Orientation and Mobility

for Children with Visual Impairments or Blindness

An early introduction to orientation and mobility skills gives children the freedom and confidence to move through the world independently. These sites offer advice for fostering orientation and mobility skills in infants and small children who are blind or visually impaired.

Helping Your Preschooler Practice O&M Skills
Family Connect for Parents of Children with Visual Impairments
Starting with the home and expanding to the neighborhood, this article tells parents how to help preschoolers know where they are, how they got there, and how they can find the way back.

Helping Your Child Develop Orientation and Mobility Skills
Family Connect for Parents of Children with Visual Impairments
This section focuses on teaching orientation and mobility skills to children with multiple disabilities, with specific information about children in strollers or wheelchairs.

Families, Babies, and O&M: Early Conversations
DVI Quartererly, 51(1), 2005, Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), Division on Visual Impairments
This article from CEC's DVI Quarterly offers ideas on how to build play/exploration environments, how to highlight landmarks, and how to design mini-travel routes in a child's day.

I'm Starting to Walk – I Can Use a Cane!
Department of Education and Training, Western Australia
Orientation and Mobility Instructor Bronwen Scott describes the system of O&M instruction in Australia, including starting points, cane work, and general guidelines. (Microsoft Word Document)

Independent Movement and Travel
Blind Children's Resource Center
Joe Cutter, Early Childhood O&M specialist with the NJ Commission for the Blind, shares his thoughts on Orientation and Mobility for young children, including independence, visual development, and other issues in early childhood.

Mobility Devices for Young Children
American Foundation for the Blind (AFB)
This site describes the several kinds of mobility devices appropriate for  young children who are blind or severely visually impaired, explains what children learn from them, how parents and teachers can help in their use, and where they can be purchased; available in Spanish.

Parents: Blind Children's First Mobility Teachers
National Federation of the Blind (NFB)
This article from Future Reflections, a magazine for family and instructors of children who are blind, emphasizes the importance of parents as teachers of mobility; based on a presentation by Joe Cutter to the Parents of Blind Children Seminar.

Teaching your Blind Baby Orientation & Mobility
WonderBaby.org
This article offers ideas of ways to introduce orientation and mobility skills from the time a baby is born.  It includes sections on directions and body awareness, environmental sounds, and suggested games.

Organizations and Resources to Explore: Orientation & Mobility

OrientationAndMobility.org
This site was designed for Certified O&M Specialists as a way to find information on the internet. It includes many links, articles, discussions, and additional resources.

For more information, see also Orientation and Mobility