Information of low vision
Jose (age 4) is a child with low vision. He was a newcomer from Winnipeg moving to Toronto. He had been in a child care center in Winnipeg. Moreover, Jose is an only child in a two-parent family. On the other hand, both of Jose’s parents are all newcomers to Toronto,they were looking for some family supports services. Moreover, both of them work, they do not have time to take care their child.
Information of low vision
Low vision is a term that refers to vision 20/70 or worse that cannot be fully corrected by glasses or contact lenses.( wikipedia). For example, the normal vision is someone looking at a standard eye chart from 6 feet away will see or 20/20 vision sees from 18 feet away. low vision means that a person standing 3 feet from the eye chart will see the same thing as a person with ‘normal’ vision from 60 feet away. If someone’s sight is any worse than this, they are classified as blind.The symptoms of Low Vision are loss of central vision ,night blindness, loss of peripheral vision, blurred vision, hazy vision. Moreover, there are many factors can cause of low vision, such as lack of pigment, the absence of the lens of the eye and lens of the eye becoming cloudy or opaque.
Secondly, The partial or complete loss of vision has a negative impact on physical abilities
that require visual control. (Sermejev B.V., 1980). The study of vision impairment performed as part of the Unique (1985) project, showed that in relation to the general population of children, low vision children have considerably lower speed, strength, flexibility, and cardiovascular endurance (Short F.S., Winnick J.P., 1986). (http://www.icevi.org/pdf/eur-034-grbovic-aleksandra.pdf)
According to this case, there are many ways to meet the children and family. Firstly, we can provide some hand-held vision spectacle magnifiers in the classroom or at home.The hand-held spectacle magnifiers are very easy to use for children. Children can change both the distance between the magnifier and the object or text, and the distance between the eye and the magnifier. The greater the distance between the magnifier and the object or text, the higher the magnification will be. Thus, the child can choose the most suitable and comfortable viewing distance for each activity, depending on the size of the object or text. The hand-held vision spectacle magnifiers can not only using in reading time( books, newspaper), but also can using in discovering time( plant , animals ). Moreover, we also can provide some small telescopes to let children to see the things at the distance. These can be in the classroom, when children with low vision, it was really helpful to them to read the blackboard. On the other hand, if some centers do not have telescopes, they can seat child with low vision as close to the board as practical, let children to choose a seat where they see the best, and provide a seating often necessary for children with low vision.
Secondly, we can plan some trips for children with low vision. According these trips, children can get more useful informations about low vision, respected each other between normal vision to low vision. During the classroom, we can read some stories about low vision. After reading, we can encourage children to discuss together. According to discuss, the children will see that there was no difference between the children with low vision and normal vision. This was very helpful to improve the children with low vision’s self-esteem and self-confident skill.
Thirdly, according to case study, we know that Jose’s parents are newcomers to Toronto, also they are busy to work. Maybe, they do not have time to research some information about low vision, some family support about children with low vision. Therefore, creating some parent’s newsletter or workshops are very helpful for parents to understanding the low vision, such as information about low vision, strategies of low vision and also provide some information about family support program with low vision. By using these strategies, parents will have a good opportunity to take care their children with low vision at home.
According to the case study, we known that Jose’s parents are newcomers in Toronto and both of them are busy to work, they do not have time to find some agencies in Toronto area. Therefore, the agency “Surrey Place Centre” is very good for Jose’s parents. The”Surrey Place Centre” is an internationally recognized organization, employing over 200 staff members. It provides specialized clinical services that are responsive to individual need and promote health and well-being in the Toronto region. In additional, this agency is committed to supporting the social inclusion of people with developmental disabilities and/or autism spectrum disorders. This agency help children and families living with developmental disabilities and / or autism spectrum disorders reach their full potential. They offer a variety of groups and workshops for children, families and caregivers, and community agencies conducted extensive education and counseling services. For example, in this agency, they have a program about “Low Vision Program” (formally the Ontario Foundation for Visually Impaired Children).”Low Vision Program” will help families and caregivers to provide support for all the senses to optimize learning opportunities, such as “Assessment of sensory functioning to determine the child’s primary learning channel”, Evaluation of the child’s environments to develop recommendations for optimizing the child’s learning opportunities”, Support to families and caregivers to promote healthy attachment and “social interactions, and Guide parents in understanding their child’s sensory functioning and required modifications to the environment to support learning”. Moreover, this program services children and their families living in Toronto, Halton, Peel, York and Durham Regions. In additional, Referrals for service must be received through Regional Blind-Low Vision Program Lead Agencies: Families living in Toronto – Toronto Public Health – 416.338.8255.
Through this assignment, I learned many informations about children with special needs. According to the study case, I learned the information about low vision, such as cause of low vision, symptoms of low vision. In additional, I gained a lot of ways to meet the needs of children with low vision in the child care center. For example, provide hand-held spectacle magnifiers in the center, seat the child with low vision as close to the board and provide some parents’s newsletter or workshop to help parents get a better way to take care their children. Moreover, I also know that there are many agencies around Toronto to provide services to children with special needs. As before, I never pay attention to these kinds of agencies.
The strength to me, according to this assignment, I can get a better way to teach the children with special needs. Because during in my placement, I have one child who has special needs. Although, he was not a low vision, but I still can use some strategies to him. Such as give his parents some newsletter about special needs, create some workshops. As before, I did not get more information about special needs. Therefore, I have no idea to teach him.
The challenge of this assignment to me is too hard to do the question. Due to my English barrier, some parts of questions I could not understand and confused. It cost me a lot of time to thinking and understanding. The other one is hard to research the agency. I realized that there are many agencies in the Toronto. But some are agencies were not very good for Jose’s parents. They did not provide some special needs programs in the center.
Last but not least, if I did the same assignment in the future, I will take more ways to research the information about special needs and to be use in my teaching area in the future. In additional, this assignment was very helpful for me to be a teacher in Canada or other counties. Because of to be a ECE, we should understand the full range of the needs of each child, including special children.