Future Reflections

Volume 33 Number 3                                    Fall 2014



Dear Subscriber,

Perhaps you read each issue of Future Reflections from cover to cover the day it lands in your mailbox. You cut out the articles that speak to you and take notes on useful resources. But maybe your children have grown up and live away from home; maybe these days you only look at Future Reflections when you carry your unread magazines to the recycling center.

We need to update our records on our Future Reflections subscribers. If you wish to continue receiving Future Reflections after December 2014, you must contact the NFB. You can contact us by mail at 200 E. Wells St., Baltimore, MD 21230; by phone at (410) 659-9314, Extension 2344; or by email at [email protected].org. Please indicate whether you wish to continue receiving the print or audio (USB drive) version of the magazine.

We want you to receive Future Reflections for as long as it is of interest and value to you. Please take a few moments in your hectic schedule and let us know that you wish to remain on our mailing list. Understand that if we do not hear from you, you will not receive Future Reflections after the final issue of 2014. Please help us continue to serve you.

Deborah Kent Stein and the NFB Staff


A magazine for parents and teachers of blind children published by
the American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults in partnership
with the National Organization of Parents of Blind Children.

Volume 33 Number 3                                    Fall 2014

Deborah Kent Stein, Editor

The Riccobono Family: Mark, Melissa, Austin, Oriana, and little Elizabeth. See "Taking Control and Becoming a Driver of My Life"


Copyright © 2014 American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults

For more information about blindness and children contact:
National Organization of Parents of Blind Children
200 East Wells Street at Jernigan Place, Baltimore, MD 21230 • (410) 659-9314
www.nfb.org/nopbc[email protected][email protected]


Volume 33 Number 3                                    Fall 2014


Taking Control and Becoming a Driver of My LifeListen Now (MP3)
by Mark Riccobono


Is Your Blind Child Autistic? One Parent's ExperienceListen Now (MP3)
by Mary McDonach

Teaching Your Visually Impaired Child Sign LanguageListen Now (MP3)
by Jennie Smith


The Slide-A-Round Teaching Aid: A New Tool to
Teach the Concept of Rounding Numbers
Listen Now (MP3)
by Jim Franklin


Tips for Trips: How One Blind Girl Survives and Thrives When TravelingListen Now (MP3)
by Emily Pennington


Playing with KnivesListen Now (MP3)
by Laura Martinez

Special Little PeopleListen Now (MP3)
by Brandy Wojcik


How Daring to Believe Changed My Life, and How It Can Change YoursListen Now (MP3)
by Mary Fernandez

Encouraging Self-AdvocacyListen Now (MP3)
by Debbie Worman


The Transition Conversation: The Journey to Adulthood of
Blind Youth with Additional Disabilities
Listen Now (MP3)
by Lydia Schuck


Beep Kickball: A New SportListen Now (MP3)
by Judy Byrd


On Long Lines and Tax Breaks: A Mindful Approach to Blindness BenefitsListen Now (MP3)
by Arielle Silverman


iBRAL Is Here!Listen Now (MP3)
by Robert Gardner

#BRLCHAT: Professional Development from the Comfort of Your HomeListen Now (MP3)
by Natalie Shaheen


Exposed to Hope: Stories of Families Who Have Adopted
Children with Visual Impairments from China
Listen Now (MP3)
Compiled by Chloe Banks
Reviewed by Paula Ann Sprecher



     Complete Future Reflections

     Complete Future Reflections Audio File (Zipped MP3 Version)

     Complete DAISY Audio File (Zipped MP3 Version)

Why Join the NOPBC?

Are you the parent of a blind or visually impaired child?  Don’t know where to turn? 

Founded in 1983, the National Organization of Parents of Blind Children (NOPBC) is a membership organization of parents, educators, and friends of blind children reaching out to give each other vital support, encouragement, and information. We have thousands of members in all fifty states plus Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico.

The NOPBC offers hope, encouragement, information, and resources for parents of blind or visually impaired children.  NOPBC provides emotional support and a network of other families dealing with the same challenges you are facing.  We also provide information, training, and resources to empower you to take an active role in guiding your child’s development and education.  We can provide information on your child’s rights and on the laws and legislative issues that will enable you and your child to become strong and effective advocates. 

Have you ever wondered what your blind or visually impaired child will be capable of when he or she grows up?  The answer to that question is that blindness/visual impairment does not have to stop your child from doing anything he or she wants to do.  We can connect you with other families and blind adults who can serve as positive mentors and role models. They can teach you the attitudes and techniques that will enable your child to become independent and to succeed in life.  

What is different about the NOPBC?

Our status as a division of the National Federation of the Blind (NFB), the largest and most influential organization of blind people in the world, provides many benefits. Our members are well informed about the societal, legislative, and technological issues that affect blind people. We also enjoy the resources, support, and expertise of fifty thousand blind people who can serve as mentors and role models for us and our children. Finally, as our children grow up, they have the Federation to belong to.

No other organization for parents of blind/visually impaired children offers more programs, activities, and training to families, children, and youth.  One of our most exciting activities is our annual conference.  Every year since it was established, the NOPBC has conducted an annual conference for parents and teachers of blind children as part of the national convention of the NFB.  The program has grown to include five exciting days of workshops, training sessions, activities for all family members, including sighted siblings, and countless opportunities to meet blind adults and other families and children from around the country.

What is the mission of the NOPBC?

The purpose of the NOPBC is to:

•  create a climate of opportunity for blind children in home and society.
•  provide information and support to parents of blind children.
•  facilitate the sharing of experience and concerns among parents of blind children.
•  develop and expand resources available to parents and their children.
•  help parents of blind children gain understanding and perspective through partnership and contact with blind adults.
•  function as an integral part of the National Federation of the Blind in its ongoing effort to achieve equality and opportunity for all blind persons.

Most states have an NOPBC affiliate chapter.  You can find your state chapter at <www.nopbc.org>.  If your state does not have a chapter and you would like to start one, please contact us.  We may be able to offer training and other assistance to start a state NOPBC chapter.

What are the programs, activities, publications, and resources of the NOPBC?

•  National and State Parent Seminars and Conferences
•  Future Reflections Magazine
•  NOPBC Website
•  Books and Videos
•  Blindkid & Other Listservs
•  Early Childhood Conferences
•  Pop-Up IEP Website
•  Slate Pals Pen Pal Program
•  AAF Free Braille Books Program
•  Share Braille Book Exchange
•  Writing Contests
•  Junior Science Academy
•  Youth Slam High School Science Academy
•  National Center for Blind Youth in Science Web site
•  NFB-NEWSLINE® Newspaper Service
•  Where the Blind Work Website
•  Free White Cane Program
•  Blindness 411 Facebook Group for Teens
•  NFB-LINK Mentoring Program
•  Scholarship Program
•  Straight Talk about Blindness Video Series
•  Parent Leadership Program (PLP)

Contact Us:
National Organization of Parents of Blind Children
[email protected]