My top five suggested school supplies for Visually Impaired Students

Across the world many students are returning to the classroom. For some parents this may be the first time their child who has a visual impairment may be getting a formal education. I have seen on many support groups that you want to help your child be as successful as possible.

To help with this here are my top five suggested school supplies to help your child achieve success.

  1. Bold lined paper. I know that paper in general is a required supply, however I found that growing up the regular notebook paper had lines that looked faded and it was hard for me to keep track of where I was writing. When I was little my teacher of the visually impaired introduced me to wide lined bold lined paper. They come in notebooks and college ruled length too!

This helped me a lot as I did not lose my place as I wrote. The only draw back that I found was that bold lined paper is meant to be used with a 20/20 pen, and it easily got onto my hands as I wrote. As I entered middle and high school, I found that using this paper did cause some bullying. That year I was lucky to find the five-star dark blue paper. I love this paper. The lines are dark enough to be seen, and you can use a regular pen or pencil.

  1. Erasable Pens. To help me see my work better I found that using erasable pens were very helpful. They come in either black or blue. When I was in high school, I found that I preferred the blue pens. The only complaint that I had with this tool is how the ink got all over my hands. This happened because of the way I held my pen. Remember guys, I have mild cerebral palsy. Just because this happened to me doesn’t mean it will happen to everyone.
  2. A mesh multi pocket pencil pouch. I am not talking about the clear plastic ones. I found that those made finding items hard to find. I am talking about a mesh multi pocket pencil pouch. These pencil pouches made it where I could separate all my pens, and made it where they were easy to find. Some pouches even come with holders at the top. I used to put my pens in there for a quick grab.
  3. A non-electric low vision device. In this day many students have Iphones, and Ipads to see their work, but what is a student to do if they fail? Use their non electric low vision device. When I was growing up, I used my dome magnifier quite often. I suggest that a student keep a device such as a dome magnifier handy just in case.
  4. Finally, eye glass wipes. Growing up I found that my glasses used to get dirty quite often, so I would have to ask for a pass to go to the bathroom just so I could clean my glasses. Some teachers may only offer a number of bathroom passes during the term, and a smart student would want to use them for what they are used for. (Kids, don’t use this excuse to get out of class, stay in there and learn. 😊 ) So, to help with this problem I suggest that you buy a package of pre moistened wipes that students can keep in their pencil pouches. That way a student can clean their glasses when needed.

 

I hope that you find these suggestions useful. I know that this is a short list. Is there something I missed? What would you add to this list? Tell me in the comments below.

 

Remember parents try not to worry. Your kids are going to be superstars! Happy School year everyone!

 

Disclaimer: Please note, these suggestions are based on my own personal experiences and will only help students who have some vision. These tips will not work for blind students.

 

Nominated for the Disability Blogger Award

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I was nominated by Failure to thrive no more for the  Disability Blogger Award.

As always there are rules that have to be posted with this award-I always forget them. 😊

  • Thank your nominator
  • Recognize Georgina from Chronillicles as the creator of the award and include her link https://www.chronillicles.com
  • Use logo somewhere in the post
  • Answer your nominator’s questions
  • Write 5-15 of your own questions – they don’t have to be illness related!
  • Nominate 5-15 other disability, chronic illness, mental illness or special needs bloggers Comment on each of your nominees’ latest posts to tell them they have

Thank you, Failure to thrive no more, for this nomination and thank you to Georgina, from the blog, Chronillicles for making this award possible.

Here are the questions from Failure to Thrive no more.

What is your ‘why’ for starting your blog? I started my blog almost ten years ago! I had to do ten blog posts for a grade in one of my classes. Since that time, I started blogging and never really stopped. Now I want to help inspire and educate others who have my eye condition, Nystagmus.

What is your coping strategy? My coping strategy for my disabilities is to learn to adapt to my needs. I may need to take a few minutes to rest my eyes when they are sore. I may need to use some adaptive technology to help me with my visual impairment. It all depends on the day and my needs.

