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Ruby Polk uses Braille Is Beautiful to teach students about blindness and Braille.Available Online:

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BRAILLE IS BEAUTIFULStudents examine a Braillewriter during a Braille Is Beautiful presentation.

This innovative diversity awareness program uses the beauty of Braille to build a bridge of understanding between sighted and blind children. It teaches sighted students how to read and write the Braille alphabet code.  As they discover how much fun it is to read and write Braille "bumps," they come to respect and appreciate the way blind children learn, and ultimately accept them as friends and equals in the classroom.  The program targets sighted children in grades four through six, but can be adapted for younger or older youth.  It can be used in the classroom, with individual students, youth clubs, or service organizations.  No previous experience with Braille or blindness is required to successfully teach the material.  The program comes in different kits to fit different budgets and instructional needs.

  • Teacher’s Guide Economy Kit
    Includes the 100-page Teacher’s Guide in a loose-leaf binder; 100 Braille alphabet cards; 25 copies of the paperback booklet, The World Under My Fingers: Personal Reflections on Braille (Second Edition), master copy of the student instruction book and workbook, and one slate and stylus for writing (embossing) Braille dots.  The Teacher's Guide is structured in five units with a variety of learning formats, including group discussions, interactive games, and applied projects.  Parts of the program can be used together or alone           
    Order Information: Item LPA55; Print; $35.00 | Order Now
  • Audiovisual Kit
    Includes two titles, "Jake and the Secret Code" for children (one DVD and one video cassette) and "That The Blind May Read" for adults (one video cassette). The kit also contains a "Audiovisual Discussion Guide," a "Braille Writing Demonstration Guide," a slate and stylus, and a Braille alphabet card.
    Order Information: Item LPA58; Video Cassette/DVD; $25.00 | Order Now
  • Curriculum Program Kit
    This program has all the materials needed to instruct a typical classroom of children.  It includes a "Teacher’s Guide," an Audiovisual Kit, "The Slate Book" (a teacher's manual for the slate and stylus), 25 sets of the student instruction book and student workbook, a ream of Braille paper, 100 Braille alphabet cards, a "Service Guide" (ideas and instructions on how to complete a Braille project), 5 plastic adhesive labeling sheets (for a service project), 25 slates and styli, 25 copies of The World Under My Fingers: Personal Reflections on Braille (Third Edition), and 25 each of two Kernel Book titles with stories by and about ordinary blind people.
    Order Information: Item LPA50C; Various; $250.00 | Order Now
  • Student Instruction/Workbook Kit
    This kit includes 25 sets of the student instruction book and student workbook for the classroom. Using the instruction book, students will be introduced to key concepts of blindness and the Braille code.  Students then use the workbook to practice what they have learned through a series of short tests and Braille exercises.
    Order Information: Item LPA63; Print; $60.00

    Note:  The following guides and books are available in alternative formats at no cost to blind instructors who purchase a Braille Is Beautiful kit as listed above:

    • Teacher’s Guide      
      Order Information: Item LPA49; Braille; No Charge
    • Audiovisual Discussion Guide   
      Order Information: Item LPA39; Braille; No Charge
    • Braille Writing Demonstration Guide
      Order Information: Item LPA76; Braille; No Charge
    • Kernel Book One
      Order Information: Item LPA71; Braille; No Charge
    • Kernel Book Two
      Order Information: Item LPA72; Braille; No Charge
    • The World Under My Fingers: Personal Reflections on Braille (Third Edition)
      Order Information: Item LSA54; Print/Data CD; No Charge

            Note: Contents are subject to revision and may change without notice.

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  • The Bridge to Braille: Reading and School Success for the Young Blind Child
    by Carol Castellano and Dawn Kosman
    A practical, step-by-step guide that will show parents and teachers how to help blind children progress from early literacy experiences all the way to full participation in the classroom.       
    Order Information: Item LSA63; Braille: $20.00; Floppy Disk/Print/CD: $12.00 | Order Now
  • The Future of Education Innovation: Panacea or Pandemonium
    by Kenneth Jernigan (1969)
    Order Information: Item LBF13; Print; No Charge
  • Independent Movement and Travel in Blind Children: A Promotion Model
    This book is full of practical tips and strategies about how parents and teachers can help a blind child develop normal and independent movement. It includes detailed instructions and information about canes--what kind, when a child should get one, etc.--and introduces an exciting new approach, "Bottom-Up," to teaching orientation and mobility to young children developmental ages birth through kindergarten.
    Order Information: Item LSA104; Print; $30.00 | Order Now
  • Jake and the Secret Code Video Package and Discussion Guide
    Viewers follow Jake, a young boy who learns about blindness and Braille from a blind man, as he visits the National Center for the Blind. Viewers are then encouraged to use the discussion guide to further explore what they've learned about blindness and Braille. A component of the Braille Is Beautiful Diversity Awareness Program, this special offer includes the video Jake and the Secret Code on both VHS and DVD, along with the audiovisual discussion guide and the Braille writing demonstration guide.
    Order Information: Item LPA41DV; Various; $15.00 | Order Now
  • Making It Work: Educating the Blind/Visually Impaired Student in the Regular School
    by Carol Castellano
    Discusses how to make the regular school education a successful experience for blind/visually impaired children.  Appropriate for school staff, specialized service providers, and parents.
    Order Information: Item LSA05; Print: $25.00 | Order Now
  • Modular Instruction for Independent Travel for Students Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired
    by Doris Willoughby and Sharon Monthei
    For the mobility teacher, classroom teacher, or parent. This practical guide offers over a thousand creative suggestions for teaching cane travel to preschool through high school blind and visually impaired students in every possible setting.
    Order Information: Item LSA01; Print: $20.00 | Order Now

If you would like to order any of these items, please contact the Independence Market for availability. You may contact us by e-mail at or by phone at 410-659-9314, extension 2216. For additional information, please refer to our Independence Market Literature Order Procedure.