What to do with this activity?
Has your child ever wondered what it would be like to be blind? Nowadays computers can convert text to speech so that blind people can hear what's written. But not everything is on computers.
Way back in 1809 a Frenchman called Louis Braille invented an alphabet that could be read by touch. He was only 15 years old and was blind himself. It's a really clever system that uses raised dots in different combinations. Each letter of the alphabet, number and punctuation mark has its own combination of dots.
Have a look at the Braille Alphabet here from PharmaBraille. We're not suggesting you learn it all, just learn a few letters by touch. Use some thick card and carefully stick pins through from the back. Your child might like to write their first name out in Braille.
Why am I doing this?
It’s important to encourage whatever reading your child is doing at this age. Children have their own interests and hobbies so they will be more inclined to read information about these subjects. Having comics, papers or magazines around the house will make it easier for your child to get into reading. Your child might find it appealing to read online and you might like that the book can be read by an automated voice. E books can be looked at when you are on the move, making sure that your child is careful with your computer or phone.
How can I do more?
Your child might like to read a section of the newspaper or a magazine – the sports, fashion or cooking sections - depending on their interests. They might like to read a short piece from a newspaper and underline facts with a pen and opinion with a pencil. You can then talk about the difference between fact and opinion (there are good examples in sports writing). Encourage your child to read instructions for mending bikes, building models and playing new games.
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