With a slideshow prepared by Amanda (iC2 Prephouse), the children were introduced to the visual aids used by the visually impaired. The children learnt about the white cane, which is often mistaken for a “walking cane”. We discovered that a walking cane refers to the cane used to aid in walking, whereas a white cane is only used to aid the visually impaired.
We also learnt about the Perkins Brailler, which the children mentioned how it looks like an old typewriter. They watched a video on how the Perkins Brailler is used to type words in Braille. School-going children who are visually impaired may also use a handheld magnifier, used to magnify words on paper or the whiteboard.
Next, we observed how public areas have features to aid the visually impaired. The children identified the following areas: MRT stations with tactile paving, Braille on lift buttons, tactile paving at crossroads. We also discussed the “Talking” ATMs, by POSB Bank, which allows people to plug in earphones to be able to listen to the options and instructions instead of looking at the screen.
The children then wondered how else they could offer help to someone who is visually impaired. We came up with different scenarios, such as being at a bus stop, or being in a shopping mall. To end off our SSDB project, the children drew out a picture to describe how they could offer help, and what accessibility feature could be added to that scenario.
“I drew me and a child who is visually impaired at the playground. I can help by helping them climb the stairs. We can put tactile paving so they know which part might be dangerous.” - Umar
“I drew a picture of me at the bus stop. An uncle who is visually impaired asked me what bus is here, because he cannot see the bus number. I will ask him what bus he wants to take, then I will tell him when his bus is here.” - Jade