the Blind (CSB) and AFB Press staff in San Francisco, California, during the California Transcribers and Educators of the Visually Handicapped (CTEVH) Conference. Product development schedules and other details were discussed for the introductory DVD. 51

The project was not removed from the PARCing Lot in the second quarter of FY 2006 as planned. Work schedules of CSB staff prevented their involvement until at least January of 2006. No further work was undertaken on this project during FY 2006, with the exception of a teleconference between CSB staff and APH project staff in August 2006 to discuss reviving the project and next steps. It was decided that the project leaders would travel to CSB in the fourth quarter of FY 2007 to meet with the assessment team, hold a planning meeting, and to meet the students who would be filmed for the DVDs. Outlines for scripting were developed and time lines documented. In this same period, RFPs went out to several videographers in Kentucky and California. In early 2008 a videographer was selected. Two teleconferences were held with CSB staff to discuss next steps. Due to scheduling problems and illness of a staff member at CSB, it was decided that the project would be put on hold until the summer. However, plans for scripting and videotaping during the summer and into the Fall semester fell through. Work during FY 2009 In the first quarter of FY 2009, CSB staff contacted APH with their decision to halt work on the project entirely. The PL contacted PaTTan to inquire about gaining permission to reproduce the 2005 Teleconference on Collaborative Assessment. Original presenters denied PaTTan permission to allow reproduction of the materials, so the idea was abandoned. Kaufman Test of Educational Achievement (KTEA-II) Large Print Edition and Braille Adaptation (returned to the PARCing Lot) Purpose To make a widely used individualized academic achievement test available in braille/tactile and large print formats Project Staff Barbara W. Henderson, Project Leader Cindy Adair, Hardin Co., KY, Schools, Project Consultant Bill Greenlee, Ph.D., Kentucky School for the Blind (ret.), Project Advisor Dena Garrett, Accessible Media Editor, Project Advisor Background KTEA-II has a broad scope and is targeted towards students ages 5 through 25. Students performing at lower than expected levels, such as students with multiple disabilities, can successfully demonstrate some of the straight-forward, skill-specific tasks presented in this

52

test. Key academic skills in reading, math, written and oral language can be assessed and remediated based on age and grade equivalent standards. Practitioners in the field have expressed need for a test which requires less time to administer than some of the other popular achievement tests, and enables them to get baselines and information for immediate intervention. In 2005 the project leader proposed KTEA-II as a product. It was approved and placed on the PARCing lot to await further development. At the suggestion of staff at Kentucky School for the Blind, who needed to use the test with several students, this project was moved onto the active timeline in the third quarter of FY 2007. In FY 2008 work began with discussions of formatting considerations for both braille and large print editions. The project consultants were identified and project leader met with them in January to plan work for the remainder of the fiscal year. The consultants agreed to work on the project at no charge to APH. A second working meeting with the project consultants was held in March in Elizabethtown, during which decisions were made on design of tactile graphics and print materials for braille readers on half of the subtests. A third working meeting at APH in July was very productive. The remaining subtests were edited for braille and tactile presentation. The consultants supplied the project leader with extensive notes which will be used to produce markups for braille translation and large print formatting; these activities will begin in the last quarter of FY 2008 and will result in prototypes for field testing and expert review in early FY 2009. Work during FY 2009 Due to the fact that copyright permissions have not been acquired, work on the project was halted until an agreement can be made with the publisher, Pearson Assessment. KeyMath – 3: Braille / Tactile Adaptation (RETURNED TO THE PARCING LOT) Purpose In keeping with a long-time collaborative tradition between AGS/Pearson Assessment and APH, another braille/tactile adaptation of KeyMath will be developed. Project Staff Barbara W. Henderson, Project Leader Debbie Willis, Project Advisor Dena Garrett, Project Advisor Background Continuing a long tradition of working with AGS Publishing to develop the original KeyMath and KeyMath Revised, in braille/tactile formats, APH arranged with the new publisher, Pearson Assessment, to develop KeyMath-3. Field testing by Pearson was completed in 2007 and publication of the print battery occurred in the first quarter of FY 2008. Pre-publication copy and 53

verbal copyright permissions were secured from the publisher in the last quarter of FY 2008. At the request of Pearson, by way of a special contract, the project leader and project advisors reviewed all test items for bias and for color vision deficit considerations. In FY 2008, several follow-up requests for written copyright permissions were sent to the publisher. No response came. Work during FY 2009 Due to the fact that copyright permissions have not been acquired from the publisher, work on the project has been halted until an agreement can be reached with the publisher, Pearson Assessment. Test and Assessment Needs (Continued) Purpose To determine the needs of the field with regard to testing and assessing students who are blind or visually impaired Project Staff Barbara W. Henderson, Project Leader Debbie Willis, Accessible Tests Director, Project Advisor Background Meeting the needs of TVIs and others who are called upon to assess visually impaired students is the focus of this home project. For instance, the project to make Harcourt‘s Wechsler Individual Achievement Test II (WIAT-II) available in braille/tactile format was proposed and implemented as a result of being expressed as a high priority need by the field. This test can now be ordered from APH (who has the braille/tactile plates already made) as long as permission is requested by the individual or organization and is granted by Harcourt Assessment. The individual or organization in need of this test may then contact APH to order a copy of the WIAT-II in braille/tactile format. Custom Contract staff is willing and able to assist with this procedure. In order to provide information about which tests are currently available in accessible formats, the project leader worked with the Directors of Accessible Tests and Communications in FY 2007 to develop the new Assessment Catalog and with Research Department staff to review current assessment products for obsolescence or modernization. The project leader also worked with Malcolm Turner to update the Accessible Tests web page. Comments received on how the field has come to view the Accessible Tests web page included ―the best information source out there.‖ Commercially available products for development of Daily Living Skills, Job Skills Assessment, and Career Interest Inventories were reviewed by project staff because of their particular 54

importance to experts in transition for VI students. As a result, a product on how to use transition assessments and screens was planned. A brief intelligence test was selected for consideration as a new product. See information on the Intelligence Testing Position Paper and the IQ Testing Workgroup in the Accessible Tests Department section of this report. Over 200 customer service calls and emails in FY 2008 were forwarded to the project leader by Customer Relations and other APH staff for more detailed information than they could supply on the topic of tests and assessments. Kerry Isham, a new test editor, took over responsibility for web content and updates as of the first quarter of FY 2008. Work during FY 2009 The project leader planned a new assessment needs survey for FY 2010. Research on the topic of alternate assessments was done, creating a bibliography on the subject as relates to visually impaired students. Recent publications on visually impaired English Language Learners (ELLs) were gathered. The PL and director attended a webinar on ―Academic Vocabulary for pre-K through Grade 2 ELLs.‖ Work planned for FY 2010 The new assessment needs survey will be posted on the web site and circulated to listserves in FY 2010. Results of the survey will be used to inform decisions on new projects, as well as to determine trends in assessment under the new presidential administration. Test Ready® Test Preparation Series (Continued) Purpose To make generic test preparation/practice materials available in accessible formats (braille, large print, and audio) for the purpose of preparing K-12 students who are visually impaired and blind to take achievement tests. Adult students preparing for the General Education Diploma (GED) or for college entrance exams may also utilize the advanced levels of these materials. Project Staff Barbara W. Henderson, Project Leader Michael Sell, Consultant, Project Editor Dena Garrett, Accessible Media Editor, Project Editor Kristopher Scott, Accessible Tests Editor, Project Editor BISIG Impact Group, Graphic Art/Layout Background

55

The PL did a review of commercially available test preparation and practice test materials prior to proposal of a new product. In response to a recommendation from the EPAC and ESAC committees, the PL selected and brought forward the Test Ready® Series from Curriculum Associates. The project was approved in FY 2004. Subject areas chosen were: Math, Reading, Language Arts, Science, and Social Studies. Plus Mathematics and Plus Reading, each comprised of seven levels and seven teacher guides, were the first subjects produced because of their high priority for visually impaired students (refer also to NCLB regulations). Visually impaired students have traditionally done poorly on math compared to their sighted counterparts due to lack of accessible test materials. Math practice is therefore essential for braille readers especially. The project leaders reviewed the math series and determined that most items were adaptable for VI students. Literacy is another high priority skills area for students who are braille or large print readers. In early FY 2005, Kristopher Scott joined Barbara Henderson as co-project leader. The project leaders and the project assistant organized a database for documenting editing of the media. The project editors began editing, each taking a different subject area for consistent presentation. The project leaders received electronic files from the publisher and arranged with BISIG staff to convert those files. Several meetings were held to discuss how to present and package the materials for marketing and catalog listings. A trial run on the project was delayed until an .HTML file and an audio version could be prepared. It was agreed that Alternative text (Alt-text) and a clean MsWord file were needed for generation of the .HTML file. The co-project leader was unable to devote time to the project due to a large volume of state tests in need of editing. Michael Sell, a new Accessible Tests editor, became the co-Project Leader in FY 2007 and Level 7 Plus Math (two out of 128 total products) moved forward. Audio scripts were developed by the project leaders during the first and second quarters. Alttext descriptions were finalized in the third quarter and BISIG began their work on the .HTML components. Revised MsWord files for Level 7 Plus Math were completed by the PLs and sent to BISIG for use in formatting the .HTML files. BISIG developed a process and format for coding .HTML files for subsequent titles in the series. The PLs began working on scripting for the next titles according to this template. They also worked with braille transcription to develop a process in that department. Finally, in preparation for a Product Development Committee (PDC) meeting, the project leaders created a flowchart and a consistent workflow description so that subsequent titles in the series can travel through various processes smoothly and quickly. At the Spring 2008 meeting at APH, members of APH‘s two advisory committees, EPAC and ESAC, recommended that the Test Ready materials be made available as soon as possible, putting them on a ―fast-track.‖ As a result of this recommendation, an analysis of the various steps, time, staff and equipment needed to complete each is underway in order to determine 56

how to effectively and efficiently develop and produce these 128 high quality products in a timely manner. Since that time, efforts have produced Plus Math Level 7, Plus Math Level 3, and Plus Math Level 4, expected to be published and available to customers in early 2010. Production was streamlined so that two levels can be processed simultaneously. Preliminary editing and file conversion work has already been done on the Plus Reading series, the next subject in the lineup. Work planned for FY 2010 Processes will continue until all levels of the Plus Math series are completed and available for sale. Transcription and large print formatting work will begin on the Plus Reading books. Work on the third subject area, Language Arts, will begin. Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Achievement Braille Adaptation (Completed) Purpose To make this widely used Psycho educational Assessment instrument available in braille/tactile format

Project Staff Barbara W. Henderson, Project Leader Lynne E. Jaffe, Ph.D., Learning Disabilities and Reading Specialist, Project Consultant Carol Anne Evans, Ph.D., School Psychologist, Farmington, UT Schools, Project Consultant Lana McClurg, M.A., TVI (deceased), Arizona Schools for the Deaf & Blind, Project Consultant Dena Garrett, Accessible Media Editor, Project Advisor Nancy Etter, Braille Transcriber David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist BISIG Impact Group, Design and Layout

57

Background The Woodcock-Johnson III (WJ-III) Tests of Achievement are widely known and trusted, and commonly used to assess academic strengths and weaknesses in children and adults. More than any other single title, practitioners in the field of visual impairment have expressed their desire to have APH provide an adaptation of the Woodcock-Johnson for braille readers. The WJ continued to be identified by recent focus groups, workgroups, and in assessment surveys as one of the top three needed tests alongside Brigance Green (CIBS-R) and Wechsler Individual Achievement Test (WIAT). WJ-III was brought forward as a project in 2001 in preparation for publication of the 2001 revision. Copyright permissions were sought from the publisher and a search for qualified consultants was carried out. Written permissions arrived in FY 2003. Consultants were hired, prototypes of three of the tests were developed, and field testing/expert review was carried out in nine locations across the country. Braille transcription was ongoing for the remaining tests and review of the braille was performed by the consultant(s) and project leader as each was completed. When field test/review results came back, the PL analyzed reviews and initiated appropriate revisions. Review and revision occurred between FY 2004 and FY 2005. Revised braille tests were then reviewed by the consultants. The PL and BISIG collaborated to design cover art and regular print product components. Work in this area continued through FY 2006. Writing of the Examiner‘s Manual for the Braille Edition and the Supplemental Manual for the Braille Edition was finished in early FY 2007. In the same period, the project consultant conferred with the author, Dr. Richard Woodcock, who became very interested in the edition for braille/tactile readers. He proposed substituting certain ―equivalent‖ tests for existing tests in the WJ III, so that all clusters would remain intact. In this manner, no parts of the test would be inaccessible to persons who are visually impaired. Additionally, Dr. Woodcock offered to furnish a special Compuscore CD for the braille adaptation as his contribution to the project. A teleconference was held with Riverside Publishing staff and the staff of the Woodcock-Munoz Foundation in Olympia, WA, to discuss the compuscore programming. During this timeframe, the project leader and the project consultant began work on the new test items from Dr. Woodcock with the assistance of APH braille transcribers. In FY 2008, the project leader and consultant facilitated creation of the Test Record for the Braille Adaptation. Programming on the special compuscore CD began and was completed by Woodcock-Munoz Foundation staff, and Quality Assurance was carried out by outside contractors with the assistance of the Woodcock-Munoz Foundation. The PL worked closely with the programmers at the Woodcock-Munoz Foundation and the project consultant to supply information and content for the software program and packaging; a desktop icon was designed for the special software program; new cover artwork was designed by BISIG for the software splash screen and packaging. The PL and transcriber continued to work on development of the new braille tests from Dr. Woodcock and made revisions on existing tests. 58

Work During FY 2009 Revisions and new transcription of tests were finalized in the first quarter of FY 2009. The PL worked with Technical Research staff to complete templates for the print component of the braille tests and with the consultant and BISIG Impact to finalize content on product manuals. Availability was promised for the end of September 2009. The PL and staff began planning training workshops and informational web casts on the WJ III braille adaptation targeted at school psychologists and test administrators. The first training will occur in Phoenix, AZ, as a National Instructional Partnership (NIP) Event in FY 2010, with Lynne Jaffe presenting a two day session on Administering and Scoring the WJ III Tests of Achievement—Braille Adaptation. It is only through the kind permission and cooperation of Riverside Publishing, the dedication and contributions of test author Dr. Richard Woodcock, the steadfastness of our chief consultant Lynne Jaffe, and the willing partnership and good work of staff at the WoodcockMunoz Foundation that this historic equivalent version of the Woodcock-Johnson III: Tests of Achievement in braille has become a reality. The Compuscore and Profiles Program and the accessible version of the achievement batteries will be usable by school psychologists and test administrators across the country in order to more accurately assess the abilities of students who are blind or visually impaired.

59

Research Department
Ralph E. Bartley, Ph.D. Director
60

Adult Life

61

Adult Life Needs (Ongoing) Purpose To develop adult life products and services that are affordable, user-friendly, and consumer driven and that address the diverse needs of the blind and visually impaired population Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Carol Roderick, Research Assistant Background Product development in the area of Adult Life was initiated at APH in the summer of 1998. The first products derived specifically from this effort were made available during FY1999. Product research along with consumer and professional networking has continued to characterize the development of products for adults. Work during FY 2009 APH Adult Life products and their applications to specific populations were presented by the Adult Life Project Leader at the following venues: Annual Conference of the Association of Southeastern Rehabilitation Teachers and the MidAmerica Conference of Rehabilitation Teachers, Birmingham, Alabama, November, 2008; American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) 89th Annual Conference Expo, Houston, Texas, April, 2009. Information about specific products under development is provided in the remainder of this section. Work planned for FY 2010 Investigation and development of new products for adults will continue. The Adult Life Project Leader will continue to seek input from the field by networking with APH Ex Officio Trustees and consumer and professional groups. Focus groups will be conducted as needed. Braille Financial Record Keeper (continued) Purpose To provide braille users with a system for easily storing and locating personal financial information Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Fred Gissoni, Project Assistant Background 62

During development of and subsequent presentations of the EZ Track Financial Record Keeper, 1-07920-00 (a financial organizer for large print users), consumers and professionals requested that APH develop a tool to organize and access financial information for braille users. The Braille DateBook, 1-07899-06, offers braille users a portable, logical system for organizing and accessing schedules, grocery lists, to do lists, and much more. A Financial Record Insert could give Braille DateBook users an efficient and user-friendly structure for organizing financial information. A more detailed financial organizer, which uses 8.5‖ X 11‖ paper in a three-ring binder, would include all of the organizational information found in its large print EZ Track counterpart. Information about the EZ Track Financial Record Keeper can be found at the following link: http://sun1.aph.org/advisory/2003adv11.html Information about the Braille DateBook can be found at the following link: http://sun1.aph.org/advisory/2006adv07.html It was decided that question stems would be embossed onto the DateBook paper rather than provided on pressure-sensitive labels for the customer to attach to the page. The project leader reformatted material from the EZ Track Financial Record Keeper for 8.5‖ x 11‖ braille paper and found that approximately 230 pages were required to allow space to fill in this material. The project leader evaluated two strategies for reducing the number of pages without loss of significant financial information: (1) providing guidelines and allowing users to enter data in a more free-flowing manner; and (2) using fewer, more general item stems so that less page space was needed for specific questions. Neither of these strategies proved to be ideal. During FY 2007, assistance of Gissoni, Technical Support Specialist at APH, was sought and obtained. The project leader and Gissoni have discussed solutions and are exploring new ideas for maintaining product integrity and reducing the number of pages, the most promising being a book describing how to make a Financial Record Keeper based on the types of income and expenses relevant to the individual. During FY 2008, Gissoni and Terlau discussed difficulties inherent in attempting to create a record book that would work for most people. They are considering the development of a guide book that would describe how individuals could create record books that are individualized for their particular types of financial records. Such a handbook might include sample pages and blank sheets for constructing customized record pages. Work during FY 2009 Ongoing examination of layout issues suggested the value of a software solution in addition to or in lieu of a hard-copy braille solution. Work planned for FY 2010 63

Prototype development and field review will be undertaken after basic design issues have been resolved. Functional Assessment (Continued) Purpose To provide assessment tools for daily living/functional skills for students in primary grades, middle school, secondary school, and transition classes Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Adult Life Project Leader Diane Bender, Project Consultant Ann Travis, Research/Project Assistant Background As the Expanded Core Curriculum becomes increasingly important in the education of students who are blind or visually impaired, a systematic method for assessing a student‘s progress in learning functional skills becomes essential. Many schools for the blind, university training programs, and rehabilitation agencies have developed their own strategies for assessing different aspects of self-care and daily living tasks. However, a systematic assessment process that incorporates a criterion-based scoring system and utilizes core curriculum skills in all levels of its functional assessment has not been made widely available. The need for such a comprehensive system has been expressed by numerous educators of persons who are blind or visually impaired. Dianne Bender‘s assessment system for functional skills has been developed during her extensive teaching career in a residential school for the blind setting. Bender‘s system is being used as the basis for the Functional Assessment project because of its comprehensive coverage of functional skill areas, scorable testing protocols, and concise, clear testing directions. Telephone conferences with Bender resulted in the finalization of four areas to be included in the Functional Assessment: Food Management; Clothing Management; Personal Management; and Home Management. Based on this plan, Bender submitted revised materials for all four levels of each of these modules. Item editing/revision and creation of additional items by Bender and the project leader have continued. Work during FY 2009 The project leader has carefully reviewed all items at all levels in all modules of the system. She has prepared suggested item changes throughout all modules and levels of the assessment to support more standardization across assessors and to equalize weights given to 64

similar items across module levels. She has spoken with Bender about these issues; has provided general descriptions of and rationale for item changes; and has prepared specific item change suggestions in spreadsheet format. Spreadsheets with specific item content changes have been sent to Bender for her consideration and review. Work planned for FY 2010 Bender and the project leader will complete item revisions that support standardization of item administration across assessors; additional item changes will be made to support relatively similar increments of skill difficulty between levels. Prototype development is expected to be completed and expert review will be initiated. Labeling Book and Tool Kit (Continued) Purpose To provide information to adults who have lost vision about how to identify objects and materials in their environment, particularly household items, and a tool kit to assist in labeling Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Lisa-Anne Mowerson, Project Consultant/Author Erica Rucker, Research/Project Assistant Background An Independent Living Specialist in Kentucky suggested that APH create a set of large print labels for canned foods and pantry items. Input from a focus group of rehabilitation teachers led to the expansion of this product to include a consumer-oriented book that provides guidance in organizational techniques as well as labeling. A Labeling Tool Kit is also being developed to accompany the book. These materials will help visually impaired adults who are unable to access rehabilitation teaching services to understand and apply organizational and labeling principles. Rehabilitation teachers can also use these materials with students whom they see infrequently. During FY 2004, Lisa-Anne Mowerson produced materials based on her years of experience teaching these skills to individuals and groups of persons with visual impairments. Editing, restructuring, and reorganization of materials for the first third of the book were completed. During FY 2005, revision and editing of materials in the second third of the book was undertaken. During FY 2006, the project leader completed the editing/writing of the middle third of the book. The consultant and project leader redesigned the structure for the final third of the book. This portion of the book was originally based on structure and presentation style used in face-to-face teaching; consequently, the book‘s material required major reorganization in order to support learning without the aid of a teacher and student group. During FY 2007,

65

the consultant rewrote the final chapters of the book, and the project leader expanded and edited them. Because project leaders‘ time was required for other projects, essential work on the functional assessment prototype was postponed during FY 2008. Work during FY 2009 The project leader rewrote sections of the book to reflect advances in auditory labeling systems and to include new MagneTacher labels available for sale from APH. Information about APH's MagneTacher labels can be found at http://www.aph.org/advisory/2008adv01.html#P3 Work planned for FY 2010 The project leader and consultant will complete the revisions of the final third of the book, and a draft will be prepared for field review. Field reviewers will be selected and the field review process will be undertaken. Materials will be edited based on field review results and final text will be made available for graphic design. MagneTachers for Braille Labels (Completed) Purpose To provide a durable magnetic material on which labels for cans and other metal surfaces can be brailed with a braillewriter or a slate and stylus and that can then be reused repeatedly on cans or other metal surfaces Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Background Braille labels that are placed on canned foods often are made from pressure-sensitive DymoTape™ or another permanently affixed braille labeling material. Such labels are thrown away with the can and cannot be reused. Discarding labels that, if attached in another way, could be reused on other cans of the same type of food is costly in terms of labeling materials and time taken to re-braille the same labels. Magnetic Dymo-Tape™ offers one solution for reusable can labels. However, some persons find this material difficult to handle because it is fairly thin. A thicker magnetic label that could hold braille well would offer a more widely acceptable label for canned goods. During FY 2006, the project leader and manufacturing specialist reviewed a variety of magnetic vinyl samples for thickness and ability to hold braille. A material and a packaging strategy were selected. During FY 2007, the manufacturing specialist located a manufacturer 66

capable of providing rolls of magnetic vinyl in the size and quantity that were needed. Content for braille/print directions was finalized. In-house expert review was conducted and appropriate changes were made. Information for the writing of specifications was collected. Internal expert review of materials and instructions was conducted and the product was made available for sale. However, the project leader noticed that braille labels on the finished product did not adhere well to the sides of metal cans. A search for vinyl incorporating a stronger magnetic material was undertaken. Work during FY 2009 It was anticipated that an engineering change would be needed to acquire and use a stronger magnetic vinyl. However, additional in-house expert review of the final product showed that its vinyl held well to the sides of metal cans and that the problem had been restricted to preproduction samples. Therefore, the product was not changed. Work planned for FY 2010 Because MagneTachers for Braille Labels required no changes and are available for sale, no additional development is anticipated in 2010. Information about MagneTachers for Braille Labels can be found at http://www.aph.org/advisory/2008adv01.html#P3 MagneTachers for Large Print Labels: Jumbo Size (Completed) Purpose To provide a magnetic label for canned goods or other metal surfaces that will hold large print letters made with bold-line pens or markers up to an inch in height Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Background Persons who can no longer read labels on canned food products frequently make large print labels on file cards and attach these cards to cans with a rubber band. Large print labelmaking devices can also be used. However, each of these methods is problematic. Rubber bands can slip off of round cans and can also become entangled with cards on neighboring cans on the cupboard shelf. Label makers are expensive and may not make print large enough for some persons with low vision. A strip of magnetized vinyl with a paper surface would allow persons with low vision to write labels and reuse them on other cans of the same food. During FY 2006, samples of magnetic vinyl were examined by the project leader and manufacturing specialist, and desirable features were determined. It was necessary to locate 67

samples that were coated with a paper-like finish that would hold writing when done with bold-line pens or markers. Vendors who produced these materials were located. During FY 2007, the manufacturing specialist searched diligently for a manufacturer capable of providing rolls of magnetic vinyl with the necessary coating in the size and quantity that were needed. A manufacturer was found late in FY 2007. Content for braille/print directions was finalized. In-house expert review was conducted and appropriate changes were made. Information for the writing of specifications was collected. During FY 2008, a final internal expert review of materials and instructions was conducted and the product was made available for sale. However, the project leader noticed that braille labels on the finished product did not adhere well to the sides of metal cans. A search for vinyl incorporating a stronger magnetic material was undertaken. Work during FY 2009 It was anticipated that an engineering change would be needed to acquire and use a stronger magnetic vinyl. However, additional in-house expert review of the final product showed that its vinyl held well to the sides of metal cans and that the problem had been restricted to preproduction samples. Therefore, the product was itself not changed. The name of the product was altered from MagneTachers for Large Print Labels, Jumbo Size to MagneTachers for Larger Print Labels. Work planned for FY 2010 Because MagneTachers for Larger Print Labels required no changes and are available for sale, no additional development is anticipated in 2010. Information about MagneTachers for Larger Print Labels can be found at http://www.aph.org/advisory/2008adv01.html#P3 MagneTachers for Large Print Labels (Completed) Purpose To provide a magnetic label for canned goods or other metal surfaces that will hold large print letters made with bold-line pens or markers up to a half-inch in height Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Background Persons who can no longer read labels on canned food products frequently make large print labels on file cards and attach these cards to cans with a rubber band. Large print labelmaking devices can also be used. However, each of these methods is problematic. Rubber bands can slip off of round cans and can also become entangled with cards on neighboring cans on the cupboard shelf. Label makers are expensive and may not make print large enough 68

for some persons with low vision. A strip of magnetized vinyl with a paper surface would allow persons with low vision to write labels and reuse them on other cans of the same food. During FY 2007, MagneTachers for such labels that were 1-inch tall were already being developed. However, a large number of persons with low vision read print that is one-half-inch tall or smaller. Using larger labels can be cumbersome. To meet the needs of persons with low vision who can read smaller handwriting, the appropriate magnetic vinyl was located, and plans to produce a half-inch tall, 120-inch roll of MagneTachers for Large Print were made. During FY 2008, internal expert review of materials and instructions was conducted and the product was made available for sale. However, the project leader noticed that large print labels on the finished product did not adhere well to the sides of metal cans. A search for vinyl incorporating a stronger magnetic material was undertaken. Work during FY 2009 It was anticipated that an engineering change would be needed to acquire and use a stronger magnetic vinyl. However, additional in-house expert review of the final product showed that its vinyl held well to the sides of metal cans and that the problem had been restricted to preproduction samples. Therefore, the product was itself not changed. Work planned for FY 2010 Because MagneTachers for Large Print labels required no changes and are available for sale, no additional development is anticipated in 2010. Information about MagneTachers for Large Print Labels can be found at http://www.aph.org/advisory/2008adv01.html#P3

MiniBook (Continued) Purpose To provide a quick and easy method for jotting down short braille notes Project Staff Rosanne Hoffmann, Project Leader Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Fred Gissoni, Project Assistant Background When persons who can see need to write down a phone number or other small note, they quickly pull a pen from their pocket and are writing on a Post-it® pad, or other available paper within seconds. The quick note can be later transferred to a planner or other more permanent storage. APH provides several products that involve small notebooks and small slates; such products allow a person who is blind to carry braille-writing materials with them in a large pocket or bag. However, when using these materials, it can take 30 seconds or more to get a 69

slate out of a pouch or notebook pocket, put it onto a small piece of paper, get the stylus in a hand, and be ready to write. Frequently, a person who is blind must ask a speaker to repeat information because of the time it takes to get such braille-writing materials ready to write. The MiniBook offers a solution to this problem because it is small enough to fit in a shirt pocket, can hold a slate fastened to the first blank page in the book, and offers a stylus that can be easily removed from a pocket in the binder. During FY 2006, the size of the notebook was resolved and an appropriate-sized slate mold was ordered. Small twin-looped notebooks with detachable pages were added to materials under consideration for inclusion in the MiniBook kit. During FY 2007, prototype materials were developed as follows: small 2-ring notebooks; drilled paper packs; small spiral notebooks with perforated pages for easy page removal; a customized, 4-line, 15-cell slate; a brief guidebook for using the MiniBook materials; tall and short APH flat styli. Field review was undertaken with 32 adult consumers, half of whom were frequent and half of whom were occasional slate-and-stylus users. Each of these groups was divided into two equal parts—one part testing the spiral notebook first, and the other testing the binder first. During FY 2008, field test responses were collected from 29 of the 32 initial testers; two infrequent slate users and one frequent slate user did not complete and return assessment materials. Seven frequent slate users evaluated the binder first and then the notebook, and eight frequent slate users evaluated the notebook first and then the binder. Eight infrequent slate users evaluated the binder first and then the notebook, and six infrequent slate users evaluated the notebook first and then the binder. Although group size was too small to allow for application of rigorous analyses, comparisons of average group scores on evaluation and performance questions suggests that the frequency of slate use and the order in which components were tested were not related to testers' evaluations of the components. Testers expressed strong preferences for a slate with notches in the top rectangle of the cell to help guide the stylus into appropriate dot positions; and a significant number experienced pain or discomfort when using the flat styli. As a result of this feedback, changes to the slate mold were initiated, and substitution of a saddle stylus for the APH flat stylus was made. Work during FY 2009 The initial slate prototype was redesigned, field testing on the redesigned slate was conducted, and additional slate design changes have been made. After the initial design changes (adding dot indentations to the top cell rectangles) were made, slates made by the Rapid Prototype manufacturing method were received, in-house expert review was undertaken, recommendations for additional changes were received, and a new set of slates were obtained meeting the new design specifications. Six of the original MiniBook field reviewers, selected according to their ability to articulate their responses, and balanced for their strong opinions for or against slate design changes, tested 70

new prototype slates for two weeks and returned evaluation forms. Based on these evaluations, one more change is to be made to slate drawings, one more rapid prototype will be created, and then the final mold will be made. Continued analysis of field test data indicated that testers found the binder rings to be very difficult to open and close. The 2-ring set used in the binder prototype does not have an opener tab; and the smallest ring set with this feature is approximately one half inch longer than the prototype ring set. Twenty-eight of the original 29 field testers were asked by email if they would trade up half an inch in binder size in exchange for rings that could be opened easily; one tester did not have an email address and was omitted from this sample. Six messages were returned as undeliverable, and four additional emails received no response. Sixteen testers expressed a strong preference for rings that opened more easily and indicated that they could tolerate a half-inch increase in binder size to obtain this feature. One respondent had no preference, and another wanted both binders to be offered. Based on these results, the slightly larger binder with the ring-opener tab was selected for use in the final product. Field testers expressed a variety of preferences about components that should be included in the final MiniBook kit; in the absence of consensus on this point, it was decided that components would be sold separately so that consumers and professionals could select the specific components that would work well for them. Final components will include: the redesigned MiniSlate and saddle stylus; the MiniBinder; filler paper; and a pack of two MiniSpirals. Work planned for FY 2010 One more set of prototype drawings will be used to construct one more rapid prototype slate and the final mold will then be made. The production binders with the new ring set will be made, paper will be cut and drilled, and spiral notebooks will also be made. All parts of the kit―binder and filler paper, slate and stylus, and notebooks—will be sold separately so that consumers can purchase the combination that will meet their unique needs. It is anticipated that the MiniBook will be produced and become available for sale in FY 2010. Money Talks (Continued) Purpose To provide a Windows-based bank account management software package that will be easily accessible to blind and visually impaired persons Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Larry Skutchan, Technology Project Leader 71

Rob Meredith, Programmer Darleen Donhoff, Administrative/Technical Assistant Background Keeping bank account records on a computer provides a reliable method of maintaining check registers and account balances. However, mainstream bank account management software presents some access obstacles to experienced, visually impaired computer users and is not accessible to visually impaired persons without specialized training and expensive access software. Money Talks is designed to perform the full range of account management functions needed by blind and visually impaired persons. It is fully accessible, with speech and large print output built into the program itself. This program is also designed to be intuitive and user-friendly for persons with little or no computer experience. During FY 2004, the following program features were implemented: the ability to emboss or print the check register; the ability to print raised-line or business checks from a checkbook or Quicken-type checks; the ability to import bank statements downloaded from the Web; procedures for automatic and manual transaction reconciliation; the look and functionality of the on-screen grid views; and the software logo. Specifically, programmers completed the following tasks:  Added  Added  Added  Added register management; support for check printing and embossing; code to translate, format, and emboss the register data; support to import Quicken Interchange Format files (QIF).

During FY 2005, field testing, revisions, documentation, tooling, specifications, and a pilot run were completed. Approximately 86 adults tested Beta versions of Money Talks for 6 months prior to the product becoming available for sale in July 2005. Enhancements to Money Talks made in FY 2006 include:  Adds the ability to speak through the self-voicing interface while making a selection.  Relaxes the way the program imports QIF data. Some QIF files incorrectly put the Type: Bank for each transaction in the file, but the specification calls for only one of these at the beginning of the file. Money Talks now imports these incorrect files.  Adds a status bar indicator to show the status of expanded splits.  Adds the ability to delete categories by typing the name and pressing Ctrl+D.  Previously, the user had to locate the list item before deleting.  Adds the ability to reuse a newly entered category in the Split dialog. Version 1.1, December 2005 72

 Corrects a bug that caused the program to ignore requests to post recurring transactions every x days. The program always used 21 days no matter what number the user specified.  Adds the Use Bank Name, Use Bank Item, Use Bank Date, and Use Bank Memo checkboxes to the General tab of the Settings dialog to let the user control which information from the bank overwrites existing information in a transaction when importing QIF files  Adds the Cleared and Uncleared Transactions commands to the View menu.  These commands let the user restrict the view to those transactions that are either cleared or nucleated. Previously, it was only possible to move to the previous or next uncleared transaction.  QIF files now respect the Windows regional settings for dates.  Adds the Credits Before Debits option in the General tab of the Settings dialog.  The option is used to let you list credit transactions before debits that occur on the same day.  Allows self-voicing to work with the registration dialog Improvements and upgrades to the program, made during FY 2007, are based on ongoing feedback from the field and include: Version 1.2, February 2007  No longer suppresses the Category and Subcategory fields of the register on printouts  Improves weekend action handling for recurring transactions with dates at the beginning or end of the month  Adds the Select by Date option to the Edit menu  Adds the ability to move directly to any column in the register  Adds the Restrict menu. The Restrict menu contains items related to restricting the view that were formerly found on the View menu.  Removes support for guessing at the next check number in recurring transactions. The check number is now cleared when the recurrence posts.  Adds the ability to import Comma Separated Value (CSV) files  Adds a unique sound for the instance where you move to a cleared transaction that falls below the minimum balance  Adds the Lowest Running Balance command  Adds commands to restrict the view to transactions that occurred this year or last year  Increases the speed at which the program closes in an attempt to solve the update problems seen by some  Corrects a problem with improper postings of semimonthly transactions 73

 Corrects a bug that made check numbers get out of sequence when posting recurring transactions containing check numbers  Corrects a bug in the category summary where the displayed data were incorrect if splits were expanded  Adds the subcategory name ―no subcategory‖ to items in the category summary that do not have subcategories  Updates the info for the specified pay name when editing a transaction. Before, pay name info was only updated when adding a new transaction.  Fixes a bug where the next check number could appear in the item list twice  Adds the Hide Selection command to the View menu to let you temporarily hide any transaction  Adds H to the list of commands the user may press while in the Status column to hide the current transaction  The minimum number of days that can be used for the recurring every X days transactions are now three. Using one or two days got confusing when weekends were thrown into the mix.  Corrects a problem where the program let the user transfer sub-transactions in a split transaction to another account  Adds Or to the find capabilities  Adds the ability to restrict the view to Split transactions  Adds three commands, U, X, and S, to the commands you may type in the status column to restrict the view to uncleared, cleared, and split transactions  Corrects a bug that prevented recurring transactions from posting on the correct day with the Every X Days setting in some circumstances  Adds the ability to speak through the self-voicing interface while making a selection  Relaxes the way the program imports QIF data. Some QIF files incorrectly put the !Type: Bank for each transaction in the file, but the specification calls for only one of these at the beginning of the file. Money Talks now imports these incorrect files.  Adds a status bar indicator to show the status of expanded splits  Adds the ability to delete categories by typing the name and pressing Ctrl+D. Previously, the user had to locate the list item before deleting.  Adds the ability to reuse a newly entered category in the Split dialog Version 1.2.X, August 2007  Adds support for dates in QIF files that contain dashes instead of slashes  Adds support for dates in QIF files that contain no separator characters

74

Work during FY 2009 Changed the method used to identify system folders. Tested for use with 64-bit versions of XP, Vista, and Windows 7. Work planned for FY 2010 Upgrades and improvements will continue to be made based on feedback from the field. Nonverbal Communication Curriculum (Continued) Purpose To develop an instructional curriculum that will help adults who are blind or visually impaired understand and integrate nonverbal communication skills into their daily lives Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Karen McCulloh, Consultant/Author Background The ability to communicate nonverbally is an essential skill for successful functioning in occupational and interpersonal situations. Because learning about and producing nonverbal communication is derived from visual modeling and is based on availability of visual information, persons with visual impairments may experience difficulties in both understanding the meaning of nonverbal behavior and producing understandable nonverbal communications. They may need specific educational experiences to help them understand what is going on around them and to develop positive methods of nonverbal communication. This project will result in a curriculum that will help people who are visually impaired learn how to integrate nonverbal communication skills into their daily interactions. Topics such as gestures, posture, social distance, appearance, voice intonations, and facial expressions will be covered. This curriculum will help blind or visually impaired individuals become more successful within interpersonal communication situations such as job interviews, professional meetings, advocacy situations, and everyday social interactions. Karen McCulloh has submitted materials to be used to select and prepare students for the instructional course. Scheduling complications have slowed down progress, but materials submitted have been excellent; and McCulloh plans to continue to submit material as quickly as her work schedule permits. McCulloh has submitted assessment protocols, background, and additional material for Session 1. Work during FY 2009

75

Because of McCulloh's intense work schedule and her increasing responsibilities in the public sector with regard to disability issues, she has not been able to provide substantial new material for this project during FY 2009. Work planned for FY 2010 McCulloh and the project leader have agreed that, if her work and public sector responsibilities remain at their present level as of January 1, 2010, she will no longer work with this project; another consultant and another project design will be sought at that time. O&M for Families (Continued) Purpose To provide orientation and mobility instructors with an interactive computer-based tool to create individualized orientation and mobility (O&M) progress booklets for a student and his/her family Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Fabiana Perla, COMS, Consultant/Author Betsy O‘Donnell, COMS, Consultant/Author Larry Skutchan, Technology Project Leader John Hedges, Programmer Erica Rucker, Research Assistant Ann Travis, Research Assistant Background In order for a student with visual impairments to integrate orientation and mobility skills into his/her daily life, the student must use these skills in a variety of home and school settings. The more information families have about their child‘s orientation and mobility needs and about the skills that their child is currently learning, the more they can encourage and support their child‘s use of orientation and mobility skills at home and in the community. Orientation and mobility instructors attempt to establish and maintain communication with their students‘ families. However, large case loads and busy family schedules may not allow enough time for individualized communication about a number of essential topics. Many orientation and mobility instructors and the families they serve could benefit from an easy-to-use, standardized method of communication about a child‘s orientation and mobility skills and needs. Betsy O‘Donnell and Fabiana Perla, experienced orientation and mobility specialists, developed and field tested a booklet that an orientation and mobility instructor could complete for the family of a particular student. Perla and O‘Donnell are working with the Adult Life Project Leader to develop a software package on CD-ROM that would guide an orientation and mobility instructor through the process of creating such a book for a particular student and her/his family. 76

The software package under development contains information found effective in Perla and O‘Donnell‘s original work. The resulting booklet provides information about the purpose of orientation and mobility and the types of skills taught. The software also includes sections to be customized by the instructor regarding the child‘s eye condition, the functional implications of this condition, the orientation and mobility skills that the child is learning, and the child‘s current level of mastery of these skills. Additional sections explained the important role of the family in utilizing teachable moments and participating in various types of games and activities to enhance development of particular skills. The software allows the instructor to choose from a list of helpful activities or write individualized ones. During FY 2006, Perla and O‘Donnell completed prototype content and the project leader completed the final edit of text. All material was ―plugged‖ into the screen-by-screen outline. The programmer brought this revised material into the program, and early prototypes of the program were evaluated by the programmer and project leader. During FY 2007, necessary program changes were outlined, the programmer revised the program, and additional changes were suggested by in-house staff. During FY 2008, color, contrast, the appearance of token characters on-screen, and the use of small scroll boxes for viewing and selecting from long lists of data have been addressed by inhouse testers; the programmer made changes to meet these specifications. Work during FY 2009 The software was revised to meet in-house review specifications. It was shared with consultants who offered additional changes. Approximately 28 O&M instructors used and reviewed the software and suggested additional changes in an on-line email list forum. Further changes were suggested by consultants as they reviewed pertinent sections of the program. The programmer is revising screens to meet altered specifications resulting from consultant and field reviews. Work planned for FY 2010 Field review changes to the software will be completed; one final field test round will be initiated to check changes, and the program will be made available for sale. Parenting Book (Continued) Purpose To provide visually impaired parents with support and information about parenting techniques that have been effective for other visually impaired parents Project Staff 77

Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Janet Ingber, Consultant/Author Kevin E. O‘Connor, Consultant Deborah Kendrick, Consultant Ann Travis, Research/Project Assistant Background Janet Ingber, a blind mother, submitted a draft outline and three chapters of a parenting book based on interviews with 17 effective parents who were visually impaired. Research conducted at APH confirmed that very little information was available for blind parents regarding issues related to visual impairment and parenting. The need for an informational parenting book was further assessed through a survey of professionals in the field of visual impairment and blindness. Survey results indicated that: training was not available for professionals in the area of parenting and visual impairment; there were a significant number of blind parents who could have benefited from information related to blindness and parenting; and a self-help informational book could maximally benefit many such parents or parents-to-be. Of particular concern among survey respondents was the need for support and information to counteract the negative stereotypes about blindness such as the belief that persons with visual impairments could not be effective parents. To meet the need for accurate information and support for parents with visual impairments, the development of an expanded version of Ingber‘s work was undertaken. A database was developed to record, store, and manipulates information to be obtained from questionnaires and phone interviews. Parent volunteers were recruited through APH Ex Officio Trustees, the APH monthly newsletter, e-mail list announcements, contacts with staff and/or relevant committees of the American Council of the Blind and the National Federation of the Blind, and word of mouth. Parent participants either had raised or were raising at least one child when the parent was legally blind. Parents were also selected because of their interest in and commitment to parenting and because of their desire to share what they had learned with other parents. Ingber contacted and conducted phone interviews with 62 blind parents. She recorded results of these interviews into the database and submitted this material to the project leader. The project leader completed content analysis and results summaries for the data. Ingber and the project leader have written, edited, and rewritten all chapters of the book based on information obtained from the parent sample. Photos were obtained from Ingber for inclusion in the book. Work during FY 2009 All chapters were reviewed/edited for consistency of style. Additional photos were sought from all participating parents; scanned photos have been received from four parents; and hard copy photos have been offered by three parents. Two sets of scanned photos are not useable because of low resolution. 78

Permissions for use of photos have been sent to all parents who sent in photos. Requests for hard copy photos where scans are not useable have been made. Mailers have been provided for parents offering hard copy photos and for those with non-useable photo scans; such borrowed photos will be returned to parents after being scanned at APH Work planned for FY 2010 Prototype layout will be completed. Three expert reviewers will offer suggestions for revision to ensure that the book reflects current promising practices in the parenting field and viable parenting practices for parents with visual impairments. It is anticipated that revisions will be completed and that this product will become available for sale in FY 2010. Printing Guide (Continued) Purpose To develop teaching materials and printing templates to assist persons who are blind to learn to print legible capital letters according to positions of the braille dots in a cell Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Monica Vaught, Research Assistant/Co-Project Leader Linda Ray, Project Consultant Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Tom Poppe, Model/Pattern Maker Background Although computers increasingly are being used as a means of written communication on the job and in social and recreational life, production of legible written communication still remains an essential skill. Jotting notes to colleagues, writing a quick comment on a page of printed material, leaving a note on the refrigerator for a family member, and filling in information on a check while shopping are only a few of the tasks that are accomplished more easily with a pen than with a computer. Some congenitally blind persons have developed legible script and/or print styles. However, many adults who did not have functional vision during primary and elementary grades have not learned to produce print or script letters that sighted persons can read. Linda Ray, a teacher of the visually impaired, submitted one print teaching method for consideration. With this method, students are taught to shape block print capital letters by connecting dot positions within a braille cell for each letter. Additionally, students are taught to print within a template of lines of rectangular openings. By using this template, cell boundaries can be detected when printing, print remains constant in size, and characters do not drift into one another. 79

Early research indicated that, though braille dot positions had been used to teach both printing and script writing throughout the blindness field, teaching curricula and materials had been developed primarily for script and not for print. Print samples from persons using Ray‘s print teaching method and from persons who had been taught to print using a variation on this method were examined. Preliminary data indicated that, with several significant exceptions, the connecting dots method of print teaching in combination with a printing template resulted in very readable block print. However, when printed with this method, several letters were indistinguishable or ambiguous. It was deemed desirable to develop a system that could eliminate as much ambiguity as possible. Additionally, it was deemed necessary to provide materials that could help students improve their production of diagonal lines. To resolve ambiguity between block letters of D and O, attempts were made to teach students to draw curves by using templates with curved rather than sharp corners and tracing boards with curved letters. Tracing boards also included K, M, V, W, and Y, to help students learn to draw more complex diagonals. Results of preliminary field testing showed that curved templates and tracing boards did not help students print curved letters; D-O and 8-B remained indistinguishable. Results also indicated that tracing boards might be helpful for teaching diagonals to some students, but a more streamlined approach to materials development was needed. To resolve the D-O ambiguity, a Greek Delta character was offered for D; this character is very recognizable and may be easier to produce than the curved D. The small Y and a restructured B were also included. The product was reconfigured to provide one learning page per letter. Each learning page will include a letter description (the braille dot combinations to be connected for that letter), a raised image of the letter shape, and an engraved, penciltraceable letter. Additional feedback from the field was sought by consulting Sally Mangold and by conducting a focus meeting at the AERBVI International Conference in July, 2004. Feedback from the field was reviewed and a plan for the project prototype was finalized. As a result of this input, an additional description of each print letter based on position in the cell and not on dot numbers will be included on learning pages. Letters will also be presented in an order that allows students to master simple strokes and then join them into multi-stroke letters. Placement of letter descriptions and of embossed and engraved letter shapes on learning pages was finalized. Work during FY 2009 The Project leader‘s schedule constraints precluded further development of the product prototype during FY 2008 and FY 2009. Work planned for FY 2010 The project leader will work closely with the model maker to develop product prototypes, which will then be submitted for field review. Field test prototypes for the learning pages will 80

be developed. A guide book for teachers will be written, and a printing template based on the braille slate will be developed. Field testing will be undertaken. Step By Step: An Interactive Guide to Mobility Techniques (Continued) Purpose To offer university students who are studying to become orientation and mobility specialists a visual tool that they can use outside of class time to learn, review, and practice the mobility techniques that they are learning to teach Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Rosanne Hoffmann, Research Assistant/Co-Project Leader Sandy Rosen, Author/Consultant Background In the Product Idea Submission Form that Sandy Rosen prepared for APH, she provided the following background information about this project. ―A laserdisc prototype (developed through a grant funded by the U.S. Department of Education, was originally field-tested by students and faculty in orientation and mobility at three universities: The University of Texas at Austin, Western Michigan University, and San Francisco State University. Feedback from students and faculty not only revealed multiple effective uses for such a database and interactive learning tool, but it also confirmed that there were significant differences among the universities in how students were taught to perform mobility skills. ―Surprised by this finding, and wanting to develop a tool that would have national relevance, Dr. Rosen participated in a symposium at San Francisco State University in February 1993. University faculty in O&M from throughout the United States were brought together to share the methods of performing mobility techniques that they each teach at their respective universities and colleges. In this symposium, participants demonstrated their individual methods for performing each technique and, as a nationally representative group, came to a general consensus on acceptable basic standard and accepted alternate methods for performing techniques.‖ Compiling information developed at this symposium, Rosen produced the Step by Step program, which she describes in the Product Idea Submission Form. ―Step by Step combines text, full-motion and stop-action video, and photographs to demonstrate and describe basic, intermediate, and advanced mobility skills used by travelers who are blind. It is an interactive instructional program that has been developed to supplement university professional preparation programs. Users of the program can test their understanding of the techniques, identify errors commonly made by those who are learning to travel, and determine appropriate 81

measures to correct each error. It is a system that lends itself to both individual use and collaborative learning where small groups of students go through the activities together. ―The focus is on learning the elements of how each technique is performed, visually identifying common performance errors made by travelers who have visual impairments, and then learning how to correct those errors in order to enable a person to travel more efficiently, effectively, and to avoid potential injury.‖ Rosen provided APH with both written and DVD materials. Written materials include photos and detailed descriptions of all techniques covered by the symposium. Additional written materials provide a quick review of all techniques. Videos and electronic photos provide both demonstrations of techniques and assessments in which students select the video that best answers a specific technical question. The co-project leader viewed videos and read all written materials. Written materials were well-prepared. They required correction of only a few keyboarding errors in order to be submitted for expert review. As a result of this review, Rosen re-shot a number of photos that were ―blurry,‖ and she submitted replacement pages and files to APH. Before FY 2008, cross-platform video materials originally developed with Macintosh® hardware presented a persistent problem when running on a PC: the cutting off of text in scroll boxes. This problem was solved by reprogramming by Rosen. Five certified O&M specialists (three university O&M faculty members and 2 advanced graduate students) were selected as expert reviewers. Complete Step by Step video and print materials and a questionnaire were sent to them. Work during FY 2009 All expert reviews were received, data were analyzed, and multiple changes to written materials were made based on reviewer suggestions. The edit/rewrite process involved intense email communication between the project leader and Rosen. Several sections were completely rewritten and input was obtained from additional experts in the field. APH's in-house graphic designer has prepared a color scheme and layout to be used throughout all modules of the printed materials. Based on this layout, design of the first Study Guide module, Human Gide, has been completed. Because design/color components for other modules have been resolved, additional modules can be laid out quickly and efficiently. The in-house graphics designer did a test run of photos in all modules on the production printer and determined that photos can be sized at 3" x 4" so that detailed hand/arm/cane positions can be clearly seen. The in-house graphics designer will touch up some photos that did not print well on the production printer on a trial run at this size.

82

Currently, some video scenarios that challenge the student to select the correct technique from a series do not operate properly when moving between incorrect answers, correct answers, and the scenario. To solve this problem, Rosen and her programmer have changed programming and have raised minimum system requirements for running DVDs. A corrected DVD set is being prepared for APH. Work Planned for FY 2010 Graphic design and layout for Study Guide and Review Guide modules will be completed. These materials will be produced as HTML and text files for inclusion on CDs in the volumes, and will be printed in book form. DVDs will be copied, and the product will be made available for sale. Talking PC Maps (New) Purpose To teach street layout and location literacy with an interactive, PC-based, talking and onscreen United States map in which specific key strokes move students virtually along streets and past points of interest. Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Ann Travis, Project Assistant Background In 2007, Mike May, CEO of the Sendero Group (a company noted for its development of accessible GPS systems for persons with visual impairments), proposed that APH develop, in collaboration with Sendero, a map exploration tool to be run on the BrailleNote® note taker made by Humanware Inc. and possibly later on a PC. The APH Product Advisory and Review Committee) PARC) decided to pursue the development of such a product for the PC. Ongoing dialog was undertaken among all interested parties, leading to the following conclusions about product development: first, working jointly to provide a GPS solution for the Braille Plus Mobile Manager and a maps solution for the PC was not feasible because technical differences between operating systems precluded parallel and collaborative development; second, Talking PC Maps must present street data by itself to teach street layout and must also present combined street and Point of Interest data to teach the integration of landmarks, location awareness, and street layout; and third, Talking PC Maps must perform in accordance with a stipulated set of essential features, some of which will be stipulated as proprietary to the APH PC program. Work during FY 2009 The project leader specified an overall program description; a set of essential features (some of which are proprietary to APH's PC software); a set of directions for describing intersection 83

shapes and layouts; and a set of on-screen color combinations to be used to depict pertinent features. The project leader prepared documentation addressing the unique qualifications of Sendero Group to produce this software. However, it was determined that a unique qualification did not exist and that, in accord with federally–mandated procedures, the project specifications were to be sent out for bid to at least three appropriate vendors. The project leader prepared the documents mentioned previously for such submittal. Work planned for FY 2010 It is anticipated that project documents will be sent out for bid, that a vendor will be located, that contractual agreements will be made, and that prototype development will begin. Transition Tote System, Revised (Continued) Purpose To update materials and resource lists in a curriculum that teaches skills necessary for successful entry into the world of work Project Staff Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Karen Wolffe, Project Consultant Background In light of the high unemployment rates for people who are blind or visually impaired, the 1993 Educational Research and Development Committee of APH strongly recommended that APH develop career preparation materials. The Transition Tote System was produced to meet this need. This product provided instruction in the following skill areas: personal organization, self-awareness, self-advocacy, work exploration, job seeking, and job keeping. An extensive list of important educational and vocational resources was also included. The Transition Tote Case was developed to provide an organizational system for storing job-search materials and to serve as a carrying case for braille and large print media, cassette recorders, note takers, and laptops. Revision of the Transition Tote System is needed because its resource sections have become outdated, because experienced users suggest that several new content areas should be included, and because the Tote Case has never functioned as originally intended. Resource information was collected during 1996 and 1997. Major changes in assistive technology, vendor contact information, and service delivery systems have occurred since that time and need to be incorporated into resource lists. Inclusion of material that might help students use recorded materials more effectively and that might improve students‘ self-advocacy should be considered. The Transition Tote Case is not sturdy enough to transport electronic equipment, note takers, and computers safely.

84

The Transition Tote Case appearance issues were corrected by a new vendor. However, the new case stock did not resolve issues related to transport of electronic equipment. Changes to be considered in a new version of the case were discussed in an informal meeting with a developer of the original project. An additional text section was also discussed. During FY 2006, the project leader acquired background materials on state standards and requirements for transition classes. During FY 2007, the project leader contacted the primary consultant on the original Transition Tote regarding revision issues. This consultant would like to update and provide major expansion of the Transition Tote system. During FY 2007, the consultant conducted extensive exploration of additional funding sources and potential collaboration partners. Additional information about the Transition Tote System can be found at: http://sun1.aph.org/products/2005.html#m2 During FY 2008, the primary consultant indicated that additional funding sources did not develop for this project. She proposed a series of revisions which were approved by the project leader. She has agreed to write the revision material at no cost to APH. Work during FY 2009 The primary consultant has completed revisions on the Student Manual and anticipates revisions on the Teacher's Guidebook (formerly called Information Supplement) by the end of FY 2009. A new backpack design has been developed to replace the tote bag. Drawings have been sent to three vendors; one sample has been received; and samples from two other vendors are expected before the end of FY 2009. Work planned for FY 2010 The backpack will be finalized, a vendor will be selected, and backpacks will be made available for sale as separate parts and as part of the revised Transition Tote system. In-house expert review of all text revisions of the Student Manual and the Teacher's Guidebook will be undertaken; revised Transition Tote materials will be submitted for graphic design, for braille, and for recording; production of new materials will begin. Travel Tales (Continued) Purpose To develop a story book that models appropriate orientation and mobility skills used by young blind and visually impaired protagonists Project Staff 85

Mary T. (Terrie) Terlau, Project Leader Suzette Wright, Consultant/Project Advisor Background Sighted children learn from other children and adults who model relevant travel skills; they see people waiting for walk lights, boarding public transportation, and moving safely through the environment on television, in books, and almost everywhere in visual range. Blind children do not benefit from sighted models for two reasons: first, they cannot see the behaviors being modeled; and second, many travel skills used by sighted persons are not relevant to the travel needs of blind children who must learn an alternate set of travel skills that will enable them to move safely and effectively through the environment without seeing it. Because blindness is a low incidence disability and because accurate portrayal of effective blind travelers by the media is extremely rare, blind children generally do not have access to models from whom they can learn more about the value and applicability of the orientation and mobility skills that they develop in school. The original Travel Tales book made story teaching materials—with a young blind traveler as protagonist and model—available to the orientation and mobility field. When Mostly Mobility, producers of this book, stopped production, they opened a dialog with APH regarding their material. After careful review, it was determined that the original work, if revised, could provide an excellent resource for use with young persons as they develop their orientation and mobility skills. Full rights to the material were obtained by APH. Suzette Wright and Terrie Terlau met to discuss content to be updated. Wright described a story idea that would introduce the collection and that would help reluctant cane users be drawn into the book. This introductory story and additional expanded content could make the book an effective tool for modeling and for motivating orientation and mobility students. Work during FY 2009 Project Leaders‘ full schedules did not allow for work on Travel Tales during FY 2009. Work planned for FY 2010 As Project Leaders‘ schedules permit, new content and story revision will be undertaken. Revisions planned include the expansion of some stories; the inclusion of ethnic/racial/gender diversity in protagonists; and the development of a sequence of stories about children with low vision using low vision orientation and mobility techniques.

86

Art

87

Art Digitizing/Modernizing of On the Way to Literacy Storybooks (New) Purpose To replace deteriorating film art with digital art and slightly reduce page sizes to enable production of the books on iGEN equipment Project staff Suzette Wright, Project Leader Terri Gilmore, Graphic Designer and Co-Project Leader Background: The 18 storybooks in the On the Way to Literacy series were first produced in the early 1990‘s using film art, then standard in the printing industry. The film art for these books has deteriorated over time and must be replaced. Most printers are reluctant to use film art, so the print tooling for the books must be recreated in digital file formats. In addition, yearly sales for the books fluctuate. In 2008, two titles sold fewer than 300 copies; others sold between 400 and 550 copies. Offset printing costs are largely determined by quantity. The per unit cost of a book rises dramatically when fewer than 400 to 500 are printed at a time. Because books are not inventoried, it may become necessary to order smaller, costlier runs. The recommendation was made by production that the books also be redesigned for iGEN production, making it possible to produce smaller runs in-house rather than send these out for offset printing. To do so, the books‘ page dimensions must be made slightly smaller. As the print art is redone, serif fonts will be converted to sans serif fonts, widely accepted as more visible for low vision, large print readers. In addition, modified visual art for some pages using additional shading, colors, and some patterns will make the illustrations more visually attractive for sighted audiences. This is an objective of the product that has become more important over time as increasing numbers of consumers and focus group members have noted the importance of providing read-aloud books that will also interest sighted siblings and peers. Braille plates, tactile art and illustrations will not change. A change in binding will be considered for some books if a suitable, less expensive alternative to the current binding can be found. Standardization was specified as being of lesser importance than the ability to move production of the product inhouse at a competitive price as well as retain current art for the tactile illustrations and plates for the braille text. Work during FY 2009 Meetings with production staff helped define the objectives of the modernization effort. The project leader and Technical Research staff analyzed the 18 books in the On the Way to Literacy series and grouped them according to type and nature of the modifications that were to be made. It was decided to handle modernization by group. The project leader has worked closely with the in-house graphic designer on the first two groups of books. Outside graphic designers, under the in-house designer‘s supervision, have also helped to complete much of the art. Colors were chosen based on iGEN swatches, and the Low Vision Project Leader was 88

consulted regarding all visual art modifications. The updated look of the books is appealing and does not affect the tactile illustrations used by the child. The new print art does not introduce visual elements that are key to the text. Changes are decorative and do not reduce visibility for low vision readers. The project leader has proofed the text and art; Technical Research is checking the print art to ensure it corresponds with the placement of the braille and tactile art. Work planned for FY 2010 Work on the first two groups of books will be completed and the modernized print tooling will be supplied to production. At the start of production using the new art, the project leader and others will review the output to ensure it meets expectations. Modernization of the print art for the three remaining groups of books will begin. Braille Beads (Continued) Purpose To create inexpensive plastic braille beads for students to create bracelets, earrings, necklaces, and ankle bracelets for personal use, gifts, and to support fundraising efforts Project Staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Anita Rutledge, Design Specialist/Process Engineer Background While visiting residential schools for the blind, APH staff noticed that teachers use beading as a way to create fun, wearable art, and to develop skills such as fine motor and sorting. Research showed that the few types of braille beads available on the market were very expensive (manufactured from metals and blown glass), making them unattainable through school budgets or for the average family to purchase. Work during FY 2009 APH produced prototype beads through Rapid Reproduction. The Project Leader created sample bracelets, necklaces, and earrings. Work planned for FY 2010 Prototype kits will be assembled and shipped to field testers. APH will determine if the product is cost effective to produce.

