PRCVI Connections - Nov/Dec 2018

Photo shows a plush snowperson leaning against a real snowperson

Happy Holidays

Dear Colleagues,

All of us at PRCVI would like to take this opportunity to wish you a happy, healthy, and relaxing holiday break. Best wishes this holiday season - we look forward to re-connecting in 2019!

New Resources at PRCVI

Visit our recent additions to the PRCVI library to get an overview of some of the new items that have been added over the past few months that include new games, equipment, and instructional resources.

2018 PRCVI/BCVTA Conference

It is our great pleasure to announce the 2019 PRCVI and BC Vision Teachers’ Association conference - May 10-11, 2019 at the Sheraton Airport Hotel in Richmond, BC.

The title of our conference is Designing for Inclusion: Creating Accessible Educational Materials for All Learners.  Dr. Luis Pérez from the National Center on Accessible Educational Materials at CAST will be presenting on the principles of inclusive design and how these can be used by content creators to ensure that digital educational materials are accessible to all learners. While the focus of Dr. Pérez’s presentation will be on educational materials in the K-12 sector, this is important content for anyone seeking to create and share accessible digital information with learners, clients, and users with diverse access requirements.

Please see the PRCVI website for a more detailed announcement and do not hesitate to be in touch with any questions or for more information. Registration to follow immediately after the upcoming winter break.

PRCVI Forum with the letters f-o-r in contracted braille

In partnership with the BC Vision Teachers' Association, the PRCVI outreach team will be holding a monthly forum for TSVIs and O&M Specialists who have questions about PRCVI service delivery or have suggestions/comments. We will also keep this forum open for general discussion around issues that are pertinent in our professional community. Join us on the first Thursday of every month from 3:00-4:00 PM PST. The first forum of 2019 will be on February 7. We'll have the lines open:

Please email Adam or Jen for call-in information

Creating Accessible Word Documents

PRCVI/ARC-BC has created a series of nine videos on how to create accessible documents in Microsoft Word. The videos cover concepts including images, headings, text layout, and formatting.

These first four videos focus on document creators who are using the mouse. Note: There are four videos in this series that will automatically play one after another. Individual videos can be selected using the playlist button in the top left corner of the player below.

These next five videos focus on document creators who are using a screen reader. Note: There are five videos in this series that will automatically play one after another. Individual videos can be selected using the playlist button in the top left corner of the player below.

Also see the reference sheet for creating accessible Microsoft Word documents with a mouse and the reference sheet for creating accessible Word documents with a screen reader, as well as the DIAGRAM Center Image Description Guidelines for information about how to create alt text.

Professional Development Recap

Teachers of students with visual impairments and orientation and mobility specialists in BC have been fortunate to be able to attend several exceptional professional development opportunities this fall. If you were unable to attend, here are some links to summaries of the events:

Links and Resources

Here's a sample of some of the links and resources that have come across our desks recently. Be sure to check out our blog, #Outreaching, for more!

  • Hadley has a series of videos on how to use Swift Playground, the free, fully-accessible app that teaches students how to use Apple's Swift programming language.
  • In iOS 12, Apple includes a new app called Shortcuts, that allows users to complete multi-step tasks with a single tap or spoken command (through Siri).
  • Ballyland Code 1 is a new iOS app that teaches coding to students who are blind or visually impaired and is fully VoiceOver accessible and is designed to be easy-to-use even for new VoiceOver users.
  • NVDA, a free screen reader for Windows, has released version 2018.4, with new features for Outlook and Word, the ability to announce emojis, and more.

About the author

Jen Jesso

I have worked in various roles in the field of visual impairment since 2007. In addition to working as a teacher of students with visual impairments, I recently completed coursework to become an orientation and mobility specialist. I have been fortunate to work with the fantastic team at PRCVI since 2014.

I enjoy many aspects of my role at PRCVI, but highlights include working with teachers of students with visual impairments and their students on outreach visits and working on PRCVI initiatives and projects.

Outside of work, my interests include reading, computer programming, swimming, and spending time with friends and family.

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