Reading Resources for VI Students
Reading Resources to Check Out
By Briana Philippi
The advancement of technology continues to provide a further resource to our students. From voice over readings to descriptive on-screen audio, technology allows many of our students the opportunity to listen to books and navigate onscreen. While this is helpful, the difficulty of finding affordable, inexpensive or free physical copies of braille and large print books becomes apparent. As a way to help, here are some free resources to help further your child’s reading involvement:
- Do you want access to visually adapted digital books?
Check out bookshare, a free online library for visually impaired people. Much like a traditional library website, bookshare provides easy access to books in braille and large print. To become a member and have access to free and unlimited books, one must qualify with an expert’s confirmation having a print disability or visual impairment inhibiting the ability to read traditional books.
- Do you want a place to find more braille books for your child?
While there are many websites containing a variety of books in braille for all readers to purchase, there are places that offer them for free. The National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, through the Library of Congress, offers free access to braille books, audiobooks, Braille and Audio Reading Downloads (BARD) which provides access to special-format books online, and music. Visit their website to sign up for free!
- Have you heard of the local special needs resource library?
Check out Vegas PBS’s special needs resource library, a digitally-accessed free lending service available to Nevadans with special needs such as autism, blindness, developmental delays and others. With a variety of book formats for different education levels, students and parents receive the books in the mail free-of-charge. Access to ordering books is available on their website or calling their office.
- Do you want to expose your child to the traditional library setting?
Both Henderson and Clark County Libraries offer various books in large print and versions of audiobooks, with their braille book selection available upon request. Clark County Libraries, however, is the only library service that offers access to free courses on Lynda.com; all you would need is access to your library card!
- Have you ever heard of talking books?
Nevada Talking Book Services (NTBS) is a free library service for Nevadans that provide access to various fiction and nonfiction audiobooks and magazines for all ages. Those eligible for their free service are those with a visual or physical disability that are unable to use standard print materials.