89

Braille

90

Alphabetic Braille and Contracted (ABC) Braille Study (Continuing through 2010)

Purpose The Alphabetic Braille and Contracted Braille (ABC) Study was conceived as a 5-year exploration of literacy environments, skills, and experiences of children who are totally blind or have light perception only. The organizing factor of the study was a comparison of students who were initially taught contracted braille with those initially taught uncontracted braille. The study also collected data on the larger issue of how the learning environment impacts literacy skill acquisition, especially in the context of braille reading. Children in the United States and Canada were enrolled. Due to assistance from the Canadian Braille Authority and the American Foundation for the Blind, the project expanded its budget to include 6 years of research (5 years of data collection). Core Team Anne Corn, Ed.D. Vanderbilt University, Principal Investigator through Summer 2007 Robert Wall Emerson, Ph.D., Western Michigan University, Statistician, Data Storage Jane Erin, Ph.D., University of Arizona at Tucson, Quantitative Research Team Leader Sharon Sacks, Ph.D., California State University Qualitative Research Team Leader Diane P. Wormsley, Ph.D., North Carolina Central University, Principal Investigator beginning Summer 2007 2006-2007 was the final year of the project. During this past year, 2008-2009, the Research Team has been conducting an analysis of data and preparing articles for dissemination of the research information. Below is the list of contributors to the project and their roles in the project. ABC Braille Cumulative Contributor List Research Team  Lizbeth Barclay, M.Ed., California School for the Blind  Anne Corn, Ed.D., Vanderbilt University, Principal Investigator through Summer 2007  Chris Craig, Ed.D., Missouri State University, 2002-2005  Frances Mary D‘Andrea, M.Ed., American Foundation for the Blind, University of Pittsburgh  Rob Wall Emerson, Ph.D., Western Michigan University, Statistician  Jane Erin, Ph.D., University of Arizona, Quantitative Team Leader  Stephanie Herlich, M.Ed., Pleasanton Unified School District  Cay Holbrook, Ph.D., University of British Columbia  Julie Anderson-Ituarte, M.A., Lecturer, Missouri State University, 2002-2005 91

 Alan Koenig, Ed.D., Texas Tech University, Quantitative Leader through 2004  Sharon Sacks, Ph.D., California School for the Blind, Qualitative Team Leader  Debbie Sitar, M.Ed., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Assessment Coordinator  Diane P. Wormsley, Ph.D., North Carolina Central University, Principal Investigator beginning Summer 2007 Research Support  Tessa Wright, M.Ed., Vanderbilt University  Cheryl Kamei Hannan, M.A., California State University, Los Angeles Research Assistants  Jennifer Cook, Vanderbilt University, Year 3  Julia Hedrick, M.Ed., Vanderbilt University, Year 2  Sara Hines, M.Ed., Vanderbilt University, Year 4  Jill Robbins, M. Ed., Vanderbilt University, Year 1  Tessa Wright, M.Ed., Vanderbilt University, Years 5 and 6 Observers  Cynthia Bachofer, M.Ed., Vanderbilt University  Jennifer Bell Coy, M.Ed., Vanderbilt University  Janetta Davenport, M.Ed., Vanderbilt University  Meg Gilchrist, M.Ed., Vanderbilt. University  Barbara Leach, M.Ed., Vanderbilt University  Kelly Lusk, Ph.D., Vanderbilt University  Heather McDonough, M.Ed., Vanderbilt University APH Officers  Robert ―Bob‖ Brasher, Vice-President, Advisory Services and Research  Tuck Tinsley III, Ed.D., President APH ABC Braille Study Staff  John Aicken, M.B.A. Assistant Director of Research  Ralph Bartley, Ph.D., Director of Research  Eleanor Pester, M.S., Braille Project Leader APH Support Staff  Janie Blome, Director of Field Services 92

     

Tessa Wright, Research Assistant Barbara Henderson, Test and Assessment Project Leader Kristopher Scott, Accessible Test Editor Debbie Willis, Director of Accessible Tests Production Staff Technical Research Staff

Financial Contributors  American Printing House for the Blind, primary financial support  American Foundation for the Blind National Literacy Center  Canadian Braille Literacy Foundation  Special Education Technology, British Columbia  Texas Tech University In Kind Contributors  American Printing House for the Blind  California State University, Los Angeles  California School for the Blind  Governor Morehead School for the Blind  North Carolina Central University  Pennsylvania College of Optometry  Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired  Texas Tech University  Mila Truan  University of Arizona  University of British Columbia  Vanderbilt University  Vanderbilt University Vision Research Center  Western Michigan University Test Publisher Acknowledgement We would like to thank the following for allowing APH to emboss the test instruments we used.  Curriculum Associates Inc. (Brigance Comprehensive Inventory of Basic Skills)  Texas Education Agency (Texas Primary Reading Inventory)  Kendall Publishing Company (Jerry L. Johns Basic Reading Inventory)  Region IV Education Service Center (Adapted Assessment of Braille  Literacy Skills)  Harcourt Assessment (Stanford Achievement Test Series) 93

Background The ABC Braille Study was a 5-year study of literacy acquisition in children who are braille readers. The study explored the development of literacy skills and charted literacy experiences of children who initially learn contracted braille as well as those who initially learn uncontracted braille. While this study sought to develop guidance for teachers of students with visual impairments with regard to initial instruction in braille, it also provided the first in-depth look at how young blind children were learning to read, write, and spell. This study was the first time a consortium of eight universities, two organizations, and a special school for the blind, had joined forces to conduct research. Children in the study resided in the U.S. and Canada and attended special schools and local education agencies, as well as pre-kindergarten programs, e.g., Head Start. They were enrolled in the study in either pre-kindergarten or kindergarten and were followed through to the end of the five years, with the fourth grade being the highest grade level achieved by students in the study. Over the course of the study 45 students were enrolled. Four children were dropped from the study because they had been identified as having multiple disabilities. Three other children left the study for various reasons. Data from these children were included where it was appropriate to do so. Enrolled children resided in 12 U.S. states and one Canadian province, with children coming from a range of educational environments. Work during FY 2009 This past 2008-2009 academic year involved the consolidation of research data and analysis by the Research Team with approximately seven writing teams submitting articles on the various aspects of the study. APH hosted a small number of teleconference calls related to the research and to move the article writing along. During the course of the year, six teams completed their writing tasks and submitted articles. These six articles will be included in the special October/November issue of the JVIB, the special JVIB issue on literacy celebrating the 200th anniversary year of Louis Braille‘s birth. A presentation at APH‘s annual meeting this year will highlight these publications. Work planned for FY 2010 During the 2009-2010 school year, researchers will continue to work in their various writing groups. Writing teams will be pulling together the existing literature and research, and including the data from the ABC Braille Project into submissions for various journals. At the moment there are approximately four to five teams at work. Two articles are presently being finalized for submission. A presentation at Getting In Touch With Literacy will explore the research questions and answers and pose additional questions which continue to need research. The writing team functions with the assistance of APH Staff members, Eleanor Pester, Ralph Bartley, and John Aicken, and the members are as follows:  Lizbeth Barclay, M.Ed., California School for the Blind 94

        

Frances Mary D‘Andrea, M.Ed., University of Pittsburgh Rob Wall Emerson, Ph.D., Western Michigan University, Statistician Jane Erin, Ph.D., University of Arizona, Quantitative Team Leader Stephanie Herlich, M.Ed., Pleasanton Unified School District Cay Holbrook, Ph.D., University of British Columbia Cheryl Kamei-Hannan, Ph.D., California State University, Los Angeles Sharon Sacks, Ph.D., California School for the Blind, Qualitative Team Leader Debbie Sitar, M.Ed., Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Diane P. Wormsley, Ph.D., North Carolina Central University, Principal Investigator beginning Summer 2007  Tessa Wright, M.Ed., Vanderbilt University Revision of Patterns: The Primary Braille Reading Program Building on Patterns: Kindergarten and First Grade Levels (Continuing Series) Purpose To revise and update Patterns: The Primary Braille Reading Program Project Staff Eleanor Pester, Project Leader Deanna Scoggins, Consultant/Writer Terri Gilmore, Graphic Designer Rosanne Hoffmann, Research/Project Assistant Carol Roderick, Research/Project Assistant Elaine Kitchel, Low Vision Project Leader/Writer Monica Vaught, Research/Project Assistant Jeanette Wicker, Core Curriculum Project Leader Suzette Wright, Emergent Literacy Project Leader Background Patterns: The Primary Braille Reading Program was designed to teach reading to children who would use braille as their primary reading medium. It was built on strong reading and braille principles and has remained an effective learning tool since its debut in 1980. In education, where textbooks over 5 years old are considered outdated, Patterns is now ancient history. Times have changed, and for some years full inclusion has been in vogue, and reading has been taught first with a whole language focus and then with phonics playing a major role. More recently the emphasis has been on phonemic awareness, phonics, comprehension, fluency, and development of oral vocabulary. With this being the case, some teachers are having a difficult time justifying the use of a program the age of Patterns. Young braille readers, however, still need a firm foundation for beginning braille reading upon which to 95

build. It is the goal of this project to produce an updated and enhanced braille reading program for beginners by building on the successes and philosophy of Patterns. In September 1997, the project advisory committee met at APH to discuss revision of Patterns: The Primary Braille Reading Program. Decisions were made regarding features that should be kept, features that should be changed, ways to update the content, and topics that would be of interest to today‘s visually impaired children. The committee discussed current trends in reading for the general population, some new programs, and methods for teaching reading and language arts, and the use of tactile graphics with young children. In 1998, a detailed timeline and budget were developed for this project. Work on a revised prototype of the early levels of the program began. An extensive bibliography on the latest literature related to braille reading was compiled and reviewed by project personnel. Current reading programs and methods were also reviewed. In 1999, the basic prototype for the kindergarten level of the Patterns revision was developed, and ideas for possible supplementary phonics and character development tapes, games, and books were explored. In 2000, changes were made in the kindergarten level based on conference sessions, reviews of research, and project advisory committee recommendations. Work began on the 1st grade level of the program. New approaches to teaching reading continued to be investigated. In 2001, work continued on the kindergarten and 1st grade levels of the program. A draft of the kindergarten level was completed and turned over to APH by the textbook writer. In 2002, work continued on the preparation of the kindergarten level for field testing and on the development of the 1st and 2nd grade levels. It was decided to talk about a child rather than children in the text since the majority of braille readers are educated in public rather than in residential schools and are likely to be working on braille reading individually rather than in a group. The kindergarten lessons were edited to reflect this change. In 2003, introductory lessons for the kindergarten level were written and the decision was made to teach braillewriting of the letter words and letters at the same time as the letter words, letters, and sounds are taught in reading rather than waiting until the students can read ten words or so to start writing. Efforts were also made to clear the project leader‘s schedule so that more time could be devoted to this project. Meanwhile the textbook writer continued work on the text and teacher‘s guide for the 1st grade. In 2004, content editing of the kindergarten level was completed. This included adding a teacher‘s note on using the braillewriter versus the slate and stylus to introduce braillewriting and adding allergy alerts when food is used as part of a lesson. The mechanics of braillewriting were taught early to allow the child to be as independent as possible as early as possible. A checklist for the mechanics of braillewriting was provided to help the teacher track 96

the child‘s progress and identify where the child still needs help. Some selections written especially for the original Patterns were edited to relate better to kindergarteners and to emphasize concept development for a visually impaired child. Meetings were held with the graphic designer to discuss graphics needed and work out designs for covers. Several meetings were also held to talk about production. Work continued on the 1st grade level which included the development of original stories and activities for the lessons and additional planning on selections and phonics and vocabulary to be included. During the summer, the project leader held a working meeting with six teachers of primary visually impaired children and the textbook writer. This group discussed state assessment standards and drafted test and remediation materials for the kindergarten and first grade levels of the revised program. In 2005, additions were made to the kindergarten level for presenting the tactual graphics on the covers and those used in the introductions of the color words to children who are blind and have limited concept development and usually do not automatically recognize two dimensional representations of three dimensional objects. These textbook introductions were also used along with the titles to begin working on the skill of forecasting. Forms were created for recording the progress on the work covered in each textbook. For field testing, the eight textbooks were then produced in braille and the Teacher‘s Edition, Posttest Manual, and Assessment Forms were produced in both print and braille. Sample print lessons were laid out two different ways with icons and formatting for field testing. Using the items written by the Teachers of the Visually Impaired last summer, the Kindergarten Posttest was put together. Several evaluation forms were developed for the field testing and expert review. In 2006, field testing was conducted. Results were reviewed as they came in and then pulled together in a more complete report. Revisions included additional worksheets, suggestions for read-aloud books at the end of each lesson, and the correction of copy errors. A general introduction to the program, a specific introduction for the kindergarten level, and an introduction for the posttest were written. Acknowledgements, references, a table of contents, a scope and sequence chart for the level, several appendices, and an index of skills were added. Copyright permissions were secured where they were needed and replacement selections were found and lessons rewritten when permissions were unable to be secured. Such selections were often ones that evaluators had recommended changing anyway. A number of new books and research articles were reviewed during the writing of the introduction and are very helpful as the 1st grade level is developed. A group of teachers of the visually impaired from Ohio is helping with the development of some of the stories. The kindergarten level of Building on Patterns (BOP) became available for purchase in November of 2006. In 2007, development of the lessons for 1st grade continued. When a draft of the 1st grade lessons was about half done, two experts reviewed the lessons. Possible cover art and titles for the proposed seven units for the level were discussed with one of the experts and our graphic artists. The other expert felt that too many things were being taught in each lesson. The project leader worked with this expert/consultant on reordering the phonics and the language activities, spreading them out over the lessons for the year, and teaching them in a more systematic way. A few of the reading selections were also reordered to better fit the 97

phonics and language being taught. This consultant cut and pasted the lessons that were done to conform to the new plan, filled in new activities when they were needed, and edited the reading selections and the spelling activities accordingly. The project leader continued on with work on additional reading selections, comprehension questions, oral reading and fluency activities, and vocabulary and concept development activities. In May, the project leader and the other expert who had reviewed the lessons co-hosted a meeting with the head of the Ohio teacher group and two of the teachers from the 2004 Summer Group, one from California and one from Oregon. The expert proposed reordering each lesson into a 5-day schedule and supplementing it with additional tactile graphics and other supplementary activities. Following the meeting, each of the three participants from Ohio, California, and Oregon formed teams of teachers of visually impaired students to work on this. In 2008, work continued on the 1st grade lessons with the project leader and the local consultant developing lesson drafts and sending them to the teacher writing teams from Ohio, California, and Oregon to reorder the lessons into 5-day sequences and supplement them with additional tactile graphics, creative writing, and other supplemental activities. The project leader worked with the teams and edited the lessons coming back from them to maintain consistency, checked print layout copy being prepared for field testing, and answered questions from the Braille transcriber. In May, a new writing team of three teachers of visually impaired students in Arkansas was trained to reorder and supplement lessons by a team leader from California and the expert whose idea it was to reorder and supplement the lessons. In June, members of the teacher writing teams and other consultants met at APH and discussed questions the groups had about the development of the remainder of the lessons for Building on Patterns Grade 1 (BOP-1) to include the reading selections and all remaining parts of the lessons yet to be done. Preliminary planning for the development of BOP Grade 2 (BOP2) was also begun. In September, the first two units of BOP-1 with all accompanying materials and appropriate evaluation forms were sent to field testers and expert reviewers. Work during FY 2009 The evaluation of BOP-1 Units 1 and 2 was completed, and prototypes of Units 3 and 4 were distributed with appropriate evaluation forms. Data from these units were analyzed, and appropriate revisions to the units were made and proofread before they were laid out in print and transcribed into braille for production. Revisions included better relating the titles and cover designs of the units to the reading selections; designing a lesson assessment form to better meet teacher needs; having a consultant design a scope and sequence of skills presented at this level for creative writing and apply it to the lessons to create more of a progression of skills; making a careful check of Dolch words incorporated into the lessons; adding Passage Miscue Assessments and ECC skills to these units; replacing the reading selection in the Unit 4 with one that seemed less confusing; checking on the quality of the braille dots in the student material; changing the title of Unit 2 from ―Away from Home‖ to ―Going and Doing‖ to make it more distinct from the Unit 1 title, ―Not Far From Home‖; putting in additional sidebar information in the Teacher‘s Edition; and finally, correcting other more minor errors brought to our attention. Drafts of lessons for Units 5, 6, and 7 were received from the writing teams, revised as needed and finalized, and prepared for evaluation. The 98

Scope and Sequence Chart for BOP-1 was completed. Beginning reading books available in braille for the students to read were identified for Units 5, 6, and 7. As this year ends, the evaluation of Units 5 and 6 is in progress and Unit 7 is being prepared for evaluation. BOP-1 Unit 1 has been available for purchase as of September 2009. It is expected that Unit 2 will be available in October; Unit 3, in November; Unit 4, in December, and so forth. Development of BOP-2 is also well under way. Regular conference calls to plan BOP-2 with the heads of the writing teams began in April and are continuing. In June, all available members of the writing teams met at APH for further planning, and team members were put on Google Docs so that lessons can be shared and critiqued in progress. A BOP-2 Scope and Sequence Chart outlining Phonics and Syllabication, Spelling Words, Language Topics, and Braille Contractions to be introduced lesson by lesson has been put together. Changes to the Lesson Overview and the 5-Day Sequence for BOP-1 to be done in BOP-2 and Guidelines for Writing the Lessons have been prepared. Writing teams have decided upon unit themes, been assigned to various units, and have created sample lessons. Guidelines for unit assessments has been put together by the project leader and the local consultant and has been discussed with the expert on assessment, and will be turned over to the writing teams before the end of the year. Work planned for FY 2010 Evaluation of BOP-1 Units 5-7 will be completed and the results will be analyzed and used to make revisions. These units will be prepared for production, laid out in print, transcribed into braille, and produced for purchase. The BOP-1 Posttest will be completed and sent out for review. BOP-2 lessons will be developed, reviewed, edited as needed, prepared for review, evaluated, results analyzed, revisions made as indicated, and copy prepared for production. At the present time, drafts of the first units are expected to be completed around Thanksgiving 2009.

99

Core Curriculum

100

Early Braille Trade Books (Continued) Purpose To provide emergent and beginning braille readers with a wide selection of small books that provide practice and reinforcement of early reading skills and aid in the development of reading fluency Project Staff Jeanette Wicker, Project Leader Dotta Hassman, Consultant Cay Holbrook, Consultant Frances Mary D‘Andrea, Consultant Anna Swenson, Consultant Darlene Donhoff, Manufacturing Specialist Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Michael McDonald, Programmer Erica Rucker, Research Assistant Anita Rutledge, Design Specialist/Process Engineer Rodger Smith, Programmer BISIG Impact Group, Graphic Design Background The need for Early Braille Trade Books was identified by the Early Literacy Focus Group conducted by Suzette Wright in the summer of 2005. These small books for emergent readers are used in classrooms to support the reading curriculum and are available from several publishers. In the winter of 2006, APH conducted a reading survey to determine the types and series of leveled reading materials used by teachers of the blind and visually impaired. Using information gained from the Early Literacy Focus Group and the customer surveys, the Wright Group Books were chosen for the first project. Cay Holbrook, Associate Professor at the University of British Columbia, agreed to serve as the consultant for this project. In July of 2007, Holbrook along with five of the original members from the Early Literacy Focus Group of 2005 met in Louisville Kentucky to review and select books to be included in the kits. Members of the work group included:  Anthony, Tanni, State Consultant on Visual Impairment, Colorado Dept. of Education, Denver, CO  Brasher, Jeanie, Teacher, Kentucky School for the Blind, Louisville, KY  D‘Andrea, Frances Mary, Doctoral Student at the University of Pittsburg, Pittsburgh, PA  Hassman, Dotta, retired, Instructional Materials Center, Iowa Braille School, Vinton, Iowa 101

 Swenson, Anna, Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments, Fairfax Co. Public Schools, Dunn Loring, VA The group developed a final rubric, based on the work of Holbrook, for selection of books. They also reviewed 90 books from the Wright Group Sunshine Kits and determined the type of information about the book to include for the teacher. Hassman agreed to serve as a consultant to complete a text analysis of each of the books. One set of 13 books was selected for the development of an initial prototype to be used in field testing and review. In FY 2008 the prototype of a kit of commercially available leveled books adapted for braille readers was completed. The initial design of the prototype included a commercially available book with braille overlays and a guide for teacher. The teacher‘s guide would include the number and frequency of the braille contractions in the book, punctuation marks, and composition signs, as well as the theme of the book with connections to core curriculum and expanded core curriculum. In the development of the prototype for field evaluation the format for the teacher‘s guide changed from a print document to a web site hosted by APH. The web site allows the teacher to continually update the student record and access records of books. Anna Swenson became a consultant for the project and wrote the follow-up activities for each book. Work during FY 2009 The prototypes, including the web site, were field tested from September 2008 to March 2009 at 15 sites with 22 different students. The evaluations were positive and teachers unanimously recommended that APH produce the book with braille label sets and make the web site available to customers. Changes and modifications were made to the materials and the web site based on reviewer‘s feedback. A work session with the original six members was held in the spring of 2009. Additional books were reviewed and three new sets were chosen to be added to the series. A total of two sets will be released in the fall of 2009 and two will be released in the winter of 2010. Work planned for FY 2010 Two sets of nonfiction books at the first grade level will be made available to customers. Additional sets will be reviewed and selected for addition to the series. Wilson Reading System (Continued) Purpose To provide a remedial reading program for students with visual impairments Project Staff Jeanette Wicker, Project Leader 102

Mary McCarthy, Consultant Justine Carlone Rines, Consultant Rosalind Rowley, Consultant Katherine Corcoran, Model Maker Darlene Donhoff, Manufacturing Specialist Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist BISIG Impact Group, Graphic Design Background The Wilson Reading Program, with its well developed multi-sensory approach, is one of the most respected programs used to teach reading in the United States. This program has been used to teach reading to students with visual impairments who experience reading difficulties but is not available for sale in large print or braille. Teachers working with students at Perkins, Arizona, and North Carolina Schools for the Blind have reported good results. The project was approved by PET and PARC committees in July 2006. Three teachers from Perkins School for the Blind, Justine Rines, Mary McCarty, and Roz Rowley, were contracted as consultants for the project. A contractual agreement was reached with the Wilson Reading Systems to produce the materials in braille and large print. As there are many components to the system, it was decided to produce the Readers Levels 1, 2, & 3 in braille as quickly as possible since the readers required no modification. The Student Readers 1, 2, and 3 became available for sale in braille in February 2008. The consultant from Perkins developed supplemental worksheets that reinforce braille skills and knowledge of braille contractions. Work during FY 2009 The first six workbooks were translated and the supplemental worksheets were revised and translated for use in field testing. Work was begun on the prototypes of the Print/Braille Word Cards, Syllable Cards, Sound Cards, and Magnetic Tiles to be used in field testing. The first three reader and the first six workbooks were reformatted for Large Type editions. The Readers and Workbooks became available in October 2009. Work planned for FY 2010 Complete the prototypes of the remaining components of the Wilson Reading System. Select field evaluators and schedule field evaluation for the adapted Braille Materials in the winter of 2010.

103

Expanded Core Curriculum

104

Adventure ECC: The Hatlen Center Guide (New) Purpose To provide teachers of students with visual impairments, certified orientation and mobility specialists, parents, and other members of the educational team with quick, creative lessons designed to teach skills related to the expanded core curriculum to secondary students in school, home, and community settings Project Staff Loana K. Mason, Project Leader Patricia Maffei, Author/Consultant Patricia Williams, Consultant Background In spite of the fact that instruction in the expanded core curriculum (ECC) has been identified as an important goal of The National Agenda for the Education of Children and Youth with Visual Impairments, Including Those with Multiple Disabilities, teachers of students with visual impairments report that it is difficult finding the time and resources required to consistently and systematically address the plethora of skills contained in the following domains of the ECC: assistive technology/technology, career education, compensatory access skills, independent living, orientation and mobility, recreation and leisure, self-determination, sensory efficiency, and social interaction. This is particularly problematic because it is these specialized skills that allow students who are blind and visually impaired to access the core curriculum and to ultimately have the opportunity to attain the intended post-secondary outcomes afforded high school graduates. However, given the shortage of qualified personnel, oversized caseloads, the extensive time it takes to produce accessible instructional materials, the need for specialized knowledge of adaptive techniques, and emphasis on demonstrating adequate yearly progress on core-curriculum standards, instruction in the expanded core curriculum is often provided in a haphazard fashion. Furthermore, it is often difficult to achieve generalized use of these skills due to time constraints that affect communication between the teacher of students with visual impairments, classroom teachers, related service providers, and parents. In order to facilitate systematic instruction in the ECC for secondary students with visual impairments, it would be beneficial to provide ideas for lessons, including suggestions for adaptive strategies and aids, which could be easily executed across all the student‘s environments by any member of the educational team. Given the extensive heterogeneity among the population of learners with visual impairments, including those with additional disabilities, a sequential and leveled curriculum is impractical. A collection of lesson plans produced like recipe cards would create an individualized and dynamic curriculum that could easily be tailored to accommodate a variety of needs, interests, age levels, and ability levels. Given the fact that most middle and high school students do not have a scheduled daily class devoted entirely to mastery of the ECC, these specialized skills are often embedded within 105

other content on an as-needed basis. Unfortunately, this can lead to the development of splinter skills that are not generalized across situations and environments. However, the availability of short, easy-to-implement lessons would increase the likelihood of direct instruction in the ECC being provided regularly by any member of the educational team in the most naturally occurring context. Furthermore, lesson plans produced in a recipe format would facilitate the understanding of adaptive techniques and the procurement of adaptive aids needed for the execution of the targeted skill. Hence, this type of curriculum would facilitate systematic instruction in the ECC while helping the student and the educational team realizes that mastery of the ECC is essential to success in the core curriculum and in life after school. Work during FY 2009 In March 2009, Patricia Maffei, program director of the Hatlen Center for the Blind, proposed a guide containing lesson plans and suggested adaptive aids and techniques that would facilitate instruction in the ECC across a variety of environments by all members of the educational team, including parents. Both the Product Evaluation Team and the Product Advisory Review Committee approved this product for development in April 2009. Contract negotiations were completed in September 2009 with Patricia Maffei and Patricia Williams, Executive Director of the Hatlen Center for the Blind, and the process of writing lesson plans began. Work planned for FY 2010 It is anticipated that this product will take two years to develop. During the first year, the goal is to have a prototype created that is ready to be submitted for expert review and/or field testing.

106

Cortical Visual Impairment

107

Cortical Visual Impairment (CVI) Projects and Needs (Continued) Purpose To help APH determine both short and long term goals for future research and product development in the CVI field Project Staff Christine Roman, Ph.D., CVI Project Leader Erica Rucker, Research/Project Assistant Background The groundwork established by the CVI Synergy Group in 2002 led to the completion of several projects in 2004-05. The Research Department named Christine Roman as part-time Project Leader. Several projects were developed from the list of ideas presented by CVI Synergy in May, 2002. Plans to establish a CVI Advisory Committee were begun. The CVI Advisory Committee will resume the work initiated by the CVI Synergy Group. This Advisory Committee will provide input to the Project Leader in terms of future projects and field testing of new CVI products. Work during FY 2009 The project leader and staff will continue to work on a comprehensive functional vision evaluation designed for students with CVI. The CVI Starter Kit will now be integrated into the CVI Evaluation Kit. It will include materials and suggestions designed to adapt objects and two-dimensional materials according to the specific characteristics associated with CVI. CVI Sequences was completed and is expected to be available by the end of 2009 or early in 2010. CVI Challenges is currently being redesigned according to the comments provided by the field reviewers. Updates have been made to the APH CVI Web site and requests for additional postings or submissions to the web site are on-going. The CVI Advisory Group suggestions, devised when they met in August 2008, were integrated into to a Statement of Purpose Paper. This paper provides guidelines that may be useful in the development of CVI products for APH. The paper also attempts to clarify distinctions between students who have CVI from those who have visual perceptual disabilities. The paper has been submitted to The Journal of Visual Impairment and Blindness. Work planned for FY 2010 The CVI Evaluation Kit continues to be developed. It is based on the CVI Range developed by Christine Roman. The Kit will contain a copy of Cortical Visual Impairment: A Guide to Assessment and Intervention published by the American Foundation for the Blind. The evaluation kit will contain assessment techniques, guidebooks, & photo supplement support materials. In addition to the CVI Evaluation Kit, the other major projects will include the development CVI early literacy materials. The CVI Stick & Stay Kit continues to be developed

108

in conjunction with the Multiple Disabilities Project Leader. Updates to the CVI Web site will continue to be made.

109

CVI Assessment Kit & CVI Starter Kit (Continued) Purpose To provide educators with materials that will facilitate functional vision assessment of students with CVI. It will include a text that can be used for background information and instructions/procedures for conducting the CVI Range (Roman, 2001, 2005). Materials in the kit will be aimed at assessment of students who have severe (Phase I), moderate (Phase II), or mild (Phase III) CVI. Project Staff Christine Roman, CVI Project Leader APH Production Staff Background CVI is the primary cause of visual impairment in children in the US and developed nations and presents unique challenges to educators. Most educational assessments and materials designed for students with ocular visual impairment are ineffective with students with CVI. The CVI Range provides educators with a specialized protocol for determining the degree and extent of CVI. Since functional educational visual assessment is mandatory for eligibility and program planning, this kit will support teachers in their efforts to make these decisions. Work during FY 2009 This kit will contain a copy of the text by Christine Roman is complete and available for purchase. The text published by the American Foundation for the Blind contains assessment forms and assorted materials that may be used to conduct the assessment. This text forms the foundation for the specialized assessment used to evaluate the functional vision of infants, children, and older students who have CVI. The Assessment Kit will contain concrete materials, video examples, and additional guidelines for the completion of the assessment. The Starter Kit, now integrated into the Assessment Kit product, will include ―raw materials‖ used to make CVI specific adaptations to functional objects and materials used in daily routines. A guidebook will accompany this kit. Work planned for FY 2010 Materials used in assessment will be developed to coordinate with specific aspects of the text. An instructional video will provide guided practice and examples of assessment strategies. An APH product review will be completed and changes will be made according to reviewer comments and recommendations.

110

CVI Complexity Challenges (Continued) Purpose To help students with CVI systematically identity details in two-dimensional materials. The design would be similar to the APH Common Object Pictures and could be used with or without the Lightbox. Each card sequence would begin with a single image; subsequent cards would add a single additional detail until approximately six details are added to the original image. The complexity cards could be stacked in any order so the student would be less likely to memorize image by position or order. Project Staff Christine Roman, Project Leader Candace Jaworski, Graphic Designer, BISIG Impact Group Background This product addresses specific needs related to the CVI characteristic of visual complexity. Many students with CVI have difficulty visually attending to two-dimensional images and identifying salient details of pictures or symbols especially when the image is presented with additional details or elements. Work during FY 2009 This product was developed in conjunction with Candace Jaworski from BISIG Impact Group. Candace Jaworski prepared illustrations that represent the salient image as well as the images that add complexity. An APH product review was completed and changes will be made according to reviewer comments and recommendations. Work planned for FY 2010 CVI Challenges is currently being redesigned according to the comments provided by the field reviewers. The CVI Advisory Group will be asked for input regarding potential options for this product. CVI Complexity Sequences (Continued) Purpose To help students with CVI practice locating a figure against backgrounds that increase in visual complexity. This product would be comprised of a series of sets in which the student would be asked to locate a common figure (apple, ball, shoe…) against backgrounds that increase in complexity. The overlay backgrounds would be overall patterns that begin with low complexity design. Overlay cards would increase in complexity requiring the student to extricate the figure from greater degrees of visual ―clutter.‖ Each set would have five cards, one figure card, and four overlays of complexity. To provide guidelines regarding the medical conditions associated with a diagnosis of CVI. 111

Project Staff Christine Roman, Project Leader Candace Jaworski, Graphic Designer, BISIG Impact Group Background This product addresses specific needs related to the CVI characteristic of visual complexity. Many students with CVI have difficulty visually attending to two-dimensional images and identifying salient details of pictures or symbols especially when the image is against a patterned background. Work during FY 2009 This product was developed in conjunction with Candace Jaworski from BISIG Impact Group. Jaworski prepared illustrations that represent the salient image as well as the images that add complexity. A manual has been developed to provide instructions and suggestions for use. An APH product review will be completed and changes were made according to reviewer comments and recommendations. Work planned for FY 2010 This product will be available for sale in 2009 or early 2010. CVI Stick & Stay Kit (Continued) Purpose To provide an independent child-centered activity or play kit used in conjunction with a student wheelchair or highchair tray. Billie Frayer from Dallas, Texas, developed an original form of this kit, the Stick & Stay Kit. The CVI version will have materials that have reduced visual complexity and that have strong elements of single color objects. The tray cover is a washable, black cloth material that has strips of Velcro used to attach the numerous elements contained in the kit. Project Staff Christine Roman, Project Leader Tristan Pierce, Project Leader, Multiple Disabilities APH Production Staff Background This product promotes increased independent play/exploration, visual attention and visual motor/function for students with CVI who require simple, moving, color materials. These principles are consistent with the principles of CVI found in the literature. Again, this CVI version is intended to meet the specific needs of students who require adaptations to materials based on the characteristic visual behaviors associated with CVI. 112

Work during FY 2009 Work on the CVI Stick & Stay has begun via discussions with Billie Frayer, the owner of the original product, Stick & Stay. Adaptations have been made to the background ―mat‖ and to a number of the individual activities contained in the kit. Educators who work with students who have CVI and additional disabilities have met with the project leader and have offered suggestions that are being integrated into the CVI Kit. Work planned for FY 2010 Adaptations and adjustments will continue to be made. An APH product review will be completed and changes will be made according to reviewer comments and recommendations. A manual will be developed to provide instructions and suggestions for use. CVI Website (Continued) Purpose To provide accurate and beneficial information to families, educators, and medical personnel who work with individuals with cortical visual impairment Project Staff Christine Roman, CVI Project Leader Erica Rucker, Research/Project Assistant Inge Formenti, Librarian Malcolm Turner, Web Master Background CVI Synergy, a group of nine professionals, representing both education and medicine, met at APH in May 2002. The group agreed to act as advisors via a listserve to help APH develop a new web site dedicated to CVI. Unable to attend the meeting, Dr. Jim Jan served via telephone and e-mail as the medical advisor. In 2003 the Multiple Disabilities Project Leader developed the outline for the web site and with a research assistant began writing text for the site and requesting submissions from the field. The APH Librarian obtained permissions on articles recommended by CVI Synergy to be placed on the web site. Photographs of children using homemade and APH products were taken. In May 2003, Dr. Jan organized CVI Synergy West in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. This second group, also representing medicine and education, addressed the issue of definitions associated with CVI. This meeting resulted in the medical-based definition and the education-based definition for CVI that APH uses on the web site. APH announced in January of 2004 that Christine Roman would serve as the new CVI Project Leader/Consultant. Work during FY 2009 113

Updates on the CVI Web site include any new definitions of CVI, educational programming suggestions, information on materials and articles in publication, and current CVI issues. Featured Presentations provide updated information pertaining to special topics of interest. In 2006 six individuals committed to providing new contributions to the web site, primarily in the area of educational applications of CVI methodologies. The CVI Web site has a Contact Us link that is available for individual comments, questions and suggestions. These communications are gathered by the research assistant and responded to by the project leader. A number of changes and additions were made based on suggestions from APH staff and comments offered through the Contact Us link on the web site. Work planned for FY 2010 The website, a continuing project, will be updated as new information is gathered. A reprint of an article on the use of CVI adaptations in a special education classroom will be added. There are plans to use parent or teacher-made videos that show methods used for interventions and materials used to adapt environments or objects.

114

Early Childhood

115

Classroom Calendar Kit (Continued) Purpose The purpose is to modernize the Classroom Calendar Kit and the Individual Calendar Kit to have them work interchangeably with each other, and have them meet the early childhood standards used by virtually every preschool and early elementary classrooms. Project Staff Burt Boyer, Early Childhood Project Leader Donna Brostek Lee, Consultant Monica Vaught, Research Assistant (Acting Early Childhood Project Leader) Background Classroom discussions relating to the calendar have become more than just learning months of the year, dates, and events. Several teachers of the visually impaired have suggested that APH should review the Classroom Calendar Kit and the Individual Calendar Kit and make revisions that bring them in line with early childhood standards. Teachers of the visually impaired are presently having to make their own individual calendars because of the following:  Patterning is being emphasized during calendar time.  Shapes, and colors, are being used for calendar activities. For example: Yellow circles, blue squares, orange triangles, red rectangles, pink stars, purple ovals, etc.  Teachers mix and match the sets to create patterns on the calendar. The current size of the classroom calendar board is fine. For the student-sized calendar, it is recommended that the board be made from plastic (rather than paper) with pieces that are attached with Velcro; thus, the board can be reused with number sets instead of current paper version. Patterning with shapes and colors at calendar time relates to the integrated curriculum approach (date, reading, numbers, lettering, patterning, shapes, colors, etc.), and this revision will address this issue more appropriately and consistently. This modernization will be very beneficial to teachers of the visually impaired and other service providers, as they are having to make these calendars as described, which is very time-consuming. In 2008, work began on the modernization of the Classroom Calendar Kit and the Individual Calendar Kit. The project leader and the consultant met several times to discuss the modernization, and have identified some suggestions for consideration as the product idea moves forward. Work during FY 2009 Based on sales of the current products Individual Calendar Kit 1-18971-00 and Classroom Calendar Kit 1-18970-00, these will not be replaced by the new Calendar Kit. Instead of a modernization, the new Calendar Kit will be an additional APH product.

116

A contract and timeline were established with the consultant. The project leader and consultant began working with technical research on the design, color, and materials of the calendars and calendar pieces. Layout templates of the student-sized calendar pieces were completed. The consultant researched curriculum standards set forth by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics as they relate to use of the calendar product. In addition, the consultant began writing the user‘s guide for the kit. Work planned for FY 2010 Content, design, and layout for the user‘s guide will be completed. Field testers will be identified. Prototypes for this product will be completed and sent out for field testing. Revisions will be made based on feedback from evaluators. The Early O&M Guide Book (Discontinued) Purpose This product is designed to be a practical, easy to use guide that encourages early Orientation & Mobility (O&M). Project Staff Charles ―Burt‖ Boyer, Early Childhood Project Leader Donna Brostek Lee, Consultant Background A comprehensive search of the literature revealed that there is not a lot of information relating to Orientation & Mobility, the early years. More importantly, there did not seem to be an easy to use guide for teaching O&M skills to very young children. Donna Brostek Lee, consultant, and the Early Childhood Project Leader concluded that there was a need for such a guidebook. A product submission form was prepared and submitted to APH for review. The Product Evaluation Team (PET) reviewed the product and sent it to two project leaders for evaluation. Both reviewers recommended APH move forward with this product idea. The product idea was first assigned to the Adult Project Leader, but later assigned to the Early Childhood Project Leader. The idea was then submitted to PARC for review and approval. PARC approved the product idea, placed it on the PARCing lot, and then immediately moved it out, allowing the project leader to move forward with the idea. The product idea addresses seven components of early O&M training: Sensory Development, Concept Development, Motor Development, Environmental Awareness, Community Awareness, Formal Orientation Skills, and Formal Mobility Skills. It is important to note that the project leader and the consultant believe this product addresses the need for a product that gives practical ideas for O&M activities with young children. It is NOT intended to act as a textbook or require lengthy reading. It is aimed at 117

O&M specialists working in early intervention and preschool, but can easily be used by many other service providers, and even caregivers due to its simplicity. Lessons and products will be collected from those who actually use them on a daily basis, thus O&M specialists who are working in early intervention. Lessons/products will emphasize skills needed for proper O&M techniques as identified by the field through research. The market for this product will be anyone working in early intervention with children who are blind and visually impaired, specifically O&M specialists. The consultant completed extensive research trying to identify work that had been completed on O&M in the early years. The research identified a few articles, books, and guide books addressing O&M for the early years, but none addressed the topic in the same way this product will do when completed. A work plan was developed to establish timelines for various steps in the process. In addition, a completion date of 2010 was set for this product to be available on federal quota. Work during FY 2009 The Early Childhood Project Leader and the consultant learned of a similar project being conducted by Kay Clarke, Outreach Director at the Ohio School for the Blind. Discussions were held on the possibility of combining efforts to develop the Early O&M Guidebook. After collaborative and positive discussions with all involved, a decision was made by the project leader, consultant, and Director of Research to discontinue our efforts to develop this product. Therefore, the Early O&M Years Guidebook was dropped as a future product by APH. Experiential Learning Kit (Continued) Purpose To set up an experiential learning environment that promotes cause/effect, coordination, motor development, object permanence, sensory awareness, and spatial awareness Project Staff Charles ―Burt‖ Boyer, Early Childhood Project Leader Tessa Wright Carlsen, Consultant Monica Vaught, Research Assistant (Acting Early Childhood Project Leader) Background In June 2005, a focus group on early childhood education for children who are blind or visually impaired met at APH. The purpose of the focus group was to identify potential products for APH to develop. There was lots of discussion about "active learning," and having products that promoted children being active from an early age. Kiara Wilder, one of the participants, suggested we consider developing an experiential learning kit. This is a "starter kit" that will enable families, and those working with families and their infants who are either blind or low vision, to set up an environment that is conducive to experiential learning. The kit would have components such as the following: toy rings, a shiny red pom pom, shiny metal measuring 118

spoons/cups, rubber squishy toy (in a bright color), large jingle bells, and additional items of bright, simple colors and interesting texture. Children who are blind or visually impaired, birth to 3 years of age, need stimulation to explore their environment, develop auditory and visual skills, and practice fine and gross motor skills to continually improve them. The concept is to have a portable bar that can be placed across a crib with items attached to it that can be manipulated by the child. This is another effective way to get parents involved in the development of their child During 2008, the project leader and consultant collaborated to complete the following tasks: (1) Researched the product name (Experiential Learning Kit) to insure this name did not meet copyright and patent standards. The research validated Experiential Learning Kit could be used for this product. (2) Completed research of the literature on activities to be included in the guidebook. (3) Activities were written for the concept areas to be included in the guidebook. (4) Researched materials to be used for the bar for items that hang from apparatus placed over the baby crib or playpen. After in-depth research, decision was made to have five to seven items made specific for the Experiential Learning Kit. Commercial items may be purchased to complement the made items. (5) Explored materials to be used to develop an apparatus to place over the baby crib or playpen. Additional exploration led to a decision to purchase a commercial mobile that would fit inside a baby crib or playpen and allow for the hang down items to be placed strategically for the infant/toddler to locate and manipulate. Work during FY 2009 Content for the Activity Booklet included in the kit was completed by the consultant and reviewed by the project leader. The booklet includes an introduction about the concept of experiential learning and the purpose of the kit; an overview of the six developmental areas, specifically cause/effect, coordination, motor development, object permanence, sensory awareness, and spatial awareness; three activities per developmental area; and a suggested materials list. Work began on the design and graphic layout of the Activity Booklet. Twenty-five mobiles were purchased for field testing; the mobile comes with five hang-down toys of different textures and sizes. For purposes of field testing, it was determined that these five toys would be evaluated for their appropriateness to the kit activities as well as their similarity to readily available hang-down toys. In addition to these toys, several others may be purchased for inclusion in the prototype. Work planned for FY 2010 Additional hang-down toys will be purchased for field testing so that at least one hang-down toy of each type from those suggested in the activities will be included. Field testers will be identified. Prototypes for this product will be completed and sent out for field testing. Revisions will be made based on feedback from evaluators. Product will become available.

119

Getting To Know You: A Social Skills/Ability Awareness Curriculum for Students with Visual Impairments and Their Sighted Peers (Continued) Purpose The purpose of this curriculum is two-fold: 1) To provide an opportunity for students with visual impairments and their sighted peers to learn and teach each other about the social skills needed to get along in the world and how both sighted people and people with visual impairments may differ in how they project themselves in social situations and 2) to have students with visual impairments teach sighted students the techniques they use to be independent in life. The lesson plans are divided into three levels: Lower Elementary (K-2), Upper Elementary (3-5), and Middle and High School. Each lesson includes an objective, targeted skill areas, an introduction, a list of materials needed, and an activity section that explains how to conduct the lesson. Lessons were designed to be conducted during a short half-hour period, preferably during students' shared lunchtime. Project Staff Charles ―Burt‖ Boyer, Early Childhood Project Leader Nita Crow, Consultant Stephanie Herlich, Consultant Monica Vaught, Research Assistant (Acting Early Childhood Project Leader) Rosanne Hoffmann, Research Assistant Background There are well-documented articles and books written on the need for social skills training for students with visual impairments. There are also studies that have found that teachers of the visually impaired often teach social skills incidentally and not on a regular basis. They do not have concrete materials needed to teach social skills and time has not been set aside to address these skills. There is less published information about the curiosity that sighted students have with regard to how their peers who are visually impaired get around in the world and conduct everyday tasks. While the two topics appear to be quite different, we found that including them both in this curriculum provided both groups with the opportunity to learn about each other and do so in a safe and accepting environment. The targeted group for every lesson in our curriculum is both students with visual impairments and their sighted peers. This curriculum focuses on learning those skills that will help students understand each other and learn how they are similar and different. The lessons teach students various skills either in the area of social development or adaptive techniques. Understanding each other and getting along in the world are two of the best educational principles that a student can learn. This curriculum was originally developed in 1997-99 and the lessons have been expanded in the subsequent years. The authors have used this curriculum for 8 years with various groups and presented the curriculum at two California State conferences and at the Denver AER International Conference. Additionally, at least three other teachers in California have used or reviewed this curriculum and two peer reviewers on the East coast have also reviewed the 120

curriculum. Feedback from peer reviewers has been positive. One suggestion that many reviewers mentioned was a desire for the inclusion of some of the specialized materials listed in various lesson plans. They felt this would make the curriculum a great deal easier for them to use. In 2008, the project leader and consultants met twice to review the curriculum and make revisions to the original document. In addition, a great deal of time was spent discussing what items to include in the kit to accompany the curriculum guidebook. The project leader developed a plan to make some of the items to include in the kit. Some discussion took place as to whether or not a training video should be considered. The final decision was that this was not needed at this time. The project leader worked with BISIG to begin the process of having the curriculum guidebook prepared for printing. BISIG prepared a draft of the guidebook, and several illustrations have been identified to be included in the guidebook. The project leader and BISIG planned to have pictures of students taken as illustrations to depict a variety of the activities in the guidebook. The Getting to Know You kit was reviewed and revised. Graphics and illustrations needed for the guidebook were identified. Items for the kit were discussed and a preliminary list made. Work during FY 2009 The project leader worked with the consultants to finalize the components of the kit to accompany the guidebook. The project leader began to build the prototype of the kit, which included purchasing items and creating others. Illustrations were completed for cards to be used in the kit. The project leader worked to identify a source for the vision simulators; it was determined that three vision simulators will be included in the kit and these will have to purchased. Pictures and illustrations for the guidebook were completed. A research assistant reviewed the guidebook, and revisions were made. Work planned for FY 2010 Expert reviewers will be identified. Prototypes for this product will be completed and sent out for expert review. Revisions will be made based on feedback from evaluators. Product will become available. Preschool Attainment Through Typical Everyday Routines (PATTER) (Completed) Purpose Curriculum and assessment tool designed to facilitate a visually impaired child's learning of the skills that preschool children are expected to master through involvement in typical household routines 121

Project Staff Charles ―Burt‖ Boyer, Early Childhood Project Leader Sandra Lewis, Consultant Rosanne Hoffmann, Research Assistant BISIG Impact Group, Graphic Design Background Research has documented that the families of young children with visual impairments tend to allow their children to be passive participants in the activities that surround them, especially the naturally occurring events that are typically required to maintain a home. Because of the issues inherent in congenital blindness and visual impairment (difficulty with incidental learning, reluctance to explore, low muscle tone, etc.), these children don't demand, as children with vision do, to be involved with what the grown-ups are doing. As a result, these children have difficulty acquiring concepts, language, social skills, motor milestones, and selfconcept. PATTER is designed to invite parents to have their children who are blind or who have low vision help with making the bed, putting groceries in the cart, washing the car, and so forth. It is intended to encourage parents to appreciate what it means to "treat the blind child like you would any other child"—not by waiting for the child to initiate an interest in these activities (as typical children do)—but by just involving the child. It is the belief of the developers of PATTER that young children with visual impairments learn through doing—by being actively engaged in meaningful activities. The project leader reviewed PATTER materials and decided that the product should be evaluated as a possible APH quota product. The product idea form was submitted by Sandra Lewis, Director of the Teacher Training Program for Teachers of the Visually Impaired at Florida State. The product idea went through the review procedures at APH, and the decision was to pursue PATTER as an APH product. A contract was secured with Lewis, including APH gaining exclusive rights to PATTER making it eligible to become a quota product. The project leader obtained the master videos of PATTER from Lewis. The project leader and consultant completed the following tasks in 2008:  Thoroughly reviewed all components of PATTER for determining whether additional ones should be developed. No additional components were identified.  Developed additional routines for participation by the child.  Coordinated PATTER videos transference to DVD format.  Videos were reviewed by BISIG to determine their quality.  PATTER manuscript was reviewed and revised by project leader and consultant. Appropriate changes made. 122

 Project leader met with BISIG to begin identifying layout of product, and any graphics to be included.  BISIG finalized guidebook for printing, and prepared DVD for duplication.  Appropriate documents and materials were to production to prepare product for sale. The project leader worked with the research assistant to complete editing of product. The project leader worked with the consultant to finalize the written document after editing was completed. Project leader worked with BISIG to determining what graphics would be included in the guidebook. A final review was made of the quality of the videos to determine if any retakes were needed. The product was not sent out for field review as three expert reviewers have provided positive feedback indicating this will be a valuable product to have on quota for the field to purchase and use. Work during FY 2009 PATTER became available for purchase as a quota item in February 2009. Three hundred copies were sold in the first month. Work has been completed on this product. Reach for the Stars (Continued) Purpose To review and modernize the product Reach for the Stars Project Staff Charles ―Burt‖ Boyer, Early Childhood Project Leader Jennifer Grisham-Brown, Consultant Diane Haynes, Consultant Monica Vaught, Research Assistant (Acting Early Childhood Project Leader) Background The need for this product has not changed since it became a federal quota item in 1999. The educational principles identified when this product was developed have not changed, but new interventions resulted in a revision of this product. The authors of Reach for the Stars, Dr. Jennifer Grisham-Brown and Diane Haynes, stated, ―It is a person-centered planning process designed to facilitate the development of educational plans that will lead to inclusive education programs for young children with disabilities. The process was developed to be used with several audiences. First, families of children with disabilities can use the material to articulate their hopes and dreams for their child‘s future. The materials are designed so that a family may complete the maps and supporting materials prior to attending a transition meeting for their child. Service providers may use the material to interview a family regarding their desires for their child‘s future.‖ 123

Research will be conducted to determine if there are national standards pertaining to transition, especially in early childhood years. Particular attention will be paid to transitioning from 2 to 3 years old because 3 years of age is the time when public schools get involved with the education of children, including those with disabilities. Also, transition from the programs serving children with disabilities who are 3 to 5 years of age. Transitioning from kindergarten to primary (1st grade to 2nd grade) will be addressed.

Reach for the Stars has been an effective transition tool, but the authors and the early

childhood project leader believe the product can be substantially improved and made more user-friendly for families and service providers. In 2008, the project leader and authors met to discuss what would be involved in reviewing and modernizing the Reach for the Stars. The conclusion was that Reach for the Stars does need modernizing, and the following steps occurred:  A contract was established with consultants.  A second meeting was held involving the project leader and authors. The result was to form a focus group to review Reach for the Stars and make recommendations to modernize the product.  A focus group convened on March 26, 2008, at General Butler State Park and Resort to carry out the plan. Many recommendations came from the focus group, and everyone felt the activity was very beneficial.  The consultants and project leader developed a plan of action that included a timeline for completion of the product in 2010. Work during FY 2009 The authors outlined a detailed work plan and timelines for various modules of the product. They completed research of national standards for transition, especially the early years. Components of the product that need revision were identified. The authors completed the following sections of the book: introduction/overview, assessment section, and assessment maps. Feedback was sought on these sections and changes made. In August 2009, the authors met with the project leader and graphic designers to discuss artwork for the book. The APH graphic designer presented an artistic theme for the book, which was approved by the authors and project leader. At this meeting, a revised timeline was discussed; the authors committed to a January 2010 date for finalized content to be submitted to the project leader. Work planned for 2010 124

The authors will present the developing product at several training sessions, including the Division of Early Childhood Conference in October 2009. These training sessions will be used an opportunity to collect input from the field and make revisions to the product as it is in development. The authors will submit all final content for the product to the project leader in January 2010. This content will include photos taken by the authors. The book will be reviewed and graphic layout will be finalized. Expert reviewers will be identified, and prototypes will be sent out for expert review. Revisions will be made based on feedback from evaluators. Sound Adapted Tangle Ball (New) Purpose To provide babies who have visual impairment/blindness and cerebral palsy with their first sound emitting ball Project staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Ann Travis, Research Assistant Darlene Donhoff, Manufacturing Specialist Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Background APH currently sells several sound emitting balls that are suitable for children, teens, and adults. The Sound Adapted Tangle Ball is a toy that can be used by babies for sensorimotor development during play-based interventions. Throwing a ball, which has an important upper limb component, is a gross motor task. Gross motor skills are needed for the baby to roll over, sit, pull up to stand, stand independently, and eventually run. The Sound Adapted Tangle Ball allows babies, toddlers, and young children with cerebral palsy and visual impairment to practice these skills. The ball can be used throughout early childhood from teething to developing ball throwing skills. The exoskeleton Tangle Ball is designed to be a teething toy. The Sound Adapted Table Tennis Ball inserted inside the Tangle Ball, allows it to float, making it ideal for water and bath time play. The customer assembles the two balls together per the instruction booklet. The balls will be sold three to a kit. Work done in FY 2009 The Sound Adapted Tangle Ball is the marriage of two successful, commercially available balls. APH chose to send the adapted ball to three professional reviewers; all chose to use the ball with babies and toddlers. Both balls passed lead and phthalates testing. The Project Leader completed all documentation. Braille translation is complete. Work planned for FY 2010 125

The balls will be ordered, documentation printed and embossed, and the three-ball kits will be packaged. The product will be available for sale. Teaching Puzzles for the Light Box (Continued) Purpose To have fun while learning, and to have puzzles that children can manipulate as well as use on the light box Project Staff Charles ―Burt‖ Boyer, Project Leader Background Several users on the Early Intervention Listserv have suggested more products need to be made available from APH for use on the light box. In addition, the Early Childhood Project Leader heard those suggestions from attendees at various conferences who visited the APH booth in exhibit halls. The Face Puzzle and Ball Puzzle are very popular APH products to be used on the light box. The project leader plans to develop more puzzles for the light box that will be manipulatives, and, at the same time, benefit children with usable vision. The puzzles will be used to teach a variety of concepts, and several categories will be included: farm animals, body parts, foods, fruits, shapes, etc. The puzzles will have color discrimination, and activities will be written for each puzzle to teach about the theme (farm animals, fruits, shapes, body parts, etc.). An example of how this will work: Take the category of fruits to include apple, banana, orange, grapes, etc. Each fruit will be a puzzle, and activities will describe each fruit allowing the child/student to learn about that particular fruit. The puzzles can be assembled on a flat surface or on the light box. This type of learning will be fun. In 2008, research was completed on APH products available for use on the light box. Research was also completed on APH products available for use on the light box that can be used as standalone manipulatives. A review of the literature was conducted to determine what products are available that are not presently available from APH. Categories were identified and the project leader began the process of writing activities to accompany the puzzles. The categories include:  Fruits—orange, apple, banana, grapes, strawberry  Body Parts—arm, hand, foot, leg, head (ears, eyes, mouth, nose)  Farm Animals—children, horse, pig, cow, dog, cat  Shapes—irregular shapes  Tree—branch, limb, trunk, bark, leaves

126

Work during FY 2009 The project leader continued efforts to develop a variety of puzzles for use on the light box. Designs were developed by the project leader for farm animals, fruits, and cars. The project leader talked with TVIs in the field to get additional ideas, and began work on designs for word games and mazes as several TVIs suggested the project leader pursue these ideas. In addition, several O&M specialists suggested developing O&M routes for the light box. The project leader outlined the next steps of the project, but was unable to share plans with BISIG and other staff at APH. Work planned for FY 2010 During the first 3 months of FY 2010, the project leader will complete designs of all puzzles to be used on the light box. In January 2010, the project leader will begin working with the APH Graphic Design Department, BISIG, and Technical Research to complete work on this product. Puzzles will have color contrast appropriate for use by individuals with usable vision. In addition, the project leader is designing the puzzles so they can be used by individuals who are totally blind as standalone items. The project leader plans to have this product ready for field testing in July 2010. The Best for a Nest (Continued) Purpose To revise The Best for a Nest, a book once printed by APH; to produce an interactive storybook for learners to focus on many concepts, such as positions, prepositions, and use of tactile symbols Project Staff Charles ―Burt‖ Boyer, Project Leader Lois Harrell, Consultant Monica Vaught, Research Assistant (Acting Early Childhood Project Leader) Background

The Best for a Nest was copyrighted in 1976 by Lois Harrell, and produced as a contract job by
APH in 1986. However, the book was not available from APH as a catalog item. The book was created to allow emphasis on prepositions. Each page in the book offers a controlled written presentation. The corresponding tactile illustrations are directly related to the text. The simplicity of both allows the focus to be upon what is happening, while avoiding unnecessary details. Approximately 70% of the 136 word vocabulary is comprised of words that appear on the Dolch list. The material in the story allows opportunity for further elaboration. Basic concepts can be explored in the tactile illustrations: counting, left and right, comparisons, and top and bottom.

127

In 2008, the project leader worked with APH staff, the consultant, and BISIG to complete the many tasks. The written document was reviewed and revised; appropriate changes were made. Regarding the layout of the book, the following components were determined: size of print, size of book (paper size), the location of braille storybook pages, presentation of graphics, how the storyboard will be used as part of the product, size of storyboard, the manipulatives to be used on the storyboard, and materials used to make the manipulatives. The project leader worked with APH staff, including staff with expertise in tactile graphics, on the idea of having a family of items that could be used to illustrate words on each page of the book. The idea is to have a Velcro® board and then place items in proper position to illustrate what is on the page (i.e. tree, bird, bird nest, grass, etc.). As each page is read to the child, the child can place the items in the proper position to illustrate what is on each page. The idea is to have the statement in large print and braille on each page, and print graphics showing what is meant by the phrase on a particular page. Tactile illustration will be done by using the method described above allowing the child to manipulate items to make the illustration. Work during FY 2009 BISIG completed graphic layout of the book. Technical research worked with the project leader to prepare the product to be printed and embossed with braille. The manipulatives, which are to be used on the storyboard as tactile illustrations, were made. This part of the project took considerable time to complete.

