Early intervention is critical for giving children with visual impairments the strongest foundation for learning and skills development from a young age. That’s why we hosted our annual Early Connections Conference virtually, enabling parents, families and professionals from around the globe to learn and benefit. More than 800 people registered for the event, hailing from 45 U.S. states and 37 countries including Indonesia, Bhutan, Gambia and Qatar.
If you missed it, don’t worry — we recorded every session, so dive into them at your convenience.
Start off with the keynote address given by Burju Sari, a teacher of students with visual impairment (TVI) in Perkins’ Community Programs and a mother to 10-year-old twin boys, one of whom has Cortical/Cerebral Visual Impairment (CVI).
Then explore these topic-specific sessions:
- Advocacy: Building an Effective Team: Learn to be an effective advocate and member of your child's educational team by understanding the team process. Build effective communication skills and principles to guide developing an optimal individual education plan (IEP).
- All About Switches: Explore activities using simple “cause & effect” technology — switches — to activate a toy, access an iPad or interact with a computer.
- Building Concept Development: Accessibility for Children with Cortical/Cerebral Visual Impairment (CVI): Learn how to help your child understand new concepts across different learning environments.
- Expanding Your Child’s Potential for Visual Improvement: For children with Cortical/Cerebral Visual Impairment (CVI), learn how a vision assessment and the right supports can foster vision improvement.
- Financial Planning for Two Generations: Go beyond wills and trusts, avoid common mistakes and pitfalls to secure your child’s financial future.
- Let’s Get Moving: Orientation and Mobility in a Child’s First Seven Years: Learn how to teach visually impaired infants, toddlers and young children and lay the foundation for future safe and independent travel.
- Technology at your Fingertips: Explore the technology available for children with visual impairment and multi-sensory needs while learning your rights for getting your child assessed and equipped with the right tools.
- Transition IFSP to an IEP: Learn how to support your child's transition from Early Intervention (0-3 years) to school-based services by understanding the initial individual education plan (IEP) process
Even remotely, we remain committed to uplifting families of young children with visual impairments and additional disabilities.
Here’s how to access more resources, connections and support from Perkins until next year’s Early Connections Conference.
- Follow us on social media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Linkedin
- Subscribe to our news and events email list
- Subscribe to learn more about our professional development offerings
- Visit Paths to Literacy for resources and activities for children with visual impairment
To enroll at Perkins or to request an independent and/or CVI evaluation, please visit us at Perkins.org/Admissions. We are here to help and look forward to speaking with you.
For more information about our services on campus, in the home and in the community for children ages 0-3, please visit our Infant-Toddler Program page.
Download a list of resources for families, contacts at Perkins and some words of wisdom from one of our parents.
For professionals who attended the virtual event, we will be offering professional credits via Perkins eLearning. Fill out this form to receive more information.
We hope to see many families and professionals again next year at Perkins’ 38th Early Connections conference!