What is your favorite movie? Why? My favorite movie? Hmm.  Frozen because I like the history of where the movie came from.

What is your favorite social media channel? Why? I love YouTube. I like seeing other people’s lives.

If you could tell your younger self one thing, what would it be? That my life would be difficult at times, however I walk in God’s grace which is beautiful.

My questions for the nominees are:

  1. What is your favorite food?
  2. What is your favorite time of day to work? Why?
  3. Why did you start blogging?
  4. Where do you see yourself in five years?
  5. If someone gave you $100 what would you do with it?

I would like to nominate the following people for this award.

  1. BeckieWrites
  2. viblind
  3. well_eye_never
  4. DisabledDisney
  5. lukesamsowden

If there is anyother blogger I should check out let me know by leaving a comment.

2019: More Movement, Patience, and Positivity-August Edition

As I sit here, I must admit I feel lost for words. This past month has come and gone with a blink of an eye.

Movement, to be honest, I feel I am lacking. My weight loss journey has gone to a stop. I have been feeling slow and tired. One of the phrases that keeps coming to my mind is, life is about movement and enjoyment, not fear and anxiety. I have been letting my anxiety get the best of me, and I know this is not a good thing. I have been taking some self-care steps, such as reading, talking to friends, and getting extra sleep, to manage my anxiety.

For those of you that have been asking about my book, please have patience. It is in the hands of my editor. Once it is edited, it must go through another check by my caseworker before it is published.

Patience has been a hard thing for me to grasp. Have any of you felt stuck in life? I have been feeling that way. I really want to get to my next phase of life. Once again, my friends and family reminded me to “keep going until God moves you.”

I have a lot to tell you when it comes to positivity. For those of you who don’t know I have been working with Vocational Rehabilitation to help me get my business off the ground. I had a meeting with my caseworker, and he is happy with my progress. I hope to be graduate from Vocational Rehabilitation in the near future.

I was made top fan of the week for one of my favorite charities. This made me very happy.

Lastly, I was nominated for the Liebster Award.

I have a lot of fun things planned for the month of September. How was this month for you guys? Let me know in the comments below.

Interview with Stephanie Davis Bolinger (Guest Blog Post #14)

Hi everyone,

Today’s guest post is from Stephanie.

Stephanie is a friend of mine, and we met at our local independence learning center for the blind. Stephanie is very active in the community.  🙂 Thank you, Stephanie for being a guest.

  1. What is your name? Stephanie Davis Bolinger
  2. Age? 32 years old
  3. Who has inspired you the most in life and your blogging and or YouTube channel?  There is not one individual who has inspired me the most in my life. I have been fortunate to surround myself with women and men who strive to be the change this world needs so I am inspired on a daily basis. My traumatic childhood is what has inspired me to become a writer for my blog as well as my upcoming book.

4.     Besides writing or making YouTube videos, what do you like to do in your spare time?  I was just asked yesterday “When do you sleep?” during a news interview so reading this question made me giggle. My response was “Well, I get 2 to 3 hours per night.” However I will share a few of my hobbies.   My biggest passion besides being a Local Outreach Ambassador for multiple organizations is interpretive ballroom dance. I have been lucky enough to dance locally for about 6 years and have even had the opportunity to dance with some of the professionals of the ABC Dancing With The Stars television show during a local benefit on two occasions. I very much enjoy spending my Sunday’s on the beach with all of my friends relaxing and paddle boarding. I am an avid reader and even have my own tutu making business on the side. I would love to go in detail about some of my daredevil stunts on 4wheelers, zip lines down mountains or some of my other blind adventures but those will eventually be out in my own book.

5. Name a bad habit that you have?  Wow, giving up my bad habit secret is difficult for me because it reveals the vulnerability that I so often try to hide from others. I discredit myself all to often. If you compliment me I will most likely give the credit to someone else. This seems strange to so many considering the amount of local attention that I receive on a daily basis for my efforts within my local community; however I do none of it for attention. Everything that I do or have ever done is for a purpose of helping someone else or helping a specific organization so I will 10 out of 10 times credit my many mentors for helping to mold me in to the woman who receives such compliments.