The Best for a Nest was sent out for field testing in the spring of 2009. Fourteen reviewers,

representing the states of Kentucky, California, Colorado, and Indiana, evaluated the product. Thirty-seven students used the product. These students ranged in age from 3-12 years old; school grades ranged from Pre-K to 6th, with the majority being Pre-K. A wide range of visual acuities and eye conditions were represented. It was reported that 100% of students enjoyed the story and showed strong interest in exploring the manipulatives on the storyboard. Evaluators felt that concepts of varying degrees of difficulty were represented. While 100% of evaluators recommended that this product be sold by APH on quota, the reviewers also suggested revisions to the prototype. These revisions included texture changes for the manipulatives and using bolder colors in the storybook. In addition, the consultant suggested that raised lines be added to the storybook. Based on this feedback and potential changes to the tactile components of the product, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Karen Poppe was assigned as a co-project leader on this product. Work planned for FY 2010 Changes will be made to the prototype based on input from field test evaluators. Project leaders will develop a post-field test survey that will be sent to the field reviewers. This survey will gather further input about tactile graphics to be used in The Best for a Nest. As needed, additional revisions will be made to the book and/or storyboard. Final tooling and specifications will be completed, and product will become available for sale.

128

The National Registry for Children with Visual Impairments, Birth to Three Years (Continued) Purpose To establish a national registry of young children, birth to 36 months, by working with public and private agencies to collect standardized epidemiological and demographic data on young children with visual impairments. All data are coded to ensure confidentiality of children and families. Collaborating agencies will forward the data to a national registry center at the American Printing House for the Blind in Louisville, Kentucky. Project Staff Charles "Burt" Boyer, Project Coordinator Deborah Hatton, Research Scientist Conrad Reynolds, Technical Consultant Erica Rucker, Research Assistant Background In 1995, the Model Registry of Early Childhood Visual Impairment Consortium Group (MRECVICG) was established to address the issue of data collection to ensure its consistent and systematic completion. The mission of MRECVICG was to develop and implement a model registry of birth to 3-year-old blind and visually impaired children, and to demonstrate the feasibility of a registry that could be replicated on a national basis. The MERCVICG was a highpowered committee representative of agencies serving children with visual impairments, departments of education, institutions of higher education, and the medical community. In late 1998, four members of the MRECVICG developed a proposal requesting that the American Printing House for the Blind assume the project as a national project. Tuck Tinsley, Ed.D., President of APH, presented the proposal to the Board of Trustees and in June 1999, and it was officially announced that APH would assume the project. In August 2000, an Early Childhood Project Leader was employed in the Research Department by APH, and APH agreed to begin collecting data in January 2001. The Board is to be commended for approving the use of endowment funds to support this project. Benefits of the project include:  Establish a centralized registry of children with visual impairments from birth to 3 years  Develop a database that will more clearly define the population of infants/toddlers who are blind and visually impaired as none presently exists.  Provide APH with a database to identify early trends in etiologies and demographics which will help give data and direction to APH for future research and product/materials development 129

 Allow for the development of outcome research and stimulate studies by other professionals, e.g. education, medical, sociological.  Assist personnel preparation programs to be more responsive to the needs of the field based upon numbers of blind and visually impaired children, changing etiologies and geographical distribution of children.  Provide a natural transition from the centralized registry for children with visual impairments, birth to 3 years, to the Federal Quota Program.  Assist with program development, assessment/evaluation, pre-service/in-service training, funding, and advocacy. The project coordinator continued efforts to add additional participants to the project. When the project was taken over by APH in 2001, there were eight states participating. Presently there are 26 states participating, and another five states have been trained to get involved. Most states have several agencies providing early intervention services to blind and visually impaired children, from birth to 3 years. With this in mind, there are presently 43 agencies participating. A total of 2,155 surveys were entered into the database as of December 31, 2004. Approximately 3,300 surveys are now in the database. An analysis was done on the 2,155 surveys, and a PowerPoint presentation developed. The project coordinator presented the data at several conferences during 2007. In 2008, the project coordinator continued to encourage more states and agencies to participate in the project. The Project coordinator participated in several conferences and seminars to promote the project. An Advisory Committee was established to review the present status of the Babies Count Project, and to recommend strategies to improve the project in the future. Advisory Committee members included: Dr. Deborah Hatton, Tom Miller, Dr. Lee Robinson, Gail Cavello, Chris Tompkins, Mindy Ely, and Janie Blome. Some of the recommendations included the following:  To have data analyzed on an annual basis  To identify 12 to 17 items from the survey to be analyzed annually for each participating agency  To upgrade/revise the present database  To have a place on the APH Website just for Babies Count The project coordinator for Babies Count did not complete the above recommendations from the Advisory Committee. Several new states joined Babies Count during FY 2008: Kansas, Texas, Montana, and Nevada. Interest in the project continues to be fairly high. Pennsylvania, Florida, and Michigan have shown a desire to get involved. Work during FY 2009 The coordinator of Babies Count continued to work closely with states and agencies participating in the Babies Count Project. The agencies participating continued to collect and 130

enter data into the database. Interest was shown from several states, but no new states were added during FY 2009. The following work was completed in FY 2009:  Twenty-two items were identified to be included in a report for each individual agency participating.  Improved entry time for surveys sent to coordinator of project  Better communication between coordinator and participating agencies was established.  Identified what materials should be part of a link on the APH Website. Someone outside APH had done data entry into the database, but that individual was unable to continue working on the project. The project leader worked to identify an outside source to do this work, but efforts were not successful. Work planned for FY 2010 The Babies Count Project continues to be important to the field, and to APH. During FY 2010, efforts will be made to re-define APH‘s commitment to the project. This will include (1) identification of how best to analyze the data that is currently in the database, and (2) what data should continue to be gathered in the future. The process through which data is gathered and entered into the database will be reviewed. The electronic survey form will be reviewed and necessary changes made.

What Is IT? (Continued) Purpose To promote comparative thinking and the ability to generalize Project Staff Charles ―Burt‖ Boyer, Early Childhood Project Leader Lois Harrell, Consultant Monica Vaught, Research Assistant (Acting Early Childhood Project Leader) Background The initial opportunity to develop comparative thinking can be different for a child who does not have detail vision. It initially takes more time and active exposure to things, activities, and people. With the blind child who does not have a visual memory, the foundation for processing consistencies and then moving on to comparative thinking takes lots of active experience with real objects and purposeful involvement, combined with verbal descriptions to develop images that can be evoked by words. Some children may ―parrot‖ phrases or labels, but they may be actually using empty words that have no value beyond rote memory until real associations are formed. Even when we are aware of the importance of "motor knowledge" or active 131

experiences for the child's mind to acquire tangible associations, we are often at a loss about how to expand the child's interpreting skills. The goal is to help the blind child develop the tools for comparative thinking and generalizing for a real basis. It is for us to become aware of all the rich detail information that can be internalized and interpreted through modalities other than vision. And it is for us to help the child become aware of these identifying qualities by gaining purposeful processing techniques. What Is IT? is a communication game that allows the mind to exercise use of words and to direct thoughts in terms of associations and descriptors. Also, the shear reward of thinking may take the focus off of performance for others and just have the fun of, "Yes, I knew that!" This game allows the blind child to have fun, but develop comparative thinking skills. In 2008, the project leader collaborated with Harrell to review and revise the product. Once the review and revisions were completed, the project leader worked with a research assistant to have the written product edited, and appropriate changes made to the product. The words and descriptors were selected to be included in the product. The project leader worked with APH staff and BISIG to determine the layout of the product, the size of the word cards, what graphics to include, and how the product would be packaged. BISIG, with the assistance of APH staff, prepared the product to be sent to Technical Research for review and recommendations prior to sending on to production. Ten prototypes of the product were developed for field testing purposes. The product for field testing included: Instructional Guidebook, Words and Descriptors (102), and a recipe-type box to store the cards. Work during FY 2009 What is IT? was field tested in the spring of 2009. Six reviewers, representing the states of Kentucky and Indiana, evaluated the product. Fifteen students used the product. These students ranged in age from 6-14 years old; school grades ranged from Pre-K to 8th, with the majority being Pre-K. A wide range of visual acuities and eye conditions were represented. Five of six evaluators recommended that this product be available from APH on quota. Reviewers reported that 87.5% of students found the game to be both fun and challenging, and the large majority of students wanted to discuss and examine the actual object after identifying it based on the clues. Suggested revisions to the product were (1) use of a thicker card stock for the game cards, (2) revising several word cards so that the word is more specific to the provided clues, and (3) adding an orientation corner cut to the cards for the braille reader. The project leader worked on these revisions. A thicker card stock in the color salmon was chosen for the game cards; the project leader consulted the Low Vision Project Leader regarding the color of the card stock. Revisions were made to the word cards and the instruction booklet. Technical research began work on a new cutting die for the cards. Work planned for FY 2010 Final tooling and specifications will be completed, and product will become available for sale.

132

Educational Games

133

Sudoku Partner (Continued) Purpose To devise an inexpensive, easily portable, and practical way for blind users to set up and solve sudoku puzzles Project staff Fred Otto, Project Leader Anita Rutledge, Model Maker/Assistant Background With the sudden and expanding popularity of these number-based puzzles for both recreational and classroom use, finding a tactile adaptation for them seems appropriate. Investigation online indicates that sudoku is being used in school classrooms with sighted students from 4th grade upward for developing logic, memory, and spatial awareness. There are also adult blind users who have devised their own adaptations, with varying degrees of complexity and success. Based on the common practice (among sighted puzzle solvers) of using pencil marks to keep track of possible answers, the project leader designed a tactile system that allows for a similar kind of note-taking. This feature sets the product apart from other braille-adapted sudoku boards sold by various companies. Work done in FY 2009 The FY 2008 "pilot" field evaluation suggested that adding braille numbers to the raised bumps on the solving board would be helpful, and after some experimentation project staff succeeded in doing this. The version which went out for field testing in February 2009 included the braille numerals and other revisions made after the initial trial. Schools or agencies in Arkansas, British Columbia, Mississippi, Ohio, Pennsylvania, S. Dakota, Texas, and Virginia (two sites) participated in the full field evaluation. Twenty-seven students ranging from elementary age to adult, several with significant additional handicapping conditions, were involved. The project leader decided on final revisions needed and evaluated samples produced by the assistant to find the most suitable materials for use in production. Work planned for FY 2010 The 6 x 6 version of the solving board will be produced and offered for sale. Although evaluators also urged the development of a full-size 9 x 9 board using the same system, plans 134

to move ahead on that version will wait until feedback from customers indicates a need for that work to take place. Touch 'em All Baseball (New) Purpose To replace the APH Baseball Game with a version that is more interesting, educational, and enjoyable to play. Project Staff Fred Otto, Project Leader Katherine Corcoran, Model and Pattern Maker Background The existing game has been in need of replacement for a long time, as it is overly simple, awkward to handle, and uninteresting to play. The fire at the TriPlastics plant in the fall of 2008 destroyed the mold for the game; this event served as the impetus to begin developing the replacement. The goal will be to devise a game that is more accurate in its scoring, more realistic in its graphic format, more educational in its potential for variations and extensions, and more fun for a variety of ages. Work during FY 2009 The project leader mocked up and tried several playing formats extensively. These included various playing field surfaces and sizes, and different combinations of cards and spinner designs. The chosen design uses spinners for the pitcher and the hitter, with areas of unequal size to represent the probability of different events. The playing field will be made of colored felt with raised bases, using Velcro pieces to represent runners and fielders. The model maker devised a base and pointer for the spinners and constructed 16 complete prototypes of the field. The project leader wrote the instruction booklet with teaching suggestions and extension activities. Work planned for FY 2010 The field evaluation will be carried out in the fall of 2009. Because of the variety of people's preferences regarding games, there may be extensive revisions or additions to be considered. The final revisions will be made and tooling changes, if needed, will be specified. Treks (Continued) 135

Purpose To develop a game for reinforcing compass skills, orientation and travel concepts, and familiarity with cardinal and secondary compass directions. Project Staff Fred Otto, Project Leader Tom Poppe, Model and Pattern Maker Katherine Corcoran, Model and Pattern Maker Frank Hayden, Prototype Specifications Paul Olson, Original Design Background A game called Compass Attack was submitted by Paul H. Olson, who created it for use with mobility students at North Dakota Vision Services/School for the Blind. The instructions are both simple and flexible, so the game has initial appeal and the potential for keeping interest through adaptation. The educational aspect is promoted by the requirement that students announce the compass direction of every move they make as they send pieces across the board. The project leader, in consultation with Mr. Olson, made numerous revisions to the game and wrote a new game booklet. The revised game features rule variations that can make the game simpler or more complex. At the suggestion of in-house staff, overlays have been added; these change the focus of the game from cardinal compass directions to secondary directions or street names. Work during FY 2009 No new development work was needed, but a major fire at the plant where the game boards were to be manufactured brought production of the game to a halt in the fall of 2008. Work planned for FY 2010 The game will move into production as the vendor re-equips and resumes manufacturing, and it will become available for sale.

136

Low Vision

137

Address: Earth Large Format Atlas, Section 2 (Continued) Purpose The Large Format Atlas provides guidelines for the creation, formatting and appearance of large print maps. Working relationships with the University of Louisville Geography Department, National Geographic, and experts in the fields of geography and history were established. Highly-trained consultants have provided useful input in the production of a truly accessible, enhanced format atlas for students with low vision. These efforts will ultimately lead to an atlas that will be visible, understandable and useful for the student with low vision who is a large print reader. Section 1 was made available in 2007 and Section 2 is on track to be produced next. Project Staff J. Elaine Kitchel, Project Leader Monica Vaught, Research Assistant Ann Travis, Research Assistant Erica Rucker, Research Assistant Rosanne Hoffmann, Research Assistant Robert Forbes, Project Consultant/University Liaison Matt Smith, Cartographer Adam Coomes, Cartographer Kevin Devine, Cartographer Amy Sadler, Cartographer Jeffrey Lucas, Expert/Writer David Pepper, Expert/Writer Phillip Cantrell, Expert/Writer Anu Sabhlok, Expert/Writer Iman Azzi, Expert/Writer James Erwin, Expert/Writer Carol Hanchette, Expert/Writer Andrew Novak, Expert/Writer Terri Gilmore, Graphic Designer Frank Hayden, Technical Researcher David McGee, Technical Researcher Background The American Printing House for the Blind received a strong recommendation from the Publications Committee in 2001 and in previous years to produce a world atlas in large format. Previous attempts to create such an atlas met with poor results. It was decided to convene a 138

focus group made up of people who had expertise in both low vision and geography, as well as people with experience in literacy issues and student use issues in order to develop the guidelines. The guidelines were developed in 2001 and 2002, and a work group was convened in order to learn to use mapping software (ArcView). In 2003 the consultants began to write the chapter content for the Atlas, while APH staff checked facts, made edits, and maintained good communication among all parties. Vice President in charge of Public Affairs, Gary Mudd, and his administrative assistant, Nancy Lacewell, met several times with officers of National Geographic in Washington, D.C. They opened a dialogue between APH and National Geographic for the purpose of exploring the potential for a joint effort in producing a large print atlas. During these conversations, it became apparent that APH processes and National Geographic processes were not compatible and collaboration for production was not feasible. The decision was made to continue work on the atlas with the expert help available from the University of Louisville Geography and Geosciences Department. Two years later, National Geographic offered to review maps after they were developed by APH in collaboration with the University of Louisville‘s Geography and Geosciences Department. To date, they have reviewed maps for both Section 1 and Section 2 of Address: Earth and their reviews have been very useful. With information about the latest technology, guidelines for the content and proposed format of the Student World Atlas were shaped. The consultants and APH staff undertook work on the first section and it was completed and made available in September of 2007. In 2009, work on Section 2 continued, as textual content was matched with photos, sidebars and illustrations, and the editing process continued in full swing. Work during FY 2009 In 2007 the project leader and department director decided to contact geography and history experts, to write the units. Most were professors at universities. Contracts were drawn up and eight experts joined the project. They wrote the units and some sidebars for Russia, Continental Europe, the Middle East, Africa, South America, Central America and Meso-America and this writing continued through the first half of 2009. Section 2 is now in the final stages of editing. Five of the six chapters have been edited and laid out. Photographs and sidebars were added. Maps were sent to National Geographic for review and revisions were made based upon the suggested changes. Final content will be reviewed by experts, teachers, students and bias reviewers. Technical Research personnel will draw up specifications and production schedules. Production processes will begin. Work planned for FY 2010 Text editing on Section 3 will commence, as will photo acquisition. Layout and review by experts, teachers, students and bias reviewers will take place. Schedules will be drawn up.

139

Appropriate Intervention Techniques Formerly: Best Intervention Techniques (Continued) Purpose To provide educators and interventionists with a video that displays and discusses appropriate practices for interventions with young children who have visual impairments. Project Staff J. Elaine Kitchel, Project Leader Dr. Amanda Hall-Lueck, Lead Consultant Dr. Toni Heinze, Consultant Carol Roderick, Research Assistant Terri Gilmore, Graphic Designer Background There are many interventions and steps practitioners take when they perform functional vision evaluations on very young children with vision impairments. Today, practitioners see very complicated children who have neurological, cognitive, and physical deficits as well as vision problems. Guidelines are needed to identify appropriate practices, and to provide guidance to the practitioner who is dealing with children with disabilities that range from uncomplicated, to very involved and medically-complicated. Dr. Amanda Hall-Lueck, an educator and researcher in the fields of low vision and early childhood, proposed and worked on this project. The resulting video/DVD is expected to be of great assistance to the practitioner who is seeking to find ways to resolve function of the visual system and lead the young child through appropriate developmental stages. The product will be primarily helpful to students who are planning to become teachers of students with visual impairments. Drs. Hall-Lueck and Dr. Heinze videotaped interventions they performed with young children who had a wide range of abilities. Once the raw footage was obtained, Dr. Lueck wrote a script to accompany it. The footage and script were turned over to the project leader for development of a professional-style video. Dr. Hall-Lueck also developed a short sample video to use at professional conferences. Work during FY 2009 The taped material was put into DVD Format and sent to five expert reviewers. This was done to determine the accuracy of the content, and the feasibility of using footage that was problematic due to audio and video interference. Editing of the script has been completed, but other edits are underway as cutting and film editing continue. Work planned for FY 2010 Video clips will now be merged with story boards, introductions, credits, voice-overs and music. Editing will continue until the video is considered to be complete enough to review. The 140

video will then be reviewed by expert reviewers. Once the review is done, suggested changes will be made and the presentation will be closed captioned and fitted with video description. It will then be duplicated and made available for sale. Determining Appropriate Visual Reading Media for Students with Low Vision Formerly: Optimizing the Reading of Text (Continued) Purpose The purpose of this project was to conduct basic research to determine visual accommodation needs, requirements, and strategies of students with low vision when reading passages of continuous text. With the research now done, the focus shifts to the development of a decision tree based on the results of data analysis. Project Staff J. Elaine Kitchel, APH Project Leader Dr. Amanda Hall Lueck, Project Consultant & Researcher Ian Bailey, O.D., Consulting Research Optometrist Helen Dornbusch, O.D., Consulting Research Optometrist Paul Bither, O.D., Consulting Low Vision Optometrist Background This was the third in a sequence of studies on how magnification, accommodation, and the visual reserve affect reading efficiency in students who already know how to read. Production of reading passages was completed. The team developed comprehension questions for the selected passages and conducted pilot testing. Data were collected, analyzed and published. The data analysis was incorporated into a report and published in the Journal of Visual Impairment and Blindness in 2006. A decision tree to help teachers and interventionists select appropriately-sized learning media for students with low vision is now being developed. Work during FY 2009 A model of the decision tree and a User‘s Guide were developed and reviewed by APH. Some pieces of the decision tree were not fully accessible when APH staff tried to open them and this problem had to be resolved. Editing began on the User‘s Guide. Since the product is technically very complex, the project leader suggested that a low vision optometrist who is not involved in the development of the product, and who is familiar with the needs of teachers, review the product for feasibility and usability. This review has been set-up and will take place in October 2009.

141

Work planned for FY 2010 The user‘s manual will be completed, edited and formatted after the expert review is complete. A CD of both the decision tree and the manual will be developed for purposes of accommodation. Once these processes take place, the project will go into production phase. It is planned for this project to be completed in FY 2010. Developmental Guidelines for Infants with Visual Impairments, Revision (Continued) Purpose The authors of ―Developmental Guidelines for Infants with Visual Impairments‖ asked for an opportunity to review the latest research and use it to update the product. The APH PARC Committee agreed that it was important to bring the product up to date and to improve the quality of the edits, so the revision was approved. The book itself provides consumers with a comparison between infants with visual impairments and infants with typical vision, their learning styles, learning needs, and appropriate interventions. Project Staff Elaine Kitchel, Project Leader Frank Hayden, Technical Researcher Amanda Hall-Lueck, Ph.D., Consultant Laurianne Matheson, Research Assistant Rosanne Hoffmann, Ph.D., Research assistant Background The first edition of Developmental Guidelines was made available in 1999. Since that time, significant research has been conducted in the areas of early childhood, child development, and development of children with visual impairments. The authors, Drs. Amanda Hall-Lueck, Deborah Chen, Elizabeth Hartmann, and Linda Kekelis requested the opportunity to update the material in the book. Work during FY 2009 The data collected from expert review underwent analysis. Literary and usage editing were conducted. The text and photos were laid out and post-layout editing was accomplished. Braille transcription and proofreading took place and all media were brought into compliance with final edits and accessibility guidelines. HTML coding was done and approved as were Braille ready files, and DAISY-compliant audio files. Files were turned over to production. Work planned for FY 2010 Production of the new edition will take place and the product will be available for sale in print, braille, Braille-ready, HTML, and DAISY-compliant formats.

142

Functional Vision Assessment/Learning Media Assessment for Academic Students with Low Vision Large Format Protocol Forms (Completed) Purpose To provide teachers and practitioners who need large format protocol forms to accompany the FV/LMA product. Project Staff J. Elaine Kitchel, Project Leader Dr. LaRhea Sanford, Consultant Dr. Rebecca Burnett, Consultant Frank Hayden, Technical Researcher David McGee, Technical Researcher Erica Rucker, Research Assistant Terri Gilmore, Graphic Designer Candace Jaworski, Graphic Designer Background There is no particular functional vision assessment for academic students available that is accepted as the standard by those who conduct these assessments. However, Drs. LaRhea Sanford and Rebecca Burnett developed one that established credibility and use among teachers and practitioners. It was proposed that APH make it widely-available as an APH product. In 2008, FV/LMA (Functional Vision/Learning Media Assessment) was edited and published by APH. Even though the instrument was available in braille, audio format, HTML, and regular text, there was no provision for the teacher with low vision to have the protocols to conduct the assessments. To provide APH consumers with a full range of options, the protocols had to be accessible to practitioners who were large print users. Therefore they were produced in large print that had been enhanced with extra formatting options to make it more readable and accessible than standard print or standard large print. Work during FY 2009 The regular print protocols were laid out in large print format. The document was then enhanced with additional formatting features to make it more readable. The product specifications and documentation were drawn up and the product entered the production phase. The product was completed and made available in July 2009. Lighting Guide Kit Formerly: Vivid Vision Lamp (Continued) 143

Purpose Many students with visual impairments are expected to work under lighting conditions that are not appropriate for their visual needs. Often this problem persists because parents and professionals, who work with students with visual impairments, do not really understand what is needed by each individual student. APH decided to develop the Lighting Guide Kit to provide individuals with recent, research-based information about what kind of lighting is needed by students with visual impairments. In addition, APH decided to work with an engineer/inventor to provide the kind of lamp most often needed by our consumers to accompany the Lighting Guide Book, ―What Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments need to Know about Lighting.‖ Project Staff Elaine Kitchel, Project Leader Frank Hayden, Technical Researcher Darlene Donhoff, Technical Researcher Robin Mumford, Engineer/Developer Background Since 2000, the Project Leader has written chapters she planned to combine into a book called ―What Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments Need to Know about Lighting.‖ Since 2001 APH has pursued the development and acquisition of a lamp that would emit light friendly to persons with low vision. Most classrooms, indeed most schools and workplaces, are lit by fluorescent tubes which emit light with strong spikes in the UV-A, (380nm to 315nm), and blue light (500nm to 381nm) ranges. Light in these ranges has been shown to be harmful to primate retinas, and has also been shown to produce glare, discomfort, and light blindness with slow recovery in persons with low vision. The challenge for APH was to develop or locate a light source which emitted light only in the green and red ranges (680 to 501nm). This lamp would have to be lightweight and useful to students. In 2006 the project leader became aware that Robin Mumford, an engineer who had devoted much of his time to studying light and low vision, had developed a lamp which emitted light in the exact range desired. In 2007 it was decided that a combination of the book and the lamp as a product would be the best way to proceed because teachers and other practitioners need information about how to select the best lighting for their students. Work during FY 2009 The project leader completed writing the book ―What Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments Need to Know about Lighting.‖ This book gives information about light and lighting in general, but it also provides specific user information about the Vivid Vision Lamp. The addition of a parabolic lens and the elimination of all blue light from the tube emissions 144

were accomplished. Specifications were written and the production schedule was set. The book is sold separately, but the lamp is sold only with the book as the Lighting Guide Kit. The product became available in Dec. of 2008. Maximize Multi-Camera Video Magnifier2 With Cordless PenTracker™ and Joystick (Continued) Purpose For many years, individuals who help provide materials and technology have asked APH for a video magnifier for students with visual impairments. Until recently, the technology has not existed to provide all the features required by APH consumers. When EITAC Solutions, LLC, presented APH with the appropriate technology, it was decided to pursue the development of the MaximEyes Video Magnifier because its new technology provides solutions to consumer needs. This product was made available in 2008. In 2009 the developer and APH decided to upgrade the product. Project Staff Elaine Kitchel, Project Leader Laurianne Matheson, Consultant Tim Curtin, Technical Developer David McGee, Technical Research Frank Hayden, Technical Research Background In the late 1960s and early 70s CCTVs began to be used regularly as aids for people with visual impairments. Today CCTVs are called video magnifiers (VMs) and they are used around the world as popular devices for individuals with visual impairments who want to increase their abilities or facility to read and write. The video magnifier in its most basic form consists of a monitor, a video camera, a lens for the camera and a reading/writing stand. With all video magnifiers the viewer is able to focus the lens, adjust the magnification, regulate the luminance and contrast and choose a positive (black letters on white background) or negative (white letters on black background) monochrome picture depending on preference. With today‘s VMs, color, handheld and headmounted versions have become available along with the traditional stand models. The ability to connect other media sources such as PCs and DVD players is also now possible through the addition of hardware and software to video magnifiers. In 2006, APH was approached by EITAC Solutions Group with a version of a video magnifier that featured a pen fitted with a device which would cause the camera to track it. The new 2009 model features a cordless and more ergonomic PenTracker™; a joystick replaces the

145

mouse. The monitor is larger and the footprint is smaller. The whole unit is quieter, having been covered by a layer of sound-muffling plastic, and fitted with a quieter scanning motor. Work during FY 2009 Several employees of APH with low vision tested the MaximEyes Video Magnifier for long periods of time and provided feedback to EITAC. Product documentation was developed, edited and completed as was research and development of an extended warranty. The product became available in August of 2009. NewT: New Tools for Use with FV/LMA (New) Purpose FV/LMA, a set of protocols for conduction of functional vision and learning media assessments requires a set of tools for practitioners to use. The protocols within FV/LMA often require such tools as colored markers, print samples of varied sizes, photos, pictures, cartoons, rulers, etc. In the past, practitioners have been responsible for the development of their own set of tools. However, there is value in standardization. When tools are standardized, other practitioners, optometrists, teachers and all people of a student‘s vision care/educational team understand how the results of the functional vision and learning media assessments were gathered and analyzed. They all understand what the results mean. With the development of NewT, practitioners across the country will be able to interpret results from their colleagues‘ reports when a child moves to a different state, for example. Project Staff J. Elaine Kitchel, Project Leader LaRhea Sanford, Consultant Darlene Donhoff, Technical Research Background FV/LMA became available in 2008. Dr. LaRhea Sanford, one of the originators of FV/LMA has done several workshops through the National Instructional Partnership. After each of her presentations, practitioners, teachers, and early interventionists call APH to request sets of tools such as NewT would provide. They are very interested in having the tools to complement their FV/LMA products. Work During 2009 The project leader and consultant met together in June of 2009, to determine the scope of the product, and to specify each item that would go into the array of tools in NewT. The project leader then met with the technical research specialist assigned to the product and talked over the projected specifications. The project leader then identified which items in the tool array would be made within APH walls, and which ones would need to be procured outside APH. The project leader then examined several items procured outside APH to determine if they would be suitable for use in the NewT array. 146

Work Planned for FY 2010 The project leader will continue to evaluate items for inclusion in the NewT array. The consultant will work on a short informational booklet for use by the consumer. A search for an appropriate carrying case will take place. Specifications will be updated and finalized immediately after tooling is completed. Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning (New) Purpose Revise to current APH and educational (best practices) standards the long time selling and very successful product created by Dr. Natalie Barraga in 1978. Project staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Millie Smith, Lead Consultant Natalie Barraga, Project Advisor Monica Vaught-Compton, Research Assistant David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Advisory Panel/Contributors Bill Daugherty Amanda Lueck Deborah Orel-Bixler Rona Pogrund Cecelia Robinson Christine Roman-Lantzy L. Penny Rosenblum LaRhea Sanford Irene Topper Background In 1978, Dr. Natalie Barraga demonstrated that school-age children with low vision could learn to use their vision more efficiently within a program that taught visual perceptual skills. She wrote, ―Experience has shown that many persons with low vision do not employ their usable vision. If they are accustomed to functioning as if blind, they do not understand how to look. Others who have tried to use vision in the past may have stopped trying because of negative experiences. A basic assumption is made that efficiency in the use of vision is desirable for all low vision learners. The major portion of the program focuses on effective use of low vision.‖ Dr. Barraga and APH agreed that now is the time to update the product. Millie Smith, a former graduate student of Dr. Barraga‘s, is the lead consultant on the project. Dr. Barraga sits on the advisory panel that was created to guide this revision. 147

Work done in FY 2009 The Project Leader and Smith reviewed the existing product. They established an advisory panel whose members represent teachers of the visually impaired, university professors, and optometrists. The panel had a very productive work session in Austin, TX. The panel created an outline of the new product and assigned preliminary tasks to panel members. Work planned for FY 2010 The new guidebook will be written. Field test sites will be identified. Tadpole (Continued) Purpose To provide teachers of students with low vision and other disabilities with a standardized array of classic tools, strategies, and graphics to conduct functional vision assessments and vision development activities with learners of the developmental ages of 0-2 yrs. Guidelines for the uses of the tools and materials are to be included. Project Staff J. Elaine Kitchel, Project Leader Millie Smith, Consultant Erica Rucker, Research Assistant David McGee, Technical Research Frank Hayden, Technical Research Candace Jaworski, Graphic Designer Background Numerous and ongoing requests from practitioners in the field led to a project named ToAD that provides a standardized set of toys, reflective materials and lights commonly used by practitioners to conduct functional vision evaluations and/or vision development activities with young children. Practitioners stated that toys and lights developed by toymakers come and go according to fads. If APH made the array and materials, they would not go out of style or become unavailable. The array would also be available on quota. An array of objects and print/graphic materials was developed and field tested along with a practitioner‘s guidebook. During the field test stage, teachers who worked with students with severe, complicating disabilities in addition to low vision commented that the ToAD activities as well as the twodimensional graphic materials were not appropriate for the population they served. They also commented that many of the tools were very appropriate, but needed to be used in a simpler and less-complicated way, to serve the needs of their students. The project leader, with approval of PARC, and with advice from the project consultant, developed a sequence of activities and visual materials for use by this special population. The project leader developed activities to accompany Tasha Tadpole‘s Puzzle Book and sent them to the consultant for her review and comments. The project leader made changes based upon the consultant‘s feedback. 148

Work during FY 2009 Additional activities were developed as a result of field testing. Editing was also completed on practitioner‘s guidebook of appropriate foundation activities for multi-handicapped students, to accompany the ToAD array of tools. Editing of the text for Tasha Tadpole‘s Puzzle Book was also completed and additional images were added. Additional TADPOLE cards were developed as was a report form. Specifications were drawn up. Work planned for FY 2010 Documentation and specifications are complete. The product files will be transcribed for braille. HTML, DAISY and Braille-ready files will be developed to provide accessibility for users with visual disabilities. TADPOLE will then go into production phase probably during the 2nd quarter of the 2010 fiscal year.

149

Mathematics

150

Consumable Number Lines Large - Print and Braille/Tactile (Formerly Toss-Away Number Lines) (Continued) Purpose To provide an inexpensive disposable number line in large print and braille/tactile formats Project staff Jeanette Wicker, Project Leader Terri Gilmore, Graphic Designer Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Katherine Corcoran, Model Maker Barbara Henderson, Project Advisor David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Anita Rutledge, Design Specialist/Process Engineer Monica Vaught, Research/Project Assistant Background The idea for a disposable number line was submitted by a teacher of the visually impaired who liked the APH disposable rulers. She wanted to make it easier for teachers to create number lines quickly. She felt that a number line of this kind would be very popular and fill a real need. The teacher‘s idea was sent through the Product Evaluation Team (PET) and deemed worthy of further development. The project was assigned to a project leader and project staff. In the second quarter of FY 2006, project staff communicated with the teacher who submitted the product idea. A sketch was sent to the project leader in preparation for the initial PDC meeting. The project leader met with other project leaders to brainstorm the idea and to get input on product design. In FY 2007 prototypes of a Toss-Away Large Print Number Line and a Toss-Away Tactile Number Line were developed. A desktop stick-on number line with braille and large print was requested through another product submission from a teacher in the field. This request will also be included in the types of number lines available from APH. Field testing of the Toss-Away Large Print Number Line and the Toss-Away Braille/Tactile Number Line were completed. Changes were made to the prototypes and production began in August 2008. The name of the product was changed for ―Toss-Away‖ to ―Consumable‖ based on the feedback from field evaluators who felt that the name ―Toss-Away‖ was not environmentally friendly. Work during FY 2009

151

The Consumable Number Lines became available for sale in November 2008. The model shop began work on the Desktop Stick-On Number Line. Work planned for FY 2010 Complete the development of the Desktop Stick-On Number Line.

FOCUS in Mathematics, Second Edition (Continued) Purpose To update an existing product, FOCUS in Mathematics Project Staff Burt Boyer, Project Leader Jeanette Wicker, Project Leader Darlene Donhoff, Manufacturing Specialist Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Rosanne Hoffman, Research Assistant David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Ann Travis, Research Assistant BISIG Impact Group, Graphic Design Background In June 2007 PET and PARC committees approved a submission for the revision of FOCUS in Mathematics. The kit was first produced in 1984. Since that time the National Council for Mathematics has revised the Principles and Standards for School Mathematics. Additionally, some of the manipulatives were no longer available from the manufacturer and/or had become very dated in appearance and usefulness. In FY 2008 lessons were reviewed to determine alignment with the Principles and Standards for School Mathematics and the Curriculum Focal Points for Prekindergarten through Grade 8 Mathematics adopted by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. Lessons were added and rewritten to meet the new standards. Lessons were organized by theme and grade level. Manipulatives were reviewed, modified, changed and/or added to the kit. Work during FY 2009 The prototype of the FOCUS in Mathematics, Second Edition was completed and sent to the following people for expert review:  Leslie Durst, Director, Indiana Education Resource Center, Indianapolis, IN  Gaylen Kapperman, Professor and Coordinator, Visual Disabilities Program, Department of Teaching and Learning, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL 152

 Susan Osterhaus, Statewide Mathematics Consultant  Outreach Department, Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Austin, TX  Shannon Pruitt, Graduate Research Assistant, Visual Disabilities Program, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL  Derrick Smith, Assistant Professor in Special Education at the University of Alabama, Huntsville, AL  Tuck Tinsley, President, American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, KY Additions and revisions began on the prototype based on the comments of the expert reviewers. Work planned for FY 2010 Complete the final revisions to the prototype and make the product available for sale. Graphic Aid for Mathematics Revision (Continued) Purpose To revise the current Graphic Aid for Mathematics by changing some components and adding new ones to make the product easier to use and read Project Staff Fred Otto, Project Leader Background At the advice of teachers who use the APH kit or homemade variations, staff investigated ideas for making graphs easier to display and more readable. Some suggestions came from teacher Ken Kalina, who constructs his own boards with grids made on a braille embosser and uses a variety of wires and pins to create his graphs; other revisions originate in-house. The project leader and Technical Research staff purchased a variety of wires and pins to substitute for existing components of the kit, and investigated changing the surface material and/or backing board for the grid. A cork composite material proved to be impractical because of the difficulty of cutting it effectively. Work during FY 2009 The possibility of changing the grid to incised lines, rather than raised lines, was investigated; it did not generate enough enthusiasm to warrant the extra time and cost needed for tooling. Input was gathered at two Annual Meeting sessions and from teachers at a multi-school inservice in New York.

153

The project leader and Technical Research staff drew up a final design for the board and sent it out for bids from manufacturers. The design may include a circle graph on the opposite side of the board from the grid, depending on the tooling costs involved. Work planned for FY 2010 A field evaluation will be conducted, taking advantage of the existing customer base, as well as trustees and consultants who are known to be users of the current product. Depending on the feasibility of constructing full mock-ups, evaluators may be asked either to review the actual redesigned product or to comment on potential redesigns. MathBuilders Formerly: Primary Math Units (Continued) Purpose To develop instructional math materials for use with students who are blind and visually impaired in the primary grades as either a supplement to the classroom math program or as a core curriculum item. Project Staff Jeanette Wicker, Project Leader Derrick Smith, Math Consultant Katherine Corcoran, Model Maker Darlene Donhoff, Technical/Clerical Assistant Jenny Dortch, Consultant/Project Assistant Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Rosanne Hoffmann, Research Assistant Tom Poppe, Model Maker Erica Rucker, Research Assistant Anita Rutledge, Design Specialist/Process Engineer Ann Travis, Research Assistant BISIG Impact Group, Graphic Design Background Math achievement of blind students has been consistently behind that of their sighted peers. In recent years, very little research and product development has been done to improve this situation. Teachers of students who are blind, however, have continuously requested special braille curricular materials for math similar to those in the Patterns program developed at APH to teach braille reading. Because of the dramatic increases in the number of blind students mainstreamed, the use of the itinerant special education teacher model, the math priority stated in GOALS 2000, and new teaching standards adopted by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, it became critical to focus once again on math materials for visually impaired students. This project received special funding as part of a three-year research initiative to develop new products in math, science, and geography. 154

During the Mathematics Focus Group Meeting in September 1994, this program was discussed and specifications were determined. During fiscal year 1995, work on the project included a review of the research and literature on math instruction for visually impaired students; analyses of math curriculum guides; thorough analyses of current textbooks to determine mathematical symbols, terms, and concepts being taught; a search of the catalogs for commercially available math related products; and a review of programs on abacus instruction. By 1996, prototypes of eight Primary Math Units and a general guidebook began to take shape with guidance from William E. Leibfritz, math consultant. In July 1996, a group of teachers of the visually impaired met at APH to share ideas they found to be particularly effective for developing math concepts and practice materials for their visually impaired students in the primary grades. In July 1997, project consultants, Leibfritz and Susan Millaway, met at APH and reviewed in detail the teaching strategies for the kindergarten and first grade Primary Math Units. A draft of an introductory book that presents the philosophy and overview of the program was developed by the project leader later in fiscal year 1997. In fiscal years 1998 and 1999 worksheets were developed to supplement the Lessons for Unit 1: Matching, Sorting, and Patterning for kindergarten through third grade. In fiscal year 2000, the decision was made to field test by units rather than waiting for the program to be finished in its entirety. Tooling of Unit 1 prototype worksheets for field testing began. In FY 2001, evaluation forms for the introduction and Unit 1 were drafted. Tooling of the prototype worksheets continued with coordination of the print and braille requiring much more time than originally planned. In fiscal year 2002-2003 Jenny Dortch completed the final draft of the introductory book and Unit 1. The evaluation forms for the book, lessons, and worksheets were developed. During fiscal year 2004, the evaluation forms, Guidelines (introductory material), and Unit 1 Lessons for Kindergarten through third grade were finalized and prepared for field testing. Materials were placed with teachers having braille reading students in kindergarten through third grade for approximately six to eight weeks and then returned to APH for compilation and analyses of data. Results were extremely positive with only a little revision required. Dortch continued work on Units 2, 3, and 4 during fiscal years 2004 and 2005. These units cover Number Concepts, Place Value, and Number Operation. Eleanor Pester served as Project Leader during this phase of development. In FY 2006 the project was assigned to Jeanette Wicker, Core Curriculum Project Leader (a newly created position). Revisions were made to Unit 1, Matching, Patterning, and Sorting and to the General Guidelines based on the feedback from the field testing. MathBuilders was selected as the name for the series. Manipulatives were added to Unit 1 based on feedback from field testing. Graphic design and braille translation were completed. Tooling for worksheets began. A consultant, Derrick Smith, a Doctoral Student at Texas Tech, was hired for Unit 6, Geometry and Unit 8, Data Collection, Graphing, and Probability/Statistics. Objectives were reviewed for alignment with Principles and Standards for School Mathematics from the National Council of Teachers of Math for Units 6 and 8. 155

In FY 2007 Unit 1 and the General Guidelines became available for sale. A prototype of the Geometry Unit was completed and field tested at 10 sites for three months in the spring of 2007. The text for Unit 8 was written and the development of a prototype was initiated. In FY 2008 revisions based on field reviewers‘ comments were completed for Unit 6, Geometry. Production was completed and the Unit became available for sale in May 2008. Field testing of Unit 8, Data Collection, Graphing, and Probability/Statistics was completed and revisions were made based on field reviewer‘s comments. A prototype of Unit 7, Fractions, Mixed Numbers, and Decimals was completed. Work during FY 2009 Unit 8, Data Collection, Graphing, and Probability/Statistics became available in September 2009. Unit 7, Fractions, Mixed Numbers, and Decimals was field tested in FY 2009. The development of Unit 5, Measurement began in FY 2009. Objectives for the remaining three units were also developed. Work planned for FY 2010 Complete revisions to Unit 7, Fractions, Mixed Numbers, and Decimals and produce for sale in winter of 2010. Field test Unit 5, Measurement. Work on the three remaining units will begin. Nemeth Across Time (New) Purpose To provide students and teachers of the visually impaired a series of ―teach sheets‖ that address mathematical concepts and Nemeth Braille Code. Project Staff Jeanette Wicker, Project Leader Patricia Bolger, Consultant Derrick Smith, Consultant Background The idea for Nemeth Across Time came from a teacher in the field, Patricia Bolger. She had developed and used the ―teach sheets‖ with her students and found them to be very helpful. Each ―teach sheet‖ has a definition or description, specific vocabulary, description in print, appearance in Braille, process or steps in calculation, formulas, math concepts explained, and oddities or exceptions to the math rule noted. The materials would be available on CD and could be embossed or printed when needed. The product submission was approved by PET and PARC committees. A contract was negotiated with Ms. Bolger and the files were reviewed by another math Consultant, Dr. Derrick Smith. 156

Work Planned for FY 2010 Review each lesson and revise as needed. Identify and create additional lessons as needed to meet the standards set by the National Council of Mathematics. Prepare materials for field testing. Talking Protractor (New) Purpose To provide students and teachers of the visually impaired a protractor that measures to the nearest degree and provides an audible announcement of the measurement. Project Staff Jeanette Wicker, Project Leader David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Background The product submission for the talking protractor came from two teachers in the field. This protractor will enable students with visual impairment to measure any angle and hear the measurement spoken. An optical encoder would be used to record the amount of rotation and the readout would then be translated into degrees (and/or) radians, which would then be reprocessed for speech output. This would provide an accurate means for students to measure angles in mathematics or science classes. Students currently use protractors that provide approximate measurements. Currently available protractors make use of tactual clues (e.g., one dot for 10 degree divisions, two dots for 45 and 135 degrees, and three dots for 90 degrees.) Other values would need to be interpolated. The product submission was approved by the PET and PARC committees. A meeting was held with the teachers to review a prototype and brainstorm ideas for improvements. Work Planned for FY 2010 Develop a prototype of the talking protractor that can be mass produced and meet the needs of students with visual impairments.

157

Micro computer Applications & Products

158

APH Digital Audio Component (Continued) Purpose To create digital audio recording, playback, and navigation components for use in several educational, application, and utility programs under development Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Rob Meredith, Programmer Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager John Zinninger, Senior Technician Background Given the close work APH does with the Digital Accessible Information System (DAISY) consortium, the National Library Service (NLS), the APH studio, and the software under development in the Department of Educational Research, APH staff recognized that the creation of a digital audio component that could be shared among several applications was the model that was most efficient for the wide variety of projects under development. Several of the educational software projects, including Book Wizard Reader, Book Wizard Producer, Book Port Transfer, Studio Recorder, Talking Typer, Termite Torpedo, Armadillo Army, Toodle Tiles, and Teacher's Pet require a digital audio recording and playback component. In addition to its needs for playback and recording controls, the Book Wizard and Book Port Transfer projects required navigation controls and the ability to speed up the playback of the recording without affecting the pitch. Given the diverse requirements and the interesting possibilities offered with custom software, APH decided to develop its own digital audio record, playback, and navigation component for use with several projects underway and to develop an interface that uses that control to provide a studio recording application. (See the separate write-up on Studio Recorder.) Through the years, staff continues to enhance the component. In 2007, they added the ability to encode and decode the AMR Wideband Plus format which is what the National Library Service uses for its new Digital Talking Books. Work during FY 2009  Added the option to provide a short beep when recording starts.  Added the ability to bleep out a segment of audio.  Added the ability to change the pitch of a file or portion of a file.  Added the ability for the Find Largest Peak function to respect a single channel selection in a stereo buffer.  Added support for direct speech through the System Access screen reader. 159

 Corrected bugs.

Work planned for FY 2010 Staff will continue to enhance the component as needed. Many software users requested the ability to slow down the speed of the audio playback. This would make learning language or music much easier. Windows Direct X filters should be supported. This would allow users of APH audio editing software to use third party plug-ins, commonly referred to as DirectX Plug-ins, for signal processing. File size limitations with the .wav file type are quickly becoming a problem as the power of PCs increases and the demands of users grows. Programmers investigated additional file types for inclusion as the set the component supports. There are still several advanced features that require significant amounts of research to implement. Among these is the addition of a band pass filter and pattern detection. Yet another area of interest is streaming technology. The digital audio component should provide full streaming services to the client in a variety of environments. Server side implementations of the component should be able to provide a local user navigation and time scale services on the server side, thereby reducing the amount of data that gets transferred. The studio has requested several modifications that should make the job of studio monitors easier. These include the following:      Create a special marker for use with corrections. Export the text of the correction marks. Increase the size of the font in the status bar. Add the ability to include special characters in mark text. Create a separate threshold for the Compress Pauses function; it currently uses the phrase detection threshold.  Add a toggle that lets the user switch between normal pitch and the last used pitch.  Make the peak meter dockable. APH Speech Environment (Continued) Purpose To develop a reusable foundation for current talking software from APH 160

Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Rob Meredith, Programmer Keith Creasy, Programmer Background APH develops talking software that runs under current and future versions of Windows. While each completed title is different, they also have much in common, especially with respect to access issues. The APH Speech Environment (ASE) provides the following common services to all the programs under development:          


Speech or braille output Controls to select speech and braille parameters Record and restore user access settings Accessible output to standard Windows menus and controls through an interface to Microsoft's Active Accessibility (MSAA) components Standard interface to speech controls and enhancements to standard text-to speech (TTS) engine behavior targeted for use by blind and visually impaired users Precise punctuation control and consistent rendering among various text-to speech engines Interactive TTS engine selection Interruptability Detection of demonstration versus registered program with an interface to accept and store registration information Dictionary translation Digitized audio playback control, including the ability to generate studio scripts of a program's prompts and an interface that uses those recordings for program interaction

ASE is a program module that provides these core services. While it will not be a stand-alone product, it is included as part of most APH software developed for Windows and could be provided to other Accessible software manufactures in an effort to meet the 508 regulations referring to government procurement of electronic tools. During the first few years of APH software development, standard services were enough to meet the needs of the software under development. For example, providing access and speech to common Windows controls and menus, a means of controlling speech parameters and voice selections, a means of stopping the speech on request, a way of repeating the information, and precise punctuation pronunciation control were once enough to meet the needs of the applications under development at APH. As more titles gain popularity, ASE's capabilities must expand to meet the needs of the new software.

161

In APH's first three titles, for example, the software was all written in C or C++ programming languages, and none of the packages required the ability to echo keyboard input, although each provided this functionality. Neither did the titles have much need for braille output. ASE's role has already expanded with the introduction of a user registration mechanism. These algorithms let the application query registration information and inform the application as to whether it is running as a demo or as a full version. They also provide a user interface that describes the limitation built into the demonstration version of the calling application and offers the user the ability to enter a key that he may obtain from APH customer support over the phone or electronically. Once the customer enters that key, the application is converted from a demo into a fully registered version of that program. Now, as APH develops under different programming languages and with the need to provide these technologies to other companies that wish to license APH's software, the flexibility of ASE's interface was improved. The first version of ASE was packaged as a standard Windows Dynamic Link Library (DLL). This is an extremely efficient means of passing large amounts of information from one component to another. Unfortunately, this technique is feasible to use only with the C programming language. As ASE's capabilities expand and the demands on it from client software expands, ASE required moving to the Component Object Model architecture. About 80% of ASE's functions have been converted to this architecture, and several educational software products are already taking advantage of ASE's new interface and capabilities. Work during FY 2009 Corrected some minor bugs. Work planned for FY 2010  Expand the support for more complex controls that are not covered by MSAA.  Enhance the keystroke announcement feature to include digitized human speech.  Support accessibility of Web 2.0 application user interfaces.  Correct other known minor issues. Book Port (Continued support) Purpose To provide a hardware tool for reading electronic books in a means convenient to the student and professional Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Steve Gomas, Project Consultant Rob Meredith, Programmer Keith Creasy, Programmer 162

Mario Eiland, Programmer Rosanne Hoffmann, Research/Project Assistant Background In FY 2000, APH began distributing a device that uses synthesized speech in a portable, convenient housing to let the user read electronic books without having to stay near the computer. While this device, the Road Runner, is no longer available, its popularity and utility were unsurpassed, especially for those students and professionals who had large amounts of material to read. Research staff began planning enhancements to the device and its interface. So, when its unavailability became apparent, staff began design on a new device that addressed the shortcomings of Road Runner while building increased functionality and flexibility for the future. These new issues included: increased, removable storage media, incremental deletes, more file types, better navigation and review, and a simplified interface. The unit needed to be able to accommodate memos, so the number of keys was increased to allow braille input for making annotations. The unit also needed to be able to play digitized audio so that it may play Digital Talking Books. As the years of software improvements continued, the hardware components became obsolete and difficult to purchase. A new model was needed that included features such as:     More file formats High speed USB port Switch to Secure Digital cards Add on-the-go USB support so that other peripherals (like Braille displays) could be supported  Rechargeable battery  Physical On/Off switch  External speaker As design for the next generation of hardware failed, staff began looking for an alternative means of providing the capabilities Book Port offered. Work during FY 2009 Updated support for bookshare.org Daisy titles as file specifications evolved. Work planned for FY 2010 See the write-up for Book Wizard Plus for the description of the hardware replacement. We will continue to provide software support and upgrades for this product.

163

Book Wizard (Continued) Purpose To provide a program that lets a student read textbooks using the National Industry Standards Organization (NISO) 3.0 Digital Talking Book (DTB) file specifications in whatever Accessible format is most appropriate for that student. It also provides navigation and control to exploit the capabilities provided by the new format and to provide simple, efficient tools for creating these books. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Keith Creasy, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Rob Meredith, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Jane Thompson, Director of ATIC Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager Background The need for a program that supports multiple output media arose from several places, including APH's and other Accessible media publishers' desire to efficiently produce textbooks in the media that best meets a student's needs. Such a task requires intelligent software and a file format that is both universal and expandable. The first step in creating such software is to identify or define the file format that best supports the characteristics required by all the output media types. Careful analysis and a worldwide trend to the extensible markup language (XML) convinced staff that this file format provided the structure, features, and extensibility required. The existence of math markup languages such as Math Markup Language (MML) and LaTex also provides the possibility of integration into the final file format. XML uses a Document Type Definition (DTD) to define the vocabulary for a markup language, and these DTD's can become quite elegant and elaborate. Creating one from scratch is not a trivial task. The National Library Service (NLS) is also attempting to define the file format for digital talking books of the future. They put a committee together to study DTDs and requirements for digital distribution of talking books in the United States. The committee consists of talking book libraries from around the world, alternative media producers, schools and training centers, and experts from the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) to identify and define the parameters of this file format. A large part of this committee is represented by the Digital Access Information System (DAISY) Consortium, which is another group comprised of alternate media producers from around the world. Their mission was to create a digital distribution system that met the 164

needs of the users and producers and one that would be compatible from country to country. European, Australian, Canadian, and some Asian countries are already using the DAISY 2.x file specifications to produce and distribute digital talking books. When NLS first commissioned the study, they were mainly on a quest for information about how to produce and distribute digital talking books for United States citizens, and this is still their primary goal. But as the process evolved and their needs coincided so well with the needs of many others, they soon found themselves, under the leadership of Michael Moody, defining the standards. They are working through the National Information Standards Organization (NISO) to define the characteristics of a file format that will meet the needs of all these producers, as well as the end user, provide compatibility among countries, and remain extensible to provide the option to grow. The file format they chose uses a number of existing technologies, so it will be possible to create tools and applications to work with such files much more easily than if they had defined their own file formats. The new file format was submitted to the National Information Standards Organization, and it gained approval in December 2002. A revision was approved in 2005. The format is called NISO z39.86. The NISO Digital Talking Book combines Simultaneous Multimedia Integrated Language (SMIL) 2.0, with a Document Type Definition (DTD) that defines the elements in the text, and an XML file called the Navigation Control to tie the parts together. The Open Ebook's package file, which contains a list of all of a book's associated files, is also included. Having attended the meetings defining the standards and insuring APH's interests were represented, research programmers gathered information about the issues and technologies and wrote specifications for a software package that uses the NISO Digital Talking Book Document Type Definition. These standards are integrating the audio representation of a work to let a student read a textbook in whatever media he desires. The package, Book Wizard, also provides services to make it simple and efficient to create such a book. Keeping all this in mind, staff is also aware that using a hand held device like the Compaq Ipaq or other Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) to read digital talking books is also required. Staff used the Book Wizard services to permit reading NISO z39.86 Digital Talking Books on Book Port. Staff continued to participate in NISO and DAISY consortium activities and, as they learned more about specific APH requirements, insured specifications were defined to meet these requirements. Keith Creasy is a member of the Digital Rights Management Committee, and helped identify features and characteristics about protecting books that would be least intrusive to readers while still offering publishers the protection they desire. Work during FY 2008 The following enhancements were made to Book Wizard Reader and Book Wizard Producer:  Adds support for 64 bit versions of Vista and Windows 7.  Corrects a problem that prevented distribution of the AMRWB+ encoder. 165

 Using audio marks when importing audio files is now one of the options in the "Settings" menu.  Fixes minor issues with audio file importation.  Fixes an issue that caused the Alt-letter hot keys to fail in the text and braille views.  Now shows a list of audio clips in the audio view. A clip may be selected using a mouse click. The hot keys for moving among clips are CTRL+Up and CTRL+Down.  The status line now shows the class and ID for the current nav point, current page, and the SMIL Ref.  Fixes the braille view so that images are shown. Also, consolidates code for the text and braille views for simplicity.  Fixes errors related to saving and restoring the view positions. Consolidates the code for saving and restoring in the child frame to avoid code duplication.  The contents view now shows the actual page number for pagenum points rather than using the ID.  Fixes bugs related to editing nav points, specifically changing a non-ncx point such as a paragraph to an ncx nav point.  Fixes a bug that caused page references to be incorrect after adding and shifting nav points.  Fixes two bugs that caused audio marks to be mishandled; a failure to go beyond level 1 and skipping level 2 marks at the beginning of audio files added after the first one. These were side effects of making BWP skip some invalid marks that might have been placed there by certain audio editors.  Fixes navigation in DAISY/NISO 2005 books.  Fixes path for images in some NIMAS files that prevented images from appearing.  Fixes an issue with the dublin core (dc) namespace in Bookshare periodicals. Version 1.4.0.0, February 2009  Fixes an error in creating the bookmark set after creating a new audio book and a related memory leak.  Fixes problems setting clip-begin and clip-end after creating a new audio book.  Fixes a crash after creating a book from existing audio files and bringing up the navigation menu.  Fixes an issue that caused the contents view of a book with dense markup to be misaligned.  Fixes a crash being caused by freeing global memory inappropriately.  Fixes problems creating AMR WB distribution books with divided audio selected.  Corrects problems that did not permit loading a sequence of audio files without marks.

