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AFB Braille Bug Website Link

The American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) created the Braille Bug® web site to teach sighted children about braille, and to encourage literacy among all children.

AFB—a national nonprofit founded in 1921 and the organization to which Helen Keller devoted more than 40 years of her life—expands possibilities for children and adults with vision loss.

There are four menu items for them to choose from, in addition to the “Parents and Teachers” item:

Change the Colors of the Site: Children have the option to change the color of the text and background based on their personal preferences for comfortable viewing.

What is Braille? Five submenu items provide children with information about the Braille Code, tools used to read and write braille, and the life of Louis Braille. It is recommended that children read “Braille: Deciphering the Code” before attempting any of the games or activities under the next main menu item.

Braille: Deciphering the Code—An introduction to Louis Braille’s systematic arrangement of dots in the braille cell to form letters, punctuation marks, and numbers. In this section children also learn about braille contractions and short-form words. These are special symbols or spellings that reduce the amount of space needed for writing words in braille.

Trivia—Interesting facts about braille

Braille Technology—A description of low- and high-tech tools used to read and write braille.

Printable Braille Alphabet—A copy of the braille alphabet that students can print out and use as a reference while playing the games, writing their own simulated braille messages, or decoding braille words and numbers they find in the environment.

Louis Braille—The story of Louis Braille’s life told in a lively style.

Games and Secret Messages: Children can explore a variety of interactive activities that challenge them to decode simulated braille letters, words, and numbers on the screen. All of the activities except the first one include a copy of the braille alphabet and numbers for reference.

See Your Name in Braille!—Type in any name or other word, and watch it appear on the screen in braille.

Trivia Mania—Decode braille words related to a specific category, such as “Insects.” After a practice round, players earn points for correct answers.

Riddles—Read a riddle in print and decode the braille answer.

Braille Jumble—A more difficult version of Trivia Mania. The braille letters for each word in a specific category are scrambled. Players decode the letters, rearrange them, and type their response. After a practice round, points are awarded for each correct answer.

Jumble Puzzle—Games designed for use with a screen reader or refreshable braille display.

Countdown!—Decode the braille numbers, figure out the pattern (such as 2, 4, 6, 8), and type the next number in the sequence. After a practice level, players earn points for correct answers.

Secret Message—Send a coded message to a friend by clicking on the letters of the braille alphabet or typing in the text. When the message is sent via e-mail, the friend will receive instructions on how to see it in braille and decode the words.

Louis Braille: The story of Louis Braille’s life, told in a lively style.

Helen Keller Kids Museum Online: A fascinating timeline of Helen Keller’s life and achievements. Includes photos, videos, letters, and more!

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