7. Name your best quality? My best quality… hmmm… since I’m the same lady who just told you that I struggle with giving myself credit for my efforts to better the world this one is difficult. I suppose that my best quality and my biggest strength is honesty and empathy which in turn mold in to one great thing to have which in my opinion is helping others with compassion in my heart and mind.

8. If you could interview anyone living or dead who would it be and why?  If I could interview anyone living or not I would without hesitation choose to interview my Daddy. He passed away when I was about 8 years old which is when my life turned in to hell on earth. I would like to ask him what he thinks about the woman I am today after overcoming so much and I would like to ask him so many questions for the book that I’m writing about my life.

9.  What is your college major/Minor?   I am a Massage Therapy student graduate as well as an Accessibility Specialist graduate holding 26 international web accessibility certifications.

10. What school (college or university) did you go to?  I Graduated as an LMT from Pensacola School of Massage Therapy. Graduated as an Accessibility Specialist with 26 international certifications from Deque University.

11. What is the title of your blog or YouTube channel? My blog is on Facebook and is called From Trauma; To Triumph Inspirational From Trauma to Triumph Inspirational speaker

12. When and why did you start your blog or YouTube channel?  I started my blog in 2018 because so many people wanted me to write a book. I do not write as often as I should but then that is due to that 2 to 3 hours of sleep, I find time for each night. Little did everyone know I have been writing a book since a couple of years after becoming blind due to a suicide attempt as a way to help myself heal from the experience, as a way to help me cope with everything I’ve gone through. I only recently announced that I have decided to publish the book once I’m done.

13. Where do you see yourself in five years?   Five years is such a short time yet such a long time away. I can honestly say that almost 8 years ago I never imagined myself where I am today so I can only hope that I am growing as a woman, wife, friend and employee 5 years from now. I hope and pray that my book is out helping others through their situations and I also hope that my public speaking opportunities have grown.

14. What is the name/cause of your visual impairment (or other disability that you may have)? My visual impairment is total blindness. I do not like to refer to it as a disability because it has strengthened me in so many ways as a person.

15. How does your visual impairment (or other disability that you may have) effect you on a daily basis?  Nothing can affect you negatively if you choose not to allow it to take you over so I would say that my vision loss affects me on a daily basis by offering me opportunity to raise awareness by teaching others about my many abilities regardless of the vision loss.

16.  What do other people feel about your visual impairment (or other disability that you may have)?  Others, the word I work so hard for in order to help yet the same word I use when I experience cruelty. As I stated above I specifically choose to surround myself with like minded friends which all treat me so normal they often laugh forgetting that I’m even blind at all but I do experience bullying from others as I’m out and about. I would say it’s a mix of good and bad however I refuse to allow the bad to change who I am as a person. I choose to smile and appreciate the good.

17. If you had to give one piece of advice to others about having a visual impairment (or other disability that you may have) what would it be?  May I have 10 pages to answer this question??? I would simply tell someone else in my situation or even a different type of situation that blindness or any disability for that matter does not define us as people. We are not disabled, we are people who live productive and independent lives with a disability. I would also say that you are the only person who can hold you back from achieving your goals so as long as you care enough to work harder than the average person has to and you put your entire heart and mind in to achieving a goal you can do anything you go after. As wrong as this may seem to others I will also say that because I’ve been at rock bottom and worked with more determination than anything before to be successful, to help others, to have confidence, to have self respect, to have self worth, to have self love, to respect and love others that I have no pitty what so ever for someone whether they live with a disability or not if they do not put in the necessary effort to help themselves. Once we become adults we have the right to choose who we will be and what we will do with our lives so choose to be the best you every single day. Choose to be the change, to be the inspiration that this world needs.

17. Where can other people find you on Social media (Please list and provide links) My social media pages are private for family and friends other than my blog page.