166

 It is now possible to import a whole series of audio files whether or not they contain any markup.  Corrects a problem that prevented using mp3 as the file type to import a series of audio files.  Fixes problems with namespaces when loading NIMAS files that caused text not to be displayed.  Adds a new command 'X' and 'Shift+X' to the audio view that moves to the transitions between files. This is very useful when audio files without marks have been imported.  When NIMAS files are imported the image is moved into an "imggroup" element and alt text is placed as a "prodnote."  Fixed problems with lists imported from NIMAS and HTML files.  BWP now uses the latest validators from NLS and will launch the NLS protector when an AMR/wb+ book is built assuming that the protector is installed.  Adds a field to the Build-distribution dialog to limit the size of SMIL files.  Numerous bug fixes. Work planned for FY 2010  Improve text navigation; character, word, sentence.  Incorporate text editing and additional XML editing capabilities.  Add support for converting only a part of a DTB to audio from text; thus allowing part of a book to be narrated by a person and part to be generated from the text.  Add more command-line options for batch processing.  Add zoom and font selection to text window.  Add better support for rendering graphics and video.  Add hyperlink support.  Book Wizard staff will continue to work in cooperation with the recording studio and other departments within APH to produce material and work out production issues related to DTB's.  Functionality will be added to allow for user response to items in a DTB when called for. This should allow a DTB to be used for interactive teaching and computerized testing.  The cursor used in the text view will be synchronized with the cursor in the braille view for simultaneous editing of both text and braille.  Support for special navigation modes such as for tables and lists from the Navigation Control XML (NCX) will be added. Future long-term enhancements include the following: 1. Features to produce hard-copy books in braille and large print. 2. Direct support for braille displays. 3. Speech recognition capabilities that will allow a narrator's recording to be automatically synchronized with a provided full-text of the content. 167

4. Interactive validation and error correcting features. 5. Enhanced library and project management features. 6. The programmers will continue to write code that performs the functions and capabilities outlined in the specifications. 7. Hardware drivers, reproduction capabilities, and library management functions are among the more time consuming components remaining. 8. Programmers will write a new Windows printer driver to address the deficiencies in the generic text driver provided with Windows that will permit embossing to a variety of devices. 9. Programmers will develop refreshable braille drivers for several popular commercial displays. These drivers also make it possible for trained and qualified proofreaders to make corrections directly to the original file. Programmers will develop tactile graphics embossing support and applicable drivers for the corresponding hardware. This work includes an analysis of the requirements and capabilities of the available devices. While several devices support the capability to provide simple tactile graphics, others support capabilities way beyond what previous devices have supported. The programmers will examine the feasibility of creating drivers that use one image and provide code that transforms the vector graphic or bit map image into a series of printer escape sequences that gracefully degrades or expands as the device's capabilities degrade or expand. If feasible, the programmers will write such drivers. If it is not feasible to support the use of a single image for all possible devices, programmers will write specific drivers for specific devices and add the capability to select among images given the specific output device. They will write formatting algorithms for both the large print and braille hard copy options. These formatting functions require the material to be rendered with respect to the style sheets in use and any XML tags that may include a Media attribute that could include or exclude parts of a book. They will add image display support. This may include intelligence to select an appropriate image based on the media output. They will add functionality to the braille translation component to support forcing characters to upper case in the reverse translation, respect XML tags to control the formatting and translation process, and work on style sheets that take braille's unique formatting requirements into account. Programmers will incorporate library checkout and check-in facilities and remote server support. This makes it possible for two editors, both in remote locations, to work on the same book. This collaboration process is expected to be an effective means of getting more complex books to students more quickly. Book Port Plus (New) Prototype

168

Purpose To replace the analog cassette machine and the Book Port with a portable electronic device that is simple enough for anyone to use for both playback and recording of Digital Talking Books and to harness the capabilities of wireless networking to obtain content. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Takoru Shiroki, Project Consultant Rob Meredith, Programmer Keith Creasy, Programmer Ken Perry, Programmer Rosanne Hoffman, Editor Terri Gilmore, Artist Background As the difficulty of using cassette tape as a playback and a recording medium increases due to normal equipment breakdown and the lack of parts and tape, the National Library Service (NLS) transitions to online and cartridge distribution of its titles, and the ever quickening capabilities of the internet for educational and content distribution purposes explodes, the need for a portable, reliable, expandable reading device for a blind student in a technological classroom setting becomes apparent. At the same time, elderly NLS patrons who embrace the simplicity of the operation of the cassette machine and its adequate recording capabilities require a device to perform the functions for which they formally employed the APH Handicassette or other analog tape recorder. They want to be able to simply and effectively play a book or make a recording without having to consider extra complexity because the medium has moved from tape to digital. Many also desire the increased recording quality made possible by the digital media, recording level controls, recording monitoring, and the ability to append to existing recordings without having to position a tape. In addition to simplicity of playback and recording, many users desire physical controls that are large and distinctive. Of all the existing DTB players, the Plextalk Pocket was identified as the hardware base that most closely meets the desired characteristics. The Plextalk Pocket 169

contains 12 large telephone keys with a very pronounced dot on the five key, a five-way arrow/selection control, and six additional, easily distinguishable keys for various purposes including recording. Its keys are well spaced and arranged in a familiar telephone-like layout. In addition to its desirable key controls, the Plextalk Pocket features state of the art hardware that will let it evolve over the next few years with quickly evolving standards. Standards of particular interest from the DAISY consortium are the online specifications that define methods for transferring content directly from the provider to the patron's device and specifications that will eventually let users answer test questions in a DAISY title. APH has contracted with Shinano Kenshi Co.,Ltd. to adapt the existing Plextalk Pocket (PTP1) DAISY player recorder to meet the following goals:  Make the player and recorder easy enough for anyone to use.  Enable recording Digital Talking Books with section support and the ability to edit and continue recording.  Make the player flexible enough for any kind of DAISY book or common file type including NLS, RFBD, and bookshare.org.  Make playback and navigation extremely responsive and intuitive to use.  Make text files editable.  Create input techniques (including ABC and Thumb Braille).  Add support for braille files. The hardware already supported the goals which include the following:  Easily distinguishable keys  Built-in speaker  Microphone  3.5 MM stereo Line-in/microphone jack  3.5 MM stereo headphone jack  Replaceable battery  Rechargeable battery  High capacity secure digital card removable storage  USB On-the-Go support  802/11 B and G support  Plays NLS cartridges  Supports playing audio or RFBD CDs via an optional USB CD drive  Built-in high quality text-to-speech capabilities Work during FY 2009 Staff and engineers from Shinano Kenshi met and evaluated the feasibility of firmware modifications, packaging, warranty and repairs, marketing, and distribution. 170

Firmware modifications were broken down into options that would increase the simplicity and usability of the interface, improvements in performance, more optimal behavior for an auditory interface, and features specific to APH's interests. Programmers at Shinano Kenshi added the following:  Improved performance in both navigation and menu control.  Added local navigation capabilities to DAISY text based files.  Decreased delays introduced to help improve clarity. It was discovered that most of the evaluations of the need for delays were non-English speakers.  Corrected bugs Work Planned for FY 2010 Engineers will implement the following:  Change the use of standby mode of the hardware to keep the application in memory. This change in behavior means the device can be treated more like the cassette machine in the sense that the user can just press the button to perform the function without having to determine if the device is on or not. It is estimated that the battery life for the device while in standby mode is twenty days.  Add additional keypad navigation keys. The increased use of keys that always perform the same function simplifies the use of the device.  Make menu options and error messages contain the name of the file in question. This helps the user both confirm her actions with more confidence and helps her to determine the file that may be causing a problem.  Optimize the interface for auditory output. Changing the order in which information is presented to the user gets the most important information to her first and eliminates redundancy in menu and file navigation.  Debug changes Staff         will: Design and prepare graphics for packaging. Record device prompt messages. Establish warranty and repair facilities. Design helper software that manages the complexities of archived files. Write documentation. Test firmware. Make product available in spring of 2010. Begin work on editor and brf support.

171

Braille+ Formerly: Linkit (Continued)

Purpose To develop a state-of-the-art portable personal data assistant (PDA) that meets the needs of the modern student or professional who is blind or visually impaired. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Marc Mulkahy, Project Consultant Michael McDonald, Programmer Rob Meredith, Programmer Keith Creasy, Programmer Ken Perry, Programmer Michael Borsuk, Programmer Rosanne Hoffman, Editor Terri Gilmore, Artist Background For several years, APH sought a low-cost, simple-to-use, inexpensive replacement for a notetaking system like the Braille 'n Speak (BNS) Scholar. Today's more connected world and less expensive parts make it possible to design an allpurpose device that can serve as a student's tool for a variety of tasks including note-taking, recording, playing audio content, calculating, timing, web browsing, emailing, and subscribing

172

to periodicals. Expansion should be possible to permit a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver and cell phone chips contained in the units housing. The unit should use a commercial operating system designed for low power consumption. This ensures the device continues to evolve and ensures the availability of a wide variety of software applications. These applications are often commercially developed packages with rigorous testing and a known user base. While the development staff were well on their way to the design of this product, events at the CSUN 2006 conference changed things. A company called Level Star showed a working prototype of a unit called Icon that was remarkably similar to what APH had been designing. Level Star and APH agreed to collaborate on a version of the Icon that contained a built-in braille keyboard. The two companies would share their software expertise, and APH would use Level Star's excellent hardware design. Once prototypes were built, several field testers were recruited. These included a number of people from various states with ages ranging from 12 to 79 and a wide degree of education levels and occupations including students, teachers, technology consultants, social workers, accessibility consultants, and research scientists. In addition, APH has begun using public beta testing to help increase the size of the test pool. The Braille+ became available for sale in April 2007. Work during FY 2009  Established a Software Maintenance Agreement and procedures for handling requests for software updates.  Established a hardware Maintenance Agreement (HMA).  Designed a tactile map of keys for the unit. Software was modified as indicated in the following: Version 2.1.X, August 2009 Improves braille display support while reading documents by hiding the cursor and moving the document's cursor to the beginning of the displayed line. This change makes it more intuitive to move the cursor without using the display's cursor routing keys. (In previous versions, the user could get confused after advancing through a document with the display panning keys, then using a document navigation command. Thus the cursor could be far from the reading position.) Now, the cursor is always at the display. RSS  Increases the speed of the RSS reader.

173

 Adds Recent Articles and Recent Podcasts to RSS's main menu. These two options show a single list of articles or podcasts from all feeds with the most recently acquired items at the top of the list. Calendar  Increases the speed of synchronization with Microsoft Exchange.  Adds settings to limit what Calendar imports from Exchange.  Adds import and export for iCal (ics) calendar files. Network  Shares the public and library/books/import folders automatically when the user turns on file sharing.  Improves Network Manager performance. Now, if the unit cannot connect to a wireless access point, it turns off the WiFi radio.  Adds a third outgoing protocol to e-mail, SMTP with SSL.  Corrects a problem that prevented effective use of file sharing when browsing PCs from the unit itself.  Corrects a problem that prevented the user from playing audio content stored on the network.  Corrects a problem that could cause the recorder to crash.  Corrects a problem that prevented books you downloaded from Bookshare on your PC from unpacking properly when you placed them into the import folder. Tuner  Separates the Internet Tuner functionality from Music Player into its own program and improves performance.  Adds the ability to add custom presets to Tuner.  Adds Previous and Next Track commands (Pound+Left or Right Arrow) for those play lists that contain multiple tracks.  Selecting a .pls or .m3u playlist from File Explorer or Web Browser now opens Tuner with that playlist. Version 2.0.41, June 2009 1. Adds support for the following additional refreshable braille displays:  Alva Braille Controller 640/680  HIMS Braille Sense and Syncbraille.  MDV MB208/MB408L/MB408S (protocol 5)  Pegasus 20/27/40/80 2. Improves detection of Bluetooth braille displays going out of and coming back in range and automatically turns speech back on when out of range. 174

3. Improves chord command support for some braille displays. 4. Enhances zip file support  Lets the user open an existing archive if it has already been extracted.  Remembers the last location of extracted archives.  Compresses files. 5. Improves Bookshelf  Improves playback of NLS books, so they are more responsive at faster playback speeds.  Changes the increments of speed adjustments to 10% in audio playback. Previously, the commands adjusted playback rate by 20%, so there are twice as many settings.  Improves brf file support.  Adds support for dropping audible files into the import folder.  Supports dropping DAISY 2.x books in the import folder.  Corrects author name listings in books with multiple authors and authors with names incorrectly written.  Corrects a problem clearing bookmarks. 6. Improves Internet Book Search:  Adds an option to list other books by the author or authors of a book in the search results list.  Adds an option to let the user download the BRF version of a book.  Checks to see if a book is already in your library and offers to open it if so.  Corrects a problem that prevented some synopsis information from appearing correctly in some books. 7. Improves News Stand  Shows revision number in periodical title.  Shows the Number of New Issues for each periodical.  Remembers the user's place in a periodical.  Shows the day of the week in the title.  Changes the behavior when the user cancels reading. Previously, News Stand opened the navigation tree at the top of the list. Now, it opens the tree at the current location.  Corrects a bug that prevented proper deletion of old issues. 8. Improves Twitter  Adds a new tag for template use to show the source of the message.  Identifies Icon or Braille+ as the source of new messages.  Adds an option to let the user review the information from a tweet.  Corrects bugs. 175

9. Corrects a problem that caused some headings in the Help contents to appear incorrectly. Version 2.0.21, March 2009  Improves the Wireless Connection Manager.  Fixes all known bookshare.org issues.  Retains one's place in a list of books or authors when the user deletes a book or author from Bookshelf.  Corrects an issue that made it difficult to navigate backward by page when in continuous reading mode.  Modifies the behavior of the "Change Level" command so that it announces the current level upon the initial press.  Restarts the book from the beginning if the user is at the end of the book and she presses the Read command.  Corrects a problem that caused links in the help document to absorb spaces around the link.  Adds the number of new issues for each periodical downloaded in Newsstand. Version 2.0.6, February 2009  Adds support for refreshable braille displays.  Setup wizard to guide user through simple connection to display.  USB, Bluetooth, and serial via USB interface.  Supports displays from a number of manufacturers.  Both keyboard and display integration.  Contracts system and all documents, including e-mail and web pages, to braille.  Key Learn tells the user the function of the input keys on the display.  Cursor routing moves the cursor to the display's position.  Expands word at cursor for editing.  Hot key turns on or off speech.  Adds Braille Display Settings to the Utilities menu.  Adds control to disable all system sounds and speech while braille is in use.  Indicates attributed text with dot 8 and enhances Word Processor to tell specific attributes with a press of the Status key.  Improves the braille translation system.  Flashes the display to indicate system sounds.  Adds Internet Radio Tuner to the Music Player.  Presents list of genres.  Each genre shows list of stations in that genre.  Creates a Recent Stations list.  Lets the user add a station to one of 50 presets. 176

                                  

Move from station to station in any list while playing. Adds unzip support for e-mail attachments, File Explorer, and Web Browser. Adds support for the Twitter micro blogging environment. Updates bookshare.org support to work with the new Bookshare format. Adds search by days added to the Internet Book Search. Displays author's name in search results. Improves background processing, so it is easy to continue browsing while files transfer. Updates the synchronization utility. Includes time zone appointments in Outlook 2007. Adds additional fields to synchronize. Respects the four states of the busy indicator for appointments. Adds the Importance attribute to synchronized appointments. Updates the address book. New user interface. Adds additional fields found in Outlook. Adds tabs to categorize types of information. Improves managing multiple e-mail addresses for a contact. Replaces Planner with a new Calendar application. Adds fields from contacts in Outlook. Adds templates to customize layout for braille or speech. Adds a conflict resolution function to handle conflicting appointments. Adds many functions to Calculator. Adds variables and a variable viewer. Adds user Functions. Adds a Function list. Adds a function editor that lets the user create their own functions. Adds Advanced mode where the user may edit input. Adds a history buffer in Advanced mode. Automatically saves variables and functions. Adds startup and shutdown functions that get called when the program starts or ends. Improves error messages. Adds interactive speech rate adjustment while using continuous reading mode. Improves Bookshelf. Improves editing author information. Supports dropping Bookshare .bks or .zip files into the Bookshelf's import folder so it automatically unpacks and stores the contained books ready for use when you start Bookshelf.  Improves RSS 177

           

Adds default settings to RSS. Lets you delete articles from the RSS article list. Adds templates to define how article titles and status get presented. Adds a template editor and templates that let you customize many aspects of how information is presented in various areas throughout the system. Adds Minor Enhancements and Corrects several bugs Announces the fact that the key lock switch is on when rebooting. Corrects several Key Learn descriptions. Adds multi-key braille letter descriptions to Key Learn. Adds "Move to Bottom of Document" command in Web Browser (hold Down Arrow). Lets you toggle on and off the Bluetooth radio by pressing Select on the Bluetooth item in the Status menu. Lets you add a song to a playlist, even if that song is not in the music library. Corrects the problem where e-mail message counts did not get updated when returning to the folder list. Adds the automatic backup file into the list of restorable backups when updating the firmware.

Work planned for FY 2010  Add printing capabilities.  Add the ability to view the student's work on a display.  Continue improving performance and features.  Design hardware that includes a refreshable braille display.  Add GPS and navigation capabilities.  Streamline and expand browser capabilities to take advantage of Web 2.0 features.  Redesign the hardware to make it easier to manufacture, test, and increase reliability. Qwerty Docking Station (New) Purpose To provide the student with an ergonomic qwerty keyboard with additional functionality for use with the Braille+. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Marc Mulkahy, Project Consultant Rob Meredith, Programmer Rosanne Hoffman, Editor Terri Gilmore, Graphics 178

Background The docking station is designed so that the Braille+ fits into it. Together, the docking station adds a full sized qwerty keyboard, ethernet connector, larger speakers, and a larger battery. The docking station also offers a fold-out wrist rest. Work Completed in FY 2009  Finalized Design  Tested prototypes  Prepared documentation  Established repair and warranty procedures.  Made available for sale. Work Planned for FY 2010 Work is complete. Future modifications will be added as the need arises. Monitoring Technological Developments and Educational Applications (Continued) Purpose To identify and develop microcomputer materials that support educational needs; to monitor technological developments and educational applications of technology; to provide support to the production area for various Digital Talking Book production issues and to disseminate information on current uses of assistive technology. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Deanne Chance, Consultant Rob Meredith, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Keith Creasy, Programmer Mike McDonald, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Ken Perry, Programmer Mike Borsuk, Programmer Background The rapid advances in use and development of software, hardware, accessibility considerations, and educational theories require significant attention. The Technology Group in the Educational Research Department monitors and participates in numerous activities to keep abreast of developing trends and current implementations and encourages trends, policies, and standards that use technology to promote APH's mission. These ongoing endeavors help keep APH personnel knowledgeable and influential in the areas of regular and assistive technology. 179

The Technology Group stays informed through participation in numerous listserves focusing on programming and accessibility issues. The group actively uses and beta tests pre-releases of operating system code, key applications, active accessibility, screen enlargement, and speech or braille output accessibility aids. The group attends conferences, presents products and activities, and demonstrates APH products related to technology. The Technology Project Leader and two of the programmers are also members of the DAISY Consortium to help ensure that APH continues at the forefront of the conversion to digital talking books and that APH is represented in the shaping of guidelines and specifications. In its efforts to influence direction, the Technology Group creates software for both internal research and use as direct products, applies expertise to help make APH effective and accessible in its production of braille and large print and its application of new and emerging technologies to these processes, and disseminates information to APH and directly to users. The group promotes accessibility within APH by establishing techniques that make the entire company accessible. Staff regularly works with other project leaders to suggest and implement technologies for projects that have technological components in specific areas of interest. Such projects include a web-based early trade book learning and management system for braille readers (see the write-up for Early Braille Trade book), an orientation and mobility instructor tool to help disseminate useful information to a client's parents, and continuing enhancements to Studio Recorder and Book Wizard Producer for the studio. Staff also creates CD layouts for projects that have CD based training material or documentation. Work during FY 2009 Staff continues enhancing a web based application to help manage and track the contractions a student knows and manage a list of books that she is capable of reading with that knowledge. They also wrote and debugged editor facilities to create the data for a given book. Staff continued programming and debugging an application to help orientation and mobility specialists communicate better with their clients and families. See the write up on O & M for Families. Staff continued working closely with the studio in order to create an efficient means of creating Digital Talking books. Staff continued working on a pilot project with the National Library Service to create "digital talking books" (DTBs). See the Book Wizard write-up for information on how the program was modified. The Technology Group continued to participate in beta testing, monitor listserves, attend conferences, collaborate with other developers, and disseminate information. Staff prepared several Digital Talking Books from NIMAS files and conducted training on using them for a pilot project with the ATIC department. 180

Technology staff provided advice and expertise at Product Advisory and Review Committee (PARC) sessions, evaluated products submitted to APH for possible production or sale, helped ensure the accessibility of APH's web site and online ordering systems, and participated in modernizing APH's recording studios. The Technology Group regularly provides advice and technical assistance to APH's Business Contract Department and meets with staff from Customer Relations to familiarize them with new products as they near their introduction date. Staff regularly consults and assists with technical or information requests via phone and e-mail. Project staff maintained and updated the demo CD that contains demonstrations of software, product information, and in depth audio demonstrations of software and hardware narrated by experts from the department on that product. The CD interface is html based, so it is also used on the APH Web site. With three staff members on the DAISY Mark Up and Specification team, the group actively used the specifications and worked to improve weaknesses in the specifications. One programmer is a member of the Daisy Intellectual Property protection working group where he participates in molding the specifications and techniques that are used to protect digital content in books distributed by National Library Service and other producers. Staff provided support and markup services to other project leaders, so each product's documentation is accessible in electronic format. Work planned for FY 2010 There are two additional areas of software development that require addressing. They are automated testing and error reporting. While automated testing is not an immediate possibility, staff has determined the need for additional personnel for testing purposes. APH will investigate the needs of this testing position and make a determination about the addition. In the meantime, the Human Resources department has connected the technology group with students at the Kentucky School for the Blind participating in a Co-op work program. Two seniors who are tech savvy will begin with complete regression testing of the Braille+ before each public beta or release of software. The group also has need for much more rigorous testing on all its products by someone who is not the product's developer or another developer in the group. Such extensive testing should both better catch problems that the developer would not normally think to consider or check and help free the developer for more time to program. The Technology Group will increase its involvement in the following:  Digital document access  Web streaming technology  Universal design concepts, and alternative user interfaces 181

 Ensure critical accessibility of system components and emerging systems  Disseminate information and advise government, manufacturers, and consumers about accessibility issues  Develop high quality, educationally sound software and hardware solutions for blind and visually impaired students and adults  Investigate the accessibility of Web 2.0 applications The Technology Group will continue to pursue ways of applying technology to the production of tactile graphics, help educate other project leaders in the Department of Educational Research, and look for ways to use technological solutions to further APH's mission. The group will pursue funding for special projects and experiment with emerging technologies. The group also plans to continue expanding the APH network site license and pursue additional text-tospeech engines for possible distribution. The technology group plans to work closely with the Accessible Tests Department by providing technological solutions to test access issues as defined by them. Advise, review, support, and software design and development are among the expected activities. Staff members plan to participate in the Daisy specifications process to define behavior and characteristics for documents, like work books, that take input from the user. The technology group will continue to host and maintain Early Braille Trade books. This system runs on the Drupal content management system. The web application lets teachers track a student's braille contraction mastery and suggests titles of trade books that contain the contractions the student knows. Drupal provides the account creation and management processes, creation and management of groups for administrative purposes, data management for edits, and most of the account and data management aspects of the system. Staff is ready to provide expansion services to support more types of content or if it is decided to broaden the application's scope. More involvement with the Linux operating system and the accessibility developments in the console, X Windows, and GNU Network object model Environment (GNOME) are a high priority. Staff is especially interested in Speakup, the Linux kernel screen access program and its compatibility with software text-to-speech systems under Linux, global positioning system engines that may run under more than one operating system, and the general movement toward the "cloud computing" environment and its accessibility implications. The group will continue to make high-interest demonstrations, training, and presentations available as podcasts on the APH Web site. Refreshabraille 18 (Formally Refreshable Braille Display) (Continued) 182

Purpose To produce a high quality, portable, inexpensive refreshable braille display and input device that may be used with the Braille+ or with other portable or stationary devices. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Thomas Friehoff, Project Consultant Rob Meredith, Programmer Rosanne Hoffman, Editor Terri Gilmore, Artist Background As APH advances its braille interests to all parts of the company, technology applications for braille were also prominent. A high quality integrated refreshable braille subsystem was finalized and released for the Braille+, and a new display and input device, Refreshabraille 18, was designed, debugged, and released. While the refreshable braille display matches Braille+ in size, convenience, and durability, it was designed to be used with a variety of other devices, both portable and desktop. GW Micro's Window-Eyes screen reader and Apple's VoiceOver screen reader both contain built-in support for Refreshabraille18, and it can be used with other software that does not yet know about it by telling that software that the device is a display from Baum. APH ships a driver that adds support to an existing JAWS installation. Refreshabraille was designed with both USB and Bluetooth (wireless) connections, and the firmware keeps device configuration simple by automatically detecting requests for a connection through either interface. Input capabilities mean the user can control her PC or other portable device like a personal data assistant (PDA) or smart phone from the braille display. When these input features are combined with the Bluetooth wireless communications, it is possible to keep the PDA away in a purse or pocket and use Refreshabraille to both read and control the device. This small, elegant braille control is ideal for both students and professionals who prefer or require braille.

183

Refreshabraille is easily configurable with respect to its orientation. In other words, the user may use the device with the braille cells either on the side closest to her or on the side furthest away. All controls also flip their orientation when the orientation of the braille cells is altered. Work during FY 2009  Develop specifications  Create art  Coordinate support with third party screen reader vendors  Build prototypes  Test firmware modifications  Write documentation  Field test prototypes  Develop Quality Control Tests  Establish warranty and repair facilities  Finalize design  Manufacture units  Made available for sale Work planned for FY 2010  Get Refreshabraille native support in MobileSpeak and MobileSpeak Smartphone from Code Factory  Implement signed 64-bit drivers as required by Freedom Scientific for support on 64-bit versions of the JAWS screen reader  Investigate all known driver issues  Design carrying case  Explore options related to designing a display with more cells Studio Recorder (Continued) Purpose To produce a simple-to-use, robust digital audio recording tool geared toward spoken word content. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Rob Meredith, Programmer Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager John Zinninger, Senior Technician Dave McGee, Manufacturing Specialist 184

Rosanne Hoffmann, Research/Project Assistant Background Studio Recorder is a powerful digital recording and editing software package geared to make recordings of the spoken word. It includes features not found in audio recording and editing programs primarily designed for music production. Such features include: 1. Speed up playback with no pitch distortion 2. Three levels of phrase detection 3. Index tone generation and removal 4. Instant open on large files 5. Instant cut, copy, paste, and delete 6. Intercom functionality 7. Simple user interface 8. Accessibility for blind and visually impaired users 9. Multiple user marks and notes 10. External controller support Studio Recorder was originally written for internal use at APH to serve as a tool for creating digital audio recordings for the National Library Service (NLS). It contains many features that ease the task of recording, editing, and proofreading audio books. Its features also facilitate simple production to Digital Talking Book or to cassette. While Studio Recorder was originally written for use by the professional narrator and narration monitor, its simple operation makes it ideal for nearly anyone interested in recording, editing, and producing spoken word audio documents in an efficient manner. In addition to all of the benefits of digital recording and playback technology common to digital recording software, Studio Recorder provides unique capabilities geared to both spoken word content and, more specifically, recordings intended for distribution via Digital Talking Book, on audio cassette, or via the World Wide Web. Features such as the intercom mode allow recording professionals, who often collaborate from separate booths, to communicate through the PC's speakers and sound card. Other features, such as the ability to mark and label points in the recording, make it easy for narrators working on large works to preserve notes about pronunciation and characterization, allowing quick reference to information from past recording sessions. The phrase detection capabilities streamline the process of sifting through cumbersome audio files. Instead of using time as the criterion for navigation, these features let the narrator use content for maneuvering through the audio file in a manner similar to that of moving through text in a word processing program.

185

Studio Recorder also provides advanced capabilities such as punch in/out recording, linear fade, instantaneous editing, and time-specific alarm tones that assist the user in various common audio editing and management tasks. Continuing development is largely driven by studio needs and customer requests. An outstanding response to this input has defined a software package that is robust, flexible, and enjoys thousands of hours of use each year at APH alone. As development continues, Studio Recorder becomes a more integral tool in the Digital Talking Book creation process. Work during FY 2009 The following enhancements were made to Studio Recorder: Version 3.7.X, June 2009  Removes the drive space checking that occurred before saving a file.  Adds the following commands to external controllers: o Alternate Rewind o Alternate Forward o Stop at Start o Mute o Pre/Post-roll Version 3.7.1, April 2009  Adds support for the System Access API so Studio Recorder provides appropriate feedback for peak meters and status information upon request while using System Access screen reader.  Improves the behavior of changing wave in or wave out devices while playing or recording.  The program no longer stops the transport when a change is made, but instead uses the new device the next time one plays or records.  Minor bug fixes Version 3.7, February 2009  Adds Change Pitch command  Adds an optional beep sound to indicate that recording started or stopped.  Adds the ability to replace a selection with a bleep sound or to bleep .25 seconds if there is no selection.  Adds a hot key, U, for the Mute command.  Disables Mute if there is no selection.  Adds the ability to move to a percent of the file.  Corrected minor bugs 186

Work planned for FY 2010  Finalize design for a better file type that supports larger files.  Add Direct X plugin support.  Add features specific to the studio to help with the proofing process. Various requests have been made by users of Studio Recorder. Some of these include:  The ability for markers to be dropped automatically when silence is encountered while recording.  The ability for recording to cease when silence persists for a specified time, and restart again when a specified signal level is detected.  Implementation of an Accessible graphic equalizer. See the write-up for the digital audio component for other possible future enhancements. Talking Learn Keys (Continued) Purpose To provide a Windows-based basic keyboard exploration program for visually impaired or blind users so they may become familiar with any computer keyboard or to hear keystrokes announced in applications. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader John Hedges, Programmer Rob Meredith, Programmer Background Talking Learn Keys provides clearly recorded audio feedback about keys that users of any age type on the PC keyboard. It can be used in two configurations. In the first, the user can type any key on the keyboard without fear of doing something wrong because Talking Learn Keys processes the keys before they are presented to the system. In the second, the learner can use Talking Learn Keys to announce keys for any program on the computer. This can be useful for providing high quality feedback for number entry in data processing applications or simply to verify the user is typing properly in any application. The program uses prerecorded speech from professional narrators and allows the user to choose either a male or female voice. There are also options for fast or normal speed announcement of key presses and a pronunciation mode feature that allows various pronunciations of some of the special keys. A large Verdana font type is used to display the key name. This feature is adjustable from the menu. The idea for Talking Learn Keys was discussed and presented to the Product Review Committee, who approved development of the program. The Technology Group in the Department of Educational Research developed initial design specifications and a functionality 187

features list. The programmers wrote, tested, and finalized the code in 1999, and Talking Learn Keys became available for sale. As the group continued the development of the APH Speech Environment with its new abilities to manage user registration, it decided to update Talking Learn Keys to take advantage of this capability. This also allows the program to be placed on the Web in a demo version. The program continues to be modernized for new versions of Windows, including Windows XP, Vista, and Windows 7. In a second area, new keyboards also may have additional multimedia buttons. These are controlled by vendor customized software. Support was added to handle the Microsoft multimedia keyboard. In addition, the other APH products now use the audio from Talking Learn Keys. It was helpful to create multiple audio components that allow other programs to use the audio files when installed on the same computer. Work during FY 2009 Tested for compatibility with 64-bit versions of XP, Vista and Windows 7. Work planned for FY 2010 Updates will take place as needed. Talking Typer for Windows (Continued) Purpose To provide Accessible, interactive keyboard training on the Windows platform. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Keith Creasy, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Background Talking Typer for Windows is a program based on two former APH products, the Talking Typer for Apple II and PC Typer. Like its predecessors, Talking Typer for Windows includes features that allow users to create and modify drills and dictation exercises. It also includes features for recording and storing, and examining student records and performance statistics. The program contains a fun game with score keeping capabilities. After completing program specifications, the basic framework of the project was created. Program specifications included the features from the DOS-based PC Typer plus additional features identified by users of the previous version. Enhancements to the previous version are: 1. The program is self-voicing, so no screen access program or speech synthesizer is required 188

2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

New students automatically receive a default list of lessons Support for special computer keys is included The program includes the ability to record and playback dictations Software is completely network ready Teacher management and lesson activities are combined into one program with password restricted access to teacher privileged functions like record manipulation and default settings.

The program entered its field testing phase in September 1999. The programming group field tested Talking Typer over a six-month period in a variety of sites, and the field test participants played a very active role in shaping the development of this product. Field testing began in September 1999 with an early prototype of the system and the programmers quickly replaced features that were difficult to understand with methods suggested by participants. The field testers and customers suggested adding some lessons that used common phrases. In response to this, Research Assistant Kris Scott created two new lessons with about 40 phrases in each lesson. Customer feedback indicated this feature was a great idea, and several users requested the two-phrase lessons be renamed Sentences, as well as the creation of additional lessons (to precede the sentence lessons) that contain shorter, more common phrases. Recent customer feedback indicates that even more sentences should be included. One of the most requested features was a better text-to-speech engine, and staff obtained a license to begin distributing AT&T's Natural Voices with the product. Work during FY 2009  Changed the way the default database is installed to better adhere to new Windows security and policy guidelines.  Tested on 64-bit versions of Windows XP, Vista, and Windows 7. Work planned for FY 2010 New features may be added to Talking Typer for Windows V 1, however most will be deferred to Talking Typer for Windows V.2. Necessary corrections and updates will be made as needed. Talking Typer V 1.0 is complete. Maintenance issues continue to arise with this product, and users continually request enhancements. Talking Word Puzzles (Continued) Purpose To produce an Accessible educational game on CD that uses hidden word or crossword-type puzzles.

189

Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Mario Eiland, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Rosanne Hoffmann, Research/Project Assistant Background The need for an educational type of game like hidden word and crossword puzzles has been long expressed by customers and experts in the field. APH's Product Advisory and Review Committee (PARC) supported the idea for such a project in May 1998, and the programming group began work on the program in FY 2000. Project staff wrote program specifications for the program. Features planned include an intuitive text-to-speech and large print navigation system through the puzzle grid. The interface includes appropriate, responsive speech and highlighting feedback as the student uses the shift key along with the arrow keys to mark a word in the grid and distinguishable characteristics as the student moves across words already marked. Specifications also call for a creation process that allows the teacher to enter either a list of words or a list of words and clues to those words in the case of a crossword puzzle. These data are committed to persistent storage and all puzzles are dynamically generated from this information. Work during FY 2009 Tested on 64-bit versions of Windows XP, Vista, and Windows 7. Work planned for FY 2010 Future enhancements will be made as identified. Teacher's Pet (Continued) Purpose To develop a program used to create and take tests and practice drills and to provide student progress record keeping. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader John Hedges, Programmer Tessa Wright, Consultant/Project Assistant Rosanne Hoffmann, Research/Project Assistant Background APH has long been interested in providing an Accessible means of creating and delivering test content to blind and visually impaired students. An early attempt at this goal, Teacher's Pet for the Apple II, was a huge success. Members of Educational Research continue to receive requests for a Windows-based program that would perform similar functions. The group 190

designed a new program to deliver content and record progress using Extensible Markup Language (XML) as its native file format. The design specifications call for software that is self voicing with easily adjustable display characteristics and a simple user interface that provides mechanisms to repeat or more closely examine test material. The program must also store and retrieve student statistics and access settings and provide an interface to make the teacher's job of preparing the test simple through modern drag and drop capabilities for multi-media objects like graphics and sounds. Teacher's Pet must also manage and display student records. Staff wrote program specifications that include the support for a variety of question types including open-ended, fill-in-the-blank, true/false, matching, information, and multiple choice. Programmer John Hedges created a prototype of the application in March 2000 using JavaScript as the programming language. (This was APH's first venture into this language in its attempt to identify a language that provides rapid deployment possibilities yet supports Accessible design concepts.) He created techniques for providing user interface elements supporting universal design concepts and incorporated the APH digital audio component and APH Speech Environment to provide some of the core services the software required. The programming team successfully solved a number of access and design issues. The program received such capabilities as an automatic integrated sound recording and playback facility that includes the ability to limit the time of the recording (through the APH Digital Audio Control), Cascading Style Sheet (CSS) support for flexible display adjustment, selection and display routines, a dialog to open and identify Teacher's Pet test files, evaluation functions that are extensible enough to permit a variety of formats for acceptable answers, and functions to preserve and restore user preferences and access settings. The programmers added the user interface and input mechanism that lets the student enter the answer in whatever format the teacher or parent specifies and the dialog and input routines that lets the teacher or parent create the test material. Functions were written to present the question, to navigate from question to question, and to move through long questions as is the case when there are several paragraphs or pages of text to read. Work during FY 2009 Staff began a major rewrite on this project to convert it to the c# language. Much of the underlying structure is actually similar to the functionality needed for the Family O&M Book project, so foundation code is being written to support both projects. Work planned for FY 2010 The project in version 1.x is complete. A new version is expected to be complete this year. Verbal View of the Net and the Web (Continued) Purpose 191

To teach blind and visually impaired computer users background information about the Internet. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Peter Duran, Project Consultant and Author Keith Creasy, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Kathy Lewis, Technical Support Specialist Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager Robert Conaghan, Studio Monitor Background A new technology typically affects a specific industry or group of workers or customers. It is a rarity that an emergent technology affects every industry and virtually every person worldwide. Usually it takes a long time for a technology to spread throughout its sphere of influence. There are two recent innovations, however, that violate these patterns: the Net―a worldwide network of connected computers, and the Web―a global collection of connected multimedia documents. Both of these developments have emerged in the past quarter century and have already influenced every aspect of human endeavor throughout the civilized world. Now that a personal computer costs about the same price as a quality television set or highperformance stereo system, an individual can afford a personal computer and can access the Net and the Web any time anywhere. The personal computer has invaded every area of human activity, and its ubiquity has made the Net and the Web commonplace. No other technology has spread throughout our culture as rapidly as the personal computer, those placed on desktops and those concealed within most appliances, cell phones, microwaves, cars, medical equipment, and tools of all kinds. The personal computer, together with the Net and the Web, has altered and enhanced all aspects of culture and human interaction forever. This tutorial, Verbal View of the Net and the Web, presents an overview of this omnipresent technology. You will rely on this technology when you take courses, when you work, when you play, when you communicate with others, and when you visit a library. Additional tutorials from APH about the Net and the Web describe ways to send and receive e-mail on the Net, browse documents on the Web, and much more. These tutorials are written for blind computer users who possess computers (desktops or laptops) that run Windows XP. They teach readers how to connect to the net, surf the web, send and receive e-mail, and much more. All the essential aspects are explained, and all the essential tools are discussed. No prior knowledge of the Net or of the Web is assumed. There are two types of tutorials: descriptive and audio-interactive. The former type is in "textbook" form. You read the material in a preferred format and then practice it. The latter is 192

in "mimic" form. You listen to a cassette tape or an audio CD and attempt to follow the instructor's steps. These tutorials about the Net and the Web are descriptive in style and are distributed as DAISY books on compact disks. DAISY stands for Digital Audio Information System; this "electronic book" format is accepted worldwide as a standard form for audio books produced for visually-impaired and blind readers. These tutorials are written for blind users who wish to employ the Net and the Web for educational, vocational, and recreational pursuits. A few topics are discussed at length, although omitted from most books, because they greatly benefit blind users. These tutorials are written for persons who have limited or no access to training centers and must learn independently. They are written for users who want or need to access the Net and the Web primarily with the keyboard. The use of the keyboard is emphasized and summarized throughout. The keyboard and the mouse are compared whenever appropriate so the strengths and weaknesses of both are apparent. Work during FY 2009 This project was made available for sale. Work planned for FY 2010 The material will be updated as needed. Verbal View of the Office Ribbon Bar (Formerly: Verbal View of Office 2007) (Continued) Purpose To teach blind students and adults how to use the new interface in Office 2007 and to rewrite the tutorials for the individual Office components. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Peter Duran, Project Consultant and Author Keith Creasy, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager Robert Conaghan, Studio Monitor Rosanne Hoffman, Editor Background 193

Microsoft completely redesigned the user interface for the series of programs in the Office suite. While each application is more consistent, the whole paradigm is new, and most blind computer users are not yet familiar with the new procedures and actions. APH already offers a tutorial for Microsoft Word, but the user interface is totally revamped for the 2007 edition. Rather than rewriting the existing Word tutorial (See Verbal View of Word and Verbal View of Word Advanced) project staff recognized that the better approach might be to write a tutorial that focuses on the new interface for the Office suite and cover the common components in that book. Such common components include the spell checker and grammar checker. Then, as sub-components, offer separate and new tutorials that focus on the unique aspects of Word, Excel, and Outlook. Taking this approach should lessen confusion by not including such varied material in one tutorial and lets the staff combine the Word and Advanced Word tutorials for the new Word tutorial. Work during FY 2009  Completed Research  Completed Writing  Checked for keystroke accuracy.  Proofed and Revised. Work Planned for FY 2010  Record and prepare as DAISY title.  Make available for Sale Verbal View of Online Mail (Continued) Purpose To teach blind and visually impaired computer users effective use of e-mail. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Peter Duran, Project Consultant and Author Keith Creasy, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Kathy Lewis, Technical Support Specialist Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager Robert Conaghan, Studio Monitor Background The only prerequisite to this tutorial, Verbal View of the Net and the Web, talks about the Net and the Web and describes the various ways to connect to the Net. Online mail―most 194

commonly called Electronic Mail or E-mail for short―now ranks with telephone calls in popularity. This tutorial only discusses e-mail on the Net. (You are able to send and receive email with mobile phones and other devices.) Usually, you rely on a word processor (like WordPad or Microsoft Word) to write, edit, format, and read ordinary documents. They are usually located on your computer. You must rely on a different kind of program to write, edit, format, and read as well as send and receive online mail. Typically, you rely on an e-mail program (alias e-mail client) to perform these tasks. Outlook express is the e-mail program that comes with Internet Explorer; this e-mail program is the most used at the present time on Windows XP. The program named just Outlook is the e-mail program that comes with Microsoft Office; this program extends the functionality of Outlook Express. Outlook Express and Outlook are different programs and Microsoft has two different support teams for them because they are substantially different. Both programs come with an Address Book in which you can enter information about persons, organizations, or businesses, called contacts. You must upgrade to Outlook 2003 (part of Microsoft Office) if you want a calendar and appointment book as well. (You can purchase Outlook 2003 as a separate program from Microsoft Corporation -- $109.00 on November 4, 2005.) Most developers of screen readers and screen magnifiers focus efforts on Internet Explorer and Outlook Express because Microsoft products currently dominate the Net and the Web. Today, virtually every newcomer to Windows XP receives and sends online mail via Outlook Express; therefore, this tutorial covers Outlook Express. Work completed in FY 2009 Made available for sale. Work planned for FY 2010 Updates will take place as needed. Verbal View of Vista (Continued) Purpose To provide a tool to teach the Vista operating system to blind computer users. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Peter Duran, Project Consultant and Author Keith Creasy, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Rosanne Hoffmann, Research Assistant Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager 195

Robert Conaghan, Studio Monitor Background The Verbal View series provides unprecedented instruction and detail about specific topics for blind computer users. With the release of Vista in February 2007, APH considers it important to provide pertinent training material on current technology. Vista contains thousands of changes and enhancements, and this tutorial covers them. Even since the release of XP, the PC hardware and usage models have changed. Serial ports, parallel ports, and floppy drives are no longer even shipped on new PCs. The emphasis has switched from work on the PC to work on the internet. Work during FY 2009  Continued revising, proofing, and writing.  Recorded and prepared for DAISY distribution. Work planned for FY 2010 The project is made available for sale. Verbal View of Web Documents (Continued) Purpose To teach blind and visually impaired computer users how to make effective use of their internet browser. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Peter Duran, Project Consultant and Author Keith Creasy, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Kathy Lewis, Technical Support Specialist Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager Robert Conaghan, Studio Monitor Background The prerequisite to this tutorial, Verbal View of the Net and the Web, talks about the Net and the Web and describes the various ways to connect to the Net. This tutorial focuses on the Web, now the most useful and influential part of the Net. Web, short for the World Wide Web, consists of hypertext documents (alias web pages) linked together in a "web" of interconnected documents. 196

Usually, you rely on a word processor (like WordPad or Microsoft Word) to write, edit, format, and read ordinary documents. They are usually located on your computer. You learn later that ordinary documents and other types of documents are also available on the Web and that you can retrieve (download) them and store them on your computer. You must rely on a different kind of program to retrieve, display, and read web documents. Typically, you rely on a web browser to perform these tasks. Internet Explorer is the web browser that comes with Microsoft Windows XP; this web browser is the most used at the present time. (Even customers of America Online rely on Internet Explorer although AOL owns Netscape Navigator, a rival web browser.) A companion program―Outlook express―is the e-mail program that comes with Internet Explorer. This e-mail program receives its just due in Verbal View of Online Mail. A web browser (like Internet Explorer from Microsoft or Mozilla from Firefox) lets you retrieve and read web documents (alias web pages) stored on the Net or on your computer. You don't write, edit, or format web pages with a web browser! You just retrieve them and read them. However, you can save web pages on your computer in three different ways: as complete web pages to read with a web browser; as html documents to read and edit with Microsoft Word; or as text documents to read and edit with NotePad. Most developers of screen readers focus efforts on Windows XP and Internet Explorer because Microsoft products currently dominate the Net and the Web. Today, virtually every blind user surfs the Web with Internet Explorer from Microsoft. Therefore, this tutorial covers Internet Explorer. You can use the keyboard or the mouse in every part of Internet Explorer. In particular, complete keyboard support is provided on web pages, on the Active Desktop, and throughout the help system. Work during FY 2009 This project was made available for sale. Work planned for FY 2010 The material will be updated as needed. Verbal View of Web Searches (Continued) Purpose To teach blind and visually impaired computer users effective use of internet searching.

197

Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Peter Duran, Project Consultant and Author Keith Creasy, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Kathy Lewis, Technical Support Specialist Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager Robert Conaghan, Studio Monitor Background A web browser lets the computer user reach the Web. A web search program, usually called a Search Engine, then lets her locate web pages. This tutorial describes the most important online phenomenon of our time, the Google Search Engine. Google governs online life, information acquisition, and citizenship in the global community. Google influences people in every nation and in every language. Google makes folks of all races and of all educational and social backgrounds equal while online. Google dominates the Web in every aspect; it has no rivals! Google's influence rivals that of television in its scope and its general acceptance. No online activity, except for e-mail, rivals Google in importance and popularity; 250 million visitors to the Web Google daily. Now the word Google is used as a noun and as a verb; you read and hear the phrase "Google it" as often as the phrase "watch TV.‖ This book explains why Google outshines its competitors, and how you will benefit when you also become a daily Googler! This book discusses web searches primarily. Other kinds of online searches are also discussed because of their usefulness. Google works well when you learn a few basics. It works magnificently when you learn a few more web search conventions and tricks. This book covers those mostly ignored web search options that can make you a power user and master over the Web. Familiarity with Google's mostly-ignored search options will make your online life more efficient and enjoyable. Besides, you can impress friends and colleagues with your Google skill―not to mention save time and perform better web searches. Work during FY 2009 This project was made available for sale. Work planned for FY 2010 Updates and enhancements will occur as the subject matter evolves.

198

Verbal View of Windows XP (Continued) Purpose To create a tutorial that explains current versions of the Windows operating system in terms most useful to blind and visually impaired users. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Peter Duran, Project Consultant and Author Keith Creasy, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager Robert Conaghan, Studio Monitor Background For many years, APH and its advisors and customers have desired an in-depth tutorial that covered the latest version of Windows from the perspective of a blind or visually impaired computer user. Staff identified a tutorial written by Peter Duran and approached him about licensing the rights to his work then distributing it as a Digital Talking Book. The result of this collaboration, Verbal View of Windows is a comprehensive tutorial on using Windows XP from the view point of a blind or partially sighted student or professional. It covers nearly every aspect of Windows XP, and it presents this material from the keyboard user's perspective. Delivered on CD, this tutorial comes in DAISY 3.0 format with its own presentation software. The CD also contains Microsoft Word, html, contracted braille, and text versions of the document, so one may send it to a portable device like the Book Port or other note taker with a refreshable braille display. The software that comes with Verbal View of Windows XP is a special version of a DAISY reading program called Book Wizard Reader. Work during FY 2009 Future revisions are anticipated as new features are added to Windows and as new versions of Windows get released. Work planned for FY 2010 Updates and enhancements will occur as the subject matter evolves.

199

Verbal View of Word (Continued) Purpose To create and distribute an in-depth tutorial that explains the basic functions and features of Microsoft Word in a format most useful to blind and visually impaired users. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Peter Duran, Project Consultant and Author Keith Creasy, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager Robert Conaghan, Studio Monitor Background Microsoft Word is the dominant word processor today. This powerful, fast, and fun software package has thousands of commands and multiple means of accomplishing a particular task. Verbal View of Word is a comprehensive tutorial designed to teach the blind or visually impaired user how to use the basic features of Microsoft Word. This tutorial is written with three groups of readers in mind: the writer who wants a complete and organized account of keyboard techniques; the writer who prefers the keyboard instead of the mouse; and the blind writer who must rely on voice or braille access technology. The tutorial assumes the reader already possesses a basic knowledge of Microsoft Windows, has Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, 2003, or later installed on the computer, and wishes to become an efficient writer using Word as a tool. If the reader is not already familiar with Windows operation and common usage, he may wish to consult Verbal View of Windows XP also available from APH. Delivered on CD, this tutorial comes in DAISY 3.0 format with its own presentation software. The CD also contains Microsoft Word, html, contracted braille, and text versions of the document, so one may send the book to a portable device like the Braille+ or other note taker with a refreshable braille display. The software that comes with Verbal View of Word is a special version of a DAISY reading program called Book Wizard Reader. Work during FY 2009 This project is available for sale.

200

Work planned for FY 2010 Future modifications will be made to the material as new versions of Word are released. A tutorial for Word 2007 is planned. Verbal View of Word Advanced (Continued) Purpose To provide a tutorial that explains advanced topics with Microsoft Word in a format most useful to blind and visually impaired computer users. Project Staff Larry Skutchan, Project Leader Peter Duran, Project Consultant and Author Keith Creasy, Programmer John Hedges, Programmer Rodger Smith, Programmer Kathy Lewis, Technical Support Specialist Steve Mullins, Special Projects Manager Robert Conaghan, Studio Monitor Background Verbal View of Word Advanced is a comprehensive tutorial designed to teach the blind or visually impaired user how to use the advanced features of Microsoft Word. It follows Verbal View of Windows XP and Verbal View of Word in a series of tutorials available from American Printing House for the Blind, Inc. This book is written for the blind Word user who wishes to write specialized documents: term papers, business letters, and even books. Some topics are discussed at length, although omitted from most books, because they greatly benefit the blind writer. The use of the keyboard is emphasized and summarized throughout this book. The keyboard and the mouse are compared whenever appropriate so the strengths and weaknesses of both are apparent. The tutorial assumes the reader already possesses a basic knowledge of Microsoft Windows, has Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, 2003, or later installed on the computer, and has already learned the basics of Word from the Verbal View of Word tutorial. If the reader is not already familiar with Windows operation and common usage, he may wish to consult Verbal View of Windows XP also available from APH. Delivered on CD, this tutorial comes in DAISY 3.0 format with its own presentation software. The CD also contains Microsoft Word, .html, contracted braille, and text versions of the document, so the user may send it to a portable device like the Book Port or other note taker with a refreshable braille display. 201

The software that comes with Verbal View of Word Advanced is a special version of a DAISY reading program called Book Wizard Reader. Work completed in FY 2009 No work was performed on this project during FY 2008. Work planned for FY 2010 Future enhancements will be made as new versions of Word are released.

202

Multiple Disabilities

203

Digital Light Box Artwork: Supporting Language and Literacy (Completed)

Purpose To provide the existing artwork from the APH Light Box Materials in a digital format that can be used in a Windows or Mac platform to design cause and effect, choice making, early symbol use, and language development and early literacy activities for multiply disabled children who use touch screens and switches when learning on a computer. Project Staff Tristan Pierce, Multiple Disabilities Project Leader Wendy Buckley, Consultant and Author Darlene Donhoff, Manufacturing Specialists Erick Rucker, Research Assistant Ann Travis, Research Assistant Monica Vaught-Compton, Research Assistant Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Background While attending a technology workshop sponsored by the Indiana Deafblind Services Project, a request was made that APH make the Light Box artwork available for the computer so that students can make a smooth transition from light box activities to new computer activities. Teachers do not have time to find artwork and scan it into the computer, plus they want the commonality of the artwork to help students with multiple disabilities make the transition. The product will help provide students with activities utilizing slides, transitions, graphics, and action buttons. An online survey was conducted to help APH determine which of the existing Light Box Materials artwork needed modernization. Work during FY 2009 All documentation and specifications were completed. Book was printed and embossed. It is available for sale. Child-Guided Strategies: The van Dijk Approach to Assessment (Continued) Purpose To provide a training manual that documents the validity and reliability of the van Dijk approach to assessment. Project Staff 204

Catherine Nelson, Consultant and Author Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Sandi Baker, Consultant Monica Vaught-Compton, Research Assistant Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Background APH currently sells the CD entitled, Child-Guided Strategies for the Assessment of Children who are Deafblind and Have Multiple Disabilities: The van Dijk Approach to Assessment. This training manual will be packaged with a new CD to provide a comprehensive tool to professionals working with learners (birth-21) who have congenital deafblindness or multisensory impairments. The new CD will have excerpts from the original CD and new video footage; it will feature a baby, a child, and a teenager. The focus of the assessment tool is to gather information for program planning and educational intervention for learners in educational settings. Work during FY 2009 Prototypes were printed and the product was field tested. Work planned for FY 2010 Field test recommendations will be completed. The product will be available for sale. Multiple Disabilities Projects and Needs (Continued) Purpose To assess needs, plan research, and manage product development to better serve individuals who are visually impaired and have additional disabilities. Project Staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Background A Multiple Disabilities Focus Group met at APH in March 2001. The group identified a total of 48 product ideas and held detailed discussions on the revision of APH‘s Sensory Stimulation Kit (SSK), the development of a tactile (communication) symbol system, and the value of adaptable calendar boxes. The 48 product ideas were developed into a needs survey that was distributed nationally and received international participation. The results of the survey were presented at the 2002 Annual Meeting and are still available on the APH Web site: http://www.aph.org/edresearch/md_results.html

205

Since that time, the Multiple Disabilities Project Leader continues to work on products recommended by the survey, and on existing APH products that need to be updated to meet current APH and educational standards. Work during FY 2008 The Digital Light Box Artwork guidebook became available for sale. Child-Guided Strategies: The van Dijk Approach to Assessment, Sound Adapted Tangle Ball, and SAM: Symbols and Meaning were field tested. Work began on the revision of the Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning. Work continues on the O&M Manual for Wheelchair Users. The Project Leader co-presented an input session and presented an informational poster during Annual Meeting. The Project Leader conducted workshops on the Sensory Learning Kit and physical education products at the New York Institute for Special Education. Multiple presentations were held for guests and teachers at APH. The Project Leader worked the exhibit booth at the National Federation of the Blind convention. Work planned for FY 2009 The Project Leader will continue to research, identify, and develop needed products; conduct presentations to the field; and address questions referred from customer service. O&M for Wheelchair Users (Continued) Purpose To provide an electronic book with videos for COMS who work with individuals who have visual impairment in addition to being wheelchair users. Project Staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Monica Vaught, Research Assistant Scott Crawford, Consultant and Author Background This product was identified by the Multiple Disabilities Focus Group. It was rated the ninth greatest need of 48 recommended products with a score of 4.15 (on a scale of 1-5) on the Multiple Disabilities Survey (2001). On a follow-up survey conducted at the 2006 Annual Meeting, it was rated the second greatest need receiving 12 points. (Note that the product rated of greatest need received 15 points.) The target group is COMS working with children of all age levels and adults. Work during FY 2009 Manual was written and edited. The majority of video was taken. Work planned for FY 2010 Remaining video will be taken and voice over added. Field testing will be done. 206

SAM: Symbols and Meaning (Continued) Purpose To provide a program to help build the conceptual foundation for successful symbol use including words, objects, tactual symbols, pictures, and graphics for learners with visual impairment and multiple impairments. Project Staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Rosanne Hoffmann, Research Assistant Millie Smith, Consultant and Author J.C. Greeley, Contributing Writer Linda Hagood, Contributing Writer Zoe Morgese, Contributing Writing Jennifer Stocker, Contributing Writer David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Background This is the continuing revision and replacement of the modalities of the Sensory Stimulation Kit (discontinued). This kit is being designed to complete the communication/intervention continuum that APH has created by the sequential use of the Sensory Learning Kit, SAM: Symbols and Meaning, and Tactile Connections: Symbols for Communication. Work during FY 2009 Field testing was from August 2008 to May 2009. Twenty-four videos were filmed using SAM games. Work planned for FY 2010 Revisions from field testing will be made. Final video editing and lead-in explanations of each video will be scripted and filmed.

207

Physical Fitness

208

Jump Rope to Fitness (Completed) Purpose To create a product that is fun and easy-to-learn for an individual who is blind to exercise independently and safely. Project Staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Lauren Lieberman, Author Haley Schedlin, Author Monica Vaught, Research Assistant David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Background Through APH funded research at sports camps, the need for teens to participate in good cardiovascular activities was reinforced. Jumping rope is an activity that can be enjoyed with peers or independently, it is light weight so it travels well on business trips; and by using an anti shock mat, a defined area is established to prevent migration and possible accidents from happening. Work during FY 2009 The manual was printed and embossed, the kit assembled, and made available for sale. PE Web Site (Continued) Purpose To provide individuals with visual impairments and blindness, parents, and teachers with a resource list that promotes health, physical education, and recreation. Project Staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Inge Formenti, Librarian Ann Travis, Research Assistant Monica Vaught, Research Assistant John Aicken, Assistant Director of Research Background

209

APH funded a 3-year study on parent-child physical activity intervention among families of children with visual impairments. During year three of the study, APH produced a resource manual for the participating families. Upon completion of the study, it was recommended that APH make the information available on its website. The original resource manual was updated and made available on the APH Web site. Viewers can navigate between PE programs, organizations, articles, books, equipment, events, magazines, mailing lists, national services, regional and state services, sport camps, switches, toys and games, and websites. This is a live document; viewers can submit items to be reviewed for placement on the web site: http://www.aph.org/pe/index.html Work during FY 2009 The project leader continued to monitor the site, solicited and reviewed submissions, and requested article permissions. One new feature presentation was added to the site. The article section was reviewed and updated. The 2009 sport camps were listed. Work planned for FY 2010 The project leader will continue to monitor the site, solicit and review submissions, and request article permissions. Physical Health and Education Projects and Needs (Continued) Purpose To research, identify, and develop products that promote physical activities, good health practices, social interactions, and self-advocacy. Project Staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Background APH recognized the need and began developing products and funding university research in the area of physical activity in relation to students who have visual impairments, blindness, and deafblindness. The positive feedback from the field prompted a new designation in the budget for Health and Physical Education. Work during FY 2009 The Project Leader completed the Portable Sound Source, Sport Edition; the Sound Localization Guidebook, the Jump Rope to Fitness kit, and the 30-Love: Tennis Guidelines for Players with Visual Impairments and Blindness kit. The Project Leader co-authored an article published in the Journal of Visual Impairment and Blindness. Work planned for FY 2010

210

The Project Leader will present on a panel session at the 2010 convention for the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance. Work will continue on Games for People With Sensory Impairments. Work will begin on a new storybook to introduce young children to sports and physical fitness. Portable Sound Source, Sport Edition (Completed) Purpose To have a reliable sound source that is small enough and adaptable enough to use in physical fitness and leisure activities (i.e., basketball, rock climbing, hiking, etc.). The accompanying book will provide sound locator activities (revision of current APH book for the Portable Sound Source 2003). Project Staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Robert Wall, Consultant Rebecca Price, COMS, Consultant Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager James Robinson, Manufacturing Specialist Monica Vaught, Research/Project Assistant Background APH recognized the need for a smaller and more adaptable electronic sound source while conducting focus group sessions on the Sound Ball. Upon reviewing the Sound Localization Book that currently accompanies the APH Portable Sound Source 2003, the need for revision was identified. A product specific electronic survey was conducted to determine new needs for the Sound Localization Guidebook. Robert Wall designed the sound localization study, and APH staff conducted the sound localization testing. Nineteen young children participated in the study, which consisted of a pre test and a post test. Work during FY 2009 The guidebook was printed and embossed. The product is available. 30 Love: Guidelines for Tennis Players with Visual Impairment or Blindness (Completed) Purpose To make available in the United States an adapted tennis game that is currently played in Japan, Korea, and the United Kingdom.

211

Project Staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Monica Vaught, Research Assistant Darlene Donhoff, Manufacturing Specialist Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Background Continuing work on the PE Web site led to the discovery of a website demonstrating tennis being played indoors by Japanese people who are blind. APH staff began working with the Japan Tennis Association for the Visually Handicapped to introduce the sport to the United States. A tennis clinic was held at the Kentucky School for the Blind in Louisville, KY. The guidelines were written and the product was field tested. Work during FY 2009 The guidelines were printed and embossed; the kit was assembled. The product is available. Games for People With Sensory Impairments (New) Purpose To provide a guidebook for physical education teachers and activity leaders that offers appropriate, appealing games and activities for their students who have sensory impairments. Project Staff Tristan Pierce, Project Leader Monica Vaught-Compton, Research Assistant Lauren Lieberman, Consultant and Co-author Jim Cowart, Co-author Darlene Donhoff, Manufacturing Specialist Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division Manager Background The first edition of this book was published by Human Kinetics, a leading publisher of physical fitness and health related materials. As visual impairment is a low incidence impairment, the authors sought a more appropriate publisher for the second edition. The original book was not accessible to braille or screen readers. Work during FY 2009 The Project Leader obtained the original files and reviewed, updated, and edited them. Additional photos were taken and several new games added. Portions of the ―teaching‖ section were rewritten. The manual was redesigned. Work during FY 2010 212

The book will be sent out for professional review and published.

