“Erupting Volcano” Showcases Blindness in North-Central Louisiana

15 Dec
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Sheena works as the Outreach Specialist for the Institute on Blindness, teaching braille and cane travel as a contractor for several school systems in Northern Louisiana.

Kiona McAllister, an 11-year-old Ruston native, learned the famous “erupting volcano” science experiment at Ruston Elementary School and, a few weeks ago, she was able to share it with viewers of the morning news.

Her mom, Karla Atwater, learned of Kiona’s blindness when Kiona entered pre-school.

“I was convinced that she should learn braille for reading, so she has another way to do her work,” Karla said. “Braille has helped Kiona learn the skills needed to help her be successful in the classroom when the print is difficult to read.”

Kiona, who has some residual vision, learns non-visual skills using sleep shades, the sparkly blindfolds she wore during her experiment. She enjoyed showing others that she’s able to do the same things in life using the non-visual techniques that she has learned from her braille and cane travel instructors.

Karla said: “I was excited that she had to the opportunity to do an experiment and show that the IDEA Place at Louisiana Tech University is a place where all kids can learn about science, regardless of their disability.”

Kiona hopes to become a track star, professional basketball player, or help kids learn braille and cane travel. Knowing her, she’ll probably do all three!

Series: Science on the Morning News

  1. "Erupting Volcano" Showcases Blindness in North-Central Louisiana (December 15, 2014)
  2. Blind Science on the Morning News (May 30, 2014)
The following two tabs change content below.
Sheena works as the Outreach Specialist for the Institute on Blindness, teaching braille and cane travel as a contractor for several school systems in Northern Louisiana.

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