This year our foundation was able to sponsor all the food for all four of the Braille Challenges one in Tampa, Jacksonville, Orlando, and Ft.Lauderdale. Florida Instructional Materials Center for the Visually Impaired (www.fimcvi.org) and Florida Association for the Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired (FAER) host four Florida Regional Braille Challenge competitions each school year to promote braille literacy in school-aged students who are blind or visually impaired. These events are preliminary rounds of Braille Institute of America’s National Braille Challenge competition held in Los Angeles, California every June (www.braillechallenge.org) Students in grades 1-12 compete in the areas of
reading comprehension, braille speed, and accuracy, proofreading, spelling, and reading tactile charts and graphs. Students in pre-kindergarten or kindergarten are invited to participate in a non-competitive portion of the day to work on braille readiness skills with fun activities related to the overall event theme. These unique events not only encourage students to increase their braille reading and writing skills, but they also recognize students for their accomplishments and promote public awareness of the literacy issues associated with braille readers. Additionally, the events provide valuable opportunities for networking, training, and educational sessions for parents and families while students compete and participate. The Little Legend foundation is so happy to be involved with this incredible organization that absolutely makes these kids’ lives just so much better while challenging them to new heights with their literacy in Braille.
This was the first year the Little Legend himself was able to participate in the Braille Challenge. The theme this year was Jurassic Braille so everything was dinosaur themed. Sawyer was there with another little cutie his friend Bijou who is also legally blind. It was quite an experience for them and us as parents. While Sawyer and Bijou worked away in different activities such as breaking open dinosaur eggs to feel fossils and read pre-brailed books, Cameron and I got to listen to an amazing speaker who was born blind and has had incredible life of travel, family and successful jobs. As parents, this was one of the most special talks because it was so positive and he is such a successful person. These programs are incredible not only for the children but also for the parents who also need the support and learning that comes along with raising successful visually impaired children.