B4 Resources for the Print Impaired

This resource guide was prepared as a part of B4 Georgia Early Literacy Initiative to help very young children to develop pre-reading skills before kindergarten. The guide is developed with the print impaired community in mind and the goal is twofold.

  • To provide parents who are blind or visually impaired with a resource to locate audio and Braille books to read to their sighted or visually impaired pre-school age children.
  • To provide parents of blind or visually impaired pre-school aged children with tools and techniques necessary to develop and promote pre-literacy skills in their very young children.

Parents with print impairment are often faced with the challenge of finding books to share with very young children to help them develop a love for reading. This resource guide presents a selection of sources to obtain audio and Braille books that are either available free of charge, for loan, or for purchase.

Parents of blind or visually impaired children from birth to age 4, have a greater challenge to find resources that foster love for and understanding of reading. Children learn from experiences relating to what they see happening around them. As early as age two, a child is able to make the connection that pictures and words have meanings and they tell a story. This resource guide provides parents of children with low vision or no vision at all with tools needed to give their child the same experiences in a different way, so that she would be ready to learn about reading and writing when the time comes.

Resources for Print Impaired Parents

Georgia Library for Accessible Statewide Services (GLASS) 
GLASS is the primary source of braille and audio books and magazine for the blind in Georgia. GLASS houses an extensive collection of Print/braille books for younger readers.

American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults (AAF) 
This program provides blind children a free braille book every month from a popular children’s reading series. The books are for the children to keep and collect for as long as they want them.

American Printing House for the Blind (APH) 
Offers a limited number of braille books for preschool children.

Beulah Reimer Legacy (BRL)
Beulah Reimer Legacy sells print/braille children’s picture books at an affordable cost. BRL’s mission is to increase braille literacy and reading opportunities by placing braille in the hands of eager readers.

Braille Institute of America, Inc 
Offers children ages 3-18 a variety of books from which they may select four titles three times a year. Dots for Tots and TacTales are programs offered for blind toddlers.

Bumpy Basics 
Bumpy Basics is a collection of books for the youngest blind children, which gives them the opportunity to begin to learn about books and reading. These board books are a combination of print and braille – the same books that sighted children read, but adapted with braille labels.

Christian Record Services, Inc 
Christian Record Services offers over 400 Braille titles and over 1,500 audio tape titles ranging from fiction, adventure, Bible and non-fiction, covering all reading levels. (30 day lending)

Great Expectations 
Great Expectations brings popular picture books to life using a multi-sensory approach — songs, tactile play, picture descriptions, body movement, engaged listening — all designed to promote active reading experiences for children with visual impairments.

I Can See Books
Offers an extensive collection of Braille and print/Braille books for the youngest readers.

National Braille Press 
NBP offers a Braille Book-of-the-Month club for young readers. The subscription is $100/year for 13 books (sign up as a trial to get notices on titles). NBP also offers other Braille books for all age groups, and a Braille manual, Just Enough to Know Better, for parents who wish to learn Braille. Check the Web site or call for a free catalog.

National Federation of the Blind Share Braille 
NFB ShareBraille is a free service that facilitates the exchange of Braille books through a community-run library.  You can go online to trade your Braille books or to request books from other NFB ShareBraille users.

National Federation of the Blind Reading Pals Club 
The Braille Reading Pals Club is an early literacy program that fosters positive attitudes about Braille for Children and their families and promotes a love for reading by encouraging parents to read daily with their blind or low vision child.

NLS Kids Zone 
Kids Zone is a feature on the NLS website designed as a central hub for parents to retrieve NLS Braille and audio books for younger readers. Every search returns only children’s materials from the NLS collection.

National Braille Press distributes attractive Braille book bags to families with blind and visually impaired children, ages birth to seven, across the U.S. and Canada. The distribution process is a collaborative effort with educators and early intervention professionals.

Seedlings: Braille Books for Children 
Seedling offers Print/braille picture books, Print-and-braille books, uncontracted braille books, and braille books for ages up to 14. Free catalog upon request.

Seeing Hands 
All books in collection available on loan free of charge. Organization also offers a free Braille book to participants on their birthday!

Resources for Parents of Children with Print Impairments

Blind Children’s  Center (BBC) 
BBC has several booklets on parenting a child with visual impairment or blindness.

An excellent series of DVD on parenting visually impaired pre-schoolers.

Georgia Learning Resources System 
An invaluable resource for books, games and educational material to teach other children about children with special needs.  These are regional systems, so go to the website to find out which branch serves your county.

Paths to Literacy 
The website assists families in the quest to provide literacy experiences for children who are blind or visually impaired.

Pre-reading Activities for Blind Preschoolers 
A list of pre-reading, reading and writing activities for preschool and kindergarten blind and visually impaired children.

Perkins Scout 
Scout is an information clearinghouse with online resources on all aspects of visual impairments and blindness.  This site is maintained by the Training and Educational Resources Program at Perkins School for the Blind.

Teaching Students with Visual Impairments 
This site provides ideas for teaching visually impaired children including sensory tables, music and movement.

Texas School for the Blind – Preschool Instructional Resources 
Provides parents with articles and instructional resources in literacy skills in pre-school age print impaired children and offers opportunities for children and youth with visual impairments to develop the skills necessary to lead personally, socially, and vocationally satisfying and productive lives.