213

Recreation Section

214

Game of Squares (Redesign) (New) Purpose To redesign and reintroduce a game that has long been a product staple in APH‘s catalog. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Katherine Corcoran, Pattern/Model Maker Tom Poppe, Pattern/Model Maker Background In October 2008, a facility fire experienced by an outside vendor of many of APH‘s urethane products destroyed the tooling for Game of Squares, specifically the grid board. This fire was the impetus for the redesign, update, and/or re-tooling of many of APH‘s products. The Game of Squares is an adaptation of the two-player pencil and paper game in which dots are connected to make squares. Two players alternate placing white plastic ―sides‖ on the board to enclose a square. Completed squares are covered with the player‘s marker. The markers differ in texture and color. The player who covers the most squares wins. The original game board has a 16-square, blue game grid and storage areas for game pieces. Expecting that the game still had merit, but could benefit from an aesthetic and tactile ―facelift,‖ the project leader conducted a survey to garner feedback from those using the original version. Feedback received from survey respondents indicated that although still valuable, the original version of the game could be improved in the following ways:  Improved overall visual look  Texture enhancement  More secure way of fastening ―sides‖ of squares  Increase size of grid  More convenient storage method One teacher noted that ―the game develops strategy and problem solving skills. Because of the grid layout, it reinforces many spatial concepts (rows, columns, left, right, etc.). Like all interactive games, it encourages peer interaction and turn-taking.‖ With this reassurance that Game of Squares was still worthwhile with some updated design features, the project leader submitted a Product Submission Form in January 2009. In March 2009, the product was approved for development by the Product Advisory and Review Committee (PARC). 215

Work during FY 2009 In April 2009, with in-house approval to proceed with the update and reintroduction of the Game of Squares, the project leader conducted a ―Brainstorming‖ PDC meeting to request additional ideas from staff representing various departments. The project leader came to the meeting with some preliminary ideas, including a mock-up of a new game layout involving a decorative border around a larger grid area. Masking overlays were suggested to minimize the playing area, if needed. Intention to utilize the same u-channel ―side‖ pieces was proposed, allowing game players to snap them onto clear, vacuum-formed grid dividers. Visual/tactile game tokens of a more interesting style were suggested as well. Product activities were a bit sluggish the remainder of the fiscal year due to the project staff‘s involvement in higher priority, and closer-to-availability projects. However, by August, some actual construction of the game grid was underway. Work planned for FY 2010 The project staff will continue to prepare the updated version of Game of Squares for field test purposes. Multiple prototypes will be built, game instructions expanded and enhanced, and field test sites located. Feedback from field reviewers will directly impact the end design. Final tooling efforts will be initiated and completed, and development of final product specifications will be completed. Re-introduction of the game as an APH product is expected in late 2010 or early 2011. SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine [Issue 6] (Completed) Purpose To continue the development of new issues of SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine which feature an assortment of activities for developing young children's tactile skills within a recreational context. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Project Leader/Tactile and Visual Designer Monica Vaught, Research Assistant Tom Poppe, Pattern/Model Maker Katherine Corcoran, Pattern/Model Maker David McGee, Technical Assistant Bisig Impact Group, Layout of Print Activities Booklet Background The premier issue SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine debuted in FY 2005. This magazine series is intended to encourage young children's development of important tactile skills within a recreational context. Each issue's activities reflect a variety of 216

tactile methods such as thermoform, embossed paper, and thermography for the purpose of familiarizing young children with a variety of raised-line images. Visual counterparts of all the tactile activities are included as well with the expectation that they could be used by peers with low vision and sighted parents, teachers, and siblings. The positive reception of the first issue of the SQUID series provided the momentum to continue its development and production; nearly 1000 issues were sold in less than a year's time. Unlike a ―subscription‖ ordering method, customers simply order the number of SQUID issues for their children/students that they need. The premier and all future issues of SQUID will be available for future generations of children to enjoy. SQUID issues will hopefully become commonplace in home settings where the children can acquire early tactile skills within a relaxed atmosphere with their family and friends. A timeline for SQUID: Issue 6 was established by the Product Development Committee in October 2007. The original goal of producing two issues of SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine per year was modified to one issue per year due to the popularity of previous issues demanding production floor time. During the second and third quarters of the fiscal year, the project leader originated new activities for SQUID: Issue 6 and finished documentation that encompassed the design of both the print and tactile activities, as well as the content updates for the "Solutions" section of the magazine. Early tooling activities reflected the following timeline of events: July  Project leader opened a job ticket with the outside graphic designer to prepare final layout design of the print activity booklet and turned over final documentation.  Braille text and layout of thermoformed activities were delivered to the Model Shop.  Project leader prepared brailling instructions for the paper-embossed activities.  Braille Order Forms were issued for the tooling of the paper-embossed and Green Machine-produced activities. August  Outside graphic designer provided first proofs of the layout of the print booklet.  Project leader and research assistant reviewed proofs from the graphic designer.  Part numbers were assigned to product components. September  Final layout of print guidebook and related cover art was proofed and approved by the project leader and research assistant.  Technical assistant prepared final specifications document.

217

Work during FY 2009 Tooling completion of the activities booklet, thermoform masters, and braille plates for SQUID: Issue 6 was completed ahead of schedule, before the beginning of FY 2009. Consequently, most of FY 2009 was awaiting the production of the new issue. The activities included in this new issue are the following: Across the Pond Best Seat in the House BIRDS Word Search Caught in the Web Give Me a Vowel HOT AIR BALLOON Coloring Page It‘s Okay to be Square Lucky Lady Bugs Making Tracks Mind Your Ps and Qs Name Calling On the Fence On the Straight and Narrow On Top of Spaghetti Piñata Party Purr-fect Trap Rainforest Residents Sea Life Sequence Snow Buddies Star Maze Tricky Triangles Two Faced Watermelon Wager What‘s the Hang Up Word Play Delayed by the production of higher priority projects, as well as some lost file and collation problems in the production area specific to Issue 6, an expected January availability was not feasible. An official ―AIRPLANE‖ announcing the availability of SQUID: Issue 6 occurred on May 15, 2009. The selling price assigned was $53.00. For the APH Newsletter announcement, go to http://www.aph.org/advisory/2009adv06.html Post-production activities included preparing brochure content, showcasing the product a workshop/conferences, and initiating work on SQUID [Issue7]. Work planned for FY 2010

218

As encouraged by the field, the project staff will continue the development of additional SQUID issues. SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine [Issue 7] (New) Purpose To continue the development of new issues of SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine which feature an assortment of activities for developing young children's tactile skills within a recreational context. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Project Leader/Tactile and Visual Designer Background The premier issue SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine debuted in FY 2005. This magazine series is intended to encourage young children's development of important tactile skills within a recreational context. Each issue's activities reflect a variety of tactile methods such as thermoform, embossed paper, and thermography for the purpose of familiarizing young children with a variety of raised-line images. Visual counterparts of all the tactile activities are included as well with the expectation that they could be used by peers with low vision and sighted parents, teachers, and siblings. The momentum to continue the development and production of the SQUID series increased following the positive reception of the first issue; nearly 1000 issues were sold in less than a year's time. Unlike a ―subscription‖ ordering method, customers are able to order the number of SQUID issues for their children/students that they need. The premier issue and all future issues of SQUID are planned to be available for future generations of children to enjoy. SQUID issues will hopefully become commonplace in home settings where the children can acquire early tactile skills within a relaxed atmosphere with their family and friends. A timeline for SQUID: Issue 7 was established by the Product Development Committee. The original goal of producing two issues of SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine per year was modified to one issue per year due to the popularity of previous issues demanding production floor time. Work during FY 2009 Project leader initiated work on the creation of new activities for SQUID: Issue 7. These activities, like those included in earlier issues, represent a variety of tasks (e.g., coloring pages, find the differences, hidden pictures, simple mazes, and puzzles). Due to intensive work on higher priority and more challenging projects (e.g., Sense of Science: Astronomy and Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit), the project leader‘s efforts on SQUID: Issue 7 were interrupted. Work planned for FY 2010

219

The project leader will complete the design of 25 new activities for SQUID: Issue 7. Fullfledged tooling of thermoform masters, braille plates, and layout of the Activities Booklet will be completed. The project leader will conduct a PDC meeting to update the product timeline based on new dates of tooling and specification completion. The project leader will monitor the pilot and production runs. Post-production activities will include preparing marking information, showcasing the product at workshops/conferences, and initiating work on SQUID: Issue 8. Tactile Tangrams (New) Purpose To provide accessible versions of Tangram puzzles for use with tactile and low vision students and adults. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Katherine Corcoran, Pattern/Model Maker Tom Poppe, Pattern/Model Maker Background Tangram puzzles are frequently used to teach geometry concepts and skills. A Tangram puzzle is made up of seven simple shapes: two small triangles, one medium-size triangle, two large triangles, a parallelogram, and a square. The goal is to arrange the pieces to create geometric shapes such as human figures in motion, geometric shapes, buildings, animals, letters of the alphabet, etc. Silhouette print images are presented in books or on cards that accompany the Tangram puzzle pieces. Numerous types of Tangram puzzles are available commercially—from wooden Tangram sets and magnetic foam pieces to giant Tangram floor tiles. However, the movable puzzle pieces are never accompanied by tactile silhouette cards or tactile ―solution‖ pages from which the tactile reader can independently solve and recreate the pictures and shapes. Describing figures and visualizing what they look like when they are transformed through rotations or flips, or are put together or taken apart in different ways, are important aspects of geometry in the lower grades. Tangram puzzle activities encourage spatial reasoning, shape recognition, size comparison, and pattern replication. Concepts such as congruence, symmetry, sides and angles, and fractions are reinforced. The following National Geometry Standards are supported:  Recognize, name, build, draw, compare and sort two- and three-dimensional shapes  Describe attributes and parts of two- and three-dimensional shapes  Investigate and predict the results of putting together and taking apart two- and threedimensional shapes 220

    

Recognize and apply slides, flips, and turns Recognize and create shapes that have symmetry Recognize and represent shapes from different perspectives Relate ideas in geometry to ideas in number and measurement Recognize geometric shapes and structures in the environment

In April 2008, the project leader prepared a formal product submission form detailing the purpose and expected components of the product. It was reviewed by the Product Evaluation Team (PET) the same month, and then approved by the Product Advisory and Review Committee (PARC) in May 2008 for actual development and production. Work during FY 2009 The project leader initiated work on this project during the first quarter of the fiscal year. Efforts entailed the following:  Ordering and reviewing commercially available Tangram puzzles, as well as on-line Tangram activities.  Selecting two dozen ideal puzzles to re-create that were not too abstract. Most of the selected puzzles depict geometric shapes (e.g., square, triangle, hexagon) or simple concepts (e.g., house, hourglass, fish). Images like human figures in motion and shapes with lots of angles were avoided.  Locating and ordering ideal material to create the kit‘s components, e.g., two thicknesses of foam, translucent material for use with light box, and clear plastic for puzzle frames. In January 2009, the project leader acquainted the Product Development Committee (PDC) with the expected components of the kit, as well as the expected production methods. A product timeline was established. Throughout the third and fourth quarters of the fiscal year, the project staff focused on the building of multiple prototypes of the planned kit, including the following:  Tangram puzzle pieces made from 3mm magnetic-backed foam (for use with the ALL-INONE Board or other magnetic surfaces)  Tangram puzzle pieces made from 6mm colored foam  Tangram puzzle pieces made from translucent material for use with a light box  Tactile/print ―silhouette picture frames‖ (outline image) into which the shapes can be arranged and can be mounted on a variety of surfaces—magnetic or light box.  Tactile/print ―silhouette solutions‖ showing dissected Tangram puzzles  Accompanying ―Activities Booklet‖ Work planned for FY 2010 The field test of Tactile Tangrams will be initiated in the second quarter of the FY 2010. The project leader will contact field test sites, develop an evaluation form to thoroughly assess the 221

use and design of the components, and make product revisions based upon evaluator feedback. Product efforts to prepare the production for initial pilot run and production run will be undertaken.

222

Science

223

Life Science Tactile Graphics (Continued) Purpose To create a collection of durable, high-relief tactile graphics depicting structures, concepts, and organisms commonly studied in life science and biology courses. Project Staff Fred Otto, Project Leader Rosanne Hoffmann, Project Assistant Katherine Corcoran, Model and Pattern Maker David McGee, Technical Research Background Since the publication of Basic Science Tactile Graphics several years ago, APH has been aware of the need for similar reference materials for students of higher level science. Like the earlier product, this one will feature tactile drawings produced on vacuumformed vinyl sheets and a teacher's guidebook. Life Science Tactile Graphics will have both printed and raised images registered together on the same page, along with labels in print and braille. Initial work to define the scope of the product and list drawings was done by the project assistant, who has an extensive background in science instruction. A field evaluation was conducted in the winter of 2007/2008, involving 35 middle and high school science students in 11 states. Evaluators generally approved of the tactile graphics and the selection of topics covered. Evaluator comments led to several graphics being redesigned or expanded for clarity. Work during FY 2009 Print preparation got underway, a process which involves scanning the original patterns, tracing outlines onscreen and applying colors to the outlined areas. Print labels are also added in this stage. Experiments with sending colored files to a vendor for printing highlighted some of the difficulties inherent in the process of mating printed and vacuumformed images together accurately. In time, however, the problems were resolved, and project staff feels confident that the process will succeed. Work planned for FY 2010 Colors and labels will be laid out for each diagram. Project staff will continue to consult with vendors on a printing process that ensures the printed and tactile images match up accurately. Specifications for the graphics and guidebook will be written by project staff and Technical Research, and the project will move forward to production. 224

Sense of Science: Astronomy (Continuing) Purpose To develop a set of materials for blind and low vision students in grades K-3 that promote active, hands-on learning activities emphasizing basic concepts related to astronomy. This is the third module of a planned series. Project Staff Karen Poppe, Project Leader/Author/Tactile and Visual Overlay Designer Tom Poppe, Pattern and Model Maker/Tactile and Visual Overlay Designer Terri Gilmore, Print Material Layout Rosanne Hoffmann, Research Assistant David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Helen Kielkopf, Astronomy Instructor/Consultant Bisig Impact Group, Guidebook Layout Background

Sense of Science: Astronomy is the third module of a planned series intended to make the

―world of science‖ accessible to young students with visual impairments. This new set of science materials will resemble in both content and design the introductory life science modules, Sense of Science: Plants and Sense of Science: Animals, by incorporating both funfilled, hands-on activities and tactile/visual overlays for use with APH light boxes. Initial development tasks included investigating and purchasing existing, commercially-available educational materials related to astronomy. Concurrently, lists of helpful, student-targeted Web sites and children‘s literature related to planets, galaxies, space exploration, etc., were compiled by the project staff. In September 2002 the product idea was presented to the Product Evaluation Team (PET) and the Product Advisory and Review Committee (PARC) and received approval from both. Extensive product development throughout both FY 2005 and FY 2006 was limited due to the project leader‘s involvement on other products of higher priority. However, some writing of content material continued, and more thought was given to possible overlay depictions, as well as actual preparation of tactile masters (e.g., moon phases, cross-section of the Sun). The project leader explored inclusion of 3-dimensional models that would assist the young student in understanding many of the abstract concepts encountered in astronomy. The project leader also kept up-to-date with the print/tactile astronomy books (e.g., Touch the Universe, Touch the Stars) published by the National Federation of the Blind in order to prevent duplication of effort or design. APH's astronomy module is designed with a younger audience in mind, incorporating more interactive, tactile components.

225

Efforts throughout FY 2007 focused on the continuation and more consistent development of the prototype components. Significant strides were made, especially in the creation of more than a dozen visual/tactile overlays and materials. By the end of August, thermoformed parts of the tactile images were readied; from these first-off parts, the project leader began to prepare print counterparts. Other prototype tasks involved the origination and authoring of complementary activities that referenced the use of the tactile/print overlays. Other materials, such as the Quick Fact Cards and electronic Astronomy Worksheets were refined. Additional input regarding needed overlays, as well as initial editing of some of the written activities, was garnered from a very creative, experienced teacher of the visually impaired. During the first quarter of FY 2008, extensive prototype development of Sense of Science: Astronomy continued and was finalized. In February 2008, prototypes were mailed to evaluators located through a Field Evaluator Survey posted in an issue of the APH Newsletter. The evaluators were given until mid-May to use the prototype with as many students as possible. The prototype was reviewed by 10 teachers representing the states of Texas (2), Ohio, Connecticut, Georgia, West Virginia, Idaho, Kentucky, Florida, and Louisiana. A total of 85 students were involved in the field testing. One hundred percent of 100% the teachers indicated that Sense of Science: Astronomy offered specific advantages over other available materials that they have used in the past with their students to teach astronomy. Specific comments included the following: ―No other commercial product has ever given them such great overlays and tactile overlays.‖ ―These are time-consuming and the ones I make are not as accurate or as durable. There is just enough time in the year to get overlays this beautiful and they are not all in the text braille books.‖ ―What an advantage having ready-made tactile graphics. They save time.‖ ―I haven‘t seen anything that even comes close.‖ ―Benefit to both sighted, low vision, and blind students.‖ The kit‘s overall strengths as noted by the evaluators included the following: ―tactile overlays;‖ ―graphics are very stimulating;‖ ―materials are arranged and contained well;‖ ―the provision of basic, yet standard, information on the Quick Fact Cards;‖ ―portability and ease of set up;‖ ―durable, accurate, and accessible;‖ ―easy to understand for teachers of all grade levels;‖ ―bridges the concepts to a tactile picture;‖ ―depicts items that have always been just explained;‖ ―opened my eyes to what the student actually knew about astronomy;‖ ―labeling is clear, concise, and print and braille; ―great lesson plans;‖ ―brailled worksheets that were laminated.‖ In June 2008, the project leader reconvened the Product Development Committee (PDC) and furnished them with an outline of the expected components of the kit. A complete timeline was established. 226

Work during FY 2009 On October 3, 2009, the Educational Product and Advisory Committee (EPAC) gave Quota approval for Sense of Science: Astronomy. Extensive and continuous effort was devoted to the tooling of this project throughout the fiscal year, primarily by the project leader and the Pattern/Model Maker. Major accomplishments by these two project staff members included the following:  Enhancing the visual art for the overlays and 2-D tactile displays  Determining final tactile presentations of the overlay counterparts, as well as the 2-D tactile displays (e.g., Northern Circumpolar Dome, Relative Distances of the Planets)  Creating new tactile displays (e.g., Our Solar System) based upon field test results  Determining production layouts for all of the print/braille labels included in the kit  Building thermoform patterns for all of the tactile overlays and 2-D displays  Designing and building two custom trays  Designing cutting die layouts  Providing Technical Research with artwork to scan for eventual printing by outside vendor  Determining housing style for the entire kit (e.g., housing folders, case design, etc.)  Identifying Pantone colors for housing folder labels and case design  Authoring the content of the 200-page Activities Guidebook, Astronomy Worksheets, and Quick Fact Cards  Working with an outside consultant with expertise in astronomy to ensure accuracy of presented content  Selecting appropriate vinyl material for the production of durable braille/print Quick Fact Cards  Preparing accessible files for CD inclusion of the Astronomy Worksheets  Building 3-D planet models for guidebook photos  Reviewing and approving the print layout of the Activities Guidebook, Astronomy Worksheets, and Quick Fact Cards  Reviewing and approving the braille translation of the Activities Guidebook, Worksheets, and Quick Fact Cards  Providing Technical Research with all necessary information to prepare Specifications document Work Planned for FY 2010 The first and second quarters of FY 2010 will be committed to the completion and readying of final tooling for the initial production of the Sense of Science: Astronomy. If no unexpected delays are encountered, the kit will be available before the first of the 2010-2011 school year.

227

Tactile Science Posters/Puzzles (New) Purpose To adapt existing science posters by popular school supply companies which are of an appropriate scale for meaningful tactile representations. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader John Aicken, Assistant Research Director Background In April 2008, the project leader submitted a product submission form for the adaptation of commercially available science posters and/or puzzles for tactile adaptation. This product submission was written following the project leader‘s review of various types of science wall charts and interactive puzzles purchased from Delta Education and other popular school supply sources. Posters/puzzles illustrating the lungs, the skeleton, the brain, the heart, the skin, the eye, the ear, the kidneys, the digestive system, the tongue, and so forth, were of particular interest for seeking permission to adapt for students with visual impairments/blindness. The goals of this product are 1) to utilize existing science posters/puzzles commonplace in the regular classroom; 2) alleviate APH‘s burden of creating original print artwork and contribute their tactile expertise by preparing raised-line counterparts; and 3) providing braille awareness to sighted peers who are using the same posters/puzzles. The product idea was approved in April 2008 by the Product Evaluation Team and in May 2008 by the Product Advisory and Review Committee (PARC). Work during FY 2009 Initial efforts by the project staff involved identifying and selecting ideal science posters to adapt. Posters eligible for adaptation show realistic and full-color layouts and are of a convenient size for capturing the detailed features via the use of a variety of tactile textures, line heights, and contours. The main concern was obtaining the poster(s) in bulk quantities, in a flat condition for convenient attachment of the tactile counterparts. As time allowed, the Assistant Research Director sought permission from the copyright holders of the print artwork. Work planned for FY 2010 The project staff will continue to seek copyright permission to adapt identified commerciallyavailable posters and/or puzzles.

228

Self-Determination V-file Formerly: Personal Vision Portfolio (Continued) Purpose To provide students, teachers, counselors, and parents of visually impaired students a tool to collect, organize, and document pertinent information and materials that will aid in transition from Kindergarten through adult life. Project Staff Jeanette Wicker, Project Leader Edith Ethridge, Consultant Katherine Corcoran, Model Maker Darlene Donhoff, Manufacturing Specialist Frank Hayden, Technical Research Division ManagerTom Poppe, Model Maker Background Edith Ethridge developed the Personal Vision Portfolio during her tenure as low vision specialist at Kentucky School for the Blind. She used this portfolio with students across Kentucky through the Outreach Program at the school. This portfolio becomes a working file of activities, documents, and resources used by the student and teacher. It is an aid to an array of students through a variety of transitions; from teacher to teacher, middle to high school, from high school to college and work and adult life. Edith retired from her position on July 1, 2006. The popularity and continued demand for the sharing of her work by groups and organizations around the U. S. led to a product submission. In January 2006, the product idea was approved by the PET and PARC Committees. Edith Ethridge agreed to serve as a consultant. The initial work of writing and revising the portfolio began. The consultant continued to write, revise, and update the text for the teacher‘s manual as well as the various forms to be used in the portfolio in FY 2008. Work during FY 2009 The consultant continued to write, revise, and update the text for the teacher‘s manual as well as the various forms to be used in the portfolio. Work planned for FY 2010 Complete a prototype of the V-file.

229

Tactile Graphics

230

ALL-IN-ONE Board (Completed) Purpose To provide a multi-platform, adjustable board for use with either hook-Velcro® accessories or magnetic pieces (homemade, obtained from APH, or purchased commercially), as well as with dry erase markers, that would facilitate a variety of learning activities within a home or classroom setting. Target populations include young children, students, and adults with visual impairments, as well as parents and teachers working with this population. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Tom Poppe, Pattern/Model Maker David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Terri Gilmore, Instruction Sheet Layout Background After researching and eliminating the risk of duplicating a similar tool already commercially available, the project leader submitted a formal proposal to develop a unique product that would provide the following:  An adjustable, dual-purpose board for use with both Velcro and magnetic interactive pieces.  A compact and portable tool for both home and classroom use.  A flexible surface for use with existing APH products. For example, the two-sided board can be used with Tactile Connections tactile cards which are usually mounted to a felt board and/or a magnetic sheet to create communication boards, daily calendars, monthly schedules, etc.  A versatile platform for assessment, instructional, and recreational purposes.  A tool helpful to students/adults of various ages, visual acuity levels, and instructional needs. Both magnetic- and Velcro-backed pieces are successfully and commonly used with visually impaired/blind students because they are interactive and stay in place during tactile/visual exploration. Provision of the ALL-IN-ONE Board will allow teachers and parents to use a widevariety of existing magnetic and Velcro accessories that can be handmade, commercially231

acquired, or purchased from APH. Although only a few magnetic options are available from APH at this time (e.g., magnetic sheets included with Feel n' Peel Stickers II), this product line can certainly be extended once the board is available and as guided by requests from the field (See separate report on Textured Sorting Circles and Shapes). In January 2007, the project leader conducted a "Brainstorming" Product Development Committee (PDC) meeting to garner additional advice and ideas from a larger audience of APH staff. It was determined that the primary task of designing the prototype and eventual production tooling would be carried out by the Model/Pattern Maker. A complete timeline was determined and posted on the active development chart. Despite the complexity of the prototype design, the pace of development was expedited by a quickly-identified solution to the adjustable handle that allows for various slant angles, regardless of which side of the board is used. Other prototype activities by the project leader and Pattern/Model Maker involved the following:  Selection and acquisition of materials that would result in a colorful frame built from two laminated layers (one blue, one yellow)  Original molds for, and duplication of, the slant mechanism uniquely designed to allow a variety of resting angles  Location of a vendor for smooth-edged metal sheets that are conducive to the application and clean erasure of dry-erase markings, as well as secure attachment of magnetic parts Early reviews from members of the Educational Product and Advisory Committee (EPAC) were very positive indicating that they liked the lightweight, colorful, and adjustable features of the board. They expected that the product would be very popular with their teachers and recommended that APH anticipate large sales. By the end of August 2007, multiple prototypes of the ALL-IN-ONE Board were completed (a month ahead of schedule) and available for field testing. The project leader then developed an evaluation form and contacted field test sites. The field test stage was formally initiated by the end of the fiscal year. The field test stage was completed on schedule in December 2008. Field evaluations were completed by 10 teachers representing the states of California, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, New Mexico, New York, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, and Virginia(2). The student sample of 44 ranged in age from 3 to 17 years old with 32% between 3 and 5, 23% between 6 and 8, 20% between 9 and 11, 14% between 12 and 14, and 11% between 15 and 17. The sample was nearly equally divided between males and females (57% and 43%, respectively). The majority (68%) was white; 18% Hispanic; 9% African American; 2% Asian, and 2% ―two or more races.‖ Nearly three-fourths of the student sample (72%) were in grades Pre-K and third grade. The students‘ primary reading medium was reported as 34% large print, 20% braille, 16% undetermined/nonreader, 9% regular print, 9% combined braille/print, 7% pre-braille, 232

2% pre-reader, and 2% pictures. Students with cortical visual impairment comprised nearly one-fifth of the sample. A large percentage (64%) was reported as having additional disabilities. A total of 85 teacher-determined tasks/activities were performed using the ALL-IN-ONE Board with the students. The majority of the tasks (73%) were assessed as ―Highly Successful,‖ 25% were rated as ―Somewhat Successful,‖ and only 2% were reported as either ―Not Successful‖ or between ―Somewhat‖ and ―Not‖ Successful.‖ The types of learning activities facilitated by the ALL-IN-ONE Board included the following:  Identified magnetic print letters and numbers  Played bingo and tic-tac-toe  Used commercially-available products (e.g., Math Window) to complete algebraic equations  Practiced one-to-one correspondence, counting, patterning, and sequencing  Matched color, shape, and size of various magnetic objects  Used with braille flashcards, spelling words, and contractions  Used magnetic money for identification and addition  Used for visual scanning and finding a target object  Manipulated magnetic gears to promote fine motor development  Created Venn diagrams  Practiced handwriting  Drew pictures and used for art projects.  Used in combination with the Picture Maker manipulatives  Practice positional concepts and O&M mapping concepts  Used for coloring activities  Practiced basic focusing and reaching for objects  Retold stories with Velcro characters—(e.g., Brown Bear, Brown Bear) The teachers gave very high ratings of the board‘s design features, indicating a 4.0 (the highest possible rating) for both its color/attractiveness and its various slant positions. Other ratings included overall size (3.85); weight (3.75); multi-purpose format (3.9); portability (3.5); and durability (3.55). One-hundred percent of the teachers reported that the ALL-INONE Board offered specific advantages over dry-erase, magnetic, and/or other Velcro boards they had previously used, most notably the adjustable slant positions and the dual-platform presentation. Product enhancements were based upon the reviewers' feedback. Given that the current design of the board itself was very well received, no structural changes—functional or aesthetic—were made to it. The only noticeable change from the prototype model to the final version will be the inclusion of a carrying bag to protect and transport the board. 233

In February 2008, the project leader and Product Development Committee members reconvened to re-evaluate the current timeline and to determine final production quantities. The third and fourth quarters of the year were dedicated to the following tasks:  Locating a vendor for the dry-erase portion of the board and evaluating received samples  Locating an overseas vendor for the handle and hub portion of the board and evaluating pre-production parts  Locating a vendor for the carrying case  Preparing artwork for the carrying case  Preparing content and final layout of the product instructions  Selecting the type of dry-erase markers to include with the product Work during FY 2009 The project leader was instrumental in locating a suitable vendor for the dry-erase portion of the ALL-IN-ONE Board despite unsuccessful, repeated efforts by Technical Research and Purchasing staff to do the same. The vendor located met the criteria outlined by the project leader including:  Smooth non-sharp edge with radius corners  Receptive to dry and wet erase markers without beading or ghosting  White magnetic surface Tom Poppe was exclusively responsible for the entire design of the board itself, from original prototype design to final hard tooling, technical drawings for hub and handle parts, planned inhouse assembly, overall dimension specifications, and choice of mounting board material. APH was able to pursue the design of this original product, despite its complexity, because of the Pattern/Model Maker‘s extensive product design knowledge and technical skills, having developed some of APH‘s most successful, long-standing products (e.g., Light Box, Mini-Lite Box, GrandStand, Fine Motor Development Materials, etc.). The project leader and Model Maker were in direct contact with the overseas vendor and local vendors to ensure quality of received parts (e.g., dry erase board, handles and hubs, and laminated mounting boards, carrying bags) throughout the pre-production stage. The project leader and the Model Maker monitored the final production of the ALL-IN-ONE Board and ensured its quality. During actual production, the project leader problem-solved the following:  Lifting a portion of the clear protective film on the dry erase side of the board prior to shipping for easier location and removal by the sighted or blind customer.

234

 Eliminating wrinkles in the Veltex® material applied to some of the boards prior to shipping.  Improving the shipping box style to added needed protection/cushion for the board. The ―Airplane‖ announcing the official availability of the ALL-IN-ONE Board (1-08836-00) was released on January 29, 2009. The set price was $145.00 (available with Quota funds). Sales during FY 2009 quickly exceeded the first-year forecast. In less than a year‘s time, 1300 units had been purchased and the product was on ―backorder‖ status. Post-production activities on the project leader‘s part included preparing marketing materials and demonstrating the product at conferences and workshops. Work planned for FY 2010 The ALL-IN-ONE Board is now available. The project leader will continue to pursue the development of magnetic and/or Velcro-backed accessories for use with this new product. Feel n’ Peel Sheets: Carousel of Textures (New) Purpose To provide an assortment of textured and brightly colored sheets which can be used by teachers, transcribers, students, parents, and adults with blindness and visual impairments for a variety of purposes including adapting/creating storybooks, classroom worksheets, or commercial game boards; preparing collage tactile displays; labeling purposes; coloring activities; arts and crafts; etc. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Tom Poppe, Pattern/Model Maker Katherine Corcoran, Pattern/Model Maker Terri Gilmore, Print Layout of Suggested Uses Sheet Background In November 2008, the Project Leader submitted a Product Submission Form that detailed the purpose and expected components of the product. The product was presented as an extension of the existing Feel n‘ Peel products that would offer teachers, parents, students, and transcribers tactually discriminable, colorful, and adhesive-backed sheets using the same material (.005 translucent rigid vinyl) used in previous packages. The textures created by the project leader and Tom Poppe for other tactile products (e.g., Web Chase, Periodic Table, Textured Sorting Circles and Shapes, etc.) were expected to be incorporated. By doing so, the product would utilize popular textures applied to APH products, thus allowing cross-over to 235

products adapted in school and in the home. Possible applications outlined included the following:  Adapting tactile collage displays  Enhancing commercial storybooks and/or self-created tactile books  Providing open-ended art activities  Affixing to acrylic puzzle pieces/manipulatives (as used with the APH light boxes)  Extending tactile possibilities for existing APH products. For example, teachers can apply the textures to Hundred Chart pieces; create their own Flip-Over Concept Books for tactile discrimination purposes; construct additional pieces for Picture Maker; etc.  Providing tactile rubbing mats—bumpy and rough—for coloring activities  Using as stand-alone sheets to reinforce color concepts and overlapping of textures/colors Work during FY 2009 The project leader‘s product submission form was reviewed by the Product Evaluation Team (PET) in November 2008 and approved for development by the Product Advisory and Review Committee (PARC) in December 2008. In March 2009, the project leader conducted a combined ―Brainstorming‖ and ―Timeline‖ meeting with the Product Development Committee (PDC). Expected components and planned production processes were reviewed. A product timeline was established. The second and third quarters of FY 2009 were devoted to the following product activities:  Ordering needed quantities of the .005 rigid vinyl in assorted colors.  Thermoforming and die-cutting the rough and bumpy textured sheets.  Identifying and ordering additional textured material from outside sources to provide an expanded inventory of textures, particularly soft and striped textures. These textures were satisfied by the provision of commercially-available velour, Vivelle, and corrugated sheets, most of which had adhesive backing already applied.  Ordering multiple packages of StickyDots Adhesive™ and double-sided adhesive sheets for inclusion in the package.  Authoring of a Suggested Uses Sheet complemented by photos illustrating possible applications.  Readying of box label artwork, as well as final layout of the Suggested Uses Sheet.  Investigating options for applying adhesive liner to in-house produced thermoformed sheets. In July 2009, field test prototypes were readied. Each contained the following components: Prototype Component Translucent ―rough‖ sheets (blue, red, yellow, green, clear) 236 Quantity 2 sheets per color

Translucent ―bumpy‖ sheets (blue, red, yellow, green, clear) Corrugated (red, blue, purple, dark green, light green, orange, yellow, pink) Velour (red, dark blue, dark green, white, black) Vivelle (red, green, blue, yellow) Package of StickyDots Adhesive™ Double-sided adhesive sheets Suggested Uses Sheet Housing Envelope for Textured Sheets Housing Box (for all components)

2 sheets per color 1 sheet per color 1 sheet per color 1 sheet per color 1 package/8 sheets 10 sheets

In August 2009, the project leader identified a total of 14 field test sites. These sites were selected from over 50 interested teachers and blind adults who had responded to a request for evaluators posted in the July issue of the APH Newsletter. The sites represented the states of Alabama, California (2), Florida (2), Iowa, Missouri (2), North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. Both residential and itinerant settings were represented in the sample. By mid-September, each field test site received a complete prototype. Ideas for potential uses, complemented by photos, were documented in the accompanying ―Suggested Uses‖ sheet. However, evaluators were encouraged to use the textured sheets in self-defined ways that met the needs of their students and/or their own personal uses. A deadline of November 2009 was set for the return of the evaluation form. Feedback specific to the following was requested:  Identified uses (e.g., adaptations to storybooks, creation of tactile displays, tactile marking mat, light box activities, etc.)  Tactile quality of each sheet  Visual quality of each sheet  Additional requests for textures and/or colors  Student/client preference or dislike of any specific texture(s)  Appropriateness and ease of use of provided adhesive options, notably double-sided adhesive sheets and Sticky Dots Adhesive™  Desired/recommended quantities of each type of texture and/or color  Helpfulness of the provided ―Suggested Uses‖ sheet  Specific advantages of provided textured sheets compared to others available elsewhere  Overall strengths and weaknesses of the textured sheets  Recommended target populations  Suitability of product name  Final recommendation of the production the product

237

Work planned for FY 2010 Product modifications prior to production will be determined by field evaluator feedback. Needed adjustments in textures and colors, if any, as well as quantities, will be incorporated. The project leader will host a PDC meeting to acquaint members with the final design and components of the final product and to update the existing timeline. Final tooling for in-house production of the .005 rigid colored vinyl will be prepared, cutting dies designed, and final documentation updates made. The project leader plans to feature additional uses of the textured sheets, as identified by the field evaluators, in the accompanying ―Suggested Uses‖ sheet. In addition, the project leader will work with the Purchasing Department to identify vendors and sources for complementary textured sheets and adhesive materials. The project leader will work with Technical Research staff to prepare final specifications. Initial pilot and production runs of the kit are anticipated by the end of FY 2010. FirstTouch Books (New) Purpose To develop books, needed by students 0 to 3 years of age, that provide meaningful literacy experiences for emergent braille readers (including emergent braille-print readers and children whose future reading media is unknown). Project staff Suzette Wright, Project Leader Wendy Sapp, Ph.D., COMS, Project Consultant Dana Fox, M.A., Project Consultant Background Children take their first steps toward learning to read and write early in life. Reading aloud to a child, from infancy onward, has been cited as a key contributor to later success in learning to read. Early, positive experiences with books help motivate children to become readers. Important oral language skills and vocabulary are built as the adult reader and young child share a book and talk about its words, illustrations, and relate these to the child‘s own experiences. Early experiences with books provide opportunities to encounter written words and to learn book-handling skills. Young children who will read braille, however, face a limited selection of books in braille, particularly print/braille books that a typically sighted adult can easily read aloud. Even fewer books contain well-designed tactile illustrations, capable of adding interest and meaning to the words of a story for a child who cannot access print pictures. APH and other braille publishers have worked to widen the availability of print/braille books. APH‘s On the Way to Literacy books for children, ages 3 to 5 years, and the Moving Ahead Tactile Graphic Storybooks for ages 4 to 6 offer print/braille texts and tactile illustrations designed to support the text and introduce children to a range of types of tactile displays. Given the importance of books for young children who will read braille, APH continues to make strong efforts to poll the field to determine current needs and to seek help 238

in prioritizing these needs. In an online survey in 2004, 140 of 156 respondents ranked very simple, early books for birth to three as a high need. This need was also noted by a 2004 focus group, and was again expressed in December of 2007, by two focus groups held at the Getting in Touch with Literacy conference. Work completed in FY 2009 Project leader time became available in 2009 to better define the objectives of books for children in this youngest age group and to initiate projects to meet those needs. The project leader examined current offerings of braille producers to determine what was already available in print/braille for children from birth to age 3. She searched commercially available books for this age group to identify titles that might be adapted to meet the needs of a young blind child. The emphasis was on selecting books with high quality language, highly recommended classics and best selling books that would lend themselves to the addition of simple tactile, interactive, or other multisensory components. Hundreds of books found through a wide variety of sources were considered, including: American Library Association (ALA) recommendations; Database of Award-winning Children‘s Literature (DAWCL); International Reading Association (IRA) Choices Awards; The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books; The Horn Book Guide Online; New York Times Bestsellers List; Amazon reviews; Barnes & Noble (store and online offerings). The project leader sketched a variety of types of tactile interactive components, such as die-cut shapes, flaps that open/close, pieces that rotated or moved, things that could be threaded in/out, things to be shaped or bent, as well as textures, objects and sound or noise-making elements. Preliminary sketches were reviewed by in-house staff regarding their feasibility for mass production. All of the information gathered by the project leader was given to two consultants, chosen to advise the project leader regarding the project‘s direction. Both had combined experience with teaching and research in the area of emergent literacy for children with visual impairments. They were asked to review input received from focus groups, further define the objectives for books needed by children 0 to 3 years of age, and to examine commercially available books located by the project leader, analyzing their potential for adaptation. In addition, the project leader supplied rough sketches showing the ideas for tactile interactive components. The consultants were also encouraged to recommend other books, either commercially available books they considered to be candidates for adaptation, or ideas for original books they or others had developed for this age group. The consultants recommended APH develop three types of books to meet the identified need: Adaptations of high quality commercially available books with tactile components developed by APH to ensure their meaningfulness for a young blind child; APH-created books with original tactile, interactive components based on simple, well-written original texts; a blank book kit and guidebook to encourage/facilitate the creation of individualized books with tactiles from the child‘s own environment. Consultants indicated books should be kept small, preferably no more than 7.5‖ x 7.5‖ and be constructed of sturdy board stock.

239

As a next step, the project leader and consultants worked to identify high-quality, commercially available books that could be to be adapted in a meaningful way by adding tactile, interactive, or other multisensory components. After examining well over 2000 books, the combined efforts of the project leader and consultants to locate a book they considered to be excellent for adaptation for children birth to 3 years were not successful. Although interesting tactile components could have been added to many of the books, we were unable to find high quality books that lent themselves to the addition of meaningful tactile components for this very young group of children. Books suited for tactile adaptation for older children were discovered and may be developed in the future as an On the Way to Literacy or Moving Ahead Storybook. The project leader will continue to monitor commercially available books for a suitable title for the birth to 3 years age group. Project consultants suggested APH explore development of an APH-created book, as some of the sketches for tactile components supplied by the project leader appeared they could be meaningfully and effectively used with a young blind child. Texts might be developed based on these. (To meet the need for a blank book kit, also recommended by past focus groups, a second, separate project was proposed. For further information, see the report written for Tactile Book Builder.) The idea for FirstTouch Books for children from birth to 3 years of age was next submitted to APH‘s in-house product evaluation and approval process. It was proposed that books be developed one at a time; the series would eventually include adaptations of commercially available books, as suitable ones were discovered, as well as original books. The proposed project received the approval of the Product Evaluation Team (PET) and Product Review and Advisory Committee (PARC) and was removed from the ―parking lot‖ in April 2009. In June, the first Product Development Committee brainstorming meeting was held. A number of good ideas regarding book construction were received. The project leader continued by searching for ideas for original texts and tactile components in files from past projects. She encouraged individuals, including both parents and teachers, to submit ideas and original drafts. As a result, four promising drafts and sketches or descriptions of accompanying tactile, interactive components were obtained. These were submitted to the project consultant for a detailed review, including a rating of each draft and ranking of their suitability for the target audience. Two drafts were rated ―excellent‖ as candidates for further development. The draft which was ranked first has been roughly laid out in electronic form by the project leader, including dimensions, materials and tactile as well as visual illustrations. This file has been sent to several current and past consultants for a preliminary, informal review. It is presently being examined by in-house staff in regards to production methods which might be used. Work planned for FY 2010 The project leader will evaluate input from the preliminary, informal review and from in-house discussion concerning production methods and costs. If this information is favorable, a final design will be established and prototypes will be made. Prototypes will be sent out for field review based on teachers‘ and parents‘ observations through extended use with children in the target audience. 240

Flip-Over Concept Books (Continued) Purpose To provide young children with an interactive tactile book series that encourages the development and understanding of basic concepts and tactile skills related to shape, texture, spatial concepts, etc. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Monica Vaught, Research Assistant Tom Poppe, Pattern/Model Maker David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Bisig Impact Group, Logo Design/Information Sheet Layout Background In April 2006, the project leader submitted a formal proposal to develop a series of interactive tactile/print books to encourage young children's development and understanding of basic concepts related to shape, texture, spatial concepts, counting, etc. Inspired by recommendations from the Early Books Focus Group, which met at APH in June 2004, these books will address the group's specific requests for both "concept books" as well as "inexpensive, simple books for children 3- to 5-years of age." A decade has passed since the introduction of Tactile Treasures, an APH product that provides static worksheets for the review of basic concepts and general exposure to tactile graphics. Unlike Tactile Treasures, the Flip-Over Concept Books incorporate an interactive feature whereby the child independently flips pages or adjacent print/tactile panels that can be matched or sequenced. The panels turn so that, for instance, the child can find all the panels that have a rough texture, continue a line path, complete a sequence, build an image, etc. Additional skills targeted include page turning, fine motor skills, independent choice-making, and problemsolving. The product idea was officially approved for development by the Product Advisory Review Committee (PARC). In January 2007, the project leader conducted a "Brainstorming" Product Development Committee (PDC) meeting to familiarize a wider APH audience with the product and explore design options. The project leader stressed the goals of making the books full-color, tactile, and durable. Although the primary goal of the project was to develop a new series of tactile/print books, a secondary goal emerged: To explore a new process for printing and registering print and tactile parts minus the in-house, labor-intensive, and costly process of 241

screen printing. In lieu of screen printing, wide-format printing in combination with thermoforming became the project staff's new challenge. If successful, the implications of this process could be far-reaching and open new possibilities for the design and production of future dual-format products. Throughout the first and second quarters of FY 2007, the project leader was engaged in the design of two selected Flip-Over Concept Books—PARTS OF A WHOLE and LINE PATHS. Specific tasks related to the prototype development of each included:  Selecting and creating original drawings to include in each book  Working with the Model/Pattern Maker to determine tactile counterparts for all print images  Utilizing a CorelDraw template, created by the Manufacturing Specialist, to plot the print images and assign high contrast colors  Selecting ideal materials for the panels and back and front covers  Experimenting with wide-format printing capabilities both in-house and outside vendors  Planning the eventual construction/assembly of the books for mass production (e.g., die designs, twin-loop binding procedure, needed production fixtures)  Purchase of non-skid material to affix to back covers of the books By the end of July, prototype development was approaching an end—all visual artwork was readied, thermoform masters were complete, and accompanying documentation was authored. The remaining task was to fully test the wide-format printing and thermoforming of the panels which, by that time, was determined to be a flat-bed, wide-format printer to prevent slippage of the heavy-weight vinyl as it was being printed, allowing exact alignment between the printed and tactile elements. Because of the additional time needed to investigate and refine this new printing process, the actual field test stage was delayed until the fourth quarter of the fiscal year. The project leader readied an evaluation packet (reviewed by Research staff for objectivity and thoroughness) and began to identify possible field test sites. The field test of the Flip-Over Concept Books was completed in January 2008. Field evaluations were completed by 13 teachers representing the states of Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, Texas (2). The student sample of 41 students ranged in age from 3- to 16-years old with 24% between 3 and 5, 46% between 6 and 8, 24% between 9 and 11, and 5% between 12 and 16. The sample was nearly equally divided between females and males (56% and 44%, respectively). The student population reflected cultural diversity: 34% were White; 32% were Hispanic; 20% were African American; 7% were Asian; and 7% were reported as ―two or more races.‖ A full 73% were in grades Pre-K through third grade; 20% were in grades 4-6; one student was in 12th grade; and remaining percentage (5%) were reported as non-graded. The largest percentage of the students (41%) were braille readers; 37% read print or large 242

print; 7% were reported a prereaders; and remaining percentage were classified as dual readers, auditory readers, or nonreaders. Over half (51%) of the students had other disabilities. Both Flip-Over Concept Books (LINE PATHS and PARTS OF A WHOLE) were reported as helpful by the teachers in supporting the development and reinforcement of various skills and concepts, with student improvements reported in various areas: more careful tactile exploration, matching, line tracking, page turning, spatial understanding/concept development, overcoming tactile defensiveness, on-task behavior, self-esteem, peer interaction, and interest in tactile games/activities. The LINE PATHS book was reported as being the most ideal for tactile readers in grades K-3; however, a full 85% of the teachers reported that the book was also useful for tactile readers and low vision readers in preschool. Similarly, 92% of the teachers reported that the PARTS OF A WHOLE book was appropriate for tactile readers in both preschool and K-3; 85% said the book was useful with low vision readers in preschool. Additional Flip-Over Concept Books were requested including books addressing basic shapes, textures, counting, sequencing, and recreational themes. The most significant change to the books, based upon field test results, will be the conversion from a twin-loop binding to one that allows removal, minimization, and randomization of the separate panels. Quota approval for the two Flip-Over Concept Books (as well as for other future books developed in the series) was received from the Educational Product Advisory Committee (EPAC) in May 2008. The Flip-Over Concept Books continued to serve as the testing ground for wide-format printing in combination with the thermoforming process. This investigation occupied the project staff‘s time throughout the third quarter of the fiscal year. Concurrently, a new binding system to allow convenient opening and closing of the rings to minimize or randomize the panels was explored and located. In August 2008, the PDC regrouped to establish the remainder of the timeline—from ―Final Documentation‖ to ―Availability.‖ Extensive efforts to prepare actual production tooling (other than that prepared during the prototype stage) extended through the end of September. Work during FY 2009 The project staff continued necessary documentation and tooling tasks to ready both LINE PATHS and PARTS OF A WHOLE for final availability. For each Flip-Over Concept Book, the following efforts were undertaken:  Finalizing print artwork for book panels and covers as conceptualized and drawn by the project leader and Pattern/Model Maker.  Finalizing tactile patterns for book panels and covers as built and designed by the Pattern/Model Maker.

243

 Readying silk screens for LINE PATHS worksheets based on artwork created by the project leader and Pattern/Model Maker.  Authoring accompanying documentation for the Reader‘s Guide as written by the project leader.  Preparing photos to insert into Reader‘s Guide.  Identifying and selecting a final binding style conducive to the removal, randomization, and minimization of panels.  Determining in-house collation style as determined by the Pattern/Model Maker.  Building needed fixtures as executed by the Pattern/Model Maker.  Designing needed cutting dies as determined by the Pattern/Model Maker.  Preparing braille translation of print documentation.  Verifying tactile/print registration and color quality for panels and covers based on initial sample provided by outside vendor.  Identifying a housing box style.  Documenting product specifications for production purposes. By June-July 2009, the final product specifications and tooling were turned over to Production staff. Timelines were updated at the specifications meeting where availability of LINE PATHS and PARTS OF A WHOLE was slated for September 2009 and February 2010, respectively. In August 2009, initial production efforts, namely the screen printing of the LINE PATHS worksheets, had begun. The effort invested by the project leader, Tom Poppe, and David McGee in identifying a wideformat printing option for this project has had positive and direct impact on the design of other recent and future APH projects (e.g., Life Science Tactile Graphics and Tactile Food Pyramid), allowing for more colorful graphics paired with tactile elements. Work planned for FY 2010 The project leader will oversee the quality of the initial pilot and production runs of both FlipOver Concept Books. Future development of similar books, as encouraged by field test evaluators, as well as EPAC recommendations, will be pursued. Moving Ahead: Tactile Graphic Storybooks (Continued) Purpose To provide print/braille storybooks for upper preschool, kindergarten and first grade students featuring tactile graphics designed to encourage tactual exploration, refine tactual discrimination, and introduce tactile symbols, simple keys, and maps in the context of a story. Project staff 244

Suzette Wright, Project Leader/Author Lois Harrell, Project Consultant/Author Mila Truan, Project Consultant Josephine Stratton, Project Consultant Background Symbolic visual displays, such as maps and diagrams, play an increasingly important role in textbooks and computer displays for students with typical vision. They present a special challenge for students with significant vision loss, who are often expected to use a tactile equivalent in the course of their studies and in test-taking. Observers have suggested difficulty interpreting tactile displays may be due, in part, to lack of early exposure. Storybooks developed in this project are designed to give young students opportunities to explore and interpret tactile illustrations that feature raised symbols, lines and areal patterns. Of equal importance, the storybooks offer exposure to braille and foster key emergent literacy skills. The print/braille text of the books is intended to be read aloud by an adult reader. Embedded text (in large print and the user‘s choice of either contracted or uncontracted braille) offers opportunities for the student to explore and read single words and short phrases, just as they might read labels included in a tactile diagram. Initially, project leader efforts focused on identifying objectives and selecting or creating story texts and graphic media to support these. Lois Harrell served as project consultant, authoring a book and reviewing drafts of other books. Project leader Fred Otto suggested the subject and objectives for another of the stories drafted. Based on input from expert reviewers, four stories were chosen from a large pool of drafts. A variety of tactile media were considered. Paper embossed graphics were selected for the first book. A combination of embossed braille and Tactile Visions graphics was selected for three books. Multiple prototypes of each of the four books were hand-produced. Accompanying storyboards (featuring symbols from the story mounted to Velcro-backed pieces) were created to enable students to create their own tactile displays. A Reader‘s Guide including information about introducing the child to the book‘s tactile graphics and briefly discussing emergent literacy skills and development of tactual learning skills was written to accompany each of the books. Seven teacher-evaluators at seven sites participated in an expert review and conducted the field evaluation of the books/storyboards with 23 students ranging in age from 4.5 to 11 years of age, spanning an eight to ten week period. Without dissension, teachers indicated texts and tactile graphics for all four books were interesting and appropriate for kindergarten and first grade students; a majority also extended the books‘ value upward to second grade students. Teachers reported 94–100% of the students, in their opinion, had benefited from using the books during the evaluation period and would benefit from using the books for a longer period of time. Reasons given included: ―increased motivation to read and exposure to braille and tactile exploration;‖ ―allowed student to experience tactile graphics with a purpose;‖ ―tactile graphics made the books more fun and motivated him to use his hands to explore and draw in information;‖ ―helped tracking skills.‖ The tactile graphics were also credited with enhancing 245

understanding of the stories for 90% of the students. Accompanying storyboards were strongly endorsed by the teachers, who stated that their use improved comprehension, offered students an important opportunity to create their own graphics, and were highly motivating. A majority of teachers commented favorably on the Tactile Visions graphics. All evaluators rated the visual graphics in the books as a ―very important‖ component of the books, promoting shared reading with typically sighted peers and adults and supplementing tactual information for the many braille readers with usable vision. The three project consultants also reviewed prototype books, provided favorable reviews and suggested changes to specific tactile illustrations. The four Moving Ahead Storybooks and accompanying components received approval for sale on quota. It was decided that each of the four books be produced separately to assist flow through the pre-production/tooling and production phases. Goin‘ On a Bear Hunt was produced and is available. In order to produce the second storybook (Splish the Fish), sample tests were run to ensure compatibility of the paper stock, the outside vendor‘s inks, and the Tactile Visions process; several problems with paper were encountered and resolved. It was necessary to design and add a special switch and tray to the Tactile Visions machine to accommodate the book‘s page size. An initial pilot run of 100 books revealed some inconsistency in registration. A debriefing addressed possible sources. Subsequent runs of the book have been problem-free. Work during FY 2009 All final tooling for the third book in this series (The Boy and the Wolf) and the accompanying Reader‘s Guide has been completed. Specifications have been written and given to Production. This book is similar in format to Splish, utilizing a combination of full-color visual graphics, Tactile Visions graphics, and paper-embossed braille. Lois Harrell is the author of the third storybook in the series. All final tooling for the fourth storybook in the series (Turtle and Rabbit) has been largely completed. Work planned for FY 2010 The Boy and the Wolf will be produced and made available for purchase. Final tooling, and specifications of Turtle and Rabbit will be completed and a production date will be set. The project leader, working with consultants, will identify a commercially available children‘s book suited to development as the next Moving Ahead book and will design accompanying tactile illustrations.

246

Pattern Matching Cards (for Giant Textured Beads) (New) Purpose To provide tactile/visual pattern matching cards that extend the use of APH‘s existing Giant Textured Beads. The tactile cards and textured beads will support the tactile continuum encountered in APH‘s Setting the Stage for Tactile Understanding—real object, thermoformed object, and raised line drawing. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Tom Poppe, Pattern/Model Maker Background Giant Textured Beads is a long-standing, consistently popular product produced by APH. The kit consists of 12 large tactile, colored beads that incorporate three different textures (smooth, striped, and checkered), three different colors (red, yellow, and blue), and three different shapes (cube, rectangular solid, and cylinder). Intended for young children 3 to 6 years old, the beads can be strung onto a provided cord in various combinations (guided by the teacher‘s verbal instructions) that reinforce concepts related to shape, color, and texture. However, the kit lacks the common component included with many commercial bead-stringing kits—that is, pattern matching cards. To make the matching cards for the Giant Textured Beads fully accessible to students with visual impairments and blindness, the cards need to be both visual and tactile. In April 2008, the project leader submitted a product idea form that suggested that APH design and offer tactile matching cards to complement the Giant Textured Beads. The submission form indicated that the proposed product would provide the following:  Extended tactile activities for a very popular APH product [Giant Textured Beads sold 750 in ‘05; 860 in ‘06; 648 in ‘07; and 802 in ‘08].  Additional interactive hands-on activities that encourage a young child‘s understanding of various shapes and textures.  Exposure to tactile graphic displays that support other content areas (e.g., mathematics) within a purposeful context.  Materials that allow a young child to engage in open-ended creative activities—e.g., building and designing their own tactile patterns. As proposed, the product will encourage:  Identification of shapes 247

 Identification of textures  Identification of colors  Patterning skills: describing, creating patterns, recognizing patterns, extending patterns, etc.  Interpretation of tactile displays—thermoformed and raised line formats  Patterning skills and concepts consistent with the current NCTM Standards for Grades K-3 The target population was expanded to also include older students who still need tactile interpretation training. In May 2008, the product idea was reviewed by the Product Evaluation Team (PET) and was approved for development by the Product Advisory and Review Committee (PARC). By the end of the fiscal year, the project leader had conducted a ―Brainstorming‖ meeting with the Product Development Committee. Work during FY 2009 A product timeline for the development of the Pattern Matching Cards for the Giant Textured Beads was established in January 2009. In March 2009, the project leader posted a request for current owners/users of the Giant Textured Beads to complete a 10-question survey to confirm the need for tactile matching cards, as well as garner feedback about the current bead design and use. Although only a small number of teachers completed the survey, helpful information was garnered. The feedback provided the following insights:

Giant Textured Beads were being used with children older than six years of age, including

students in grades 1-3, as well as students with multiple disabilities and cognitive delays. One respondent reported that she used the beads with high school students ―in a life skills classroom to build their hand/eye coordination and work on keeping their vision focused on a specific activity,‖ noting that the beads ―help build sensory awareness and identification skills.‖ The beads were used for a variety of activities including: matching beads to similar ones of the same shape; following an ―ab‖ or ―abc‖ pattern with the textures/shapes; matching the shape of the bead to other objects in the environment; copying a pattern created by the teacher; using the beads to represent letter sequences, words, or sound patterns; and so forth. One hundred percent of the respondents thought that pattern matching cards would be a helpful accessory to the existing beads. As one teacher noted: ―If the cards are tactile, this would be of great benefit for students learning to discriminate tactile graphics and to be able to be more independent when working on a task.‖ Another echoed: ―The cards would help the child develop tactile discrimination skills from 3D to 2D.‖ One hundred percent of the respondents supported the project leader‘s intention to add a tray to allow a child to place (rather than string) the beads into separate compartments. As one 248

evaluator attested: ―Currently we use a table and it is difficult to keep the beads in a central location for students to reach.‖ Another expected that ―it would specifically help autistic and multi-impaired visually impaired students.‖ One hundred percent of the respondents indicated that assortment of print/tactile pattern matching cards (e.g., 2-D raised shape with texture, 2-D raised shapes without texture, and 3D view with hidden lines depicted) would allow a variety of matching activities. As one respondent indicated: ―A variety of cards would be great for students at various cognitive/skill levels.‖ Some respondents requested a duplicate of each type of bead. As one teacher explained: ―I often combine sets in order to work with students and have them copy me.‖ Throughout the third and fourth quarters of the fiscal year, multiple prototypes of the Matching Pattern Cards for the Giant Textured Beads were designed and built exclusively by the Project Leader and the Model/Pattern Maker in preparation for field test activities. These tasks involved the following:          Determining and planning the types of tactile/print cards to include. Reviewing the color of the beads for possible improvement. Assigning tactually discernible corner cuts to the three set of cards to distinguish by type. Designing and building a custom tray to hold both the beads and matching cards. Constructing a thermoform pattern to form the tray (two trays per kit) Selecting an ideal thickness of styrene to use for the tray. Constructing a thermoform pattern to form all of the matching cards in one set-up. Preparing silkscreen artwork to register with the raised images. Researching the availability of 6mm colored foam to serve as the substrate for each of the cards.  Forming, die-cutting, and affixing foam substrate to cards.  Identifying and ordering an ideal container for the product. By the end of July 2009, the project leader and Tom Poppe had all the tangibles constructed for field test purposes—two months ahead of schedule despite the product‘s complexity. In September, the project leader authored an Activities Booklet to accompany the beads and matching cards. Work planned for FY 2010 The prototypes of the Matching Pattern Cards for the Giant Textured Beads will be mailed to field evaluators for direct use with students representing a variety of ages and visual acuities. The project leader and Pattern/Model Maker will use the evaluators‘ feedback to determine enhancements to the materials and accompanying guidebook. The Product Development 249

Committee will reconvene and update the timeline (if needed). Post field-test activities will include:  Preparing final tooling for tray, matching cards, and guidebook (to be produced in both large print and braille).  Working with outside vendor of the beads to ensure brightest possible colors during the liquid resin forming process.  Preparing final specifications for use by Purchasing and Production staff  Overseeing the quality of the first pilot and production runs.  Assisting with the brochure content.  Showcasing the final product at workshops and conferences. The goal is to have the product available for sale by the first of 2010-2011 school year. Picture Maker Accessories: Geometric Textured Shapes (Completed) Purpose To broaden the assortment of interactive Velcro®-backed pieces that can be used with the Picture Maker (or other existing Velcro-compatible boards). Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Tom Poppe, Pattern/Model Maker David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Monica Vaught, Research Assistant Erica Rucker, Research Assistant Terri Gilmore, Documentation Layout Background Since the debut of APH's Picture Maker: Wheatley Tactile Diagramming Kit in 2000, the project leader has received numerous requests from workshop attendees and from respondents to product-specific surveys to provide a wider variety of Velcro pieces that can be used with Picture Maker. These requests ranged from more lengths/textures of strips to more geometric shapes of various sizes and textures. Although additional hook-Velcro is included with the kit to create self-constructed pieces, teachers find it more convenient to have ready-made materials available from APH.

