Nalida Lacet Besson is an itinerant teacher of blind and visually impaired students (TVI) for Boston Public Schools. Prior to becoming a TVI she worked with or for the school system in a variety of capacities including as a high school writing center coordinator and youth development/health educator supervisor. Nalida graduated with a JD and MPA from Suffolk University Law School and School of Management. It was there, while taking special education law and disability policy classes, that she decided her true calling was to teach blind children. She received her M.Ed. from UMass Boston’s Northeast Regional Center for Vision Education (NERCVE) program in special education concentrating in teaching students who are blind and visually impaired.
Nalida LOVES gadgets and in 2004 wrote a book for National Braille Press called “The Gadget Queen: 100 Ways to Simplify Your Life.” If she ever does an e-book version the iPad will definitely be included. Why? “The iPad is the gadget of all gadgets. All the gadgets I included in my book were mainstream gadgets that anyone could use. As I sighted person, I could use them and as blind persons my husband and three children could use them. The iDevices are not just great assistive technology, but really universal learning design (UDL) devices accessible to all!”
This iPad curriculum with VoiceOver is geared toward upper elementary, middle and high school students. It can be adapted by breaking down the steps further and finding more appropriate research topics and apps for younger students. The lessons are planned for small group instruction but can be used for one-to-one instruction also. Lessons may be further divided for students who need more time.