Motor Skills Resources

In this section, families and educators can explore the importance of touch in bonding and communicating with a baby who is blind or visually impaired. Touch and movement are integral to development of fine and gross motor skills, encouraging young children to reach out and to actively explore the world around them.

A project developed between Penrickton Center for the Blind in Michigan, Perkins School for the Blind, and the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired provides resources and a community of practice around the work of Dr. Lilli Nielsen and Active Learning. The site includes discussion of Active Learning principles, assessment, implementation, materials, equipment, and other events and resources. Active Learning is most effective for those with significant multiple disabilities and in the 0-48 month developmental level. 

This 7-minute video was created by Elina Mullen, Ed.D. and demonstrates different types of equipment for various sports, such as hockey, racquet games, and more.

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired

Authors Perla and Ducret explain how the design of an O&M program for students with multiple disabilities should start with understanding the child's most basic needs, such as communication, safety, independence, and consistency.

Source: International Council for Education of People with Visual Impairment (ICEVI)

This site includes extensive information about sensory integration dysfunction, with sections focusing on education, classroom accommodations, and additional resources.

Source: Bridges4Kids

This PowerPoint presentation focuses on the learning styles of children with visual impairments with and without additional disabilities and on early orientation and mobility development.

Source: Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired (British Columbia)

Colorado's state standards are listed here for grades K-12; a glossary and references are included.

Aimed at parents, with clear, nonclinical language. This is a compilation of three different developmental scales for evaluating social/emotional, communication, cognitive, fine motor, and gross motor development.

Source: WonderBaby

"Discovery is dedicated to fostering self-sufficiency in blind and visually impaired children and adults by improving their mobility, confidence, independence, and social skills through involvement in physical activities."

Easter Seals New Hampshire Camping Program
Manchester, New Hampshire
 
Integrated program for children of all levels of ability.
 
Source: Easterseals

Motor and cognitive skills essential to literacy are presented in a grid that shows how they interrelate and support a child's development (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader).

Source: Paths to Literacy

This page offers suggestions for helping young children develop greater independence in all areas of daily living, including mobility, toileting, eating, dressing and undressing.

Source: Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB)

Eye care specialists and their areas of expertise; includes links to parents' group and other important sources.

Source: FamilyConnect

ASHA explains the nature of feeding and swallowing disorders, their signs and symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment.

Source: American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

Chris Tabb offers tips on encouraging purposeful movement, developing sensory efficiency, and grasping concepts as lessons of O&M for students with significant disabilities.

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)

The joys of woodworking. Includes safety tips. 

Source: Vision Aware

O&M skills begin when a baby learns to balance and walk. Advice for enhancing confidence and development.

Source: FamilyConnect

This guide summarizes the various visual impairments a child will have after hemispherectomy, TPO disconnection, and occipital lobectomy, and how they can affect a child’s daily living, functional mobility, and access to the educational curriculum in school.

Source: Perkins eLearning

Heather Miller-Kuhaneck gives specific suggestions for incorporating sensory input into daily activities and offers general guidelines for the home.

Source: Sensory Processing Disorder Foundation

Educators and authors D. Jay Gense and Marilyn Gense provide educational strategies in this illustrated article that places Orientation & Mobility in context for learners with deafblindness. Also in PDF format, English or Spanish.

Source: National Consortium on Deaf-Blindness (NCDB)

A wealth of information can be found here on all topics related to infants and toddlers, and the adults who spend time with them. The online information includes many specific tips on topics ranging from play to sleep.

Prof. Grace Lappin describes how infant massage can provide another way for the caregiver and child to interact, establish contact and communication, and develop a deep bond. (Microsoft Word Document)

Source: DVI Quarterly, 2003, Council for Exceptional Children (CEC)Division on Visual Impairments

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