250

Picture Maker continues to be one of APH's most popular and versatile products. As detailed in the accompanying guidebook, Picture Maker can be used for many concept-teaching tasks. By
adding a greater variety of Velcro-backed manipulatives, the product's uses and applications can be extended. Target populations include young children, students, and adults with visual impairments, as well as parents, teachers, and O&M instructors working with this population. Despite lagging behind the development of related products, that is, Picture Maker Accessories: Textured Strips and Storage Panel (see separate reports), notable tasks were accomplished on Geometric Shapes including:  Investigation and acquisition of additional textured papers and materials from outside sources.  Early sketches of planned shapes, including basic shape sorting puzzles During the months of January and February 2007, the project leader focused attention on designing and selecting planned components for this third accessory package for Picture Maker. The Product Development Committee (PDC) met to establish a complete time and initial production quantities. By end of March 2007, the project leader had compiled a final list of planned accessory pieces which included the following: (1) Geometric Shapes Pack (4) Stars [same size as Web Chase pieces], azure polyblend (.023‖) backed by black hook Velcro (4) Stars [same size as Web Chase pieces], silver mylar affixed to white polyethylene (.023‖) and backed with black hook Velcro. (6) 1‖ diameter donut, white polyethylene (.023‖) backed with black hook Velcro (6) 0.5‖ circles, white polyethylene (.023‖) [salvage pieces from donut shapes] (6) X-shapes, red flocked styrene (.020‖) backed with black hook Velcro. 1‖ crossbars (5) 1‖ squares, green Tactile Colour pebbly/rough texture adhered to .023 white polyethylene and backed with black hook Velcro (4) 2.25‖ x 1.5‖ rectangles, pink felt adhered to .023 polyethylene and back with black hook Velcro. (5) 1-3/16‖ x 1-1/16‖ isosceles triangles, yellow polyethylene (.023) and backed with black hook Velcro. (6) 5/8‖ x 9/16‖ isosceles triangles, orange felt adhered to polyethylene (.023) and backed with black hook Velcro. (4) 1 5/8 x 1 ovals, purple craft foam affixed to white polyethylene and backed with black hook Velcro (4) Round Craft ―Wiggly‖ Eyes with Lids and Lashes—Multicolor, 2 sizes, non-adhesive backed (4) 22mm Rhinestone round jewel, pink (4) 25mm Rhinestone round jewel, peridot (4) 15 x 15mm Rhinestone square jewel, jonquil 251

(1)—Yellow, Bumpy Shapes Frame Note: All parts have .032‖ radius corners (1) 5-pointed star inscribed in 2-1/16‖ diameter circle, yellow bumpy (1) oval (2-7/16‖ x 1.5‖), yellow bumpy (1) square (1 9/16‖ sides), yellow bumpy (1) triangle (base 1-9/16‖, 1-3/4 high) yellow bumpy (1) circle (diameter 1.5‖), yellow bumpy (1) regular hexagon with 1-1/2‖ across flats, yellow bumpy (1) rectangle (2.5‖ x 1-9/16‖), yellow bumpy (1) trapezoid (2‖ base, 1-3/8‖ height, sides angled 20 degrees), yellow bumpy (1) regular pentagon (inscribed in 1-3/4‖ circle), yellow bumpy (1) heart (1-13/16‖ wide and 1-5/8‖ high), yellow bumpy (1) octagon (1-7/8‖ across flats), yellow bumpy (1) diamond (1-3/8 across flats with 70-degree points), yellow bumpy (1)—Red, Smooth Shapes Frame Note: All parts have .032‖ radius corners (1) 5-pointed star inscribed in 2-1/16‖ diameter circle, red smooth (1) oval (2-7/16‖ x 1.5‖), red smooth (1) square (1 9/16‖ sides), red smooth (1) triangle (base 1-9/16‖, 1-3/4 high) red smooth (1) circle (diameter 1.5‖), red smooth (1) regular hexagon with 1-1/2‖ across flats, red smooth (1) rectangle (2.5‖ x 1-9/16‖), red smooth (1) trapezoid (2‖ base, 1-3/8‖ height, sides angled 20 degrees), red smooth (1) regular pentagon (inscribed in 1-3/4‖ circle), red smooth (1) heart (1-13/16‖ wide and 1-5/8‖ high), red smooth (1) octagon (1-7/8‖ across flats), red smooth (1) diamond (1-3/8 across flats with 70-degree points), red smooth (1)—Strip of (20) ½‖ black hook Velcoins The project leader provided preliminary specifications and vendor contact information to Technical Research and Purchasing staff. The project leader also authored a brief Product Instruction sheet that was professionally laid out by the graphic designer; it was also transcribed into braille. The Pattern/Model Maker was instrumental in designing the cutting die layout to build the puzzle frames and related pieces, as well as building the necessary thermoformed patterns to produce the textured components.

252

Although the contents of the kit were fully defined by the end of March, the product lagged somewhat due to available time in Technical Research area for finalizing the Specifications document. The goal date for this milestone was updated from August 2008 to October 2008. Quota approval for this third package was received from the Educational Product Advisory Committee at the same time as the two earlier packages—in October 2007. Work during FY 2009 Completion of the Specifications document generated by Technical Research was postponed until January 2009. Nevertheless, the expected production run date was abbreviated one month, with a new goal date of July 2009. Throughout March and April, needed materials/textures and cutting dies for final production were received and approved. As scheduled, production was initiated in July. Quality was monitored by the project leader and Technical Research. The final product is a hybrid of parts acquired from outside vendors and those uniquely produced by APH. Work planned for FY 2010

Picture Maker Accessories: Geometric Textured Shapes (1-09939-01) is now available for sale.
If sales of this package mimic those of the previous two accessory packages (i.e., over 1100 units each to date), this will be a very popular APH product. No additional Picture Maker accessory packages are planned for the immediate future. Tactile Book Builder (New) Purpose To develop a blank book kit and accompanying guidebook that will encourage/facilitate the creation of individualized books for children; materials will support inclusion of text in an appropriate medium as well as various types of tactile illustrations, including real objects, collaged illustrations, raised line illustrations, and tactiles from the child‘s own environment. Project staff Suzette Wright, Project Leader Wendy Sapp, Ph.D., COMS, Project Consultant Dana Fox, M.A., Project Consultant Background The request that APH create a kit of materials that would enable users to more easily create a variety of individualized, custom-made books has been expressed for some time. A 2004 online survey elicited this request, and various focus groups have remarked on the usefulness of such a tool. Individualized books offer a way to provide a range of audiences with books in an appropriate medium with related tactile components. Because a very young child‘s concepts 253

and language are limited, individualized books that address familiar topics and include things the child has experienced firsthand are more likely to be meaningful than many commercially produced books. And although many commercially available books are meaningful for an older child, preschoolers as well as older children often show great interest in reading from custommade books they have helped to write, perhaps based on a recent personal experience. If the child helps to produce the written text, the adult can use this opportunity to build important early literacy knowledge and skills. The child can also participate in illustrating the book with objects, other tactile items and illustrations, broadening his awareness of how tactile displays can be used to communicate meaning. Creating custom-made books, whether done by the adult or in collaboration with the child, can broaden the number of appropriate books available to the child and increase his/her interest in books. Work completed in FY 2009 The idea for a blank book kit and accompanying guidebook was presented via a product submission form, received approval from the Product Evaluation Team (PET), and proceeded to the Product Advisory and Review Committee (PARC). The project was approved and released for work to begin in April 2009. The brainstorming session, which marked the first Product Development Committee meeting, yielded a number of useful suggestions for materials which might be part of the kit. The project leader examined a wide range of materials that could be used for book-making by looking online and in stores. At present, a ―family‖ of products is envisioned. The basis for the kit would be a small, but thick binder with plastic rings and blank pages, 3-hole punched, for insertion into the binder. A number of different page types will be available: doubled braille paper pages, board stock pages, pocket pages, permabraille pages, magnetic pages, Velcro-able pages, and colorful polyblend pages. Labeling material will be included, as will ―tools‖ such as Sticky Dots, adhesive-backed Velcro materials, adhesive-backed magnetized strips. Add-on ―packs‖ are also proposed, including a version of the APH SoundPage sized for the small binders in the kit, a textured fabric and paper pack, a scented sticker pack, and a pack containing materials and fibers for creating raised lines. Dimensions for pages and the binders are being established. The first draft of the guidebook is underway and includes ideas for using the kit materials to construct a variety of types of books. It will include examples of custom-made books. The kit will also be accompanied by a hard copy version of the Guide to Designing Tactile Illustrations for Children‘s Books. This is a document that was field evaluated at the same time as the new 2nd edition of the On the Way to Literacy handbook; it is currently available at the APH Website as a free download. It supplies suggestions for designing meaningful tactile illustrations and indicates the limitations of tactile illustrations as it highlights good tactile graphic design principles. Work planned for FY 2010 The project leader will continue to draft the guidebook. The list of kit components and how they will be grouped will be finalized. Dimensions and quantities for all materials will be selected, and prototype kits will begin to be assembled.

254

Tactile Graphics Research (Continued) Purpose To study and develop techniques for making useful tactile graphics, to work toward standards in tactile graphic presentations, and to evaluate product submissions and ideas from the field related to tactile graphics. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Fred Otto, Project Leader Tom Poppe, Pattern/Model Maker Katherine Corcoran, Pattern/Model Maker Background APH has a variety of means for producing tactile graphics, including embossed paper, puff ink, capsule paper, thermography, and vacuumform. One goal of this research project is to learn which media are appropriate for which uses. Another goal is to identify and expand the available methods/tools useful for the production of tactile displays, whether by APH or by the individual teacher, transcriber, or student. In addition, tactile graphic products are frequently submitted by teachers or other professionals who would like to collaborate with APH in producing their materials; project staff provides written reviews of these submissions. Yet another aspect of this research is to monitor developments in practice, technology, and philosophy as they evolve. Work during FY 2009 Throughout the year, project staff conducted a variety of tactile graphic workshops and training sessions (both in-house and at national conferences), initiated contacts and gathered input from the field, and proposed new product ideas. Examples of these activities are listed below: Continued graphic population of the Tactile Graphics Image Library. Investigation of wide-format printing in combination with in-house thermoformed graphics to produce dual-format, accurately registered tactile/print components continued. The prototype development and production of Flip-Over Concept Books [see separate report] continued to serve as the test for this new process. The project leaders provided product-development advice to other project leaders developing products with tactile graphic features/components, including the Building on Patterns project and Best for a Nest storybook.

255

The project leaders reviewed product ideas submitted from the field such as ―Crossing Academy,‖ "Map of the World" and ―Deciphering Graphics.‖ Also participated in an in-house review of ―Adventure ECC: The Hatlen Center Guide‖ and gave product design ideas. The project leaders provided a detailed written review of the graphics included in BANA‘s Standards for Tactile Graphic Design document. This review was complemented by the input from a braille-reading adult/professional proofreader and a tooling designer of many tactile graphics included in APH‘s educational materials Occasional tactile graphic workshops were conducted for visiting focus groups, in-house staff, visiting teachers, sighted parents and children, and so forth. In November 2008, conducted tactile product demonstrations to teachers, teacher trainees and students during in-services at the NY Institute for Special Education, and visited classes where APH materials are being used to teach science and geography. On April 15, project leaders, along with Yan Zhang from ATIC, conducted a tactile graphics workshop for braille transcribers and tactile designers at the Kentucky Correctional Institute. Participants were provided with topical handouts (e.g., Tactile Terminology, Tactile Graphic Methods, etc.) and conducted hands-on activities to demonstrate the challenges unique to tactile interpretation. The training concluded with a second session on May 28. Conducted a tactile-book-building activity booth at Kentucky School for the Blind‘s ―DropEverything-And-Read (DEAR) Kick-Off Carnival.‖ Students were given the opportunity to build two types of tactile books—either a pumpkin-shaped book enhanced by student-composed text or a flip-style, Halloween-themed tactile counting book. The project leader prepared over 100 tactile template books for this event. Offered tactile activity ideas and materials to the Museum staff for weekend workshops tailored for sighted children. Reviewed and tested new tactile graphic methods as demonstrated by outside vendors. Assisted with re-tooling efforts and decisions impacting updates of urethane products impacted by an outside vendor facility fire. Karen Poppe is responsible for keeping the Chang Diagramming Kit on the market despite a lost urethane part by coming up with a way to router-cut a new ―gingerbread man‖ figure from ExCell material. This quick solution translated into a huge cost-savings for the product. Met with Phil Hatlen, Executive in Residence at APH, on numerous occasions to discuss strategies for placing tactile graphics in the hands of young students, especially within their home environments.

256

Work planned for FY 2010 Project staff will continue to monitor advances in technology and practice as they relate to tactile design and teaching, conduct workshops and conference presentations, and work inhouse to promote consistently good tactile design. Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit (formerly 3-D O&M Kit) (Continued) Purpose To provide a comprehensive kit of three-dimensional items that can be used for orientation and mobility instruction, especially with young children who benefit from more realistic, concrete representations. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Tom Poppe, Pattern/Model Maker Terri Gilmore, Guidebook Cover Layout Background Past research supports the efficacy of using interactive, three-dimensional models for teaching environmental concepts, especially to young children. From constructed 3-D representations, generalizations to the actual environment can be made. Realistic models allow information to be presented in small scale without the added complexity that simple raised-line images can pose for inexperienced, young tactile readers. The need for 3-D models for mapping purposes was expressed in compiled data from past field test activities and in the results from product-specific, on-line surveys. The need was also supported by multiple submissions of previously designed kits (e.g., Buddy Road Kit manufactured in New Zealand) for APH's review. In 2003, the project leader conducted an on-line survey regarding the need for a 3-D O&M kit. The survey requested feedback as to needed components if development of such a kit was undertaken. The results of the survey revealed the following:  27 of 31 respondents indicated that APH should develop and make a 3-D O&M kit available.  Many of the respondents had created labor-intensive, homemade kits of their own.

257

 Preferred components of an O&M kit included labeled buildings, several generic buildings, realistic streets, sidewalks, wheelchair ramps, grass strips/islands, railroad tracks, street sign/traffic lights, pedestrian models, and model cars.  Recommended target populations extended beyond the expected "young students with visual impairments/blindness" category to multiply-disabled students, as well as both adventitiously- and congenitally-blinded adults. In August 2007, with permission from the Product Advisory Review Committee, the project leader transferred the 3-D O&M Kit from "PARC-ing Lot" status to active development. The project leader and Pattern/Model Maker focused attention on the development of the prototype throughout the third and fourth quarters of the fiscal year. Notable activities encompassed the following: designing 3-D models of cars, pedestrians, and buildings; determining amount and structure of grassy areas, railroad tracks, roads dashes, and other manipulatives; tailoring components around a newly designed tri-fold Velcro board; acquiring commercially-available labeling materials; and authoring accompanying lesson plans. Work during FY 2009 The project leader and Pattern/Model Maker had the opportunity to conduct a Product Input Session on Tactile Town at APH‘s 140th Annual Meeting. The session was well attended and participants representing teachers of the visually impaired, O&M specialists, and Ex Officio Trustees expressed great enthusiasm for the product and had lots of suggestions for additional parts and a toolbox-like storage container. Encouraged by the feedback, the project staff hurried to construct multiple prototypes for field testing purposes. Because of the complexity of the kit and the number of uniquely built pieces for each kit, prototype preparation occupied most of the first quarter of the fiscal year. Activities carried out by the project leader and Pattern/Model Maker consisted of the following:  Preparing molds of three unique building shapes and selecting ideal paint colors.  Finalizing the design and number of each grassy area piece. The project leader located and ordered an ideal color of Veltex. The Pattern/Model Maker applied this to a durable substrate and cut the grassy areas to specified sizes.  Identifying a material for the construction of the pond.  Finalizing details of the road accessories—e.g., road dashes, divider lanes, crosswalks, and sidewalks.  Designing original 3-D pedestrians and cars.  Designing the final layout of the traffic lights and stop signs.  Preparing the print/braille labels for compass directions (and arrows), street names, etc.  Designing a railroad track strip—two of which are included in each kit  Devising a storage method, including storage panels and a commercially-available toolbox-like carrying case.  Authoring a guidebook including a variety of activities using the provided materials. 258

 Creating a Skills Checklist to monitor a student‘s progress while using the kit.  Taking photos of the kit to complement each proposed guidebook activity  Preparing the guidebook layout (for which Terri Gilmore prepared a professional looking cover art). Other pre-field test activities included reviewing the kit with two Orientation & Mobility Instructors at the Kentucky School for the Blind, who were so impressed with the kit that they wanted to participate as field test evaluators. The project leader also conducted a Research Department meeting attended by other project leaders and research assistants to review ways to acquire performance outcome data. It was determined that the project leader‘s Skills Checklist could be utilized for this purpose. Identified field test evaluators were a blend of respondents to an APH Newsletter request for field test evaluators, as well as attendees of the Annual Meeting Product Input Session who had indicated interest in reviewing the final prototype. The number of respondents to the APH Newsletter posting was overwhelming, reaffirming the great need for this product. The prototypes of Tactile Town were shipped to evaluators on February 23, 2009. The evaluators were given until the end of May to use the materials with their students. With the exception of one, all evaluators returned their field test evaluation forms, along with three separate progress reports on each participating student over the three-month evaluation period. All of the field test evaluators were Certified Orientation and Mobility Instructors, with 72% having over 11 years of teaching experience; of those, 43% had teaching experience exceeding 21 years. They represented the states of Connecticut, Kentucky, Tennessee, Hawaii (2), Colorado, Kansas, Minnesota (3), California, Michigan, Texas, and Ohio. The majority (64%) of the field test sites were reported as ―Itinerant;‖ 21% were residential settings; 7% were a combination of itinerant/residential; and 7% were resource settings. The field evaluators used the prototype with a total of 114 visually impaired and blind students. The student sample reflected a range of ethnic backgrounds: 61% were white, 13% were Hispanic, 13% were African American, 6% were Asian, and an equal percentage (4%) were either Native Hawaiian or reported as ―two or more races;‖ and 3% were reported as ―Other‖ (e.g., from India or Somalia). Nearly half (47%) of the students were braille readers; 25% were large print readers; and 11% read regular print. The rest of the student sample included non-readers, combination print/auditory or print/braille readers, and pre-readers. The students ranged in age from 4- to 21-years of age, with 13% between the ages of 4-6, 30% between the ages of 7-9, 19% between the ages of 10-12, 18% between the ages of 13-15, 15% between the ages of 16-18, and 5% between the ages of 19-21. The largest percentage of students (31%) were in grades 1-3; 28% of the students were in grades 4-8; 20% were in high school; 14% were preschoolers or kindergarteners; and smaller percentages were either post-high school/transition (4%) or unreported grade level (3%). Students reported as having additional disabilities represented exactly half of the student sample. Examples of other 259

disabilities reported included speech/language impairment, autism, learning disabled, seizure disorder, cerebral palsy, and hearing loss. One hundred percent of the evaluators indicated that Tactile Town offered specific advantages over other available tools/materials for teaching orientation and mobility skills. Specific comments included: ―The ability to customize the layout for the individual student‘s needs, rather than a static/permanent mold of an intersection.‖ ―The 3-D element was helpful for students who are still at the stage of developing the model/map to the real thing. Three-dimensional elements were easier to manipulate than two dimensional.‖ ―Tactile Town offers so many different settings and scenarios…Using the Tactile Town Kit has broadened their [the students‘] awareness and skills of traffic patterns in relation to real intersections they are crossing.‖ ―It was great to have a kit specific to orientation and mobility instead of trying to make the components of the Wheatley Kit do the same things. It also offered the opportunity to make a bigger map of a larger environment—such as a whole neighborhood.‖ ―It was helpful to have actual houses, buildings, ―water,‖ and crosswalks that FEEL like they could be crosswalks, etc.‖ ―It provided the transition from a real environment to a two-dimensional map that is often so difficult.‖ ―It was more fun. It is colorful. It was easy for the children to manipulate, see, and read. There are more pieces and it looks very inviting.‖ With regard to ideal target populations, an equal percentage of evaluators (93%) thought Tactile Town was appropriate for preschoolers, as well as tactile readers in grades K-3 and low vision readers in grades K-3. Eighty-six percent of the evaluators thought it was appropriate for both tactile readers and low vision readers in grades 4-6; 71% indicated that it was appropriate for tactile and low vision readers in grades 7-8; 79% indicated it was appropriate for both tactile readers and low vision readers in high school; and 71% indicated that it was appropriate for students with multiple disabilities, blind adults, and sighted peers. These results highlighted the potential impact of Tactile Town on a wide audience of students. One-hundred percent responded ―Yes‖ to the following questions posed on the evaluation form:  Was the tri-fold board a helpful component?  Was it helpful to have a basic assortment of print/braille labels (e.g., directional labels, street labels, etc.) provided with the kit?  Did the guidebook provide sufficient information on the purpose and use of Tactile Town?

260

 Was the basic format of each activity helpful…e.g., ―List of Materials,‖ ―Initial Setup,‖ ―Task Examples,‖ ―Pretend Play Activities?‖  Were the two Veltex-covered panels helpful for storing smaller Tactile Town accessories?  Did the student(s) enjoy using Tactile Town?  Did the student(s) want to engage in independent play with Tactile Town apart from formal instruction?  Does Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit offer any specific advantage(s) over other available materials you have used in the past with your student(s) to teach spatial concepts, environmental layouts, intersections, etc.? Over 90% of the evaluators responded ―YES‖ to the following:  Did you find the package of Velcro Paper handy for creating your own labels?  Did you find the package of Braillable Labels handy for creating additional braille labels to affix to the Velcro Paper?  Was it helpful to have ―Suggested Layout Examples‖ as part of the guidebook?  Was the Concepts/Skills Checklist a helpful component of the guidebook?  Is it your final recommendation that Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit be produced and made available from APH for visually impaired/blind students?  Is Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit an appropriate title for this product? The only component receiving less than a 70% approval rating was the 2-tiered commerciallyavailable storage container which some evaluators reported as not durable or awkward to carry. Specific ratings of each of the individual Tactile Town manipulatives, based upon a scale from 1 (lowest) to 5 (highest), yielded the following results from the evaluators. Tactile Town Component Pond Railroad Tracks Arrows Stop Signs Dividing Lines Buildings Road Dashes Pedestrians Crosswalks Traffic Lights Sidewalks Cars Overall Rating 5 = highest possible rating 4.8 4.8 4.8 4.7 4.5 4.4 4.4 4.2 4.2 4.1 4.1 4.0 261

Grassy Strips

3.7

Considering students‘ reactions to the prototype as direct indicators of the expected usefulness and popularity of the kit, the project leader asked evaluators to comment on whether or not their students enjoyed using Tactile Town. One hundred percent of the evaluators responded ―Yes.‖ Below are examples of actual comments received from the teachers: ―Most of my students enjoyed Tactile Town. Some students would come to class early and find it and start playing with it/exploring it.‖ ―Eight out of ten students cheered whenever I brought TT to their O&M lessons.‖ ―The kids really enjoyed playing with the materials more that using it as tools.‖ ―They enjoyed touching the pieces and manipulating the materials as I directed.‖ ―They loved it and they said so. In fact, we had to create a chart on which students were on which lesson and they just begged me to come and ‗get me today‘ just so they could use Tactile Town!‖ In July 2009, the project leader conducted a Product Development Committee meeting to acquaint other APH staff with the expected components of the kit. A complete product timeline was established. By the end of the fiscal year, the project leader and Pattern/Model Maker had initiated making improvements to the kit‘s design based upon field test feedback, such as the incorporation of an upright traffic light, more durable grassy areas, additional building structures, and pieces to facilitate a roundabout setup. Work planned for FY 2010 The project staff will continue to make product enhancements based upon the field reviewer feedback. The project staff will prepare necessary hard tooling and related specification drawings that are needed internally and/or by outside vendors to mass produce the product. This information will be provided to Technical Research who will repeat the project leader‘s and Pattern/Model Maker‘s designs in the product specifications document. Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit is slated to be available from APH in July 2009. Textured Sorting Circles and Shapes (Continued) Purpose To provide tactile diagramming circles and shapes which can be used for creating Venn diagrams on a magnetic surface and/or a Veltex® surface. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Monica Vaught, Research Assistant 262

Tom Poppe, Pattern/Model Maker David McGee, Manufacturing Specialist Bisig Impact Group, Graphic Designer Background In February 2007, a product submission was received from a teacher in Texas who suggested that APH tactually adapt Magnetic Sorting Circles available from Learning Resources [visit http://www.learningresources.com/p2p/searchResults.do?method=view&search=basic&keywo rd=magnetic+sorting+circles&sortby=best&asc=true&page=1] for the purpose of demonstrating Venn diagrams to visually impaired/blind students. The project leader presented the teacher's product idea to the Product Advisory and Review Committee (PARC). The product was approved and moved to the active development timeline in June 2007. It was suggested that the product be field tested with the ALL-IN-ONE Board [see separate report]. Concurrent with the development of the ALL-IN-ONE Board, the project leader ordered and adapted multiple sets of Learning Resources' Magnetic Sorting Circles. The project leader modified the sorting circles by applying APH's Graphic Art Tape in tactually-discernible patterns: red circles received a solid line of graphic tape; yellow circles received a spiraling pattern of graphic tape; and the blue circles remained smooth. The application of the graphic tape did not hinder the adherence of the circles to a magnetic surface. In October 2007, a tactually-adapted set of the sorting circles and shapes were sent to the same evaluators of the ALL-IN-ONE Board. Field test results revealed the popularity of the manipulatives with 100% of the field reviewers having used the sorting circles and shapes in combination with the ALL-IN-ONE Board with both low vision and blind students. All but one of the evaluators indicated that it was helpful to have the circles tactually adapted with the graphic art tape. In February 2008, the project leader reported a re-direction of the project to the PARC. Given the extensive in-house labor that would be involved in applying the graphic art tape to the Learning Resources' Venn diagramming circles, paired with the less-than-satisfactory textures of the commercially-available pieces, it was decided that APH would pursue the development and production of originally-designed sorting circles and textured shapes (for use with the ALLIN-ONE Board and other Velcro boards). In April, a Product Development Meeting was held to set a complete timeline and determine initial pilot/production run quantities. The third and fourth quarters of the fiscal year were dedicated to tooling preparation and vendor identification. Specifically, the following tasks were accomplished:  The project leader contacted and received samples of various magnetic sheeting in different colors, textures, and thicknesses.  The project leader prepared the initial cutting die layout to generate the needed textured shapes. 263

 The project leader identified necessary attribute labels (e.g., smooth, rough, small, medium, triangle, star, etc.) to complement the kit of shapes and circles.  The project leader authored content for the Product Instruction booklet and created accompanying graphics.  Vendors for the magnetic sheeting were identified.  The vacuum-form patterns to create textures were prepared.  Documentation layout was readied by the outside graphic designer.  The project leader selected an ideal re-useable storage box for all of the contents of the kit.  The project leader identified .005 rigid vinyl (same material she and Model Maker located for Feel n‘ Peel Stickers) as the ideal material to adhere to the magnetic substrate. Three colors were selected. Work during FY 2009 The first quarter of FY 2009 witnessed the completion of the tooling needed for the production of the large print and braille versions of the Reader‘s Guide. Other pre-production tasks included the following:  Model/Pattern Maker designed and prepared the thermoform pattern for the print/braille labels and thermoform patterns.  Design layout of cutting dies  Screen art preparation for print/braille labels; the project leader checked quality and accuracy of the braille.  Box label artwork  Determination of braille embossing method for the production of one-sided braille pages due to inclusion of many tactile diagrams. By May 2009, product specifications were provided to Production staff, all outside materials and cutting dies had been received, and all in-house tooling was in place for the scheduled pilot run slated for July 2009. Because of higher priority assigned to the production of other products, the schedule production of this product was missed. By August 2009, only the print Reader‘s Guide and related box label had been produced. Work planned for FY 2010 The project leader will monitor the quality of the initial pilot and production runs. Once available, the product will be showcased at training workshops and conferences.

Tri-Fold Board (New/Completed) 264

Purpose To offer the Tri-Fold Board, originally designed for inclusion in Azer‘s Interactive Periodic Table Set, for separate purchase. Its separate availability would satisfy customers‘ request for an intermediate-sized display board for a variety of uses. Project Staff Karen J. Poppe, Tactile Graphics Project Leader Background The Tri-Fold Board was originally designed as a component of the recently produced Azer‘s Interactive Periodic Table Study Set. The Tri-Fold Board is covered with Velcro®-compatible material and measures 37 x 24 inches. The board can be used at its full size, folded down to one or two panels, or propped up in an easel position (if supported from behind). Two ¾-inch nickel-plated D-rings are riveted in the top center of the two outside panels for easy hanging. The reverse side of the board is covered with a protective red vinyl. Although intended as a platform for displaying the entire Periodic Table of the Elements, the project leader noted that the size and design of the Tri-Fold Board addressed the field‘s request for a display board intermediate in size between that of the large Invisiboard and the smallerPicture Maker display board. In August 2008, it was proposed to the Product Advisory and Review Committee (PARC) that the Tri-Fold Board, if sold separately, could be used in combination with many existing APH hook Velcro-backed pieces, as well as with commercially available OR teacher/parent-made manipulatives. The committee approved its availability for separate purchase. Work during FY 2009 The minimal effort required for product development expedited the quick provision of the TriFold Board under its own catalog number—1-08859-00. By July 2009, the Tri-Fold Board was announced as a new APH product, and within a month‘s time had sold 100 units. Available with Quota Funds, it sells for $54.00—significantly less expensive than the Invisiboard which sells for $134.00. The project leader‘s primary role was preparing brochure information and photos, as well as overseeing the quality of received parts from the outside vendor. Work planned for FY 2010 The Tri-Fold Board is now available for separate purchase apart from Azer‘s Interactive Periodic Table Study Set. No additional work is anticipated. U.S. & Canada Basic Atlas (New)

265

Purpose To produce new volumes of high-quality tactile thematic maps by continuing partnership with The Princeton Braillists. Project Staff Fred Otto, Project Leader Katherine Corcoran, Model and Pattern Maker Terri Gilmore, Design Nancy Amick, The Princeton Braillists Background An earlier collaboration with The Princeton Braillists resulted in the product World Maps, which has been well received. This project aims to address a deficiency in APH's offerings in the way of detailed thematic maps showing land use, elevation, major cities, and so on. It is based on the multi-volume set Northern North America by The Princeton Braillists, but has fewer and simpler maps and will be contained in one volume. A major advance represented in this set of maps is the addition of color and print maps, making the volume more accessible to low-vision or sighted students and students. Work during FY 2009 The medium on which the tactile maps must be produced for best readability―a thin vinyl―limited the methods by which the print maps could be provided. Through various trials, project staff decided to produce the tactile maps on a clear vinyl and the print maps as paper underlay sheets. These will be put in a binder so that pages can be removed as desired. The chosen format also has the advantage of using all in-house processes, so no coordination with outside vendors is needed. The project leader and Ms. Amick agreed on the maps to be included and the simplifications needed for each. The model maker created vacuumform patterns, poured molds, and revised the production patterns. Because the content of the maps is already determined, a full field evaluation was deemed unnecessary; an expert review of the clear map/print underlay format will be conducted. Several representative maps were chosen for this purpose. These were scanned, and color was added along with print labels. The expert reviewers were selected, and review materials were sent to them. Work planned for FY 2010 The reviews will be considered and if they are positive, final changes and preparation will be made. The maps and specifications will move into the production process. TG TV (New)

266

Purpose To create an instructional video that gives real-time, specific examples of the thinking that goes into adapting print images into tactile graphics Project Staff Fred Otto, Project Leader Background The existing videos relating to tactile graphics, from APH and elsewhere, speak either in very general terms about philosophy or in specific terms about working with materials. What is apparently lacking is an understanding of how to adapt the print graphic after deciding what is to be shown―that is, how to convert it into a readable design for a tactile. The project leader has experimented with "screen-capture" programs, which record the onscreen editing of images in a drawing program along with voice-over narration. This seems promising as a relatively low-cost and direct way of illustrating the processes and should form the foundation of the video. Work during FY 2009 The project has received approval and been placed on active status, but no significant development has taken place as of this writing. Work planned for FY 2010 The project leader will consult videographers and in-house tactile graphics staff to develop a storyboard and outline. Appropriate software will be selected and obtained, and shooting will be done. The process of editing and preparing accompanying materials will begin.

267

Model/Pattern Maker

268

Model Shop Product Involvement during FY 2009 Tom Poppe.…………………………………………………………….……... Supervisor/Pattern/Model Maker Katherine Corcoran………………………………………………………………………….. Pattern/Model Maker Anita Rutledge………………………………………………………….………Pattern/Model Maker (part-time) The Model Shop is part of the APH Research Department and provides a unique service to the APH product development process. With regard to Research endeavors, the Model/Pattern Makers frequently interface with project leaders to build prototypes of early product concepts, planning for eventual mass production that will take place in-house, by an outside vendor, or a combination of both. The Model/Pattern Makers are regular participants in a product‘s evolution, from the early prototype stage to the final tooling, eventually offering direct monitoring and guidance during actual production runs. With regard to Production efforts, the Model Shop provides direct support by preparing hard tooling associated with thermoform masters, molds, repairs to older equipment, and initial orientation to production setups/processes needed to produce a given product. The Model Shop frequently furnishes Technical Research staff with final specifications/drawings for the construction of various product components; these are inserted into the final specifications documentation. Typical efforts engaged in by the Model Shop in the pursuit of new product designs include:  Producing conceptual drawings of new products  Construction of conceptual prototypes for field test purpose and for eventual massproduction  Construction of original molds for outer case designs  Designing cutting dies  Designing and laying out tactile graphics  Originating visual artwork for specific product components  Investigating and implementing new production processes (e.g., liquid resin casting) and materials (e.g., vinyl, foam, etc.)  Investigating new products and materials to be incorporated into new APH products  Identifying possible manufacturers and vendors and dealing with them directly regarding product specifications  Serving as regular members of the tactile graphic committee  Participating in conferences and listservs (e.g., association of professional model makers) to keep abreast of new technologies related to prototype development 269

Notable achievements include the efficient preparation of numerous thermoform patterns requiring additional storage space outside the Model Shop. The Model Shop established a brisk pace of prototype development and production of hard tooling that resulted in a backlog of products awaiting specifications put out by Technical Research. The following are specific examples of the Model Shop‘s contributions to projects developed during FY 2009:

All-In-One Magnetic-Velcro Board

Tom Poppe originated the entire design of an adjustable, two-sided magnetic/Velcro board. This involved:  Working with the project leader to determine ideal colors and thickness of the substrate boards  Designing and molding the handle brackets  Selecting a color for the handle brackets  Locating vendors of the dry-erase portion of the board  Constructing multiple prototypes of the final design  Designing and building a registration fixture for mounting the dry erase board to its backing. The Model Maker was active not only in aiding the project leader in finding suitable dryerase/wet erase magnetic boards, but also active in dealing with the outside vendor who will supply the specially-molded handles and mounting brackets. The Model Maker furnished design specifications of the entire board to Technical Research for duplication purposes in the final Specifications document. The Model Maker assisted in overseeing the received parts from vendors and the in-house construction of the board itself. When vendor difficulties arose in preparing a suitable-sized carrying bag, Tom Poppe modified the vendor-presented sample bag to model its expected size and style. This product has experienced outstanding sales.

Azer's Interactive Periodic Table Study Set

Tom Poppe was responsible for troubleshooting die-cutting problems with the outside vendor as related to the Atomic Models. After locating a proper substrate (styrene versus ExCell), as well as a better quality Veltex®, the die-cutting issue was quickly resolved by the end of the fiscal year and expected production processes were in place for mass production purposes.

Best for a Nest

The tactile manipulatives required for field test of this storybook were built by Tom Poppe. Movable, interactive story-page items included a tree trunk with branches, clusters of leaves, a bird‘s nest, bird eggs, birds, a cat, and grassy areas. Each tactile element is described in the story. The tactile, die-cut pieces attach to a background board using hook and loop material. Tom Poppe drew the designs of steel-rule cutting dies and sent these to an outside vendor for construction purposes. Enough material (of various textures) was purchased to make twelve 270

sets of interactive parts. These story-page parts were provided to the project leader for field test purposes.

Braille Plus Mobile Manager

Just as the Braille Plus was nearing its ship date, the Model Shop was asked to design and produce a tactile key with braille identifications for the Mobile Manager. An enlarged tactile version of this device was made, a rubber mold poured, and an epoxy pattern was prepared by Katherine Corcoran. Braille pins were inserted into the epoxy pattern for identification of each symbol. The project was completed in October.

Building on Patterns

The project leader had written a teacher‘s guide that included an activity requiring student identification of various animal crackers by shape. Identification of some of the cookies can be confusing, so Katherine Corcoran designed an insert page that can be torn out of the teacher‘s guidebook and distributed to the class. This page has each of the different animal crackers identified with a braille label, plus a cut-out for each animal shape.

Feel n‘ Peel Sheets: Carousel of Textures

Based upon product specifications provided by the project leader, the Model Shop thermoformed various textures into 8.5‖ x 11‖ rigid vinyl sheets in five different colors. These unique textures (bumpy and rough), created and established by Tom Poppe and the project leader for numerous past products (e.g., Web Chase, Textured Sorting Circles and Shapes), have become commonplace and used repeatedly by other project leaders in recent projects (e.g., MathBuilders).

Flip-Over Concept Books

This project continued to be a production ―guinea pig‖ to determine if the pages can be fullcolor printed using alternative processes. If successful, this will lead to significant cost savings and alleviate APH in-house production staff of time-intensive and expensive silkscreening methods. The Model Maker was involved in arranging vendors to do the printing on the project. Numerous meetings have been attended. Color and printing tests were made, tested, and/or rejected. Once outside printing capabilities were proven out, the Model Maker proceeded to prepare production thermoform patterns, as well as related artwork to ensure accurate registration. Original thermoform patterns (a total of seven) were required for both the LINE PATHS book and the PARTS OF A WHOLE book. LINE PATHS involved the extra chore of preparing both thermoform patterns and print artwork for accompanying worksheets. The Model Maker determined the best way to set up these patterns to yield the most copies for multiple kits. Crucial to the design of this product was the Model Maker‘s origination of a collation process for binding three separate stacks of panels onto Pro-Click rings.

Food Pyramid

271

The Model Shop was consulted to determine the best approach for this project. Several concept models were made and later refined into the finished prototype. There are two levels of the project: one for elementary-aged students and one for students in secondary grades. Both convey basically the same information. Katherine Corcoran completed all necessary thermoform patterns for prototype purposes, as well as oversaw the plate production of the elementary version of the chart.

Game of Squares

The Game of Squares is currently being redesigned by Karen Poppe. The game design is being simplified to cut production costs. The size of the board, game tokens, visual appeal, and storage style are being improved. The Model Shop staff began the fabrication of the master pattern for the grid and brainstormed token ideas with the project leader.

Hands-On Trays

Due to an outside vendor facility fire, Tom Poppe repaired a mold for the urethane ―ClothesLine Stringer‖ tray included in the Hands-On Preschool Activities Kit. The Model Maker was able to locate the original pattern he created for this product in the 1980s. He then modified the pattern somewhat in order to minimize the weight of the tray and to reduce material consumption without sacrificing function. A duplicate pattern was made and sent to the urethane vendor for production and re-introduction into the APH product line.

Life Science Tactile Graphics

This project consists of 61, 8.5 x 11 printed and thermoformed science graphics. The project leader did basic drawings of all the graphics. Katherine Corcoran then made temporary fieldtest thermoform patterns (16 total) used to create the field test prototypes. After field testing, some modifications, and in some instances, complete redesign of the original tactile model had to be done. The project was temporarily sidelined as the project leader awaited the outcome of wide-format printing options investigated for the Flip-Over Concept Books. With the completion of the thermoform patterns, the product is now awaiting print artwork for the visual overlays.

MathBuilders Unit 7

Two new complete fiberglass thermoform patterns were designed by Tom Poppe and made to duplicate, as nearly as possible, the parts used for field testing. Fixtures were also designed to register parts for silk-screening. Artwork for screen printing is yet to be readied. One of the thermoform patterns will form trays to hold fractional parts of a whole. The other thermoform pattern will make circular raised borders to hold various pie-shape fractional parts.

MathBuilders Unit 8

In November, the model makers began tooling various graphic grids for this math program. It involved cutting ¼-inch, symmetrical wooden components to construct each of the four grids. When completed, a rubber mold was made from each grid and an epoxy pattern was made for thermoforming.

272

In addition to the grids, two spinners were included in the kit. Using the existing APH spinner hardware, model shop staff designed two new spinner overlays according to the project leader‘s specifications. Molds were then routed in styrene and an epoxy pattern was made directly from the styrene master. The staff then tested each pattern, checking for potential problems. Unfortunately, one of the grid thermoform patterns experienced some problems with warping after it was used for a short time in production. Some buckling occurred that could not be satisfactorily repaired. A new thermoform pattern was made and is working satisfactorily.

Meter Stick

The American Printing House for the Blind has outside vendors who supply some of our educational aids products. The facilities belonging to the vendor who supplies our urethane foam materials experienced a fire damaging many product patterns belonging to APH. The Meter Stick was one such pattern that was lost in the fire. Fortunately, Tom Poppe located the original mold that he had built many years ago and it was still in excellent condition. After a series of castings and molds were made, a new pattern was produced of the proper length and surface quality for the vendor to use to produce the product.

On the Way to Literacy

One of the several patterns for the thermoformed parts in the On the Way to Literacy books was in need of revision. Several patterns are required to generate the tactile pages in Jellybean Jungle; each pattern makes three pages within the storybook. One of the patterns was being used to yield only one page; the other two spaces on the pattern were intentionally left black and were therefore wasting two-thirds of the pieces of plastic used on that pattern. Tom Poppe changed the pattern so that it would produce three identical pages, thus not wasting plastic in future production runs.

Pattern Matching Cards for Giant Textured Beads

Tom Poppe worked directly with the project leader to design the holding tray and matching tactile/visual cards for this product. Temporary thermoform patterns were made, silkscreen art was originated, and steel rule cutting dies were designed (based on the Model Maker‘s technical drawings). The tactile/visual pattern matching cards were die-cut and applied to 6mm color foam backing. A total of 15 sets were produced for field test purposes.

Picture Maker Accessories: Geometric Textured Shapes

Tom Poppe and the project leader designed tactile sorting puzzles that will be included with the kit. They also provided Technical Research with a full listing of the dimensions, type of material, and quantity of all the shapes included in the kit—essentially all of the specifications needed for the production of the kit. Thermoform patterns were readied for the production of the textured puzzles.

Sense of Science: Astronomy

273

After field test completion, Tom Poppe continued to work with the project leader to finalize the tactile graphic representations encountered in this kit. Hard tooling involved many complicated thermoform patterns to produce the tactile overlays, two custom-designed trays, and interactive, two-dimensional displays (i.e., the Northern Circumpolar Dome, a fold-out Relative Distances of the Planets, and Our Solar System fold-out display with movable braille/print labels). All of the manipulatives of this kit were designed by the Model Maker and project leader. Die drawings were originated in the Model Shop and provided to Technical Research for duplication, as well as the overlay artwork for scanning.

Stick-On Number Line The Stick-On Number Line is designed for the student‘s desktop. It has a low-tack adhesive

backing for easy re-positioning and is vacuum-formed in .010 white vinyl. The Model Shop staff made the epoxy/fiberglass thermoform pattern directly from the routed styrene mold supplied by Technical Research. Braille pins were then added for number identification. The pattern will yield ten number lines at a time.

Sudoku Puzzle

This popular, recreational puzzle seemed quite simple in nature at the outset, but it quickly presented technical problems. The model shop staff tested various materials to use for the product that would maintain its ―snap‖ after repeated use. The staff used rapid prototyping methods to produce the prototype thermoform master and to add braille dots to the small bumps in each square. Model shop staff will soon be testing and comparing the use of steel pins to epoxy pins on these ¼-inch round bumps for durability during the production stage.

SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine [Issue 6]

Katherine Corcoran prepared thermoform patterns according to the project leader‘s original art designs. This issue required three rubber molds and three master patterns of epoxy and fiberglass. The tooling was completed in October 2008.

Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit

Tom Poppe met frequently with the project leader to determine needed tangibles for the kit. Multiple preliminary sketches were made and preliminary concept models were built. Master models of the tangible items were duplicated and sent to three possible vendors for price quotes. Multiple prototypes of all the interactive pieces were designed exclusively by the Model Maker and the project leader. These included four each of three building designs, four cars, four pedestrians, and four stop signs―all made via liquid resin casting. Various shapes of green loop Velcro-compatible material to represent grassy areas were assembled. Twelve-inch ―railroad tracks‖ were designed and thermoformed. Other shapes included a pond, sidewalk strips, crosswalks, cul-de-sacs, traffic lights, and dashed road lines. Field testing took place during the fiscal year. Very positive feedback was received, however, and evaluators requested yet more parts (e.g., additional buildings and free-standing traffic lights). The Model Maker will be responsible for the entire hard tooling of this product for mass production purposes.

274

Tangrams

The Model Shop cut ¼-inch wooden trapezoid profiles to form the outline of each of 23 different design layouts. To build multiple field test prototypes, these patterns were then vacuum-formed in .010‖ clear vinyl and cut to a size that can be used with an APH light box. The puzzle components were made from 1/8‖ and 1/4‖ foam which were die cut into the geometric shapes that form each unique design. Fifteen sets of red Plexiglass Tangram parts were made to fit properly into the thermoformed puzzle frames.

Textured Sorting Circles and Shapes

Tom Poppe and the project leader designed the die layout duplicated by Technical Research for the production of the various parts. The Model Maker consulted with an outside die maker to determine the best radius for the star pieces. The Model Maker also prepared two thermoform patterns similar in size—roughly 22 inches by 24 inches. One is used to generate the texture in sheets of plastic; the other is used to generate the braille ―attribute‖ labels. The Model Maker also worked with Technical Research to develop the print layouts and cutting die specifications for production of the braille ―attribute‖ labels.

Touch ‗em All Baseball Game

The Model Shop constructed 15 field test samples of the newly re-designed version of the APH baseball game. The game consists of a 12‖ x 12‖ cardboard game board with a ball diamond made from green and orange felt. The infield and outfield are different levels. There are two spinners in the game that determine the players‘ next move. Katherine Corcoran designed a pointer for the spinners that can stop each wheel indiscriminately and remain fixed until the wheel is spun again. Each player has 12 tokens to represent the players on his team.

Treks

The Model Shop staff worked with the project leader to design the game board. A mock-up of the board was made to test peg shapes and determine the best peg-hole diameter, spacing, depth, and so forth. Many prototype test pegs were made and tested. In all, 15 complete sets of pegs were made along with multiple boards and overlays. Additional work by the Model Shop staff involved slightly redesigning the game tokens to make them easier and cheaper to mass produce. Unfortunately, the urethane pattern for the game board was one of the victims of the Tri-Plastic fire and is awaiting rebuilding and duplication for production purposes.

Twist, Turn, and Learn: Fine Motor Materials

It became evident after many years of production that the thermoform patterns for the Fine Motor trays were not performing as required. There was apparently some leakage in some of the many air passages in this rather complex double pattern. Tom Poppe completely disassembled, cleaned, and drilled larger air passages into the patterns. New fiber board parts were made. As a result, the new pattern behaved in production as expected.

US and Canada Basic Atlas

In January, the Model Shop was given 27 individual maps which were expertly made in aluminum diagramming foil by Nancy Amick, the outside project consultant. Each map 275

measured 11.5‖ x 11‖ and required a rubber mold and subsequent epoxy/fiberglass pattern for mass production purposes. Katherine Corcoran added a set of five keys to the aforementioned graphics, bringing the total number of pages to 32. The maps were designed and vacuumformed in .005 clear vinyl with a printed overlay supplying the color highlights for each. All hard tooling for this project was completed in March 2009.

US Puzzle Map

Seven patterns used to produce the U.S. Puzzle Map were damaged in a vendor facility fire. Fortunately, the Model Maker still had the original patterns he had created for this product. The patterns were still in excellent condition. No modifications were made to the original patterns, with the exception of an additional finger hole for puzzle piece removal (as requested by the project leader). Molds were then generated and delivered to the outside vendor for both the outer puzzle frame and six state-mounting boards.

Wilson Magnetic Tiles

In December, the model shop began work on the Wilson Magnetic Tiles. This project originated in Technical Research with a CAD layout design on clear acetate film. Using this film, Katherine Corcoran inserted approximately 1400 individual braille pins into an epoxy pattern previously made for the product. Each pin measures .030 inches in diameter. This process has become the standard for producing durable braille patterns which will be used for production at APH for decades. The new pattern will be thoroughly tested by the Model Shop staff before production use.

Wings of Freedom Award

Tom Poppe made the base for the Wings of Freedom Award—an award presented during APH‘s 141st Annual Meeting to a person who does outstanding work in the field of blindness. The base is made from walnut and has an oil finish. Braille plates with the honoree‘s name are affixed to the base. Product Manuals Available for Free Download To provide our customers with immediate access to various product guidebooks in accessible formats from our website, we started a special project to review all product manuals and identify those that would assist teachers, resource center staff, and other professionals to have immediate access to our large print and Braille guide books for various products. This is an on-going project that includes selection committee members from the APH Research Staff and Advisory Services in addition to specific project leaders. Guides are identified with availability announced via our monthly newsletter and made available from the APH Website. Customers and users can review the list and select materials needed. They can then print or emboss the files needed and use immediately in their daily curriculum or use for future reference.

276

These materials are included with product kits and historically sold from the APH catalog. We will continue to make them available for sale for the convenience of those that do not have equipment to print or emboss. Extra guides are generally required, as many institutions will share the master kit, but will want separate guides for various classrooms, teachers, etc. We have now approved 69 titles, of which 34 are currently available from the web. The remaining files are in various states being readied for download capability. Please visit the APH shopping site to review existing available files. This effort is now being viewed as a new marketing tool, that allows information to be shared and value tested before the actual kit is purchased. The advanced evaluation is leading to the purchase of additional kits, thus it is working much like an ―Infomercial.‖ Product modernization Annually we budget project leader time to review and update older products. Additionally, we are undertaking the effort to move all materials historically available on audio cassette tapes to CDs. Likewise all videos originally produced on VHS tapes are moving to DVDs to accommodate our customers and students that have converted to new technology. During this fiscal year a more aggressive approach has been implemented to identify various older products that are to be discontinued while many others need to be reviewed and modernized. We are determined that APH maintain high standards to keep the teachers and students, users of our products current with the high level standards established. Some completed results are as follows:  Focus in Math, 2nd Edition  Listen and Think, Levels B and C  Shape Board  Game of Squares  Graphic Aid for Math New Edition Others in the planning/evaluation phase:  ISAVE  Reach for the Stars  Program to Develop Efficiency in Visual Functioning  Elizabeth‘s Story - video  Tangible Graphs  Baseball Game Print and Braille Manuals Available for FREE Download Updated 9-16-09 Titles have been completed. 277

Stock Code Description 5-08850-00 Basic Science Tactile Graphics Guidebook - Braille 7-08850-00 Basic Science Tactile Graphics Guidebook - Print 7-08845-00 Basic Tactile Anatomy Atlas Handbook - Print 5-03180-00 Beginner's Abacus Instruction Guidebook - Braille 7-03180-00 Beginner's Abacus Instruction Guidebook - Lg Print 5-11102-00 Braille Connection Mentoring Manual - Braille 5-16750-04 Braille: A Different Approach Instructor's Manual - Braille 5-17401-00 Braillewriting Dot by Dot Teacher's - Braille 7-17401-00 Braillewriting Dot by Dot Teacher's Print Edition 5-08844-00 Crafty Graphics: Stencil Embossing Kit Guidebook - Braille 7-08844-00 Crafty Graphics: Stencil Embossing Kit Guidebook - Lg Print 5-08551-01 Envision I, 10 and under, Teacher's Manual - Braille 7-08551-01 Envision I, 10 and under, Teacher's Manual - Print 5-08551-02 Envision I, 11 and older, Teacher's Manual - Braille 7-08551-02 Envision I, 11 and older, Teacher's Manual - Print 5-08552-01 Envision II, 10 and under, Teacher's Manual - Braille 7-08552-01 Envision II, 10 and younger, Teacher's Manual - Print 5-08552-02 Envision II, 11 and older, Teacher's Manual - Braille 7-08552-02 Envision II, 11 and older, Teacher's Manual - Print 7-47160-00 Getting in Touch with Reading, Teacher's Manual - Print 7-52210-00 Hands on Guidebook - Print 5-08516-01 IntelliTactiles: Pre-Braille Concepts User's Guide - Braille 7-08516-01 IntelliTactiles: Pre-Braille Concepts User's Guide - Lg Print 5-08515-00 IntelliTactiles: Standard Overlay Companions User's Guide - Braille 7-08515-00 IntelliTactiles: Standard Overlay Companions User's Guide - Lg Print 5-08513-00 IntelliTactiles: USB Overlay Companions User's Guide - Braille 7-08513-00 IntelliTactiles: USB Overlay Companions User's Guide - Lg Print 7-07000-00 K' Sonar Curriculum Handbook 7-65701-00 Key Math Revised. Form A; Print Supplemental Directions 5-08151-00 Let's See. Perceptual Activities Kit: Vision Development Activities Manual - Braille 7-08151-00 Let's See. Perceptual Activities Kit: Vision Development Activities Manual - Lg Print 5-08141-00 Let's See. Sensory Activities Kit: Vision Development Activities Manual - Braille 7-08141-00 Let's See. Sensory Activities Kit: Vision Development Activities Manual - Lg Print 7-08670-SP Light Box Activity Guide. Level I - Spanish 7-08680-SP Light Box Activity Guide. Level II - Spanish 7-08690-SP Light Box Activity Guide. Level III - Spanish 7-73970-00 Longhand Writing for the Blind, Manual - Print 7-03450-00 Making Picture Recipes - Print 6-77907-00 Moving Ahead: Goin' on a Bear Hunt Reader's Guide - Braille 7-82700-00 Multiplication and Division Table Teacher's Guide 278

5-96201-00 Parent Early Childhood Education Series - 1P - Braille 8-16040-00 PDEVF: Vol. I, Diagnostic Assessment Procedure 8-16070-00 PDEVF: Vol. II, Design for Instruction 5-08410-01 Reach for the Stars, Planning for the Future: A Transition Process for Families of Young Children 5-30020-00 Reclaiming Independence: Braille Resource Guide - Braille 7-08990-00 Sense of Science Animals Guidebook - Lg Print 5-08990-00 Sense of Science: Animals, Guidebook - Braille 5-08980-00 Sense of Science: Plants Guidebook - Braille 7-08980-00 Sense of Science: Plants Guidebook - Lg Print 5-08853-00 Setting the Stage for Tactile Understanding Guidebook - Braille 7-08853-00 Setting the Stage for Tactile Understanding Guidebook - Lg Print 5-08960-00 Stackups, Teacher's Guidebook - Braille (Booklet Only) 8-44660-00 Suggestions for Using Touch and Tell: A Readiness Book for Primary Braille Readers Print 5-08837-00 Tactile Connections: Symbols for Communication Guidebook - Braille 7-08837-00 Tactile Connections: Symbols for Communication Guidebook - Lg Print (Booklet Only) 7-08837-SP Tactile Connections: Symbols for Communication Guidebook, Spanish - Print 5-08839-00 Tactile Graphics Guidebook 8-08839-00 Tactile Graphics Starter Kit Guidebook - Print 5-08842-00 Tactile Treasures Guidebook - Braille 7-08842-00 Tactile Treasures Guidebook - Lg Print 7-08750-00 Tangle Book - Print 8-39530-00 Teacher's Guide to Tangible Graphs 5-08861-00 Teaching Touch Guidebook - Braille 7-30006-00 The Good Tactile Graphic - Guidelines, Resources and Samples (Booklet Only) 5-01140-00 U.S.A. Puzzle Map - Braille Instruction Manual 7-01140-00 U.S.A. Puzzle Map Replacement Large Print Reference Guide 5-08941-00 What Teachers of Students w/VI Need to Know About Lighting 6-39051-00 Word Association Braille Guidebook 8-39051-00 Word Association, Print Guide

279

Technical Research Division

280

Technical Research Division Activities (Continued) Purpose The Technical Research Division functions as a ―bridge‖ between the concepts of the Project Leader‘s product and the concrete reality on the production floor. The purpose of the division is to remain as faithful as possible to the Project Leader‘s intent and function of the product while making it as inexpensive and as easily produced on the manufacturing plant‘s floor as possible. The division is involved in all aspects of the product including design work, materials selection, vendor selection, and process development. After developing and documenting the product‘s specifications the Technical Research Division works with production workers, floor supervisors, upper levels of APH management, and outside vendors to shepherd the Project Leader‘s product throughout its entire pilot and first production runs. This development, documentation, and preparation of the product for actual manufacture, along with the monitoring of the manufacturing process by the division, help to assure the greatest probability of success for a new product. Division Staff Frank Hayden A.A.S., C.E.T., Manager David McGee A.A.S, C.E.T., Manufacturing Specialist James Robinson M.S, Manufacturing Specialist Darlene Donhoff, Manufacturing Specialist Nancy Etter, Administrative Assistant Work During FY 2009 Address Earth: Section 2 (Continued) In early April 2009, the Project Leader reported that there was enough information about the content to verify that Section 2 would be significantly larger than Section 1, both in the number of map pages in the atlas and the pages in the textbooks. Since the overall weight of Section 1 had already brought up discussions of dividing product into two carry cases, there was little discussion of dividing this section into two, but only on how to distribute the materials evenly between the cases. The decision was to divide the materials as follows: Section 2 will have maps and textbooks for Chapters 1-3 in the first case, and maps and textbooks for Chapters 4-6 in the second. To help the user differentiate which case contains which set of chapters, the two cases will be screen-printed with gold as the primary color and either red or blue trim. By dividing Section 2 into two sets, the depth of the existing Section 1 carry case would be too great, allowing the materials (primarily the textbooks) to slide around, possibly damaging the books. The vendor was contacted in order to determine the minimum depth to which they could manufacture a case. The vendor reported that they are capable of 281

making the cases to a dimension less than that specified by APH. The ongoing investigation into the concerns from the field of the map pages ripping or tearing out of the rings in the Address Earth: Section 1 Atlas binder is mandating changes on how this product will be manufactured. At a May meeting with the Project Leader and production departments, a plan was developed for testing various synthetic papers and binder options to eliminate the concerns with page tear out. Production took the lead in testing, verifying that possible paper samples would run on the IGEN, and obtaining measurements for the amount of force necessary to pull out pages that have been 3, 5 and 7 hole drilled. The material originally used for the map pages is a synthetic based paper that is rated ―tear resistant.‖ Initial testing of this material with a standard 3-ring binding system proved adequate, but based on feedback following the release of the Section 1 indicates a new material or other options will be necessary to remedy the problem. Other than change the Atlas page material, possible solutions are having a clear re-enforcement strip applied to the binding edge and/or changing from the existing 3-ring to a 5 or 7-ring configuration binder. Sets of the Section 1 Atlas pages were obtained and sent to a vendor to test the re-enforcement strip concept. This added a tremendous amount of strength to the binding edge of the sheet. Cost of this binding improvement would add about $5.00 per set of map pages. It would also introduce delays, as the map pages printed at APH would have to be sent out and worked into an outside vendor's production queue. Since the release of the product, new synthetic papers have been approved by Xerox for use on the IGEN. Samples were obtained and run in early 2009. Nekoosa ―Thermanent‖ 8mil synthetic paper was selected as being substantially stronger/with increased resistance to tear-out at the binding holes. This material will be used on production of Address Earth: Section 2 and future production of Sections 1 and 3, the latter of which is in development. Information is being gathered and work on specifications is still in preliminary informational gathering stages for the kit and for the separately available components listed below. Address Address Address Address Earth: Earth: Earth: Earth: Section Section Section Section 2 2 2 2 Maps and Charts Large Print Textbook Set Braille Textbook Set Symbol Guide Addition/Subtraction Tables (New) An initial ―Brainstorming‖ PDC meeting was held in March 2009 to lay out the concept of product. Technical Research worked with the Project Leader to develop tooling needed to allow for a full 0 through 10 grid that has both print and braille numbers. Spacing, based on standard braille cell-to-cell spacing necessitated a grid size that would need to be placed on an 11.5‖ x 11‖ sheet. The Project Leader wanted a material that would hold up better than standard 80# braille paper. Technical Research suggested several options, printing the table on each of the materials to assist the Project Leader in making a decision. After several revisions, including the addition of light yellow banding of every other row down the table, the material selected is 100# white index stock. Technical Research is currently working with 282

production departments in order that materials can be produced for field- testing. This involves getting the print file to Production in order to have materials printed and working with Braille Transcription and Tooling departments to create a plate that will be used to emboss the printed sheets. Work on specifications will begin after the results of field-testing have been completed. All Children Have Different Eyes (Completed―Pass through item) Technical Research worked with Marketing to have a packaging label to attach to this product when received. The first shipment went into stock in December 2008. ALL-IN-ONE Board (Continued) Following the specifications turn over to Production in September 2008, materials (some ordered in advance due to long lead times) had arrived and were available for production by December. The pilot run of 100 kits was completed in January 2009. At the February debriefing meeting, several minor issues were discussed. The screws for handle assembly were Phillips head screws. Technical Research noted these screws had been used in the same handle assembly on the mini-light box several years before with poor results. Screw heads had stripped out on handle assembly. Technical Research recommended using Roberts head (square drive) screws for a more positive lock on the driving tool bit to avoid stripping. It was decided to go ahead with the Phillips head screws. Technical Research still felt this would be a problem so, as an insurance policy, Technical Research purchased enough square head drive screws out of the departmental budget ($18.00 worth) to assemble the pilot run. As the pilot run was started, the screws started stripping out. Technical Research retrieved the square head drive screws from the department and gave them to the Production Floor Supervisor. The handle assembly was completed with no further stripping of the screws. The Production Supervisor has since bought enough square head drive screws to complete the remainder of the production run. We also encountered visual (but not tactile) wrinkles in the black Veltex material applied to the board. The Project Leader tried ironing the fabric and this much improved the appearance. It is likely this appearance problem is confined to the last several feet on the roll of material. This would be where the material is most compressed in storage and handling. At the de-briefing, it was decided to make the vendor aware of this problem and ask that they watch for it in future materials production. A second run of 200-250 boards was produced in late February. No problems with the production run of this kit were reported. There have been three reports from customers stating that the handle assemblies were broken upon receipt. Investigation of the returned boards found that the handle arm on one end of the board was broken in all instances it was also noted that the cartons had significant damage. The handle assembly is specified as being manufactured from nylon, which should have stood up to a tremendous amount of impact without breaking. The unbroken arms were flexed and twisted, but did not break. This would indicate the arms were made from the specified material. It was noted that the three units in question were all shipped to 283

northwestern states, which raises a question about how the material might perform under extreme cold conditions. Testing will begin to determine if this may have contributed to the damage. The shipping box may also be a contributing factor. This box is also used for the Azer‘s kit and has an auto-lock design at one end of the box. The design was chosen to eliminate some taping during final packaging of the kit. This type of box design depends on 100% fill to assist in putting pressure from the inside. Although the footprint of the box is better suited for the All-in-One, the thickness was determined by the amount of materials with the Azer‘s kit. There is not enough material inside to fill the box completely, and though taped, it now has become apparent that end of the box is more susceptible to collapse. The decision has been made to switch to a box with a fold over flap design on both ends of the box, which will provide greater overall strength and integrity to the box. Other methods to improve the packaging, such as foam inserts are also being explored. While the end design of the box was changed from a pop-in-place auto-lock design to a stronger, more traditional tuck-flap, it was ultimately decided that it would be necessary to use an insert to prevent the board from shifting/being damaged. Technical Research worked with the box vendor to develop a corrugated insert that reinforced the existing outer box (which is used for other kits) and locked the All-in-One Board into a central position within the insert by use of strategically placed folding tabs. Technical Research worked with the box vendor through several revisions before a final design was selected. There is a nominal cost for the insert but it will provide greater protection to the board and other miscellaneous components that are packed with it. Following the Project Leader‘s approval the insert was added to the bills of materials. The inserts were ordered and successfully incorporated into the next production run of the product. Also worth noting is that the vendor of the dry erase panel has been changed. The original out of state vendor actually subcontracted the boards with a local company. While this company would not deal directly with APH, they had no problem with APH purchasing them from any other established vendor. APH‘s Purchasing Department coordinated with an existing APH vendor to become a vendor that handled this product line as well. This vendor and APH have a long history of business together. APH was able to purchase the next order of boards at a significant cost reduction. Technical Research worked closely with Purchasing to ensure that the boards would be manufactured to the same specifications as those originally obtained. APH Alphabet Card (50-Pack) (Completed) Technical Research worked with the Project Leader to facilitate the re-packaging of this product into sets of 50 cards each. Technical Research monitored the progress of this product through placing it into stock in November. APH Insights Calendar 2010 (Completed) Technical Research met with all parties to establish a game plan for in-house production of the calendars. Final print files were given to Large Type. Large Type furnished the Tactile Graphics Department proof copies to use in tooling the plates for the calendar. Plates were completed 284

and production began in late spring/early summer of 2009. Technical Research held an update meeting in February and continued monitoring this project through its production and into stock in May 2009. This was a full 3 months earlier than the 2009 Insights calendar which was stocked in August 2008. Braille DateBook Calendar 2010 (Completed) Request for catalog and associated part numbers placed in January for the 2010 product. Tooling information turned over to Braille Translation in February. Tooling proofed and approved in March. Requested sales forecast and provided Production with information to have the product placed into the production queue and will continue to monitor it through the completed production run. Production scheduled for July 2009; was completed in August due to workload in Braille Production areas and problems embossing the Calendar Tabs. Braille DateBook 2010 Calendar Tabs (Completed) Requested catalog number in January for the 2010 product. Copies of the 2009 Calendar turned over for plate tooling in mid February. After the plates for making the embossed Calendar Tabs were produced, Technical Research checked and found the margins to be incorrect. Plates were returned with the specific correction noted. Requested sales forecast and provided Production with information to have the product placed into the production queue and will continue to monitor it through the completed production run. Production scheduled for July 2009 was completed in August due to problems embossing the braille into the plastic substrate. Technical Research worked with Production to find the solution to the problem of low braille. Braille Docking Station (Continued) This item is used with the Braille+ and will be a pass through item. A meeting was held in May to map out and organize a product development plan. Negotiations regarding purchase price and quantities for this item were initiated. Technical Research will continue to monitor this item through its first production run. Brigance Green: Large Print Edition (Continued) Product competed and stocked in September 2008. Production debriefing meeting held in November. Other than some delays in production until corrections could be made to the IGEN to address skewed color tones, no problems were reported.

