CVI Now hosted a live virtual event about CVI and social skills, exploring the potential implications of developing and maintaining social skills for people with CVI. Burju Sari and Lacey Smith, CVI Coordinators at the CVI Center at Perkins and both CVI parents, discuss the importance of social skill development, how the CVI behaviors act as major barriers to building social skills and peer relationships, and examples of recommendations for providing access to social situations both in school and in the community.
Download the video transcript and the presentation PDF.
CVI has a profound impact on social skills
Key takeaways from the presentation and discussion:
- Social skills are one of the best predictors of success in school and life, and are just as important as mastering core academic subjects. Focus on social skills in a child’s educational programming is critical. Social interaction skills are one of the nine areas of the Expanded Core Curriculum for students on the blindness spectrum.
- CVI puts up big barriers to learning social skills, including difficulty with:
- Students with CVI need direct and explicit instruction to develop social interaction skills, which should be part of the student’s educational programming. In the Q&A portion, Sari and Smith share ideas for incorporating meaningful social interactions and skill development in the IEP.
- Compensatory skills play a key role in allowing students with CVI to engage with peers and family. Compensatory access refers to how an individual with a visual impairment learns to acquire, share and process information. Some examples of compensatory skills that people with CVI may use are tactile cues and exploration, context cues, color coding strategies, memory, and prediction skills.
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