Learning Opportunities and Resources for Children

Parents Are a Child’s First Teacher

How do I help my blind child to grow and develop age appropriate skills? MDPOBC has advice for parents with children from infancy to adulthood. Parents must not only think about their child’s academic skills but also must help the child develop skills for independent living and for the world of work. Get started by visiting our Children’s Resource page.


Special Summer Programs

During the school year, there is not enough time for a child to develop all the skills that he or she may need throughout life. To overcome this problem, MDPOBC and the NFB of Maryland encourage parents to enroll their children in specialized summer programs.


Braille, Enrichment, Literacy, and Learning (BELL) Academy

  The BELL Academy is a two-week day program (weekends not included) designed to offer pre-kindergarten and elementary age low vision beginning Braille readers an opportunity to be immersed in Braille and increase the use of tactile skills for reading Braille. Children will receive Braille instruction daily as well as learn alternative techniques through arts and crafts, games, field trips, and other fun activities. Maryland conducts three BELL programs, one in Baltimore City for students in Baltimore City, Baltimore County, and surrounding areas, one in Glendale for students in Montgomery County, PG County, and surrounding areas, and one in Salisbury for students in Wicomico County, Worcester County, Dorchester County and surrounding areas. Find out more about the BELL program here.


Youth Empowerment Grants

To help students continue on their roads to independence, the NFB of Maryland created the Youth Empowerment Grants program. MDPOBC assists by raising money for these grants and by publicizing their existence to families and teachers. Our Youth Empowerment Grants help to fund students who wish to attend a summer youth training program. Students can participate in programs in Maryland or throughout the country. Students will develop skill and speed in Braille reading and writing, learn to use assistive technology and a computer, increase independence and confidence when using a cane, and improve daily living skills such as cooking and cleaning. They will develop strategies to handle their blindness and advocate for themselves which will lead to greater self-esteem and confidence.