285

Brigance Yellow (Continued) Technical Research met with the Project Leader in a series of brain storming meetings on this series of products. Technical Research furnished the Project Leader with samples and examples of various paper and other materials to be considered for printing, various storage devices from other kits to be considered, a new concept drawing for a single-sided polyblend folder for packaging, and options on binding in October. The Project Leader is currently examining/evaluating these samples. The Project Leader initially rejected the idea of a singlesided folder to be bound with the book. However, after hand-making sample folders and passing them around in December, it was decided to pursue a 1-off prototype sample fabricated by a vendor in the polyblend material. Technical Research has not received any updates on this product. No additional information to report. Building on Patterns 1st Grade (Continued) Technical Research working with information received from the Graphics Designer, the Assistant Director of Research, and Braille Translation in developing product specifications for each of Units 1 through 4. Each unit has eight individual parts, so this covered 32 individual product specifications that were turned over to Production in June. This included an additional item that added four more product specifications for the Lesson Monitoring Sheets. There is still another item, an eighth volume to incorporate Introductory Materials and the Index, but it will not be completed until all of the seven units are done. In addition, no work has been started on product specifications for the Posttest Materials, which will be three individual parts for each of the seven units. Technical Research continues to work on the specifications for the components for Units 5, 6, and 7 as information becomes available, as well as monitoring the work being done on the production floor. Building on Patterns Grade 2 (Continued) Grade 2 materials are being composed by the Project Leader and consultants as work for Grade 1 Units 5, 6, and 7 are being completed. Technical Research will begin working on developing product specifications as information is received on the individual parts. Child Guided Strategies (Van Dijk assessment) (New) The Project Leader said that sample prototype copies of this product were needed for a conference scheduled for April. Technical Research conducted a meeting with Production in February to map out a plan for producing this product in time for the conference. Technical Research designed a ―mini-spec‖ to facilitate the production and worked with the Graphics Department, Mastering, the Project Leader, and other Production areas to coordinate efforts 286

required to meet the deadline. In late February/early March it was learned the conference was cancelled, so work on this project is continuing, but at a normal pace since there is no longer a deadline. Consumable Number Lines, Braille/Tactile (Completed) Following the completion of specifications and monitoring of a successful first production run, a production debriefing was held in November 2008. Difficulties reported involved taping/sealing the cardboard mailer. This led to a decision to design a mailer that requires less effort to form and seal. After samples from several box vendors were obtained, Technical Research conducted a poll among production departments as to which style would require the least amount of effort in completing the packaging operation. This mailer is currently used for three products, and will be used for another currently in development. The selected box is made of white corrugated cardboard and is made in a style that allows it to be used to both ship and store the product once received. The cost of the new mailer is actually less than the original brown cardboard folded-over mailer. The new mailer will be ordered prior to the next production run of this product. There are no other issues to report. Consumable Number Lines, Large Print (Completed) Following the completion of specifications and monitoring of a successful first production run, a production debriefing was held in November 2008. This product had the same issues with the mailer and this has been resolved accordingly. Cranmer Abacus Hands-On DVD (Completed) Technical Research worked with the Project Leader to have the video changed from VHS to DVD. The first production run was monitored into stock July 2009. CVI Complexity main kit (Continued) This will be a kit containing a combination of the Sequencing and Challenges kits listed below. CVI Complexity Challenges (Continued) After several attempts to produce acceptable prototypes for field testing, parts were finalized, successfully produced, and sent out for field testing in December. The field test results were received and reviewed in January. Revisions to the product were completed in February. Work was recently completed on the final content of the materials. There are special vinyl pouches needed as well as a 2-ring binder. Both items will have to be custom-made for this kit. 287

Technical Research previously worked with the Purchasing Department and outside vendors to obtain samples and pricing for these items. The items and pricing will need to be reviewed to assure they are still suitable for use in the kit. Technical Research will need to re-familiarize itself with the current items used in this kit in order to begin specifications. Notes on the project state that the kit will consist of the printed plastic pieces, a custom 2-ring binder, and custom vinyl pouches for storage and presentation. These notes will be reviewed with the Project Leader to be sure they are still accurate. This kit and the Sequencing Kit will be put together with a Print Guide, a Braille Guide, and the Innovations Tote Bag to form a kit. Technical Research will continue to monitor this product and will begin work on product specifications in the near future. CVI Complexity Sequencing (Continued) Technical Research worked with the Graphics Designer, Purchasing, and an outside vendor to obtain tests to demonstrate the output of various printing processes on various materials being considered for use in this project. These items will be kept on file both at APH and at the vendor to use as reference materials for future products that may want to explore various process/materials combinations. Tests on various printing methods were reviewed in November/December. Offset printing directly on plastic had an acceptable quality of printing and was chosen for its economy of production in the quantities expected. Prototype pieces were obtained in January to use for field-testing. Technical Research met with the Project Leader to learn more about the structure of this product in February. The kit will consist of printed plastic pieces, a custom 2-ring binder, and custom vinyl pouches for storage and presentation. This kit and the Challenges kit will be put together with a Print Guide, a Braille Guide, and the Innovations Tote Bag to form a kit. Denver the Guide Dog DVD (Completed) The Discovery Channel granted APH the rights to reproduce and sell this video. Technical Research wrote product specifications and conducted a specification meeting, which was completed within 6 weeks of the releasing of the rights. The first production went into stock in March. Desktop Food Pyramid, Primary Kit (New) The kit includes a wall poster, paper embossed personal-sized food pyramids, and other associated materials. There had been ongoing development and testing with paper types to be used for the embossed Primary Pyramid and Cutouts. The samples printed on various paper weights came out with mixed results. After repeated testing using different combinations of the retooled ―Pyramid‖ plate and stock paper, a satisfactory result was obtained in March 2009. Unfortunately, the ―Cutouts‖ did not fare so well. Samples on all four of paper stocks 288

consistently had breaks and tears. Technical Research discussed the paper ―breaking‖ with a number of production personnel in order to obtain a consensus of possible remedies to the problem. Fifty sheets of material that worked for the Pyramid was obtained from inventory for printing in Large Type, due to production backups, these sheets were not printed until the end of June. The Project Leader had inquired if these would be completed by August so that they would be ready for field-testing at the beginning of the 2010 school year. Technical Research contacted production departments and found that the printing of materials required for fieldtesting would not be possible. It was then discussed to have both the Pyramid and Cutouts sheets printed by the vendor already prepared to print limited quantities of the two Food Pyramid posters and the Secondary Pyramid on vinyl. Technical Research coordinated the procurement of materials, print files, and created a list of specifications for the vendor. The finished print was received in August 2009. After consultation with the Project Leader, Technical Research worked with production departments in order to get these sheets embossed by September. Production agreed, which should make these kits available for fieldtesting in October. Desktop Food Pyramid, Primary (10 Pack) (New) Packs of only the embossed personal sized ―Pyramids‖ and ―Cutouts‖ will be offered in sets of ten as a replacement part. Desktop Food Pyramid, Secondary Kit (New) The Secondary Pyramid Kit will be a vacuum-formed version. With the number of colors involved, it has been decided that this product would be offset printed instead of the conventional screen-printing. Before going to press with a large run of the printed sheets, it was decided to ensure the art matched the vacuum-form pattern. This was done via a second vendor, used in the past for limited runs (10 ~ 15 copies) on a flat bed UV ink printing system. Taking this step led to significant delays, due to the vendor inexplicably adjusting the scale of the printed image. After properly scaled sheets were obtained, attempts were made to vacuum-form them. The Model Shop requested more printed sheets because they were unsuccessful in getting the sheets to register to the vacuum-form mold. After some close examination by Technical Research, it was determined that the finished vacuum-form had deviated from the original artwork. The only course of action available was to re-create the print artwork, matching it direct with the now complete vacuum-form. Technical Research scanned the vacuum-form mold in sections, pieced them together, and used the scanned image as an underlayment so the print art could be placed over and then repositioned and thus corrected. An outline copy of the final art was plotted on clear film and placed over the vacuum-form mold to verify that they now matched. After discussions with the Model Shop, it was decided that no further test would be needed off the flat bed printer. The vendor that has offset capability has been contacted about running enough sheets to satisfy the Project Leader needs for field-testing. A quote for the 0.010‖ white vinyl in the size required for this project 289

has been requested. Technical Research coordinated the procurement of materials, print files, and created a list of specifications for the vendor. The printed sheets had arrived from the printer in August. Technical Research worked with production departments in order to get these sheets vacuum-formed and die-cut by September. Production agreed, which should make these kits available for field-testing in October. Desktop Food Pyramid, Secondary (5 Pack) (New) Packs of only the vacuum-formed personal sized pyramids offered in sets of five as a replacement part. Desktop Stick-On Number Line – Large Print (Continued) Technical Research worked with the Project Leader in developing a semi-permanent print/braille tactile number line. The Project Leader agreed to a recommended screenprinted/vacuum-formed vinyl strip with a strip of double-sided tape applied to the backside. After some investigation, a suitable double-sided tape was located. This tape has a permanent adhesive on one side and a low tack or removable adhesive on the opposite. The strip is applied down the length of the number line on the permanent side, leaving the removable side with a release line exposed. The release line is removed by the customer exposing the removable adhesive, which can then be placed on the desktop. The strength of the adhesive will hold it in place, even allowing for limited repositioning. The tape is only available in 1 inch widths. In consideration of the cost of the tape and costs associated with manufacturing time of applying the tape, it was proposed to run a single strip down the length in the middle of the number line. A couple of mockups were made and provided to the Project Leader to test. The Project Leader reported that once placed on a desktop, the strip seemed to hold its position through what was considered anticipated normal use. It was also mentioned that with the stiffness of the vinyl, the edges seemed to stay down. In late April 2009, tooling for the number line began. The screen-printing tooling, vacuum form tooling (includes the number lines and placement of braille), and cutting die for number lines have been laid out in a 10-up pattern. From this layout, Technical Research routed into a plastic panel what would become the raised 10-up pattern. This panel was provided to the Model Shop, which cast the production thermoform from it, and then added the braille pins based on a template also provided by Technical Research. Art to make the production silk screen is in place. Technical Research will continue to work toward production of materials for field-testing/expert review. Developmental Guidelines Print Kit w/CD (Continued) The Project Leader conducted a ―Brainstorming‖ PDC meeting to discuss revising an existing product, making it more accessible. This will now include a CD with HTML, BRF, and DBT files. Technical Research met once more with the Project Leader regarding the various parts to this 290

product and then part numbers were requested and received. This will now be three individual products. A Print kit w/CD, a Braille kit w/CD, and the Summary Consumables pack. Technical Research completed product specifications, conducted a meeting turning them over to Production in August, and will monitor the first production run schedule for October 2009. Developmental Guidelines Braille Kit w/CD (Continued) The same information listed for the Print Kit applies to the Braille kit. Developmental Summary Consumable (Continued) The same information applies to this part as well. This pack goes in both kits as well as being sold separately. A pack of these is 10 copies of the one consumable form. Production wants to get started on this part as soon as possible as it is needed for all three items. Digital Light Box Artwork, Large Print w/CD (New) This was a new product taking some of the artwork from Light Box Materials Levels 1, 2, and 3 and putting them into digital format on a CD for use on a computer. Technical Research worked with the Project Leader to determine the individual parts and then developed product specifications, which were turned over to Production in July. Technical Research will monitor the first production run scheduled for November 2009. Experiential Learning Kit (New) Technical Research worked with the Project Leader and the Purchasing Department to find a source for a combination crib and freestanding activity center for low vision and blind infants. A company was located in California that agreed to supply the activity center. Twenty-five of the activity centers were ordered and received. Originally, there were custom designed toys planned for use in this kit. In a September meeting regarding this product it was suggested that this kit may be developed into a curriculum that would use off-the-shelf items readily available at toy and department stores. This concept is still being evaluated. Work on this project is ongoing. Technical Research will continue to monitor the progress of this project. EZ Track Calendar 2010 (Completed) Technical Research selected a new butterfly photo for the front cover and gave it to our Graphics Designer in February. The Graphics Designer designed a cover, which was approved and forwarded to Bisig to include in the new APH catalog of products. Technical Research 291

turned over files to Production in April. The calendars were completed and placed in stock July 2009. Feel n’ Peel Textured Sheets (New) Project Leader called a meeting March 2009 to set dates for the timeline and requested assistance in obtaining materials for prototype samples. Technical Research had discussions with vendor currently applying textures into transparent vinyl with adhesive pre-applied. Due to the complexity of the textures desired for this product, the vendor stated that they could not produce these materials. Technical Research recommended vacuum forming the textures in larger sections, die cutting down to a finished size (likely 8.5‖ x 11‖), and send out to a have double sided adhesive applied. Technical Research had some of the transparent vinyl sheets in its possession and turned them over to the Model Shop to be used to make fieldtesting materials. This product should be in field-testing by the fall of 2009. Flip-Over Concept Books - Line Paths (Continued) Technical Research first attended a PDC meeting in January 2008. There are two books under development; each book has 10 layers of three side-by-side panels that can be flipped individually in order to match the appropriate print/tactual images. From the beginning of this project, there has been a great deal of discussion and research on finding alternative methods to screen-printing on to vinyl. This would allow for a greater amount of colors than is typically considered the cut-off point of being cost effective. Technical Research did extensive research into different methods of printing directly on to vinyl, specifically the special controlled shrink vinyl that APH uses in many of its products. Technical Research worked with the Model Shop, scanning supplied art of all individual images, converting them into image files. Images were then placed within a master template based on positioning information also provided by the Model Shop. The merged files were imported into a CorelDraw format and provided to the Project Leader. The Project Leader was then able to follow the template and add colors of her choosing. The final file was next prepped by Technical Research and provided to a vendor with a Large Format UV printing system for having prototypes made for field-testing. This method was selected for field-testing because it was better suited for limited production quantities, even thought the quality was less than that of offset printing. Technical Research created a drawing for a cutting die needed for the field-testing (and likely production as well) and sent a request for quotes on making the die. Technical Research worked with a co-op engineering student to have a print test run on the large format printer at APH. Preliminary testing had proven unsatisfactory with the quality of the print being somewhat blurry and striations in the solid colors. Another problem with the print method had to do with compression of the print image, this prevented precise registration of the printed sheet and the vacuum-form mold. The compression was thought to have been the result of printing sheets on a roll feed system. The file was given to a second local vendor that has multiple large format systems to have a sample run. A sample printed on a flat bed UV printer had a much better appearance and the 292

registration matched precisely. This sample was vacuum-formed to verify the registration. The Project Leader gave approval for this process for field-testing materials but wanted to continue to explore better printing methods. Additional vinyl was obtained to send to this vendor to satisfy the quantities of sheets needed for field-testing. While materials were being field tested, Technical Research continued to explore printing methods. By process of elimination, it appeared both Large Format and Flat Bed UV printing would not be a viable production method, leaving only offset printing as the only method that could insure print accuracy and registration. Several vendors were brought in to discuss our requirements. Of these, only two were agreeable to run tests. After some preliminary test, one of these vendors reported that they would not be interested in pursuing this work. The second vendor worked extensively with their ink suppliers and reported that they believed that they found an ink that was compatible with our vinyl. About a hundred sheets of vinyl as sent to the vendor for at test run in October 2008. Upon receipt of the printed vinyl, they were vacuum-formed to ensure that the ink would perform the same as screen-printed inks, i.e. they would not blister, crack or easily be separated from the formed sheet. These tests were 100% successful. This process not only opens the door for both expanded use of color in this product, but also allows realistic photo images to be printed on vinyl. During field-testing, the production binding department sent notice that the wire twin looping was being discontinued and replaced with plastic coil binding. The coil binding spacing was not compatible with spacing used for twin looping. This necessitated finding a new binding method. The Project Leader and Model Shop proposed having the vendor that manufactures plastic ―Tuffy Rings‖ to create a custom injection mold that would produce a short, two-loop ring for APH. These short rings would be riveted, three side by side along the binding edge, providing the spacing required between each set of panels. Technical Research continued to research other binding methods and found a stock plastic ―editable ring‖ that had promise. Samples were obtained, and after some skillful redesign by the Model Shop, this was found to be an acceptable solution. The binding method change had already required changes to tooling, so the Model Shop decided to move the spacing of the individual panels together, creating a smaller vacuum-form pattern, thus smaller sheets of vinyl. Technical Research worked closely with the Model Shop to facilitate these changes. Art created by Technical Research was reworked, plotted on clear film, and given to the Model Shop to create the production vacuum-form mold. This same art was used to generate the final print tooling and drawings for production cutting dies. This product was behind its original schedule because of the time required to research and develop a new process that will be used. Because of this, the Project Leader held a PDC meeting in March 2009, to update the production schedule. Part numbers for new materials were setup and quotes for pricing and availability were requested. Specifications were completed and turned over to Production in May. Because of the amount of work already in queue, the production departments could not commit to begin any work on this product until the pilot run in September, with the remaining production to be completed in November. With the two-month separation between the pilot and production runs, it was agreed to increase the pilot to 200 kits produced. The five cutting dies required to manufacture this kit have arrived and been approved. The printed vinyl sheets used for the flipbooks were received in July. Various components, including a screen-printed, vacuum-formed ―Worksheet‖ set began in early

293

August. At this time, the product is still on schedule for completion in September. Technical Research will continue to monitor this product through its first production run. Flip-Over Concept Books - Parts of a Whole (Continued) The Project Leader held a PDC meeting on March 25 to update the production schedule. By this time, manufacturing issues had been resolved for the first flipbook, allowing work to progress on this second book now in the active phase. Technical Research cleaned up the art and drop images into the new layout for the 5-up cover and two flip panel pages and turned them over to the Model Shop by April 2009. Some adjustments were needed before the art was finalized in July. All other print and braille tooling was completed by the end of June. Specifications were completed and turned over to Production in July. Production is scheduled for February 2010, but Production reported that if time allows they would begin sooner. The printed vinyl sheets will be ordered after successful completion of the Line Paths Book. This will place them in stock earlier than necessary for the scheduled production, but will allow Production to start on this product if the window of opportunity allows. Technical Research will continue to monitor this product through its first production run. Focus in Mathematics; 2nd Edition Print Kit (New) Technical Research met with the co-Project Leaders several times to discuss the changes and additions to the existing product. Technical Research has worked with the Project Leader to develop and make new parts and to pull existing parts from stock for use in expert reviews. In early 2009, Technical Research worked the Project Leader to review the product components and to discuss possible redesign for a number of components used in this product. New part numbers and catalog numbers were established for the new and/or changed components for the kit. Technical Research worked closely with the Project Leader to develop new manipulatives that would be placed into this kit and revise several existing items. Once the concepts for these items were finalized, Technical Research took the necessary steps to produce materials that would represent these components in their finished state for expert review. This involved creating print files, vacuum-form molds, obtaining cutting dies, and working with a vendor to have texture applied to foam sheets. The revised items are Irregular Shape Puzzles and Activity Sheets. There are actually two puzzles included with the kit, yellow and black. The redesigned puzzle is based on the existing Focus in Math puzzle, but is made of ½ inch thick foam and has a frame. The layout of the puzzle still contains three pairs of matching irregular shaped pieces, but adjustments were made to make some of the pieces interlocking. The addition of the puzzle frame improves/assists in the assembly of the puzzle pieces, keeping pieces more confined. Technical Research worked with a vendor to incorporate a bumpy texture to one side of the foam sheets. By placing frames and pieces in two colors in the kit, puzzles can be assembled, mixing colored pieces as well as texture. The Project Leader selected thirteen activities that would become the new Activity Sheet Set. These activities are made in a two-step process. Sheets printed with non-tactile information in 30 pt type. Next, 294

the printed sheets are run through the green machine or tactile vision process to add corresponding braille information. Any diagrams are added in the green machine process, making them accessible for both low vision and braille readers. Technical Research created the tooling that separates the print and tactile components in order that they can be separately processed. New items are Raised Shape Counting Cards, Raised Shape Number Cards, and Set of Diagramming Strips. Both the Raised Shape Counting Cards (3 sets of 11) and Number Cards (1 set of 11) are based on a set made by Shapely Cal. The four sets of cards produced by APH will have several significant improvements. The primary difference will be that the raised images will be screen-printed black on all sets. The Counting Cards will also have 30pt numbers printed on them in addition to the braille numbering. The upper left hand corner of all cards will have the corner cut at 45° for orientation. Both the shapes and positions are precise, having been generated from a CAD drawing. The Tactile Tokens will also be used in MathBuilders Unit 8. These are 1-3/16 inch round tokens constructed of blue Veltex laminated to yellow polyethylene. The materials are attached to each other in sheet form and then diecut 30 pieces at a time. All 30 pieces are placed into the kit. The tokens are made large enough that they do not present a choking hazard. The Diagramming Strips are based on those found in the Wheatly Picture Maker Kit. There are different size/shape/color components with black hook Velcro applied to one side. Prototypes of these parts were sent out for expert review in March 2009. Technical Research met with the Project Leader after the expert review in July to note any changes or additions to be made. Patterns for four vacuum form molds were cut on the CNC router in Technical Research and turned over to the Model Shop in July. Artwork for silk screens was finalized in July as well. This artwork will be output to film positives and silk screens made in the next few weeks. Technical Research is currently working on completing the production tooling for all of these items and is beginning work on developing product specifications. Focus in Mathematics; 2nd Edition Braille Kit (New) Technical Research will work with the Project Leader to develop product specifications for the Braille kit, which will have all the same parts along with a Braille guidebook. Plans will be to have them ready to turn over to Production at the same time as the Print Kit. FVLMA Protocols Large Print (Completed) Technical Research developed production specifications and turned them over to Production in February, and monitored the first production run of this product into stock in March 2009. Geometro GS16 Mini Set (New) Technical Research met with the Project Leader, Purchasing, and Production to determine how these items would be received from the vendor and depending on that, determined how they 295

would be packaged in-house. After this was determined, Technical Research designed product specifications and turned them over in August. The parts were ordered and received into stock August 19th. Technical Research will work with Production when packaging begins which is scheduled for September 2009. There are also four sets of shapes that will be offered by APH as additional parts to go with these three sets. Technical Research designed labels for the vendor to attach to the packs of parts allowing them to go directly into stock. There will be the GPT Pack of 6 Triangles, GPS Pack of 6 Squares, GPP Pack of 6 Pentagons, and GPH Pack of 6 Hexagons. These bags of parts were received along with the rest of the sets of parts on August 19th and will be going into stock. Geometro GS22 Medium Set (New) Technical Research met with the Project Leader, Purchasing, and Production to determine how these items would be received from the vendor and depending on that, determined how they would be packaged in house. After this was determined, Technical Research designed product specifications and turned them over in August. The parts were ordered and received into stock August 19th. Technical Research will work with Production when packaging begins, which is scheduled for September 2009. Geometro GS56 Large Set (New) Technical Research met with the Project Leader, Purchasing, and Production to determine how these items would be received from the vendor and depending on that, determined how they would be packaged in house. After this was determined, Technical Research designed product specifications and turned them over in August. The parts were ordered and received into stock August 19th. Technical Research will work with Production when packaging begins, which is scheduled for September 2009. Graphic Aid for Math (Revisions) Technical Research worked with Project Leader to find possible alternative materials to use to 1) make the board from, and 2) to use with current or revised board. Suggested materials included rubberized cork material for the board and vinyl coated, thin gauge solid wire that might be used for a graphing material. Vendors were contacted to obtain samples of board material and wire was ordered for the Project Leader to evaluate. Samples of the various cork materials were found to be unsuitable for use in the board. The Project Leader and Technical Research worked together to re-design the board, keeping the rubber mat concept and also explored the possibility of making the board 2-sided for greater versatility. Technical Research created tooling drawings for two distinct rubber mats. These were approved by the Project Leader and turned over to the Purchasing Department in July. These drawings have been sent out to several vendors for bids. Once bids are received, the Project Leader and Technical 296

Research will review the feasibility of moving forward with a 2-sided design for this product from a cost standpoint. Work on this project is ongoing. Home Grown Video: Sensory Learning Kit DVD (Completed) Technical Research met with the Project Leader and developed product specifications for this latest of the Home Grown video series. Specifications were completed and turned over to Production in July. The DVD was produced and placed into stock in August. i-vu (Completed) This was essentially a pass-thru product. Technical Research monitored the progress of this product to make sure it was ordered and received. It was stocked October 2008. Jump Rope for Fitness Kit (Completed) This product contains a electronic Ropeless Jump Rope, three plastic beaded ropes that come in different length/color combinations, a competition style jump rope, anti-fatigue mat and both print and braille guidebooks. Following field-testing, Technical Research met with Project Leader and Accounting/Inventory Control Department to discuss product structure and replacement part requirements. Following this meeting, catalog and part numbers were requested. The Project Leader also turned over the items used in field-testing, along with a list containing the sources that items were obtained from. Technical Research contacted these vendors and verified/documented the specifications/ordering information. Technical Research initiated the inclusion of cautionary warning information addressing both strangulation hazards associated with ropes/playground equipment and advisory notice concerning obtaining a health checkup before beginning any physical fitness regimen to the kit. Specifications and bills of materials and production routings were established in June 2008. Product specifications were turned over to Production in July with production scheduled for November 2008 due to long lead times on one of the items placed into the kit. The JumpSnap Ropeless Jump Ropes arrived and the product was finally able to be packaged in December. Due to uncontrollable circumstances, the product was not released until January 2009. There were only a couple of minor problems in production; the most significant had to do with the amount of rope on the spools of ―guide rope.‖ The spools were specified to have exactly 500 feet, but as many as 10 percent of them had slightly less. This caused the actual production run to close short of the number of kits planned. The vendor of the rope was contacted to remedy this problem. The vendor sent a number of replacement spools to make up for the shortages encountered. Life Science Tactile Graphics Kit (Continued)

297

This product will be similar to the Basic Science Tactile Graphics Kit. Technical Research met with the Project Leader and Model Shop in 2008 to discuss the possibility of scanning the already produced thermoformed patterns. Technical Research proposed a method of scanning and electronically generating screen art vs. tracing by hand and laying it out by hand. A variation of this process of scanning the line drawings was used for graphics templates in the Flip-Over Books. Scanning of actual tactile forms may prove to be more difficult. These molds were made from basic sketches that have been heavily modified to suit the needs of the vacuum-forming process. Early in the development process, there was discussion about the possibility of large format, offset or some other method of printing directly on to the vinyl sheets vs. screen-printing. There will be approximately 56 finished sheets, produced in sixteen various 3 and 4-up patterns. Even using a screen-printing palate limited to three to four colors on each grouping or pattern, it would still require 48 to 64 separate screen-printing setups to produce the entire kit, and this would include black as one of the colors, further restricting the colors that could be used on any one sheet. It appeared that none of the alternative methods of print on the controlled shrink vinyl that APH uses on many of its products would have a positive outcome. Most problems had to do with poor print quality, scaling (compression or expansion) or lack of compatibility of the inks to the vinyl, specifically trying to offset print. During the development of this product, Technical Research had located a vendor that was interested in finding a solution to this problem. This vendor worked extensively with their ink suppliers and found an ink that was compatible with our vinyl. These tests were 100% successful. This process would not only open the door for the expanded use of color in this product, but also allow realistic photo images to be printed on vinyl. The decision was made to proceed with this production method. Preliminary tests on scanning of raised tactile images were completed in late 2008. After work was completed on the first 4-up panel, the file was sent out to a vendor to have several vinyl sheets printed to verify the accuracy in registering the art to the vacuum-form molds. The vendor was to use a flat bed printing system. This method to obtain proof sheets was selected because it was the process used to generate fieldtesting materials for Flip-Over Concept Books – LINE PATHS. The print accuracy on these sheets appeared acceptable, and very limited production quantities could be obtained. After receiving print copies back and attempts to form them, the sheets were found to have very significant errors. It appeared that the print image was both oversized and had skewing of certain elements of the file. After additional investigation, it was found that the printed sheets did not match a plotted clear overlay generated from the original art file. Material was obtained for the vendor to run a second print test. This second test was better than the first, but it still appeared to be slightly oversized. Additional investigation turned up two additional problems, first the scans were made from the original cardboard mockups, in the process of generating the final fiberglass production vacuum-form mold, there is a slight amount of shrinkage; second, a mistake was made when the art was expanded to compensate for the amount of shrinkage in the vacuum-forming process. This shrinkage factor is typically not factored in when working from the vacuum-form pattern and working backward. The art was matched to the completed vacuum-form mold and the correction made. This file was given to the vendor with additional vinyl and again printed. This last printing again displayed skewing problems and issues that appeared as if the vendor had manipulated the file, changing positions of many but not all components of the file. Use of the flat bed printing method can 298

no longer be recommended. Work on the scanning of the original prototype vacuum-form patterns from which the production art would be generated, began in the spring of 2009. After refining the process, Technical Research began the work of scanning and properly placing the scanned image into its correct location in the electronic file. Due to the size limitations of scanners available, patterns had to be broken down into four individual 8.5 inch by 11 inch sections and then be placed into a grid. Each scan was placed back in its original position on the grid/template. This was made more difficult because the prototype patterns were free hand made and had variances, some not adhering strictly to the established grid dimensions. Work on eight of the sixteen had been completed by Technical Research and turned over to the Project Leader by the end of June. The files provided to the Project Leader contain the scanned image, and tracings of the individual components that make up the item represented on the page. The Project Leader is able to ―click‖ on items and color them, selecting colors that are appropriate for the item represented on the page. The scanned images also show the location/placement of the braille tags on each page. The Project Leader can then correctly place the corresponding print information in the file. Upon completion, the background scan is removed. Work on the remaining eight patterns will progress as time allows, with anticipated turn over to the Project Leader by the end of September. Once the file for each pattern is completed, it will be plotted on clear film and matched to the actual production vacuum form before being released to the printer. Lighting Guide Kit (Completed) Technical Research monitored the first production run of the product into stock in January. However, sales for this product were held until the on-hand stock of the Variable Intensity Study Lamp was sold out. This product was made available for sale in March. Lighting Guide Manual, Large Print Lighting Guide Manual, Braille Listen and Think Level B (Complete) This item was an update of the product from cassette audio materials to CD audio materials. Technical Research worked with all production and production support areas to convert the recordings to CD format, to create new bills and routings in the APH computer system, and followed this item through the production process. This item was placed into stock in June Listen and Think Level C (Complete) This item was an update of the product from cassette audio materials to CD audio materials. Technical Research worked with all production and production support areas to convert the

299

recordings to CD format, to create new bills and routings in the APH computer system, and followed this item through the production process. This item was placed into stock in August. MathBuilders Unit 7 (Fractions) (Continued) Technical Research met with the Project Leader and an outside consultant to work out the basic components required for this product. This kit required creating two types of fractional teaching aids. One is a set of circles made of parts segmented into 1/8, 1/6, 1/4, 1/3, 1/2, and whole units. A vacuum-formed tray to facilitate assembling the circles will also be included. The second tray will be made with rows of removable rectangular pieces that are broken into 1/10, 1/8, 1/6, 1/4, 1/3, 1/2 units. The whole unit (1.0) is to be formed into the tray. Both types of teaching aids will have both large print and Braille numbering. Preliminary drawings for the major manufactured items were created and approved by the Project Leader. Technical Research worked with the Project Leader to lay out the Braille label sheets needed to label all of the fractional pieces. Technical Research created silk screens and had braille plates made for the label sheets. Technical Research worked with the production floor to have the sheets silk screened and Braille embossed. Technical Research contacted a die cutting vendor to make production dies and die cut the materials. A vendor was selected and made sample urethane fractional circles. These were cut from the backer boards they were shipped on using a band saw and placed in plastic zip lock bags for field-testing. The rectangular pieces for field-testing were made by Technical Research using the CNC router. It was decided to make the trays for the prototypes only out of machined ExCel using the CNC router. This avoided the need to have a vacuum form pattern made by the Model Shop and will help speed up the process for field-testing. The actual production trays will be vacuum formed out of white styrene. Work was started on final drawings and sizing of the two trays (one for the circles and one for the bars). Cutting drawings were completed on both the bar tray and the circle tray. ExCel for making the trays was ordered and received. Tray fabrication on the CNC router in Technical Research was completed. Material to be used for the 2-sided coins (yellow polyblend and blue veltex) was ordered and received. The coins were die-cut and packaged in zip lock bags. The die cut labels were the last item needed for field test samples. These were completed and the field test samples sent out for field testing. Field testing and evaluations were completed in January. Revisions to the product were completed in April. Technical Research is in-process of working with Purchasing to obtain quotes for the fraction bar pieces. Unfortunately, the circle fraction pieces were two of over 70 parts that had tooling destroyed in an October fire in the manufacturing plant (Tri-Plastics). Technical Research has worked with Purchasing and the vendor to make new tooling for these two components of this kit. Tooling was completed and approved for production in July. Technical Research will begin work on product specifications as time and departmental workload allow. MathBuilders Unit 8 (Data Collection, Graphing, and Probability/Statistics) (Completed)

300

Technical Research worked with the Project Leader to determine the basic parts of this product and created drawings for two trays and graphing pieces to go in this product. After field testing, Technical Research began developing product specifications, which were completed and turned over to Production in March 2009. Technical Research has followed the production of all the various parts though final packaging, which was completed the last week in August 2009. MaximEyes Video Magnifier Version 2.0 (Completed and continued) This was an upgrade to an existing product. Technical Research worked with the Project Leader, the vendor, and APH Purchasing Department to finalize the product run. The product was placed into stock and available for sale in July 2009. Work is ongoing on a cordless pen tracker. MiniBook (Continued) Initial field test results were received in early 2008. Review of the data noted interest in both types of binding (a mini-binder as well as spiral binding). Based on field test results, this project will be split into multiple products. The plastic mini-slate included in the kit is also being revised. Several field testers made recommendations for changes to the slate. These changes were extensive enough that a new mold would be required. Technical Research worked with the Operations Engineering Department to fabricate two runs of rapid prototyped parts for review by the field. After the first round of RPM prototypes a second series of changes were made to the part. This was accomplished simply by changing the design in the CAD file and sending the file out to a RPM facility to have parts made. This second series of parts was reviewed by the field and approved. Technical Research and the Purchasing Department have begun discussions with vendors to have a mold made based on the final design of the part. Technical Research will continue to work with the Project Leader and monitor the progress of this product. Newt: New Tools for use with FV/LMA (New) Technical Research met with the Project Leader to discuss this new product. It will include some items from existing products and purchased off the shelf items. Technical Research will begin looking at parts needed for prototypes as time becomes available. PATTER, Large Print w/CD & DVD (Completed) Technical Research worked with the Project Leader in developing product specifications and

301

turning them over to Production in late September. The first production run of this product was completed and placed into stock in February 2009. PATTER, Braille w/CD & DVD (Completed) Technical Research worked with the Project Leader in developing product specifications and turning them over to Production in late September. The first production run of this product was completed and placed into stock in February 2009. Pattern Matching Cards for Textured Beads (New) A ―Brainstorming‖ PDC meeting was held in mid-January. Dates were established up to product documentation at this meeting. Project Leader noted in the April New Products Meeting that the Model Shop had completed the tooling for this project. Technical Research is not actively working on this product at this time due to departmental workload. Picture Maker Accessories: Geometric Textured Shapes (Completed) Technical Research created CAD drawings for nine dies containing various shape/sized parts that are included in this kit. There was extensive research and development, specifying use of existing materials in conjunction with sixteen new materials for this product. Specifications were turned over to Production with production scheduled for February 2009. The dies and most of the materials had arrived and been approved for production by the end of April 2009. Production was successfully completed in July. Due to limits in available time among all departments and the fact the no significant issues developed during production, Technical Research tested an alternative method of conducting the ―Production Debriefing Meeting‖ that marks the completed phase of a products development. This test used the ―polling feature‖ of Outlook. An email was sent, requiring the recipient to ―vote‖ and/or ―respond‖ to any known issues. Outlook tracks these responses, which can then be sent back to the group. There were no responses indicating problems; this time saving ―virtual‖ meeting seemed to work and may be used again. Subsequent to the production of the kit and the de-briefing meeting the Project Leader noticed there were five parts packed in the kit of three different shapes (a circle, a doughnut, and an ―X‖) instead of the required six. A small pack of the three shapes was made and 230 kits that were in stock had the missing parts added and were re-stocked. The 170 kits already sold had the replacement parts mailed out to the customers on August 31. Technical Research facilitated and coordinated the repair of the existing kits, obtained a mailing list for the kits already sold, and coordinated the packing and mailing of the replacement parts for the kits already sold. Printing Guide (Continued) 302

This product will be a mechanical template to help teach printing skills. Technical Research designed and fabricated several versions for the Project Leader‘s review and produced ten each of the two preferred designs. Technical Research will work with the Project Leader to help design and fabricate tooling for this project as needed and will develop product specifications as final decisions are made. Currently the project has been moved back to the PARCing lot and is on hold. QWERTY Docking Station (Completed) This item was an accessory for the Braille +. It was processed through APH as a pass-through item. Technical Research worked with the Project Leader, Purchasing, Inventory, Warehousing, and Quality Assurance to see that this item was ordered, inspected upon receipt and placed into stock. This item was placed into stock in March. Battery for QWERTY Docking Station AC/DC Adapter for QWERTY Docking Station Case for QWERTY Docking Station RefreshaBraille 18 (Completed) This item was processed through APH as a pass-through item. Technical Research worked with the Project Leader, Purchasing, Inventory, Warehousing, and Quality Assurance to see that this item was ordered, inspected upon receipt and placed into stock. This item was placed into stock in January. SAM; Symbols and Meaning (Continued) The Project Leader held a ―Brainstorming‖ PDC meeting, presented the concepts of the product, and opened the floor for ideas on how to make some of the items in the kit. Some items originally discussed for the kit turned out to be impractical to manufacture and have been dropped from the original list, such as weighted cup(s) with removable handles (or weight wrap for use on cups), and weight wraps (for use on utensils, toothbrushes, hairbrushes). Technical Research met with Project Leader, Purchasing, and vendor to discuss the specific of several purchased items needed for this kit. These are a portable recording device (likely a mini-cassette or personal digital recorder), a custom-made bag made in three sizes and a collapsible mesh box (cloth). Remaining items are either stock APH items (such as Calendar Boxes or Small Work and Play Tray) or easily purchasable items like cloth and binders. These materials were obtained for field-testing. Technical Research provided assistance in producing, obtaining, and packaging these items. The kit is currently out for field-testing. Technical Research has no additional information to report at this time. 303

Sense of Science—Astronomy (Continued) There was a great deal of work between Technical Research, the Project Leader, and Model Shop to develop/document new production process for items for this product. This product is heavy in various standard and new production methods. Technical Research was involved with assisting with standard in-house methods and developing the tooling requirements for several new processes. Technical Research assisted with obtaining cutting dies, generating silk-screen tooling and production screens, and developing the tooling and production processes for items using vinyl printed in the offset process. Technical Research also generated CAD drawings for an expanded Carry Case. This is designed to have a clear view pocket, that holds a multi-color product insert on one panel and be screen-printed on a number of the other panels for easy identification of the case. Previous Sense of Science kits had multiple print overlays for each tactile. The subject matter was often broken into sub-parts. For this kit, the clear overlays, which are the main component of the Sense of Science products, will be limited to one print overlay and its corresponding clear tactile counterpart. With the possibility of printing the overlays using offset process, there is a greater range of both color and detail that will be available. Technical Research scanned the actual clear vacuum-formed sheets and generated graphics that included line drawings and fills that the Project Leader could work with to create final art that met the requirements for such a complex topic. These were turned over in early August. Testing for printing in the offset process directly onto clear vinyl is scheduled for early September. The vendor has worked with their ink suppliers, and feels confident in their ability to satisfy our requirements. The test will be a confirmation of the process, used for this kit and several others in development. Because of the time to develop new process, the Project Leader re-established dates on the production timeline. Specifications are currently due in December 2009. Sense of Science: Astronomy Large Type Manual Sense of Science: Astronomy Braille Manual Sense of Science: Astronomy Worksheets The Project Leader decided to make several components part of the kit and separately available as catalog items. This product will consist of both printed and braille embossed Worksheets packaged together as a set. The print Worksheets will be produced with standard methods. Technical Research proposed using the interpoint 55 embossing machine because of its ability to have alphanumeric identifiers placed into the sheets, eliminating the need for plate fabrication for the braille. After some preliminary testing, the Project Leader felt that this would be an important feature to have. Technical Research worked with the Braille Transcription department, providing instructions on how to create, format and insert the identifiers into the braille document. Sense of Science: Astronomy Quick Fact Cards (New) 304

The Project Leader decided to make several components part of the kit and separately available as catalog items. Based on results on experimentation with offset printing directly onto vinyl, Technical Research proposed having these cards printed on vinyl and then cold form embossing with plates on the clamshell presses. This printing method would allow for realistic photo print images on a medium (white vinyl) that would be extremely durable. The vendor currently printing on vinyl confirmed that they could print two-sided or backed up sheets. Several 8.5‖ x 11‖ sheets were taken to Braille and embossed in order to determine the quality of the braille. This material embossed extremely well with text only. The Project Leader decided on using this method of production for the Quick Fact Cards in the product. Sound Adapted Tangle Balls (New) Technical Research met with the Project Leader to discuss this new product. It will contain off the shelf items, print and braille, and an existing part already produced by APH. Technical Research is beginning work on specs and will try to have a specification meeting in September 2009. SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine Issue 6 (Completed) This product was originally scheduled for production in February 2009. There were a number of delays in getting this product completed, primarily because of the workload in Production areas. There were unfortunately some errors made during production that caused some stoppages and re-working of product. The braille file could not be found when production was about to begin. Essentially the whole braille file had to be re-created. Some portions completed by a previous transcriber were found and were incorporated into the file, which did save some time. Other materials were scanned and converted to complete the file. The scanning of materials likely caused an additional problem that was not found until the books had been bound. There was originally to be a graphics page collated into the book. Without notes from the original braille file, this graphics page was not noted. The page had text on it instead of just being a ―placeholder‖ page with only a braille number. This threw the collation off. The Project Leader stated that the page was essential, requiring all books to be unbound, the graphics page inserted, and rebound. Specifications called for the graphics page to be run 2-up, in order to cut in half the run time on the production floor. The Production Supervisor turned over one of the two plates to the Project Leader. This resulted in the pages being run just 1-up. As the activity pages were being collated into packs, the Project Leader found that some vacuum-formed activity pages were poorly formed. Initially the Project Leader called for the sheets to be re-run, but after culling through the formed sheets, only a small percentage were found to be unacceptable. Production was completed, and the product was put into stock in May.

305

SQUID, Tactile Activities Magazine Issue 7 (New) The Project Leader asked to set up a schedule for Issue 7 at the spec meeting for Issue 6. A catalog number was requested and the product has been placed on the production timeline. Technical Research will design a work schedule to develop product specifications for this product. Step by Step: An Interactive Guide to Mobility (New) Technical Research met with the Project Leader to discuss the various parts of this product and to get an idea of the time involved to produce product specifications. Once all the parts in the kit are finalized, Technical Research will develop product specifications and conduct a specification turn over meeting. Sudoku Partner 6x6 (Continued) Technical Research worked with the Project Leader and the Model Shop to create drawings for use on the CNC router to make patterns needed for molds to make field test prototypes. After reviewing several designs of the part the Project Leader requested another series of changes and added features to the part. The engineer in the Model Shop made a small test pattern to provide the Project Leader with samples. The samples were approved and the Model Shop had RPM parts made of a single cell and poured multiple copies of the RPM part to make molds for both the 6x6 and a 9x9 Sudoku cell version. Technical Research met with the Project Leader and Model Shop in June to discuss revisions to the product following field testing. Substantial redesign was required, with most of this work falling to the Model Shop. Technical Research has little involvement at this time. The 9x9 version of the Sudoku partner product is being reconsidered. The 9x9 version will not be started on until the tooling for the 6x6 version is complete. The 9x9 version may or may not be made. Technical Research will begin work on product specifications as details become available and will hold on product specifications for the 9x9 pending a decision on whether or not to move forward with this version of the product. Super-Sized File Pocket (New) This is a free-standing folder suitable in size to hold standard (11.5x11) Braille. This project was turned over to Technical Research in June. Technical Research created a concept drawing of the product and worked with Purchasing in July to obtain vendor quotes. The first quotes arrived in August with the last quote expected in September. Following selection of a vendor, Technical Research will monitor this product through its completion and availability for sale. This should be early in fiscal 2010. 306

Tactile Tangrams (New) The Project Leader called an initial BS-PDC meeting in September 2008. In August 2009, the Project Leader contacted Technical Research about recommendations to run the textbook on the Interpoint 55 embossing machine. This machine has the ability to merge simple raised dot graphics with braille text. Technical Research generated a sample Tangram and ran several samples on the machine for the Project Leader to evaluate. If the Project Leader decides that this is an acceptable method to convey the Tangram concept it will eliminate the need for raised line embossing with plates and reduce the complexity and cost of the product. If the method is found acceptable, Technical Research will work with Braille Transcription to instruct on how to create tactile images and import them into braille text documents. This product currently has specifications scheduled for June 2010. Tactile Science Posters/Puzzles (New) This product is not being actively worked on at this time because of difficulty in obtaining printing rights for the posters. If these rights cannot be worked out, or if posters from another source cannot be located, the product may be abandoned. Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit (Continued) A PDC meeting was held on March 2008. The Project Leader presented an overview of product and established tentative timeline with specifications scheduled for September 2008, a pilot run set for January 2009 and production March 2009. At a July PDC, the Project Leader provided an overview of what would be the finished product following field-testing. Dates on the product timeline were moved out, with completion of the product in early 2010. At this meeting, the Project Leader solicited help in resolving a problem with the ―grassy area‖ sections used to build the community layout. The self-adhesive Veltex tends to lift or separate from the polyethylene substrate along the edges. Technical Research offered several solutions including having the edges sewn and using a lighter duty Velcro hook. Vendors of alternative materials have been contacted in an effort to find a material that can be used instead of Veltex. This material does have to be compatible with hook Velcro. Samples of several promising materials are expected to arrive for evaluation. Technical Research will begin on specifications as product details are finalized and as time allows. Talking Protractor (New)

307

The concept of this product is to develop a protractor that provides auditory feedback in degrees, with potential accuracy of 0.5 degree. The device will likely consist of two arms with a center pivot point. A miniature rotary optical encoder will be attached at the pivot point in such a manner that real time feedback readings in degrees from 0 to 180 are possible. Optical encoders have been obtained and preliminary testing is underway. Due to workload in Technical Research, co-op engineering students from the University of Louisville have been asked to assist in the development of the arm assembly to which the encoder is attached. Once a working prototype is assembled, it will be given to the Technology Research Department in order that they can begin developing specific interfaces and software. The longrange plan is to make this device work in a wireless configuration. Decisions on what type/development of a specific wireless method will likely take some time evaluate. Tasha Tadpole’s Puzzle Book (Continued) The Project Leader had re-established time lines for this item. Work on product specifications that was anticipated in late spring to early summer 2008 was changed to July 2009. This was moved to a lower priority to allow more efforts to be concentrated on projects nearer their deadlines for completion of specifications. This product is currently behind schedule due to introduction of extra components that will be part of the kit and available separately as catalog item. Technical Research has been developing new manufacturing processes and working with vendors to create new components, while documenting these process via the product specifications. The Tasha Tadpole Puzzle Book was initially to be produced in the same manner as the Squire ToAD Puzzle Book. After evaluation of feedback from the field, the Project Leader decided to make this book with an ―easel‖ style cover. Technical Research contacted a couple of vendors currently making similar covers for APH from 0.055 inch white polyethylene and clear polycarbonate. This puzzle book has presented unique challenge to produce because of the 18 x 12 inch landscape page size. The page size introduced two problems in attempting to design the cover with these materials. The 18 inch width made finding standard ring configurations difficult and getting the cover to stand upright without sagging because of both the number of sheets (weight) and extended span to accommodate the 12 inch height of the page. Vendors have reported that samples will be made available by September for evaluation. If acceptable, work can begin on product specifications. Tasha Tadpole Practitioner’s Guide, Braille w/CD (Continued) After field-testing, it was decided to add another manual for multiple handicapped children in both print and braille. This was moved to a lower priority to allow more efforts to be concentrated on projects nearer their deadlines for completion of specifications. The Project Leader had re-established time lines for this item to July 2009. This product is running behind schedule due to development issues related to the Object Cards and easel binder for the Tadpole Puzzle Book. There is a print test scheduled in early September that should bring

308

conclusion the printing of the Object Cards, and samples of the binder is due any time. Work on specifications can begin after these issues are resolved. Tasha Tadpole Practitioner’s Guide, Print w/CD (Continued) After field-testing, it was decided to add another manual for multiply-handicapped children in both print and braille. This was moved to a lower priority to allow more efforts to be concentrated on projects nearer their deadlines for completion of specifications. The Project Leader had re-established time lines for this item to July 2009. This product is running behind schedule due to development issues related to the Object Cards and easel binder for the Tadpole Puzzle Book. There is a print test scheduled in early September that should bring conclusion the printing of the Object Cards, and samples of the binder is due any time. Work on specifications can begin after these issues are resolved. Tasha Tadpole’s Object Cards (New) In February 2009, the Project Leader advised Technical Research of a decision to have as part of the kit and available separately a set of Object Cards. This set would be manufactured in a manner similar those made for ToAD, though there are only 24 cards (six cards on four sheets) and they are larger. They would be printed single-sided, full color/non-bleed on 12pt C2S stock and laminated on both sides with non-glare lamination. The sheets are kiss-cut with the cards remaining attached to the sheets but allowing for easy removal. Tasha Tadpole Light-Box Overlays (New) In April, the Project Leader contacted Technical Research about the possibility of creating clear overlays based on the Object Cards. Technical Research gave the Project Leader several options; including offset printing directly onto the clear vinyl. Printing on clear vinyl had not been tested at this time, but printing on the white controlled shrink vinyl had already proven successful. Technical Research contacted the vendor to discuss this process. The vendor setup a meeting with a specialist from their ink supplier to discuss the requirements. Examples of current overlays and a Lightbox were taken to demonstrate exact requirements of both opaqueness and translucence. A specific page from the Object Card set was chosen as an appropriate test to run. It has both a photo of a real object (an individuals‘ face) and sections that have a black background which would need to be opaque or having very little light come through. The material was obtained, file provided and a tentative print date in early September has been scheduled. Following completion of the test, Technical Research will work with the vendor, specifying the exact requirements for the complete set. TADPOLE Report of Visual Skills (10 pack) (New) 309

The Project Leader has added this pack of ten ―consumable‖ documents as a separately available catalog item. This will be a four-page document, printed full color, no bleed on one sheet of folded 11 x 17 inch 80# paper. Test Ready (Continued) Technical Research met several times with the Project Leader in late 2008 to try to establish the basic structure of this series of products. Part numbers were requested. However, the Project Leader introduced a new part to the kit and new part numbers had to be requested and product specifications re-written. Specifications for 4 catalogue items (Math + Book 7 Kits) were written and turned over in June. At the specifications meeting several changes were introduced that resulted in having to re-work the products‘ specifications, bills of material, and job routings. Technical Research has continued to monitor this product and to solve problems as they arise in the production phase of the development of this product. With the successful completion of these four items, the final specifications will be used as a template for the remaining items associated with this series of products. This series of products numbers greater than 100 items. Work will be ongoing on these items for the foreseeable future. Textured Sorting Circles and Shapes (Continued) Technical Research had completed a CAD drawings for the cutting dies needed for this item. These drawings were sent to vendors for quotation in January. Decisions on materials and production methods were ongoing in early 2009. Finding vendors that can manufacture materials to the specifications required has been difficult. Early on, it appeared that the tolerances in manufacturing products with these materials might exceed the manufacturing capabilities of APH. After additional evaluation and experimentation with these materials, it was decided to keep production in-house. The initial plan was to have textures vacuumformed into clear vinyl and then laminated to flexible magnetic material. These sheets would then be kiss-cut leaving the parts to be easily removed from the sheet. After extensive research, finding flexible magnetic material pre-laminated with a color that would be deemed acceptable by the Project Leader proved impossible. There was another option of print the color required on the white-faced magnetic material. This option was found to be very costly. Another idea discussed was to emboss sheets of transparent vinyl sheets with adhesive backing pre-applied such as used in several Feel N‘ Peel products. Discussion with the vendor that embosses the Feel N‘ Peel Stickers confirmed what Technical Research suspected, that the textures were too high and too complicated of patterns to be embossed in this configuration. During this time, Technical Research investigated whether this transparent colored vinyl could be obtained from a vendor in sheet sizes large enough to vacuum-form without the adhesive backing pre-applied. Samples of three colors, red, blue, and yellow were obtained, vacuum-formed and laminated to the white-faced magnetic material. The Project Leader found the look to be satisfactory. Another component in the kit was printed braille 310

labels. To produce these, it was decided to screen-print, then vacuum-form into white vinyl. The vinyl is laminated to the un-faced flexible magnetic sheet and then die-cut. A mockup was made the laminated the vinyl sheet to the magnetic material in order to test the adhesion between materials between temperature extremes. Specifications were turned over to Production on March 2009. The last of the four dies arrived in early April, completing the tooling. A Pilot Run was scheduled for July, with production of the remainder in August. A backup in the production areas caused the Pilot to be started late. Work began in August on various components needed for this kit. At this time, it appears the completion of the Pilot Run will be in September. Technical Research will continue to monitor this product through its first full production run. The Best for a Nest (Continued) Technical Research met with the Project Leader and the Model Shop several times to discuss how best to design prototypes. Technical Research worked with the Project Leader and outside vendors to order the materials needed to build the prototypes. One material needed was obtained by Technical Research at no cost. While working on another project with the Educational Aids supervisor, Technical Research noticed scrap pieces of a material needed for fabrication of the storyboard for this project. Technical Research asked for and was given the scrap to use in this project‘s prototypes. Options for fabricating the storyboard pieces were explored. Translation of the storybook was started. This book was designed to fit the production capacity of the in-house IGEN color printer. Samples of paper were obtained to make field test copies on this machine. Field test copies were completed and sent out in March. Field test results are in the process of being evaluated. Technical Research continues to work on this project and monitor this project‘s progress. The Boy and the Wolf Storybook, Moving Ahead Series (Continued) Technical Research completed specifications and turned them over to production in July. With the huge amount of work on the production floor, this book is scheduled for production in February 2010. Technical Research will follow production and give any help required. The Boy and the Wolf, Braille Reader’s Guide (Continued) Technical Research turned over product specifications in July at the same time as for the storybook. The Braille Reader‘s Guide will be produced at the same time as the storybook. 30-Love Sound Adapted Tennis (Completed)

