TX SenseAbilities – Fall 2020 Issue

Featured Article

Una mujer canosa sostiene una lupa en su mano derecha para ayudarse a leer el libro de su regazo.

Older Individuals Who Are Blind Program: A Treasured Resource for Older Texans

Tim Spong, with the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC), describes the Older Individuals Who are Blind Program (OIB) for people who are 55 or older and are experiencing vision loss.

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News & Views

Singing Through The Quarantine: The Spinrockers and Our Journey to Musical Fulfillment

This article follows the journey of Devin Gutierrez and Mary Rose Bushland as they developed their band, The Spinrockers, and entertained the nation through the “Live from the Living Room Concert Series” during the COVID-19 quarantine.

The Highs and Lows of Remote Learning

This article follows one family as they reflect on the last several months of remote learning. The author focuses on her experiences, the high points, low points, and how navigating the situation with a team of support has helped them feel empowered in the end.

Does Santa Know Braille?

Introducing TAPVI’s New President

The Texas Association for Parents of Children with Visual Impairments (TAPVI) has just elected Hillary Rodriguez as its new president. In this article, Hillary introduces herself, shares information about her journey to TAPVI, and describes her aspirations for the organization. Readers can also learn more about how to become connected with and informed about TAPVI events.

The Five Rs: Navigating Virtual and Hybrid Special Education

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, families have become increasingly concerned about how their children receiving special education services will continue to make progress and move forward in their learning. This article discusses the implications of the pandemic on special education services. The author provides families with five considerations for balancing advocacy for their children with the realities and limitations of learning during these unusual times.

Evaluation of Blind and Low Vision Students During COVID-19: A Guidance Document

Looking at Self-Stimulation

During the long period of quarantine during COVID-19, many families have reported an increase in self-stimulatory behaviors in their children with sensory impairments, including those who are visually impaired and have additional disabilities or are deafblind. This article was first published in the Spring 1993 issue of P.S. NEWS!!! (Volume V. No. 3) by the TSBVI Outreach Programs. Because stress and changes in routine continue to impact student behavior, especially during the pandemic, we asked author Kate Hurst to revisit and update her article. Along with co-author Robbie Blaha, they explore the root causes of activities and behaviors that may be considered to be socially inappropriate and encourage readers to revise their thinking about and reactions to self-stimulatory behaviors. Changing perceptions about these behaviors can help parents and professionals respond more effectively and help guide them in addressing students’ sensory needs.

Assistive Technology for Math: 10 Tips for TVIs

All students need a strong foundation of knowledge and skills in math so that new learning can be retained and new mathematical concepts can continue to be developed. This is true for students with visual impairments as well, and there are many assistive technology (AT) devices available to help facilitate their learning of math concepts and skills. The author shares information on a variety of these materials and describes how both low-tech and high-tech can enhance students’ learning of math.

What is ECI and Why Is it Important?

The author spells out the interplay between agencies, systems, and plans for providing Early Childhood Intervention (ECI) services for children with sensory impairments in Texas, ages birth to three. She also describes the legal framework within which these systems and entities operate.

TSBVI Amidst a Pandemic

TSBVI’s Superintendent discusses how TSBVI shifted during the COVID-19 pandemic to remote learning and established goals for embarking on a new school year.

When Someone in Your Family Has Diabetes

The author describes ways to manage and support family members who have diabetes, based on the seven self-care behaviors determined by the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE) to be effective for self-management of diabetes (the AADE7 Self-Care Behaviors®).

Announcing! New 2020 Guidelines and Standards!

Outreach in the Time of COVID-19

TSBVI’s Outreach Director describes some of the creative initiatives that the TSBVI Outreach Program developed during the Spring and Summer of 2020 to provide needed support and collaboration to teachers, providers, and families during COVID-19.

TSBVI Short-Term Programs (STP) Update

TSBVI’s Principal of Short-Term Programs (STP) describes classes and activities they provided during the COVID-19 quarantine and their plans for 2020-2021.

Teach Beyond the Classroom

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