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Kaleidoscope: The Podcast on Cortical Visual Impairment

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Team Archer! | Cheyanne Marcy | 13

Cheyanne Marcy has been an advocate on big stages, on everyday social media platforms and in day-to-day life on behalf of her son, Archer (5). She values action and advocacy – and has navigated not one, not two, but three state education systems. She writes, “… I learned I was not doing enough to advocate for my child’s needs. Advocacy begins in your home, with our family and friends. It is all too easy to clam up and keep quiet. Sometimes feeling like you are explaining things over and...


This Mom With a Blog | Mia Carella | 12

Mia Carella of thismomwithablog.com shares wisdom from the head and the heart, which comes from navigating life as a CVI mom / heart mom. (Her daughter Evalyn, 8, has cortical visual impairment and a congenital heart defect.) Mia describes the ups and downs of being a special needs parent and why we should let go of the Super Mom ideal. In this episode: 2:05 – Dance programs for kids with special needs 4:45 – Moving from feeling helpless to feeling more empowered as a mom 9:20 –...


Word Bubble Much? | Tommy Szalapski | 11

Tommy Szalapski – Google accessibility engineer and CVI dad – has created a new app for CVI literacy. The Roman Word Bubbling project automates the tedious process of adding color outlining to letters, numbers and words, based on Dr. Christine Roman’s CVI literacy research and methodology. Tommy describes this project, Google’s Lookout app and emerging technologies that will benefit people with cortical visual impairment, like his daughter Jocelyn (9). Resources mentioned: Roman Word...


Rosalie, Small but Mighty| Stephanie Kung | 10

Rosalie (1.5) has hydrocephalus, a build-up of fluid in the cavities deep within the brain, which comes with the risk of vision problems. She received a cortical visual impairment (CVI) diagnosis from an ophthalmologist who provided her parents with accurate information, for instance: The doctor referred Rosalie to the state agency for vision services, but that’s where the CVI conversation stopped. “I did not have a good understanding in the moment what CVI really meant and kind of...


Emma’s Renaissance | Lynn Elko | 9

When Emma (16) received a cortical visual impairment diagnosis at age four, CVI literature was not widely available. The consensus was “this is just what she has, live with it,” says her mother, Lynn Elko. Her family didn’t know great gains could be made. They didn’t know how to help her learn or meet developmental milestones. Then Lynn discovered what kids with CVI can accomplish with strategic, appropriate interventions that give them visual access to the world. And that changed...


Helping River Read | Judy Endicott | 8

Judy Endicott works with her grandson River (9) on his reading skills, relying on her background as a special educator and continuing education in CVI principles and practices. How does she manage to keep up with his needs, including the countless custom materials he requires to access print? What techniques does she use to motivate him to practice? Judy talks about putting the CVI overlay on River’s reading curriculum. Some suggested resources: Cortical Visual Impairment Advanced...


Mini-Episode | Year of the CVI Advocate | 7

I’m reflecting on 2018. For me, this has been the Year of the CVI Advocate. My life has been transformed by my interactions with fellow CVI parent advocates – online, at conferences and through this podcast. From Start Seeing CVI Advocacy on Facebook to Boston for the CVI Symposium to Omaha for the American Conference on Pediatric Visual Impairment back to Boston for CVI Family Vacation – and even from my closet here in Raleigh – I’ve interacted with some pretty amazing humans who have...


When Your Daughter Has a Visual Impairment, and Your Niece Does Too | Anna Ault & Lori Kinney | 6

Sisters Anna Ault and Lori Kinney are raising daughters with visual impairments. One has cortical visual impairment, the other an ocular visual impairment. We discuss their parallel but unique experiences advocating for CVI and Leber’s congenital amaurosis. They are raising their kids in the same community – their childhood community, in fact. Their girls are close in age and attend the same public-school system. But as Anna and Lori compare their experiences, it becomes evident that...


Life With CVI and Perfect Pitch | Dagbjört Andrésdóttir | 5

Opera performance student Dagbjört Andrésdóttir gives us a glimpse into her life with cortical visual impairment, describing music and strong parental support as her saving grace. “I kind of knew always there was something, but I wasn’t sure if it was my vision or something else,” says Dagbjört. Three years ago, with the help of her mother, she concluded that CVI was the culprit. To parents she says, “You know your children better than anybody – any physician, any teacher, any person in...


What Happens When Things Go Right? | The Rastogi-Wilsons | 4

Krish (6) received an early CVI diagnosis and guidance from a teacher of the visually impaired who knew how to intervene appropriately, based on his CVI Range score. With neuroplasticity and dedicated parents on his side, he’s heading to kindergarten with improved functional vision and a CVI-rich IEP. In this episode: Partners on the Journey: A TVI and Family’s CVI Experience from Birth to Age 3 Start Seeing CVI Advocacy


Going All In: From Phase I to Phase III | Alisha Waugh | 3

When Alisha Waugh and her husband learned that their son Griffen (10) has a cortical visual impairment (CVI), they committed to improving his functional vision above all else – and with stellar results. Alisha puts her Perkins-Roman CVI Range Endorsement to work each and every day for Griffen. She is also serving other kids with CVI and their families through her consultancy Fundamentals First. In this episode: Fundamentals First (whattodoaboutcvi.com) Start Seeing CVI Advocacy


The Early Days: A Mother's First Year on the CVI Journey | Rachel Bennett | 2

Henry (5) has a new cortical visual impairment (CVI) diagnosis. His mom, Rachel, now understands why he is so frustrated. He can't interpret what he sees. Relying on the 10 characteristics of CVI, they infuse vision into everything they do. His vision has improved, and his whole being has too. Not only has Rachel fully embraced the educational approach based on the research of Dr. Christine Roman, she and a group of other CVI moms are building a collective national movement to advocate...


Testing. Are CVI Parents Out There? | The Marquardts | 1

Grace (6) reads sight words, enjoys hearing chapter books and shows an affinity for math. Yet she can’t interpret illustrations in a children’s book or recognize the faces of her mother and father. Her parents on the struggles and joys of raising a child with cortical visual impairment. In this episode: Pediatric Cortical Visual Impairment Society Cortical Visual Impairment: An Approach to Assessment and Intervention CVI Hub: Perkins eLearning Start Seeing CVI Advocacy