The Adventures of LightHouse Little Learners! Our Story Begins Here…
Greater independence and engagement in the world are the aims of LightHouse Little Learners.
Working with their families, the program is designed to help young children, birth to age three, who are blind, deafblind, have low vision or neurological visual impairment, or whose developmental delays include blindness or low vision.
Neurological Visual Impairment is also known as Cerebral Visual Impairment, or CVI, a brain-based visual condition which influences a child’s ability to process visual information. CVI is the most frequent cause of visual impairment during childhood in industrialized countries, including the United States.
Early childhood services for children, three to six years of age, will soon grow within the LightHouse Little Learners Program to bring preschool age children and their families together to share their experiences, learn from each other, have fun and make friends. Through these gatherings, the preschool program will support and build on specialized services available through school districts and county offices of education.
It is widely considered that up to 80% of a child’s early learning comes through vision, and because infants and toddlers learn by watching and imitating others during daily activities, blindness or low vision can impact their development in myriad ways. To have their best start in life, young children who are blind or have low vision and their families benefit from specialized intervention at this early age.
When a specialist in blindness and low vision partners with the family to enjoy all aspects of the child’s development, and at the same time the child explores the world more freely through hands-on activities and adventure, the path to accessibility and possibility goes beyond the diagnosis, and unfolds in spectacular ways.
LightHouse Little Learners expert staff will walk alongside families on this path.
LightHouse Little Learners Program is grounded in the philosophy of infant and family mental health, which supports the child’s developing capacity to form close relationships, and experience, regulate, and express emotions in the context of family and community.
Fun for Families and Children, Birth to 3 Years of Age
In the natural environment of the home and community highly qualified specialists use early intervention best practices by listening to the family’s priorities and concerns and providing information and resources in ways that match the family’s learning style. Following the family’s lead while demonstrating adaptations to an activity, or providing an instructional video or materials in the family’s preferred language are among many examples of partnering with families.
Based on their child’s individual developmental level, LightHouse Little Learners’ families tap in to an array of other skilled LightHouse staff. The infants and toddlers discover ways to explore their surroundings with Orientation and Mobility specialists, engage their hands and fingers in pre-Braille tactile activities with trained instructors, and start as early as needed with Accessible/Assistive Technology.
Imagine the hope that will be shared through these partnerships!