Celebrating Braille

January 4, 2016 marks the 207th birthday of Louis Braille, inventor of the 6-dot reading/writing system for visually impaired individuals. I began learning
braille at age 5. Braille was essential throughout grade school and continues to be useful in adulthood.

I use braille every day on-the-job via a braille display connected to my office computer. With braille I can be more efficient when filling out forms by
telephone. This skill also helps with correcting grammatical errors and assists my concentration.

I also read braille material at home for personal enjoyment. I don’t do much writing of braille anymore, but I have a braille writer at home when needed.
Because of braille knowledge, I don’t have to listen to everything all the time via text-to-speech. Braille is, in other words, an alternative reading/writing
method. I also want to publicly thank the Delaware Division for the Visually Impaired. I believe that this agency’s commitment to teaching/promoting braille
literacy helps increase the number of braill readers in my state of residence.

For anyone who may be looking for material in braille, here are several resources to consider.

The

National Library Service for the blind and physically handicapped (NLS)

in Washington, D.C., is a part of the Library of Congress. It offers braille
books on loan to registered patrons. If you are looking to buy braille books for yourself or someone else, I recommend purchasing from

Seedlings Braille Books for Children

or

National Braille Press

Both Seedlings and NBP offer reasonably-priced books for children and books appropriate for all ages. Example: Although I am an adult I still enjoy reading
the Little House on the Prairie series, which my parents purchased from Seedlings as gifts for me over the years.

You may also choose to search the braille book offerings of

the Braille Superstore

which is owned by a Canadian company called Future Aids. Although some of the braille books at this site are priced reasonably at $30 or less, many are
not. Three examples: “Chicken Soup for the Christian Soul” is priced at $72.95. “Jurassic Park” is a whopping $115.95! The Little House books purchased
from this entity are around $45 each, whereas buying from Seedlings is only about $25 each. I’m not saying don’t buy from braillebooks.com, just be sure
to check the price to make sure its something you can afford.

Happy reading!

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