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With schools closed, teachers all over the world are now resorting to online tools. Zoom is the new classroom, where teachers talk to children, share ideas and visuals through slides and PowerPoint presentations. If for sighted children, switching to online might be fun because they now get to spend more time then ever at the computer, this change significantly affects the teachers of the blind. We are here to bring them closer to their students in times of distress and help them teach visual content, although they are far apart. 

 

    1. Free access to an online solution
    2. The ability to create personalized content
    3. Embossing techniques for parents 
    4. Free assistance

1. Free access to an online solution

The Tactile Images e-learning platform is here to offer the teachers of the blind a free educational tool they can use to teach visual content while in lock-down. If traditionally, they need to be physically close to blind children to help them explore tactile graphics – embossed simplified drawings, we thought of a solution that gives the children study independence.

We created a mobile app that can be used to explore tactile graphics with a QR Code attached independently. We call them self-describing tactile graphics because the app uses VoiceOver to give audio information to the blind.

Our online solution includes a LIBRARY of self-describing tactile graphics, which can be explored independently by blind children with the aid of a smartphone in two ways. They can either use any smartphone to read the information on the website or use the READER app we created especially for the independent exploration of self-describing tactile graphics. Right now, the app is available only for iOS, and you can download it free of charge right here.

2. The ability to create personalized content

Because we want to allow the teachers of the blind to follow their curricula, we also created an EDITOR which empowers them to make their own self-describing tactile graphics. They can either use the tactile graphics in our LIBRARY, which they can adapt to the knowledge level of their children, or digitize the tactile graphics they have at home. If you want to get access to the EDITOR, please fill out this form to send a free request.

After creating a self-describing tactile graphic in the EDITOR, a teacher can send it to all the parents of blind children via e-mail. Just as easy! With the READER app, the blind child will then be able to explore the tactile graphic by himself and listen to the indications of his teacher as if he/she was there, with him.

3. Embossing techniques for parents

We know how expensive embossing is, so we thought of ways of empowering the parents of blind children, as well. After the teacher sends them the self-describing tactile graphic, parents can emboss them manually by using a syringe and some wood adhesive. It’s inexpensive and easy to learn. You can emboss one graphic with under $1. We’ll show you how in these videos.

4. Free assistance

Teachers of the blind, do you need our assistance to learn how to explore the e-learning platform? We are here for you! You can schedule a call at this link. Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

How can you teach visual content to the blind while in lock-down? Let’s make a recap: You access the Tactile Images platform, and you either download a self-describing tactile graphic or create your own in the EDITOR. You then send it via e-mail to the parents, also telling them to download the READER mobile app. You also mention the inexpensive embossing techniques and then empower the children to study visual content independently.
Do you have any questions about how we can help teachers teach visual content while in lock-down? You can write them in the comment section below!

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