Image of 3 story red barn and text

Vermont Farm: Drawing Conclusions from an O&M Map

Learn about a Vermont farm using a non-visual digital map!

During the Perkins Non-Visual Digital Map workshop, orientation and mobility specialists learned how to create, use and apply non-visual digital map skills. Each participant was asked to create a map and to write a short scenario on how she/he would use her/his non-visual digital map during an O&M lesson. This is the Vermont Farm map and lesson.

Lesson Goal

Farming is a way of life in this rural Vermont community. While not every student lives on a farm, students with visual impairments may have opportunities to spend time on a farm. This map was designed to help a high school student with visual impairments develop the “big picture” of the layout of the Vermont Farm.

Note: SBissonette, a COMS who participated in the workshop, created the Vermont Farm Map and goals along with her student’s scenario.
The goal is to introduce the concept of a non-visual digital map to a tech savvy teenager.


  1. To download SAS Graphics on his computer (SAS Graphics Accelerator for Google Chrome)
  2. To open the Vermont Farm digital map on his computer 
  3. To identify 3 streets 
  4. To Identify 3 buildings 
  5. To identify 3 points of interest

Vermont Farm Map


The goals listed above are for a high school student who has not yet independently downloaded an extension and gleaned information from simple user guides. This student’s goals are broken down into smaller tasks. As always, provide opportunities for the student to be as independent as possible; if a student needs subtle help, try sharing written directions instead of coaching him step-by-step. If absolutely necessary, observe and coach as necessary while he installs the Google extension and as he explores the map using the keyboard commands.

These activities can be done in person or remotely. For a tech savvy student, simply send the SAS Graphics Accelerator link, the Vermont Farm link, and SAS Graphics Accelerator Guide link. High school students should be able to independently install Google extensions (in this case, SAS Graphics Accelerator), open the desired map and explore the map using the keyboard commands. The student can apply the keyboard commands described in the SAS Graphics Accelerator Guide to find the objective answers: identify 3 streets, 3 buildings and 3 points of interest. 

Expanded Objectives

The first objects are straight forward – the answers are given “facts” as the student explores the map. The expanded objectives are designed for the student to take the general information gleaned for the map’s data points and draw conclusions and then apply the information for O&M purposes. While students continue to learn and memorize facts, 21st century students are expected to draw conclusions from facts, including conclusions gleaned from information provided in maps. Let’s start by building a mental map of the Farm and then draw conclusions (which may be educated guesses!) from these map data points. 

See Remote O&M Instruction for Students Transitioning to College: Building a Mental Map post for details on how to introduce non-visual digital maps to students who are visually impaired, including how to draw conclusions from the data points on the map.

Fun Facts about this Vermont Farm!

After using the map to learn about this Vermont Farm, my curiosity was sparked and I wanted to know more about the farm itself – how old is the farm, how many acres, what kinds of crops, etc. The owner of the farm graciously shared more details! I bet your student has questions too!

After your student has drawn his/her conclusions about this farm, then share these fun facts:


Vermont Farm Lesson: Elementary Student post

By Diane Brauner

3 story red barn drawing with text

Vermont Farm Lesson: Elementary Student


Remote O&M instruction for students transitioning to college: Building a mental map

Screenshot of my with tabs: Owned

Editing a Non-Visual Digital Map from the Map Library