Sunday, October 22, 2023

From Tennis Camp for the Blind to Insights Art Show and APH trip

APH president & my student
This year, the American Printing House for the Blind had more than 300 entries for their national Insights Art Contest; of those, only about 40 works of Art made it into their exhibit. Two of my studensthad work shown since one won an honorable mention and another got 3rd place in the grades 7-9 category, for art they made last year. Two other art students came for a trip to Kentucky to attend the Meet the Artists Reception and Awards Banquet. My student is seen here explaining her use of arbitrary color in her painting to the President of APH at the reception.

Ticket to the IMAX in Braille

They also attended a pre-screening and Q&A session for the Netflix Original "All the Light You Cannot See" at the Kentucky Science Center. It's coming to Netflix in November and I highly recommend it. It's so refreshing to have a blind protagonist played by blind actresses (both old and young versions).

watching bats being carved and dipped at the factory
Much of Friday was spent at the Kentucky Museum of Arts and Crafts (complete with Audio Described tour), followed by Sluggers Museum and Factory Tour and the Louisville Visitor's Center.

Nick Doyle's solo show in denim at KMAC

Orientation and Mobility (O&M) experiences were everywhere: navigating TSA, flying on a plane, the plane train, an Uber, a charter bus, escalators, elevators, moving sidewalks, and miles of city sidewalks. Other life/ learning experiences included being interviewed for a podcast, networking at the reception, eating a meal with three forks and three plates, and shaking hands with the APH president in front of 400 people. It was an amazing trip!

The weekends leading up to the Kentucky trip were also exhausting and wonderful starting with an annual Crisis Clean-up trip. this time, my son and I went to Madison, Florida  after Hurricane Idilia left trees down everywhere. Tree work is physically taxing, but rewarding volunteer service.

Then there was Tennis camp for the Blind. They make special balls that are soft foam, bouncing balls with a rattle inside for Blind Tennis. Students started with basics like moving side to side, front to back as directed. They caught and threw balls, before trying to learn to serve and hit. It would take a great deal of work for an actual game to be played, but three hours flew by and the students were just enjoying getting better at basic skills.

I helped students cook s'mores over a campfire, go on scavenger hunts, play games (hide and seek was especially entertaining), and go swimming.


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