311

Technical Research completed and turned over product specifications in October 2008 and monitored the first production run of the product into stock in March 2009. Transparent CCTV Ruler - Clear (Completed) Following a meeting to discuss possible revisions to tooling from field-testing, the co-Project Leaders provided notice that a decision was made that no change in layout was needed but a second set of CCTV Rulers in clear vinyl would be made. Catalog and associated part numbers were requested along with changes in description to reflect two products were initiated on the same day. The kit will have six rulers; one marked in 1/8 inches, one in ¼ inches, one in ½ inches, one in 1 inch, one in 10 mm and one in 0.5 cm increments. Rulers will be screenprinted eight-up on existing 0.020 inch clear rigid vinyl with both standard and metric rulers die cut into the finished size with the same cutting die. This is the same die used for producing field-testing materials. Specifications were completed and turned over in June 2008 with production scheduled for August. In August, the shipment of 0.020 inch clear vinyl used to manufacture the rulers was rejected due to the vinyl being frosted instead of clear. The replacement shipment of material arrived in September and production was completed in October. The production ―debriefing meeting‖ which is the official conclusion in the product development process was held in November 2008. Transparent CCTV Ruler - Yellow (Completed) This project was originally started in August 2007; work began on designing a set of rulers in four different increments for field review. Technical Research submitted sample pieces for review by the Project Leader that same month. Art generated by Technical Research used to generate film needed to make the two silk screens for production of the CCTV rulers in the recently completed darkroom. This item was the first production item made in the new darkroom. Technical Research obtained sheets of transparent yellow vinyl from stock then setup, silk-screened, die-cut and bagged in sets the CCTV rulers. Twelve sets were delivered to the Project Leaders in early December for use in field-testing. Additional sets of rulers were requested and Technical Research was able to provide two sets held as samples and was able to track down additional material that was used to produce four additional sets for the Project Leader in December. Following an April 2008 meeting to discuss possible revisions to tooling following field-testing, the co-Project Leader provided notice that a decision was made that no change in layout was needed, but that a second set of CCTV Rulers in clear vinyl would be made (see above). Catalog and associated part numbers were requested along with changes in description to reflect two products were initiated on the same day. The kit will have six rulers; one marked in 1/8 inches, one in 1/4 inches, one in 1/2 inches, one in 1 inch, one in 10 mm and one in 0.5 cm increments. Rulers will be screen-printed eight-up on existing 0.020‖ transparent yellow rigid vinyl with both standard and metric rulers die cut to the finished size with the same cutting die. This is the same die used for producing field-testing materials. Specifications were completed and turned over in June 2008 with production scheduled for 312

August. In August, the shipment of 0.020 inch yellow vinyl was rejected due to visual blemishes in surface. The shipment of replacement material arrived in September and production was completed in October. The production ―debriefing meeting‖ which is the official conclusion in the product development process was held in November 2008. Treks (Continued) Technical Research met with the Project Leader and Model Shop in June 2009 to discuss revisions to tooling. Technical Research investigated whether minor changes could be made to the urethane mold for that game board. The change involved placing a very slight curve on the top of the recessed grid on the top of the board. The vendor felt that this detail would increase the difficulty in the manufacturing process and possibly the detail would be lost anyway. Technical Research also checked to determine when the urethane vendor might be able to complete the mold from the drawings provided and provide sample parts. As of August, the Treks board is currently in the tooling stage at the vendor. This item had been moved back because of the backlog of tooling needing to be replaced for existing products destroyed in the fire at their plant. Technical Research made a drawing of the three game pieces and had the Model Shop review. After some discussion about having these turned from stock Delrin and looking over the drawings, the Model Shop felt two of the pieces would be difficult to manufacture. New pieces were created by the Model Shop; these essentially have the ends fabricated in mirrored, either with a convex and concave end. New drawings were created to reflect these changes and given to the Purchasing Department in August. The Purchasing Department is currently contacting vendors for quotes. Technical Research has had several conversations with the Project Leader about a game box. Until March, no boxes in inventory met the specifications laid out by the Project Leader. There were several products in development that also needing shipping/storage type boxes. Technical Research analyzed the requirements for each and adjusted dimensions to come up with one box to work with all products. This multi-product box will be used for Treks, with a custom insert to separate and hold the game board and other components securely in position. The revised tooling for the game board, game pieces and insert for the box should all be completed sometime in late 2009 or early 2010. Tri-Fold Board (Completed) Technical Research monitored the progress of this item through production. This item was placed into stock in June. Turbo 6 Talking Battery Charger, English Version (Completed) Technical Research developed product specifications and turned them over to Production in February 2009. When the English units were received, they were rejected and sent back to the 313

vendor to correct a problem found. A sample was sent in and approved by APH. The new shipment was received in August. Technical Research worked with Production to get the product packaged and placed into stock August 20th. Turbo 6 Talking Battery Charger, Spanish Version (Completed) This product will go into stock at the same time. The shipment of the Spanish versions were accepted, but not packaged and placed into stock until we had the English in stock as well. Turtle and Rabbit Storybook (New) Technical Research has worked with the Project Leader in getting the braille translation completed for the storybook pages. Technical Research is also working with the Graphics Designer in making sure the print lines and braille lines on the pages match up correctly. Technical Research will begin product specifications very shortly. Turtle and Rabbit, Braille Reader’s Guide (New) Technical Research met with the Project Leader and has taken the guide down for braille translation, which has already been completed. Technical Research will develop product specifications on the reader‘s guide at the same time as for the storybook. U.S. & Canada Basic Atlas (New) The Model Shop had already begun working on vacuum-form patterns when they realized that they did not leave any space between the four patterns on each sheet. The Model Shop asked if a cutting die could be made to split the four sections. While this would be possible, there could be a problem with the sheets cleanly separating, specifically at the corners were the cutting die rule would be seamed. This type of cutting die would also have to have square corners. Technical Research asked if the current vacuum-form patterns could be adjusted for a 1/8‖ gap between pages instead of the standard 1/4‖. After some discussion, the Model Shop concluded that this would be possible. Technical Research confirmed with the die vendor that a production cutting die could be made to separate the sheets in the manufacturing process that would meet standard product guidelines. This means that the Model Shop would not have to rework the vacuum form patterns already created. Prototype pieces are being fabricated for field testing. There is no additional information to report at this time. Verbal View of Office 2007 (Continued)

314

No information to report at this time. Verbal View of Office Ribbon Bar (Formerly: Verbal View of Fluent User Interface) (Continued) Technical Research informed at the August 2009 Technology Research Meeting that the product would officially have its name changed and that tooling should be completed by September. Catalog and associated part numbers were requested and provided to Project Leader. Since this is a standard software product, specifications can quickly put into place. Tentative specification completion date will be September 2009. Verbal View of Windows Vista (Completed) Technical Research completed product specifications and turned them over in September 2008. There were software issues that prevented the finalizing of tooling. The problem reported to be corrected, and turned over to Production in mid June 2009. Production department reported that the first production sample was rejected by Technology Research because of file errors. A second sample was turned over on June 22, and subsequently approved. Following approval, production began on the same day and completed on the next. The product was stocked in late June. VIPs Growing My Way Part 2 (Completed) This was another product from the VIP series. Technical Research monitored the first order of this into stock in October 2008. v-File Vision Portfolio (Continued) Technical Research met with the Project Leader and consultant in December and again in February to begin defining what the product would be in an attempt to set goals for the research portion of the product development time lines. Technical Research met with them in April to discuss the binding of the print matter and a system of tabs/folders for organizing the materials. Technical Research has begun work on an outline document in an attempt to establish the rudiments of the project. The name for this product has been changed from ―Personal Vision Portfolio‖ to ―v-File Vision Portfolio.‖ What Is It? (New)

315

This project is a series of cards with clues printed on one side and the answer in print and in braille on the other. The clues will be given in braille in a separate booklet. Technical Research worked with the Project Leader to design a layout template. This template was sent to the graphics designer to use for layout of the print. This same layout was used for Braille Translation to position the braille answers for the cards. Proof copies of the braille and of the print files were checked using a registration guide created by Technical Research. All items were in register. The plates and print files were taken to Large Type for prototype production. Prototypes were produced and sent out for field testing. Field test results were evaluated in June. There will be some minor changes needed that will impact tooling. Technical Research is working to follow up on tooling changes. Color for the stock op paper used in this product was also finalized. The cards will be printed on a salmon colored stock. Technical Research is working to collect information to begin specifications for this product. Wilson Reading System (Continued) This product has grown into 29 individual products. Technical Research has worked very closely with the Project Leader to determine how the items would be arranged in order to request catalog numbers. As of this time for the Braille parts there are: Student Kit One, which will contain the Student Reader One (already in stock), Student Workbook One A, Student Workbook One B, and Supplemental Worksheets One. Student Kit Two, which will contain Student Reader Two (already in stock), Student Workbook Two A, Student Workbook Two B, and Supplemental Worksheets Two. Student Kit Three, which will contain Student Reader Three (already in stock), Student Workbook Three A, Student Workbook Three B, and Supplemental Worksheets Three. And in Large Print there are: Student Kit One, which will contain the Student Reader One, Student Workbook One A, Student Workbook One B. Student Kit Two, which will contain Student Reader Two, Student Workbook Two A, Student Workbook Two B. Student Kit Three, which will contain Student Reader Three, Student Workbook Three A, Student Workbook Three B. In addition to the student parts there are: Print/Braille Cards Set, Print/Braille Magnetic Tiles Set, Magnetic Journal, Teacher‘s Kit Large Print, and Teacher‘s Kit Braille. Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Kit One (Completed) After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September. The Student Kit includes the Student Reader One, Student Workbook One A, and Student Workbook One B. Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Reader One (Completed) 316

After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September. Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook One A (Completed) After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided that since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September. Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook One B (Completed) After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided that since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September. Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Kit Two (Completed) After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided that since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September. The Student Kit includes the Student Reader Two, Student Workbook Two A, and Student Workbook Two B. Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Reader Two (Completed) After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided that since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September.

317

Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook Two A (Completed) After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided that since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September. Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook Two B (Completed) After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided that since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September. Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Kit Three (Completed) After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided that since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September. The Student Kit includes the Student Reader Three, Student Workbook Three A, and Student Workbook Three B. Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Reader Three (Completed) After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided that since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September. Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook Three A (Completed) After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided that since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product

318

specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September. Wilson Reading System Large Print Student Workbook Three B (Completed) After meeting with the Project Leader in June, it was decided that since the print was just being reformatted to 18 point type, we would try and get product specifications developed so this could get onto production schedule for completing by September 2009. Product specifications were developed and turned over to Production in August. Plans are to have this in stock by the end of September. Wilson Reading System: Print/Braille Sound Cards Set (New) There were some preliminary meetings with Project Leader in early 2009, but at an August meeting, revisions/improvements to the product were discussed in detail. Technical Research began layout work on the sets of cards that incorporate larger and consistently sized font for the cards. Technical Research made recommendations that would make this easier to accomplish. Proposed changes include changing the orientation of the type to horizontal instead of the vertically orientated Wilson cards. Another change would be to make the cards slightly larger than the current Wilson cards in order that the longest words would properly fit at the desired font size, and Lay the cards out on an 11 x 11.75 inch sheet size so they could be manufactured in the most productive fashion. The Project Leader was agreeable to all of these recommendations. Technical Research also proposed using stock colors of 100# index stock for the various groups of cards. Samples were obtained from inventory and provided to the Project Leader. The Project Leader found these to be satisfactory, following the same concept of the Wilson system. Technical Research will begin the process of creating a print/braille placement guide that fits within a finished cards outline. Once the template is completed, work will begin enter that data for the individual sheets. This data will then be provided to Braille Tooling along with a placement template to generate plates that will be used to emboss the printed sheets. The amount of work to satisfy all requirements for these components is extensive and will likely take until at least November 2009 to complete. These materials will be field-tested and Technical Research will work with production departments to manufacture these items. Wilson Reading System: Print/Braille Magnetic Tiles (New) Because of the complexity in manufacturing this product, the Project Leader met with Technical Research in March, to begin the development process for this component of the Wilson Reading System. This was in advance of other separately available components of the Wilson System. This meeting was to provide the requirements of the product and solicit possible manufacturing methods. The product will consist of print/braille cards with a magnetic 319

backing for use with the Wilson Magnetic Journal. Technical Research had been recently experimenting with laminating screen-printed/vacuum-formed vinyl sheets to flexible magnetic material and recommended this as a possible solution. A mockup was put together, and provided to the Project Leader, who subsequently approved this as an acceptable method for manufacturing the tiles. The Project Leader provided a list, broken into three groupings of tiles required for the kit. These are consonants, vowels, and welded sounds. There are both uncontracted and contracted cards in each of the three groupings. The sizes of the cards are based on the content of the individual card with letter(s) in a 30-point font size dictating the width; and print (top) above braille (bottom) determining the height of the cards. The cards fall into two sizes: 1 x 1 inch and 1.25 x 1 inch, and are mixed randomly within the layouts for each of the three groups. Each group has a specific color for its background. Technical Research developed the layout that reflects the exact location of print and braille lettering within a cutting die grid that represents the size of the finished tiles. The separation of this layout is used to create the silk-screen tooling, braille pin layout for the Model Shop on the vacuum-form tooling, and generation of the three unique cutting dies required for different groupings. The Project Leaders‘ choices for background colors for the three groupings were not available in the current inventory of inks. Technical Research worked with Purchasing to obtain sample inks based on Pantone choices provided by the Project Leader. After samples were received, test printings were generated to confirm the correctness to the Pantones selected. These were approved and additional amounts of these inks have been obtained in order to produce field-testing materials. The magnetic backing material for the tiles was originally to be laminated to the screen-printed vacuum-formed vinyl using double-sided tape applied at APH. This manufacturing method is currently being used on another product. This process is very labor intensive on the production floor. Technical Research contacted the vendor of the flexible magnetic material and inquired if they could provide the material with adhesive pre-applied. The vendor responded that they could, also providing samples, which were then thoroughly tested to ensure proper adhesion, even through extremely hot and cold conditions. This material will be obtained with adhesive applied to produce field-testing materials. Technical Research hopes to have the necessary tooling in place and work with Production to manufacture field testing materials by October 2009. Woodcock - Johnson III, Student Braille Edition (Continued) There had been several PDC meetings throughout late 2008 through early 2009, with additional requirements being introduced at each of these meetings. Items that are part of the kit and available separately as catalog items are listed below. Decisions on how to produce various components of the product, each needing to be manufactured in a non-standard method pushed the production timeline back. During the development process, one of the items that has taken the longest time to resolve is the ―Scoring‖ CD for the kit. This component will have the longest pre-production time line for this kit, but is essential for using the kit. After much effort, the Project Leader was finally able to reach an agreement with the publisher, allowing this item to be made in-house. Technical Research continued to gather information and develop specifications as information became available. Technical Research 320

worked with the Project Leader to develop a print page template to assist in layout of test book pages. This template was designed to match print information with braille line spacing of a standard 11.5 x 11 inch page. After several revisions, this was completed in November 2008. The Project Leader initially provided files for the test pages to Braille Translation in June 2007. In January, with the content thought to be finalized, the administrative assistant from Technical Research worked with the manufacturing specialist to begin entering the print data and placing it in the specific location required for each of the 304 test pages. The administrative assistant‘s knowledge of braille was essential in matching the correct braille and print information. In late February, changes to content and other components previously not included in the kit were introduced. Print layouts for the entire test were completed in a 2-1/2 week time span even with approximately 10% of the print layout needing to be re-worked due to late revisions in the product. Once completed, print files were given to Braille Production in order to have the complete set of test pages run. Each of the print pages was hand embossed by Technical Research to verify print and braille registration. Ten pages needed minor corrections to print locations. Finalized files were turned over to the Purchasing Manager in order to send out for bids about the time that specifications were being finalized. A specification meeting was held in late March, with an agreed production date of September 2009. Because of both the complexity and number of items required for this product, many of the sub-components had earlier completion dates. There have been two re-writes of specifications following the ―turn-over‖ of specifications to Production due to incomplete tooling prior to the meeting. Inaccurate page counts provided for manuals and test books necessitated having to change binding and other production methods. By July, several components were either completed or in process on the production floor. Technical Research will continue to monitor this product through its first production run. Woodcock-Johnson Woodcock-Johnson Woodcock-Johnson Woodcock-Johnson III, III, III, III, Print Test Record Examinee Braille Test Book – Standard Battery Examinee Braille Test Book – Extended Battery Shape Recognition Test (3 Pack) Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books (Continued) Technical Research worked with the Project Leader and Braille Production in getting prototype samples of labels in contracted and uncontracted braille run together for the Sunshine Kit 2 books and sent out for field testing. Testing was completed in March 2009 with favorable results. Technical Research met with the Project Leader and in discussing things further, a decision was made to offer these as separate sets in either contracted or uncontracted kits. Therefore, this product has become 16 individual catalog items. Sunshine Kit 1 Contracted Braille, Sunshine Kit 1 Uncontracted Braille, Sunshine Kit 2 Contracted Braille, Sunshine Kit 2 Uncontracted Braille, Twig Kit 1 Contracted Braille, Twig Kit 1 Uncontracted Braille, Twig Kit 2 Contracted Braille, Twig Kit 2 Uncontracted Braille. Each kit will contain a set of the books selected for that group and sets of labels in either contacted or uncontracted form. There are Print and Braille Instruction Sheets containing information about the books, how to build a 321

database for students, and how to attach the labels onto the storybook pages for the TBVI teacher. In addition to the eight full kits, there will be eight sets of just the Braille Labels in either Contracted or Uncontracted form. Technical Research has developed product specifications for Sunshine Kits 1 and 2, Contracted and Uncontracted. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine Kit 1 Contracted Braille (Continued) Technical Research developed mini-specifications in order for Braille to start producing the Braille label packs, which were turned over in July. Production is working on the Braille label packs. Technical Research completed full product specifications and turned them over in August. Production is working on having this product completed and in stock by the end of September. Technical Research continues to monitor production as things progress. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine 1 Contracted Braille Pack (Continued) Technical Research developed mini-specifications in order for Braille to start producing the Braille label packs, which were turned over in July. Production is working on the Braille label packs. Technical Research completed full product specifications and turned them over in August. Production is working on having this product completed and in stock by the end of September. Technical Research continues to monitor production as things progress. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine Kit 2 Uncontracted Braille (Continued) Technical Research developed mini-specifications in order for Braille to start producing the Braille label packs, which were turned over in July. Production is working on the Braille label packs. Technical Research completed full product specifications and turned them over in August. Production is working on having this product completed and in stock by the end of September. Technical Research continues to monitor production as things progress. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine 2 Uncontracted Braille Pack (Continued) Technical Research developed mini-specifications in order for Braille to start producing the Braille label packs, which were turned over in July. Production is working on the Braille label packs. Technical Research completed full product specifications and turned them over in August. Production is working on having this product completed and in stock by the end of September. Technical Research continues to monitor production as things progress. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine Kit 2 Contracted Braille (Continued)

322

Technical Research developed mini-specifications in order for Braille to start producing the Braille label packs, which were turned over in July. Production is working on the Braille label packs. Technical Research completed full product specifications and turned them over in August. Production is working on having this product completed and in stock by the end of September. Technical Research continues to monitor production as things progress. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine 2 Contracted Braille Pack (Continued) Technical Research developed mini-specifications in order for Braille to start producing the Braille label packs, which were turned over in July. Production is working on the Braille label packs. Technical Research completed full product specifications and turned them over in August. Production is working on having this product completed and in stock by the end of September. Technical Research continues to monitor production as things progress. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine Kit 2 Uncontracted Braille (Continued) Technical Research developed mini specifications in order for Braille to start producing the Braille label packs, which were turned over in July. Production is working on the Braille label packs. Technical Research completed full product specifications and turned them over in August. Production is working on having this product completed and in stock by the end of September. Technical Research continues to monitor production as things progress. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Sunshine 2 Uncontracted Braille Pack (Continued) Technical Research developed mini-specifications in order for Braille to start producing the Braille label packs, which were turned over in July. Production is working on the Braille label packs. Technical Research completed full product specifications and turned them over in August. Production is working on having this product completed and in stock by the end of September. Technical Research continues to monitor production as things progress. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig Kit 1 Contracted Braille (Continued) This collection of books is currently in Braille Translation, and as soon as translation is complete, Technical Research will finish product specifications and turn them over to Production. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig 1 Contracted Braille Pack (Continued)

323

This collection of books is currently in Braille Translation, and as soon as translation is complete, Technical Research will finish product specifications and turn them over to Production. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig Kit 2 Uncontracted Braille (Continued) This collection of books is currently in Braille Translation, and as soon as translation is complete, Technical Research will finish product specifications and turn them over to Production. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig 2 Uncontracted Braille Pack (Continued) This collection of books is currently in Braille Translation, and as soon as translation is complete, Technical Research will finish product specifications and turn them over to Production. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig Kit 2 Contracted Braille (Continued) This collection of books is currently in Braille Translation, and as soon as translation is complete, Technical Research will finish product specifications and turn them over to Production. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig 2 Contracted Braille Pack (Continued) This collection of books is currently in Braille Translation, and as soon as translation is complete, Technical Research will finish product specifications and turn them over to Production. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig Kit 2 Uncontracted Braille (Continued) This collection of books is currently in Braille Translation, and as soon as translation is complete, Technical Research will finish product specifications and turn them over to Production. Wright Group: Early Braille Trade Books, Twig 2 Uncontracted Braille Pack (Continued)

324

This collection of books is currently in Braille Translation, and as soon as translation is complete, Technical Research will finish product specifications and turn them over to Production. Other Technical Research Projects Product Updates/Redesigns and Special Projects Technical Research was asked to work on redesigns for several products this year. Many of the redesigns involved material changes to help improve the product and to improve worker safety conditions. Some of the work was necessary due to problems/quality issues with existing products as well as new products. In addition some, but not all, changes resulted in cost savings that allowed APH to minimize or even avoid cost increases on these products. Some of the products impacted are listed below. Technical Research also worked on several special projects this year, not the least of which was to head a team of in-house personnel and outside vendors to re-tool the molds for all urethane molded parts. This involved 34 kits and over 70 parts. Extensive work was done to research new child safety laws and Technical Research assisted in the creation of the new digital flashcard talking book duplication system. These projects are documented in greater detail below. Address Earth: Section 1 (Product Maintenance) The Project Leader provided information that there were several reports from the field about concerns dealing with two specific issues, 1) page tear-out of the map pages, and 2) overall weight of the entire kit in the carry case/carry handles breaking. Several options to reduce the ease with which pages could be torn have been investigated. Options include using a paper with increased tear resistance, adding a clear re-enforcement strip to the binding edge, increasing the number of binding rings, and the possibility of using a completely different binding method. The material originally used for the map pages is a synthetic based paper that is rated ―tear resistant.‖ Initial testing of this material with a standard 3-ring binding system proved adequate, but based on feedback following the release of the product indicates a new material might help remedy to problem. Since the release of the product, new synthetic papers have been approved by Xerox for use on the IGEN. Samples were obtained and run in early 2009. Nekoosa ―Thermanent‖ 8mil synthetic paper was selected as being substantially stronger/with increased resistance to tear-out at the binding holes. This material will be used on future production of Address Earth: Section 1 and Sections 2 and 3, which are in development. Sets of the Section 1 map pages were obtained and sent to a vendor to test the re-enforcement strip concept. This added a tremendous amount of strength to the binding edge of the sheet. Cost of this binding improvement would add about $5.00 per set of map pages. It would also introduce delays, as the map pages are printed at APH and would have to be sent out and worked into an outside vendor's production queue. Investigation into binding changes quickly eliminated binding methods other than ring binding. The necessity to quickly access and remove an individual map page from the Atlas is easiest to do using standard snap open binder rings. The decision came down to five or seven ring assemblies, both of which are 325

available as standard components. Testing was performed in the following manner: pages were punched in 3, 5, and 7-hole configurations to match the binder rings. Pages were then given a pull test, with the results measured for analysis. The 3-hole (standard being used) was the base line to measure against. Findings revealed that the 5-ring system in conjunction with the new paper was significantly better than the 3-hole. The difference between the 5 to 7-hole bindings was measurable, but not significant. Because of the increased cost associated with the 7-hole binding, and marginal improvement in specification, the decision was made to use the 5-hole binding ring. This will be changed on future runs of Address Earth: Section 1 and Sections 2 and 3. As for the weight of the kit, the idea would be to break the product into two cases. One would carry the Atlas and the second would contain the five guidebooks. This would distribute the number of pounds the kit weighs almost evenly between the two cases. Technical Research has contacted the vendor of the carry case to determine the minimum required dimension for the thickness (front to back) for this type of case. Properly sizing the case for its contents is essential to prevent excessive shifting around of the contents. Dimensions for the redesigned case have been provided to the vendor and a sample to be used for evaluation is due in September. Technical Research will continue to monitor the product following the implementation of these changes on future runs. Azer’s Interactive Tactile Periodic Table Study Set (Product Maintenance) The pilot and production runs of this product were very difficult. Many problems were encountered by the vendor when attempting to fabricate the atomic model board. Technical Research designed a fixture for manual application of the Veltex to the atomic model board as a stop-gap measure to enable the production run to be completed in-house and on time. These difficulties were discussed in the de-briefing meeting on this product after the first production run. The Model Shop and Project Leader worked with the outside vendor originally making these boards to work out a solution. Experiments were conducted using a different substrate (styrene vs. ExCell) by the Model Shop. The Model Shop worked with an outside vendor to cut test pieces using the new materials chosen for the board. The experiments were successful. Product structure in SYSPRO was modified to reflect the new materials. A successful production run was made using the new substrate and different adhesive backing on the Veltex. Chang Kit (Product Maintenance) This kit was one of the kits impacted by the fire at the urethane-molding factory. The kit has a pair of urethane molded gingerbread men in it. Technical Research worked to create a new cutting file for the CNC router to make the gingerbread men out of ExCell material. Technical Research intentionally used existing materials in existing sizes, which enabled the use of existing clamping fixtures for the plastic while it was being cut. Technical Research submitted samples to the Project Leader who approved them. One hundred and fifty-four gingerbread men (77 kits‘ worth) were cut in December and were sent to the Educational Aids Production 326

Supervisor‘s office. This quantity was used to fill back orders on this item. Technical Research also learned the purchased gingerbread men cost $3.50 apiece or $7.00 per kit. The new, cut out gingerbread men cost $0.35 each or $0.70 per kit. This is a cost saving of $6.30 per kit. At anticipated 126 kit sales per year, this works out to an annual saving of $793.80. An additional $1,200.00 savings for APH was realized by avoiding re-making the mold. This kit was slated for a re-design that would make any molds made obsolete. Technical Research‘s work on this project resulted in a total saving of $1,993.80 for the year. This is project is being submitted to the company‘s C.I. efforts. A key material (Veltex for the Chang board) arrived in early April. Production on the kit started April 21. Technical Research monitored this product through completion of its production run. Kits were placed into stock in April. Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) In reaction to the fall and winter 2007 news accounts of children‘s jewelry being imported from China that had been made from lead and major toy manufacturers (Mattel being one) having problems with lead contaminated paint on their products, the U.S. Congress passed the consumer product safety improvement act in the latter part of 2008. This new law sets tighter standards for the allowable levels of lead in products (current 600ppm (parts per million) to 300ppm and ultimately 100ppm), sets limits for phthalates in plastics, and makes safety testing based on ASTM F-963 mandatory (American Society of Toy Manufacturers). F-963 was a voluntary standard that APH had complied with prior to the new law. APH testing of new products for F-963 compliance was always performed in-house prior to releasing a new product to production. In addition to the stricter standards the new law also mandates 3rd party testing of production runs of product for compliance by an independent, accredited lab and requires tagging of product ―where practicable‖ in order to be able to trace the production origins (production dates, lots, etc) of any given production run. Technical Research has worked with the executive committee to make the company aware of the potential impacts the new law will have on APH company operations. In addition, Technical Research worked with the Purchasing Manager and the Materials Planning Manager to draft a letter to our vendors informing them of the new law and its requirements. Technical Research also participated in drafting a statement sent out to Ex-Officio trustees as well as a statement that now appears on all APH catalogues noting that the products are for educational purposes and should only be used in a supervised and structured environment. Technical Research spent time during the winter and spring of this year investigating the new law and industry reactions to comply with the law via the internet and other sources. This past spring Technical Research participated in a webinar given by SGIA (screen graphics images association) covering the new law and its impact. Technical Research made notes during the webinar and distributed them to members of the Executive Committee and others the next day. The new law is in a state of almost continuous flux. Many manufacturers are petitioning Congress for amendments to the law to enable manufacturers to comply with the law in the most efficient, least burdensome manners possible. Congress has passed a stay of enforcement of the testing and certification portions of the law but all products produced after Feb 10, 2008 must comply with the standards set forth in the law. Technical Research will continue to monitor the law‘s progress and work with

327

internal company personnel to keep them informed and to support them in whatever capacity is needed. Department of Education Presentation (Special Project) Technical Research participated in a 4-person presentation to the DOE on March 9 giving examples of how APH is monitoring new and emerging technologies for use in APH products. The team was originally Jack Decker, Steve Paris, and Frank Hayden. Frank Hayden recommended Anita Rutledge be part of the presentation due to her work specifically on rapid prototyping. The entire presentation was well received by the DOE but Ms. Rutledge‘s portion was particularly well received as was the hands-on demonstration of the RPM software that was set up on the plant tour for the DOE representatives. Digital Flashcard Duplication Project (Special Project) Technical Research spent time in March and April working with Operations Engineering and other production support departments to create a working duplication line for the new NLS digital flashcard talking book program. Staff of Technical Research assisted the Operations Engineering department by designing and fabricating mechanical and electro-mechanical components of the production line for digital flashcard duplication. Most of the time spent on this project has been outside of regular working hours with time spent on this project charged to the Maintenance Department of APH. Technical Research has made important contributions to this project. This project is vital to the continuance of the APH Talking Book Department. The NLS talking book program has evolved from records to cassettes and now to digital flashcards as the medium for playback of Talking Books. At the forefront of digital duplication development, APH is able to set the standards for the new program, much in the same manner that APH has always set the standard for record and cassette duplication. Work on this project is nearing completion. However, Technical Research continues to help as needed on this project. Jump Rope for Fitness Kit (Product Maintenance) Technical Research was made aware that a number of the spools containing the rope continue to come in short. The specified length is 500 feet per spool. When the spool contains less than that specified the number of feet, Production is not able to complete the number of kits scheduled for production. Technical Research first verified that the device that is measuring the rope as it‘s cut to length was working properly and then notified Purchasing to contact the vendor again about this issue. Lead Content in Products/Child Safety

328

Technical Research spent a good part of February and March researching a notice received by an ex-officio trustee who had an outside firm testing their facility and equipment for lead content. The trustee noted that the APH ―grandstand‖ had come back testing positive for lead content. Despite repeated efforts to contact the trustee to gain more information on the particulars of their test and results the trustee could not be reached. Technical Research then took the various components of a grandstand and submitted them for testing at an independent local laboratory. While the testing was being conducted, Technical Research began investigating current standards for child product safety regarding lead levels (see previous entry on CPSIA). It was discovered that standards are sketchy at best and are currently in a state of flux. Most of the standards applied to lead based paint and actual lead metal parts used in toys and children‘s jewelry. There were currently no definitive standards for lead content in plastics used in toys. It was also discovered there are two main standards: total lead content and total ―bioavailable‖ or ―leachable‖ lead. The initial tests run were for bioavailable lead. The laboratory‘s allowable standard for the testing was shown as 5ppm. European standards, which have been adopted by U.S. toy makers on a voluntary basis, are currently 90ppm. All pieces to the grandstand tested negative for lead except the plastic used to make the stand. It tested at 0.9ppm―well under either standard. Technical Research found a statement by a CSPC (consumer product safety commission) official that stated the lead in plastics was not readily bioavailable and not a major concern for their division. The most common total lead content standards were at a 600ppm allowable level. Technical Research had more samples of the Sintra brand foamed PVC plastic tested for total lead content in addition to the tests run for bioavailable lead. Tests showed 568ppm. This was within limits but only 32ppm below allowable standards. Even with all the evidence supporting the use of lead in plastics so long as it was contained within the plastic, Technical Research recommended the company move away from Sintra brand materials to other brands that do not contain lead. Technical Research worked with Purchasing and Production to identify all areas where this material was being used. Technical Research obtained test swab kits to detect the presence of lead. These swabs would turn pink or red when they came in contact with materials containing lead. At least one sample from every single sized piece of foamed PVC material was tested to show which pieces were Sintra brand, having lead content, and which ones were another brand that did not use lead in the materials. Technical Research worked with Purchasing and the vendor and located a similar material (brand name ExCel) that will be used in all future production. In addition, all shipments in-process of Sintra brand materials were stopped at the vendor and replaced with ExCel material. Technical Research gave a full report to the Director of Research, the Vice-President of Research and Advisory Services, and the company President. In addition, Technical Research helped compose a statement the Vice-President used in his March monthly electronic newsletter to ex-officio trustees. It was decided not to recall materials already out in the field containing Sintra based on the facts noted above. However, all future production will be run using ExCell or other brands of foamed PVC materials to avoid the slightest appearance of lead in a product. Technical Research continues to attempt to monitor the development of regulations. Light Box (Product Redesign) 329

Technical Research has developed a new design for the full-size light box. Circuitry has been developed that could enable the light box to run using a 28VDC adapter rather than the current 120VAC mode of operation. This would lower the voltage in the unit itself and eliminate the requirement for UL testing of the light box unit. The adapter itself will be UL tested by the manufacturer and arrive at APH pre-certified for UL compliance. The unit is anticipated to be somewhat brighter and lighter in weight. In addition to product improvement, one of the goals in re-designing the unit is to simplify the assembly process, specifically the wiring of the unit. Currently one unit has been fabricated and reviewed by the Project Leader and the Director of Research. Five more units will be fabricated to test the circuit design and the circuit‘s ability to withstand physical abuse. Once these tests are successfully completed, bid packets will be drawn up to send to perspective vendors. Mini-Lite Box (Product Maintenance/Redesign) Component availability forced the overseas factory to source new components for this product. While the vendor was able to locate a new source for most parts, a positive temperature coefficient thermistor that is key to the design still requires a custom production run and can only be purchased in larger quantities. Technical Research has re-designed the light box circuitry to accept a more standard, off-the-shelf component. This should enable the parts to be purchased more easily, less expensively, in lower quantities, and with faster component delivery time. In addition, Technical Research tested and approved a new source for the rechargeable batteries in the unit. The next shipment of the mini-light box is due in November and will use these new components. Technical Research will continue to monitor this product to assure the new circuitry performs correctly. Picture Maker Bag A Materials (Product Maintenance) Technical Research was notified of adhesive ―creep‖ on the foam items in the Bag A parts of the PM Wheatley tactile diagramming kit. The foam materials were shifting after the parts were manufactured resulting in a misalignment between the foam layer of the parts and the polyethylene substrate. Technical Research worked with the Project Leader, Production, and Purchasing to sort all materials that were currently in stock. All defective sets of materials were removed. In checking the history of the parts with the vendor it was learned that these parts had originally been made using a liquid adhesive. This had been switched at some point to a PSA (pressure sensitive adhesive). This was done for ease of assembly and for aesthetics. Future runs of the parts were to be made using the liquid adhesive. The rejected parts were returned to the vendor for re-work. These re-worked parts were received in September but, unfortunately, both the Project Leader and Technical Research rejected the shipment. The reworked shipment of parts was returned to the vendor a second time. The vendor sent in a bag of parts for testing using a different substrate (flocked styrene). The APH Model Shop subjected the parts to an extended heat test of 125 degrees. The parts did not exhibit 330

adhesive creep. Purchasing contacted the vendor and told them to replace those parts exhibiting adhesive creep with the new, flocked styrene parts. Samples were received in November that met Project Leader specifications. The vendor re-worked existing sets of Bag As and has resumed production of the item. Re-worked Bag As were received and approved in early December. This allowed not only the Wheatley Tactile Diagramming strips kit to be made but also provided materials to make the MathBuilders kits that were back ordered. Shape Board (Product Maintenance/Re-Design) This kit was one of the kits impacted by the fire at the urethane-molding factory. Technical Research re-designed the board used in the kit to avoid the use of the urethane molding process and used a material called ExCel for the board instead. Technical Research completed drawings of the new design of the board after the Project Leader approved the hand-made sample. The drawings were sent out to vendors for bids. Bids were received and the job was awarded. Technical Research reviewed pre-production samples from the vendor. The first samples were rejected due to minor flaws. The second set of samples had the defects corrected and were approved for production. Once the samples were approved, production of the boards by the vendor began in June. Materials arrived at the APH dock in late June and production of the kits was started in July. Kits with the new Excel based board were placed in stock in late July. The board used in this run was green in order to use the existing materials currently in stock. By avoiding scrapping the current shapes in stock a savings of over $6,500 was realized. Also, since the mold was not needed, $1,200 in tooling costs was avoided. Yet another savings was in the cost of the board itself. The urethane board cost $16.00. The new ExCell board costs $10.75. This is a per kit savings of $5.25 and an estimated annual savings of $1,443.75 based on annual kit production of 275 units. With the existing materials for the shapes used up, a new color board will be incorporated into the kit and all shapes will be redesigned from a standpoint of size and color. Savings on this project will be turned in to the 2009 company continuous improvement program. Technical Research worked with this product on its initial production run and will continue to work on the re-design of this kit incorporating different colors for the pieces and the board as well as improving the shapes used in the kit. Sound Balls (Techno beat and Boing Boing) (Product Maintenance) Due to production problems at the Taiwan production plant, the sound ball production was moved to China. This took a great deal of time and effort on both the part of the overseas representative and APH Technical Research. Following initial samples made by the China facility, all tooling was moved from the Taiwan plant to the China plant. Pre-production samples were made and sent to APH. These were tested and problems noted. Several sets of samples were sent back and forth between China and APH. The problems with the samples were solved and production began in early 2009. Production was completed and the balls shipped via ocean freighter and rail to U.S. customs. The balls arrived at APH and were 331

inspected by both the APH quality assurance and Technical Research departments. These balls sold very quickly due to pent up demand. A second production run was started on the balls in July and completed in late August. These were shipped via ocean freighter and rail to U.S. customs. They are expected to clear customs and arrive at APH in late September to early October. Technical Research will follow up on this shipment to assure the balls were produced correctly. Technical Research continues to work on this item with the Purchasing Department and the sales representative. Stackups (Product Maintenance) Technical Research received notice of a customer complaint regarding separation of the Velcro from the cubes in the Stackups kit. The customer‘s returned parts were examined and found to have the white hook Velcro separating from the cubes. The blue loop Velcro was not separating. The Project Leader and Technical Research examined materials that were in stock and found no separation but it was noted the white hook Velcro was easier to remove from the cube than the blue loop. Samples were placed in a high heat environment to try to speed the process of adhesive failure but samples survived this test. Technical Research worked with the Purchasing Department and the vendor to find adhesive for the hook material that will hold as well as the loop material. The vendor made samples for review by the Project Leader and Technical Research. These samples were approved and production of the cubes was resumed. A new shipment of the cubes was received and tested in July. These were accepted and the kits with new cubes were stocked in July. All Urethane Parts—72 Items/34 kits (Special Project/Product Maintenance) On Oct 11, 2008, Tri-Plastics in Huntington Indiana had a catastrophic fire that destroyed all tooling for urethane foam molded parts for APH. All parts‘ tooling was at this facility because APH‘s original vendor (Jasper Plastics) had asked to end a long standing production relationship with APH. Technical Research immediately began working with the Purchasing and Inventory Departments to secure any sample parts from stock that were available. Any items not available from stock were pulled from the Technical Research standards library. Seventytwo items were collected, physically organized, and labeled by part number in Technical Research. Next, all items were photographed to create an inventory of digital images for reference when discussing parts with potential vendors. These photos included the part numbers and a scale to give the size of the part. All parts were weighed and the weight of the urethane part (used by vendors in figuring material amounts for production) was noted. All parts were reviewed for proper Pantone number identification of part color. Archives of Technical Research and the Model Shop were researched for drawings of parts. Also, Technical Research had kept many patterns of items when the Model Shop was organized some years back. These patterns were examined and several parts were found that tooling could potentially be re-made from these older patterns. Most of the items involved were very old (25-30 years) and documentation of these items was somewhat sparse. However, either 332

drawings or patterns were found on approximately 20% of the parts involved. Technical Research next took all information, organized it, and created a database that could be sorted by column to give information needed on the status of items as well as to help prioritize which items to work on first. This database contains information regarding: the item part number, what catalogue item the part is used in, the page of the APH catalogue the kit appears on, the pantone number of the part, the weight of the part, whether or not there are drawings of the part, whether or not any pattern is located in either the Model Shop or the shelves of Technical Research, a notation if the part is being considered for either re-design or dropping from production, total inventory of the kit the part is used in, inventory of the kit (in months) the existing stock will cover, and Project Leader associated with the kit. This database was distributed to the Director of Research, Project Leaders, and Production and Production Support areas. Once information, tooling, and drawings were organized work began in earnest to replace tooling and put the parts back in to production. Two kits were immediately redesigned to avoid the use of urethane parts. Both had new parts made using a material called Excel, a form of plastic that was cut to shape rather than molded as the urethane parts were. For many of the parts, existing parts located from APH stock or from the Technical Research standards library were used to make tooling drawings. Drawings were reviewed and changes made as needed. These drawings were submitted to several vendors, including the vendor that had originally made the parts. As bids were awarded, vendors made tooling. Prior to any full production, vendors were required to submit pre-production approval samples for review by Technical Research for accuracy of dimensions, quality of finish, and color of part. Once a sample part was approved, the vendor could start production. Nineteen kits have had tooling approved and have either been produced or are in production. Technical Research was successful in locating old patterns used to make the original production molds on nine different parts impacting three different kits. These were turned over to the Model Shop where the patterns were evaluated, repaired (as needed), and used to pour new master patterns for tooling. This process saved time, labor, and money in re-creating the production molds. This was particularly important on U.S. Puzzle Map kit because those molds were made from very intricate master pieces of the states. This would have been very difficult to re-create. Within 10 months of the fire, 30 of the 34 kits impacted are either completely re-tooled and are back in production, in-process of re-tooling at the vendor for production, or have been discontinued. Four kits remain needing further work before the re-tooling process can begin. One kit currently has 20 molds. Technical Research is working on a re-design of the tooling for the kit that will cut the number of molds from 20 to 10. Five molds will be made the traditional way, via drawings of the tooling. However, 15 of the molds should be able to be combined down to five molds with the use of electronic CAD files and rapid prototyping. Two kits currently have drawings in-process. One of these is a complete re-design of the part and the second is a very complex part. Both will require extensive work to complete the drawings. One kit is on hold currently pending responses to surveys about the kit and the urethane part. Any changes requested by Trustees will be incorporated into the design of the new part during the retooling process. Or, if the responses indicate the kit is no longer useful, it will be discontinued. The progress to date is the direct result of the coordinated efforts of Technical Research,

333

Operations Engineering, the Model Shop, and Purchasing. Work on this is ongoing to complete the last four kits and to monitor the first production runs of the re-tooled kits. U S Puzzle Map (Product Maintenance) Technical Research investigated, developed, and tested a method to salvage some $13,000 in parts received from Tri-plastics just before the fire. The parts were too shiny. Technical Research located an approved clear coat to produce a matte finish on the parts. The clear coat was tested and shown to be lead free. Technical Research trained and supervised the worker as the parts were sprayed. This allowed 89 kits to be placed into stock in March. This kit had existing patterns salvaged in the Technical Research archives. Molds were made from these patterns by the model maker for use by the vendor. The 89 kits salvaged allowed the time for the molds to be finished and put back into production.

334

Presentations & Workshops

335

American Printing House for the Blind. (Producer). (2009, April). Azer‘s Interactive Periodic Table Presented by Karen Poppe. Video retrieved from http://www.aph.org/webcast/index.html Holbrook, C. & Pester, E. (2008, October). Building on Patterns Update. Product Development Input Session. APH Annual Meeting, Louisville, KY. Henderson, B.W., and Jaffe, L. (2009, February). Issues in Translating Tests into Braille: WJ III Achievement-Braille Adaptation. National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) Convention, Boston, MA. Henderson, B.W. (2009, June). Presentation on Accessible Tests Department. Visit to APH by Middle Tennessee State University Students. Kitchel, E. (2008, October). ToAD: Tools for Assessment and Development of Visual Skills. APH Annual Meeting, Louisville, KY. Kitchel, E. (2009, January). Understanding the Text, Graphic & Visual Needs of Test Takers who are Partially-Sighted. National Test Publishers and Editors, Louisville, KY. Kitchel, E. (2009, March). ToAD: Tools for Assessment and Development of Visual Skills. Webcast Workshop, New York Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments, Albany, NY. Kitchel, E. (2009, April). Using Address: Earth to Teach Students with Visual Impairments. North Carolina Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments, Raleigh, NC. Kitchel, E. (2009, April). Understanding the Illumination Needs of Persons with Low Vision. North Carolina Chapter of the American Council of the Blind, Winston-Salem, NC. Kitchel, E. (2009, June). ToAD: Tools for Assessment and Development of Visual Skills. Workshop. Tennessee School for the Blind, Nashville, TN. Kitchel, E. (2009, June). Understanding Light and Its Effects on Persons with Low Vision. [Multimedia]. Alabama Technology Symposium, Talladega, AL. Kitchel, E. (2009, July). Turbo Phonics-Guided Tour. [Multimedia] American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, KY Otto, F. (2008, November). Tactile Considerations and APH Tactile Materials. In-service for New York state teachers of visually impaired students, New York Institute for Special Education, Bronx, NY. Otto, F., Poppe, K. & Zhang, Y. (2009, April & May). Tactile Graphic Design and Production Principles. Workshop for transcribers at KY Correctional Institute for Women, Pewee Valley, KY. Otto, F. (2009, June). Treks, a Game for Learning Compass Directions. Presentation to Middle Tennessee State students, Louisville, KY. Pester, E. (2008, October). Thinking Outside the Book. Poster Session, APH Annual Meeting, Louisville, KY. Pester, E. & Scoggins, D. (2008, October). Braille Sessions of Dits, Dahs, & Dots: Using Morse and Braille Codes. Saturday Museum Program for the Adelante Hispanic Achievers, Louisville, KY. Pester, E. & Scoggins, D. (2009, February). Braille Sessions of Dits, Dahs, & Dots: Using Morse and Braille Codes. Saturday Museum Program for the Public, Louisville, KY. 336

Pierce, T. (2008, October). Digital Light Box Artwork. 140th Annual Meeting of the Ex Officio Trustees of the American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, KY. Pierce, T. & Smith, M. (2008, October). SAM: Symbols and Meaning. 140th Annual Meeting of the Ex Officio Trustees of the American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, KY. Pierce, T. (2008, November). The APH Intervention/Communication Continuum. New York Institute for Special Education, Bronx, NY. Pierce, T. (2008, November). APH Physical Fitness Products. New York Institute for Special Education, Bronx, NY. Pierce, T. (2008, November). APH Physical Fitness Products. YMCA National Diversity Conference, Louisville, KY. Pierce, T. (2009, May). Product training: Walk/Run for Fitness, Jump Rope to Fitness, and 30: Love: Tennis Guidelines for Players with Visual Impairment or Blindness. Louisville, KY. Pierce, T. (2009, June). Product showcase: Multiple Disabilities and Physical Education. Middle Tennessee State University, Louisville, KY. Poppe, K. J. (2008, October). Tactile Town: 3-D O&M Kit. Product Input Session presented at the 140th Annual Meeting of Ex Officio Trustees of the American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, KY. Poppe, K. J. (2008, October). Touching on the Basics. Poster session presented at the 140th Annual Meeting of Ex Officio Trustees of the American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, KY. Poppe, K. J. (2009, March). New Tactile Graphics Product Training Session for APH Staff. American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, KY. Poppe, K. J., Otto, F., & Zhang, Y. (2009, April). Tactile Graphics Workshop. Kentucky Correctional Institute, LaGrange, KY. Terlau, M. (2009, April). Information Access, Storage And Retrieval: 21st Century Challenges and Solutions for Persons with Vision Loss. American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) 89th Annual Conference Expo, Houston, TX. Wright, S. (2008, December). In Touch with Literacy: Meeting the Needs of Young Children Who are Blind and Visually Impaired. 26th Southeast Regional Conference of the International Reading Association, Nashville, Tennessee. Wright, S. (2008, October). Poster Session: Guidelines for Designing Tactile Illustrations for Children‘s Books. Annual Meeting, American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, KY.

337

Product Materials

338

Henderson, B.W. (2009). Examiner‘s Manual for Brigance® Diagnostic Inventory of Early Development (IED II), Tactile and Large Print Edition (Revision). Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind Henderson, B.W. (2009). Annotated Bibliography on Impact of Vision Loss on Early Cognitive Development: Update. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Kitchel, E., (2008). What Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments Need to Know about Lighting. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Kitchel, E. (2009). Developmental Guidelines for Infants with Visual Impairments, Ed., Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Kitchel, E. & Hoffmann, R. (2009). MaximEyes User‘s Guide, Eds., Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pester, E. J. (2009). Building on Patterns: Grade 1 Print Kit. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pester, E. J. (2009). Building on Patterns: Grade 1 Braille Kit. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pester, E. J. (2009). Building on Patterns: Grade 1 Unit 1 Teacher‘s Edition (Print). Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pester, E. J. (2009). Building on Patterns: Grade 1 Unit 1 Teacher‘s Edition (Braille). Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pester, E. J. (2009). Building on Patterns: Grade 1 Unit 1 Student Textbook (Braille). Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pester, E. J. (2009). Building on Patterns: Grade 1 Unit 1 Worksheets (Braille). Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pester, E.J. (2009). Building on Patterns: Grade 1 Unit 1 Lesson Monitoring Sheets (Print and Braille). Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pester, E. J. (2009). Building on Patterns: Grade 1 Unit 1 Assessment Check-up Forms (Print and Braille). Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pierce, T. (2009). 30-Love: Tennis Guidelines for Players With Visual Impairment or Blindness. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pierce, T. (2009). Digital Light Box Artwork. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pierce, T. (2009). Jump Rope to Fitness. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pierce, T. (2008). Portable Sound Source, Sport Edition. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Pierce, T. (2008). The Sound Localization Guidebook. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Poppe, K. J. (2009). ALL-IN-ONE Board: Reader’s Guide. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Poppe, K. J. (2009). Picture Maker Accessories: Geometric Textured Shapes. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Poppe, K. J. (2009). SQUID: Tactile Activities Magazine [Issue 6]. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. 339

Poppe, K. J. (2009). Textured Sorting Circles and Shapes: Reader’s Guide. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind. Wicker, J., Smith, D., & Leibfritz, B. (2009). MathBuilders, Unit 8, Data Collection, Graphing, and Probability/Statistics, Teacher‘s Guide. Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind.

340

Publications

341

Kitchel, E. (2009). The Effects of Fluorescent Light on the Ocular Health of Persons with PreExisting Eye Pathologies, Philadelphia, PA: Council of Citizens with Low Vision International Kitchel, E. (2009). Understanding Light and its Effects on Persons with Low Vision, [Multimedia], Louisville, KY: American Printing House for the Blind Kitchel, E. (2009). Turbo Phonics Guided Tour, [Multimedia], Louisville, PA: American Printing House for the Blind. Lieberman, L. J., Schedlin, H., & Pierce, T. (2009). Teaching jump rope to children with visual impairments. Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness, 103(3), 173-178. Mason, L. (2009). Synergy in Seattle. D.V.I. Quarterly, 54(4), 11 Otto, F. (2008, November). Tactile Considerations and APH Tactile Materials. In-service for New York state teachers of visually impaired students, New York Institute for Special Education, Bronx, NY. Otto, F., Poppe, K. & Zhang, Y. (2009, April & May). Tactile Graphic Design and Production Principles. Workshop for transcribers at KY Correctional Institute for Women, Pewee Valley, KY. Otto, F. (2009, June). Treks, a Game for Learning Compass Directions. Presentation to Middle Tennessee State students, Louisville, KY. Rosenblum, L. P. & Terlau, T. (2008). Reclaiming independence: Staying in the driver's seat when you no longer drive. Research and Practice in Visual Impairment and Blindness, 1(2), 57. Wright, S. (2009). Designing tactile Illustrations for children's books. In P. Claudet (Ed.), The Typhlo & Tactus Guide to children's books with tactile illustrations. Dijon FRANCE: Les Doigts Qui Revent.

342

2009 New Products

343

30-Love Tennis (Grant 402) .......................... 1-08110-00 All Children Have Different Eyes (68) ............... 8-00070-00 ALL-IN-ONE Board (379) .............................. 1-08836-00 APH ALPHABET CARD 50-PK (67) ....................... 1-04000-01 APH InSights 2010 Calendar (67) ..................... 5-18971-10 APH Insights Calendar Custom 2010 ................ 5-18972-10 BOP 1st Grade Unit 1 Print Kit (364) ................ 8-78460-U1 BOP 1st Grade Unit 1 Lesson Monitoring Shts ...... 8-78463-U1 BOP 1st Grade Unit 1 Braille Kit ................. 6-78460-U1 BOP 1st Grade Unit 1 Br. Teacher's Ed. ........... 6-78461-U1 BOP 1st Grade Unit 1 Assess. Check-Up Forms ...... 8-78466-U1 BOP 1st Grade Unit 1 Print Teacher's Ed. ......... 8-78461-U1 BOP 1st Grade Unit 1 St. Textbook Not Far From Home 6-78463-U1 BOP 1st Grade Unit 1 Worksheets Pack ............. 6-78464-U1 Braille Datebook Calendar 2010 (67) ................. 1-07899-10 Braille Datebook Calendar Tabs 2010 .............. 1-07898-10 Charge Syndrome Revisited (68) ...................... 1-31001-01 Consumable Number Lines Braille/Tactile (358) ...... 1-03013-00 Consumable Number Lines Large Print ............. 1-03012-00 Cranmer Abacus Hands-On DVD (68) .................... 1-30004-DVD Denver the Guide Dog DVD (68) ....................... 1-30010-DVD Digital Lightbox Artwork (403) ..................... 1-08691-00 Early Braille Trade Books (391): Sunshine 2 Contracted Label Pack ................ 3-00203-CL Sunshine 2 Uncontracted Label Pack ............... 3-00204-UL Sunshine Kit 2, Contracted Br. ................... 3-00203-00 Sunshine Kit 2, Uncontracted Br. ................. 3-00204-00 EZ Track 2010 Calendar (67) ......................... 1-07900-10 EZ Track 2010 Calendar Insert .................... 1-07901-10 FVLMA Protocols Large Print (325) ................... 7-96154-00 Geometro GS16 Mini Set (68) ......................... 1-03022-00 Geometro GS22 Medium Set ......................... 1-03023-00 Geometro GS56 Large Set .......................... 1-03024-00 History in the Making: The Story of APH 1858-2008 (68) W-HISTORY HomeGrown Video: Sensory Learning Kit DVD (68) ...... 1-30022-DVD i-vu (68) ............................................ 1-07580-00 Jump Rope to Fitness Kit (383) ....................... 1-07521-00 Lighting Guide Kit (362) ............................. 1-08941-00 Lighting Guide, Braille ........................... 5-08941-00 Lighting Guide, Large Print ......................7-08941-00 Listen & Think Level B (67) .........................1-03890-01 Listen & Think Level AR ..........................1-08510-01 Listen & Think Level C ...........................1-03910-01 MathBuilders Unit 8 Braille Kit (112) ...............5-03565-00 MathBuilders Unit 8 Braille Teacher's Guide ......5-03565-01 MathBuilders Unit 8 Consumable Pack ..............5-03565-02 344

MathBuilders Unit 8 Print Kit ....................7-03565-00 MathBuilders Unit 8 Print Teacher's Guide ........7-03565-01 MaximEyes Video Magnifier Ver. 2.0 (344) ............1-03915-01 PATTER, Braille w/CD & DVD (339) ....................6-76001-00 PATTER, Large Print w/CD & DVD ..................8-76001-00 Perkins/APH Brailler, Blue (68) .....................1-00800-00 PM:Geometric Textured Shapes (376) ..................1-08838-01 Qwerty Docking Station (301) ........................1-07452-00 One-year Extended HMA ............................1-07465-00 HMA Inspection Service ...........................1-07461-00 Case for Docking Station .........................1-07452-12 Battery for Docking Station ......................1-07452-10 AC/DC Adapter for Docking Station ................1-07452-11 RefreshaBraille 18 (420) ............................1-07445-00 One-year Extended Warranty .......................1-07446-00 SQUID: Tactile Act. Mag., Issue 6 (298) .............1-08862-06 Transparent CCTV Ruler-Clear (396) ..................1-03009-00 Transparent CCTV Ruler-Yellow ....................1-03008-00 Tri-Fold Board (306) ................................1-08859-00 Turbo 6 Talking Battery Charger English Kit (68) ....1-03965-00 Turbo 6 Talking Battery Charger Spanish Kit ......1-03965-SP Verbal View of Windows Vista (386) ..................D-10517-00 VIPs Growing My Way - Part 2 (406) ..................1-30036-DVD Woodcock-Johnson III, Student Br. Ed (266). ........6-66000-00 WJIII Print Test Record (10) ......................4-66002-00

345

Completed Projects (Chart I)

[This is a summary of 70 Completed Projects. See ―Project Status‖ for details.] 346

Active Projects (Chart II)

[230 Active Projects, see ―Project Status‖ for details.] 347

Parking Lot Projects (Chart III)

[22 Parking Lot Projects, see ―Project Status‖ for details.] 348

Pipeline Projects (Chart IV)

[44 Pipeline Projects, see ―Project Status‖ for details.] 349

Project Status (Chart V)

Product Status: Summary
as of 9/30/09 Active Assessment Assistive Technology & Electronics Career Education & Transition Communication Modes & Literature Education Daily Living & Social Interaction Early Childhood Insights/Special Touch Math Orientation & Mobility and Concept Development Physical Education Recreation & Leisure Social Studies & Geography Science & Health Visual Efficiency & Low Vision Total 42 8 1 71 9 29 0 27 7 1 5 10 10 10 230 Parking Lot 2 1 0 2 4 4 0 1 3 0 1 1 3 0 22 Completed 4 10 0 18 6 7 4 10 1 1 2 0 2 5 70 Pipeline 2 14 1 12 2 3 0 3 2 1 1 2 1 0 44

350


				
DOCUMENT INFO