Project: Designing an educational game for children who are blind
Consider how you might interact with the world should you lose your sight.
  • How would you find your way?
  • Would you lose your independence?
  • What coping strategies might you use?

In this project, you will design a Memory Game card in Photoshop (or other graphics programme) and then, using your design as a template, construct 2 identical 3D cards that can be added to the cards from the rest of the class. These can then be used by blind children as memory Game cards or as flash cards for learning Braille. The textures on the surface also develop the sensitivity of touch so that the children become more adept at seeing with their fingertips.

Should you wish to enter into the spirit of the original project, you would need to make more sets of cards to swap with other schools, thereby creating really comprehensive sets. The grade 9s at Eden College (Durban, South Africa) each made 10 cards so that they had 5 sets to donate to schools for the blind and to swap with other schools.

Where possible, pupils should be exposed to and observe children who have difficulties with sight. They should also investigate educational toys appropriate for children. Using the internet (and where possible, interviews), they should conduct research and establish how toys and games for sighted children can be adapted to facilitate learning for those who have little or no sight.

Choose a word that you would like to illustrate (e.g. house). Whilst planning your card, you should establish which materials would be most suitable for the word you intend illustrating.
  • Materials required:
  • 10 x Thick, firm cardboard (100mm x 150mm)
  • Braille master sheet
  • Glue or 3D stickers to form Braille letters
  • Scraps of card, fabric, sandpaper
  • All purpose glue to attach fabric to the cards

  • Tools required:
  • Sharp scissors and / or craft knife

  1. Using Adobe Photoshop (or other graphics programme), create a new file.
  2. Preset size of canvas as Width - 150mm; Height - 100mm and Resolution as 300 pixels per inch
  3. You now have the correct size of the card you need
  4. Either use the ‘Place’ option to insert the picture you wish to illustrate, or use the drawing tools to create your original image
  5. Type the word for your picture in English, making sure it is fairly large
  6. Using a Braille translator or master sheet (below), insert the Braille ‘text’ onto your card
  7. Once satisfied with the placement and relative sizes of the elements, flatten the layers
  8. Save your file to the appropriate folder in jpg format
  9. Print out two copies as your pattern

  1. Cut out 2 cards on the firm cardboard. Each card should be 100mm by 150mm
  2. Copying the pattern you created in Photoshop, write the chosen word in English with a thick permanent marker OR use the printed copies as your base
  3. Draw in the Braille lettering to spell out the word
  4. Raise the surface of the dots that form the Braille by using droplets of glue, sequins, beads or tiny 3D stickers
  5. Transfer the simple picture from your Photoshop pattern to the thick card
  6. Cut up the printed picture into the various elements, so turning it into pattern pieces like a puzzle (e.g. roof, door, windows and so on)
  7. Use the pattern pieces to cut the different textured materials for the various elements in your picture, cut according to size and shape and glue these into place. The picture should be large enough for children to differentiate between the different parts of the picture using touch only

Pupils should cover their eyes and then ‘test’ a few cards of their peers using ONLY their fingers to read the words and pictures.

Global partnerships:
Enter the world of international collaboration by contacting Mr Charli Wiggill (charliw@telkomsa.net) for further information, should this be required.

Here is an example of a card:

Braille sheet: