Resources for braille readers
Looking for braille books, board games or information on the latest refreshable braille technology? Chances are, if you'd like to have something in braille it can be found online.
This is not an exhaustive list but should help to get you started!
Sources of Braille Books and Resources
The following are links to online stores where you can purchase braille books, games, clothing, greeting cards and just about any other braille-related item available.
Beulah Reimer Legacy (BRL)
Offers print/braille children's picture books at an affordable cost. These books are brailled with clear plastic strips which are placed on top of the printed text.
Seedlings Braille Books for Children
Seedlings has over 1200 low-cost books for children in braille, including print/braille books for younger children. They also run several programs, including the "Book Angel Program" where registered children can receive two free braille books per year, and an "Adopt-A-Reader" program that provides sponsored children with funding to purchase braille books of their own.
Future Aids - The Braille Superstore
Thousands of braille books for children, teens, and adults, as well as toys, games, kitchen aids, software, and other products.
National Braille Press
A producer of braille books for children and adults (including print/braille board books for very young children). They also run several programs, including a children's braille book club and a ReadBooks! book bag for preschool-aged children designed to foster early literacy.
Braille Institute - Special Collection
This program, run by the Braille Institute, offers free books to children who are blind or visually impaired throughout the year, with the goal of increasing literacy and love of reading by enabling children to build their own home braille library.
This family-run, Canadian business offers a variety of services including braille transcription, training in assistive technology, and other blindness-related services.
The CNIB WebStore offers a wide variety of products for Canadians who are blind or visually impaired, including many braille-related products such as cookbooks, calendars, and tools for reading and writing braille.
The CNIB Library offers 80,000 titles in accessible formats including braille. The library includes a digital service that allows users to download braille and audio books directly to portable devices. The service is free to all Canadians who are blind or visually impaired.
National Federation of the Blind Independence Market
A resource for blindness-related products, including an extensive collection of NFB literature of interest to individuals who are blind and their families.
Perkins School for the Blind eStore
Perkins Products sells a wide variety of blindness-related products, including a large collection of products related to braille and literacy, such as the popular Perkins Brailler braillewriter.
Royal National Institute of Blind People Online Shop
The RNIB online shop carries a variety of products for people who are blind and visually impaired, including many braille- and literacy-related products.
Bookshare is an online digital library with over 110,000 books available to download in accessible formats (such as DAISY, braille, or audio) to Canadians who have print disabilities. Users must register and provide proof of disability before being able to access this service.
Tactile Vision (braille greeting cards)
A producer of tactile/braille greeting cards for many occasions. Cards are 5” by 7” and include a raised-line graphic with a greeting in both print and braille. They also have a line of products which include colouring books, children’s books, educational tools, maps, calendars and much more.
World Braille Usage, Third Edition
Developed with support from Perkins, the International Council on English Braille, and the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, this third edition of World Braille Usage attempts to document the current state of braille around the world.
The below links provide information about braille technology and product vendors.
Perkins Products “Drawing with your Perkins brailler”
Written by Perkins Braille & Talking Book Library Director Kim Charlson, this book contains step-by-step directions for creating 36 different drawings including basic shapes, various animals, and pictures with holiday and transportation themes. The actual braille pictures are included to show what the drawings will look like when completed.
So What About Drawing?
A fun and free book available in PDF format that contains directions for creating many different drawings (both simple and more complex) with the Perkins brailler. A wonderful resource for creating braille art and also practising different contractions along the way. There are instructions for creating shamrocks, Christmas trees, sailboats, bears, angels, flags and much more.
Braille into the Next Millennium
A comprehensive and extensive 600-page anthology of articles by more than two dozen international experts in the field of braille, this ample volume is divided into three sections: braille in the past, braille in the present, and braille in the future – Note that this book is also available for loan to clients of the CNIB library.
Perkins Braille Webcasts
A collection of braille and literacy related webcasts available on the Perkins website.
UEB and You - A Hadley School for the Blind seminar
This webinar gives a brief background on the development of UEB and some basic characteristics of the code. It was first recorded shortly after UEB was officially adopted in the United States (during the very early stages of the implementation process).
CNIB Braille Creative Writing Contest
An annual contest for primary and secondary students in Canada. Students can submit a story or poem in any level of braille for a chance to win prizes.
ViA Apps by Braille Institute
A database of relevant apps for the visually impaired. Apps are divided into different categories, including a “braille” category which contains many braille teaching and learning related apps.
National Braille Press
A producer of braille books for children and adults (including print/braille board books for very young children). They also run several wonderful programs, including a children’s braille book club.
The Transforming Braille Project
The objective of the project is to identify a breakthrough solution which will radically reduce the cost of refreshable braille technology so that it both comes within the reach of blind people in developing countries but also allows braille libraries to give readers the choice of cheap electronic text files and more expensive hard copy braille. Information about this break-through project and the link to the project blog to stay up-to-date with developments.
The bookstore of the American Foundation for the Blind contains a wide range of material related to blindness and visual impairment. This link contains a list of the braille and literacy related books available for purchase, many of which may be of interest to parents, teachers, academics and braille readers alike.
Hadley – Braille courses
The Hadley School for the Blind provides a wide variety of courses for a number of different populations (blind and visually impaired adult learners, sighted family members, and professionals within the blindness field). This link provides a list of some of the braille related courses they offer, ranging from those that introduce the braille code, to those that provide instructional strategies for teaching braille to children and adults.
BrailleTouch is an app that allows a user to type on their touch screen using braille. Information about this app including the user guide can be found at this site.
This website (developed by the Statewide Vision resource center in Australia) contains many resources for early tactile learning, teaching braille, creating tactile books and games to promote braille literacy, as well as resources specifically related to Unified English Braille.
Lifetime Magnetic Braille Calendar.
The Jewish Braille International (JBI) Library
Provides Jewish relevant material in alternate formats, including braille material in Hebrew.
Producer of braille and alternate formats for bill statements, documents, policies and more.