Black witch's caldron with green bubbles and text

Contraction Magic: A Bewitching Way of Teaching Braille Contractions

Turn your emerging braille student into a braille wizard!

Learning braille contractions does not need to be a mystery. Convert contraction catastrophe into a captivating contraction activity with this bewitching spell!

Reintroduce your student to his refreshable braille display a.k.a. the “enchanted braille box”. A master warlock (you, the TVI) has placed a spell on the braille box; a powerful wizard (your student) can now use the enchanted braille box to convert uncontracted braille words into contracted words! 

Place a Spell on the Braille Box

The refreshable braille display should be paired with an iPad or iPhone.

Prior to the activity, the master warlock (TVI) should set the braille display to Input > Uncontracted six-dot braille and Output > Contracted braille.

To set the Output and Input, go to Settings > Accessibility > VoiceOver > Braille > Output > Contracted braille and Input > Uncontracted six-dot braille.

Open a word document app, such as Notes, Pages, or Google Docs.

Contraction Magic Activity

The powerful Wizard (student) has been commissioned to use the enchanted braille box to decode the bewitched words of the hexed chant. Type in the uncontracted word, say “abracadabra” and press the space bar! The enchanted braille box will spit out the contracted word! 

The Wizard can whisper the chant by spelling the word and saying the contraction three times.

In the video below, second grader Logan demonstrates Contraction Magic with the words “with” and “you”.

Note: Reverse the spell! Change the Input to Contracted Braille and the Output to Uncontracted six-dot braille. The student then has to type in the contracted word and the enchanted braille box spits out the uncontracted braille!


By Diane Brauner

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