If you would like to be interviewed as a guest on my blog feel free to email me at: amanda@amandagene.com

 

The Glasses Tag

I saw this tag on the internet, and since I have to wear my glasses due to my visual impairment, I thought this would be fun to answer this tag!

1. How long have you been wearing glasses? I been wearing glasses since the age of two.
2. What were your first pair of glasses like? I think I still have them in my messy closet, but they were a pair of mickey mouse glasses with light purple arms. My mother said once I got used to them, I didn’t want to stop wearing them. I even fell asleep with them on.

3. How often do you wear your glasses? I have to wear them daily.
4. How many pairs of glasses do you have? I have two pairs. The pair that is my current prescription and another pair that has my old prescription which isn’t very helpful at all.
5. Where did you get your glasses? I got them at my local eye doctor through a grant from Division of Blind Services.
6. Long sighted or short sighted? I’m both. I struggle with seeing things at a distance than up close. This is one of the reasons why I can’t drive.
7. What prescription are your glasses? According to my eye doctor report I can see Right eye Distance: 20/100 Both together 20/50, Let eye distance: 20/250 with both together 20/800 and Distance together 20/50+ Near is 20/30. Basically, all those numbers mean is I have low vision.
8. Do your family members wear glasses? Yes, my dad wears glasses, my grandpa wears glasses and both my grandmothers wear glasses.
9. What do you think about wearing glasses? It helps me see better than when I don’t have them on.
10. Do you wear contact lenses? No. I wish I could though.

Do you wear glasses? Tell me in the comments below.

Nominated For The Blogger Recognition Award

Blogger-Rec-Award
Picture of the Blogger Recognition Award.

I was nominated by Disabled Disney for the Blogger Recognition Award.

Here are the rules for this award:

Thank the nominator, and publish a post on your blog about receiving the Blogger Recognition Award.

Make sure to provide a link to the nominator’s blog in your post.

Give a brief story of how your blog started.

Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers. Nominate 10-15 other bloggers for this award, and inform them of their nomination. (I know I only did five. 😊)

Thank you, Melissa, for this award.

Why I started my blog: I started my blog almost ten years ago (in September of 2010) as part of a college course that I had to take for my journalism degree. I enjoyed sharing my life’s journey, including how I deal with my disabilities, that I couldn’t stop writing. Now I want to make blogging part of my career.

Two pieces of advice to new bloggers.

  1. Network with other bloggers. It is a great way to get ideas for posts and for other resources.
  2. Don’t give up, keep writing. Over the past nine to ten years of writing I didn’t stop writing. Even if it was just a small post to say hello, I reached out to my audience.

I nominate the following five bloggers for this award:

  1. Matt Harris
  2. Jessica Woods
  3. VI Blind Resources
  4. Joy Ross
  5. Sam with the Blind Life

If you know of any bloggers I should check out let me know in the comments below.

Amanda Gene tries Candy from Canada

I was excited to receive a box of Canada treats to try. Thank you, Aunt Wendy, for the treats. 😊

The first candy I tried was a Big Foot Gros Pieds. The texture remined me of the fruit rollup snacks we have in America. I liked the fruit flavors of Banana, grape, and apple. I enjoyed this treat a lot.

The next treat I tried were chocolate covered almonds. I love chocolate and almonds. The candy was very sweet and it tingled even after I finished the sample. I liked the crunch from the almond. I am sure I will finish the box very quickly.

Sugar Shack Maple Candy Pastilles were next. I honestly feel that if I sucked on the candy longer, I could have enjoyed it more. However, I did not care for it right off hand. To me it was too sweet.

The next treat I tried was a hard candy that was in the shape of a maple leaf. Even though the candy shape looked unique, I did not care for the strong maple flavor.

The last treat I tried was a Canada milk chocolate bar. I loved the markings on the bar because it remined me of tree bark. I liked how sweet the bar was. It really was delicious.

Tell me what country I should try next by leaving me a comment below!