Back-to-school preparations are well underway for many parents and students. To help give children a great head start to a successful school year, Prevent Blindness Iowa offers free information and programs on the importance of healthy vision.
Prevent Blindness Iowa has declared August as Children’s Eye Health and Safety Awareness month to inspire parents to make their child’s vision health a priority. Family-friendly resources on a wide variety of topics that help parents take the right steps to keep their child's sight healthy for life can be found at preventblindness.org and through the National Center for Children’s Vision and Eye Health at Prevent Blindness(NCCVEH) website. Topics covered include amblyopia (lazy eye), strabismus (crossed eyes), UV-protection and sports safety, and the Affordable Care Act and children’s vision.
Prevent Blindness Iowa also offers the following programs to help save children’s sight:
· The NCCVEH is teaming up with Family Voices and its National Center for Family Professional Partnership(NCFPP) for August’s Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month to offer families of children with special health care needs important information on vision issues. Resources include Vision Health for Children on the Autism Spectrum, Families of Children with Vision Impairment: Working with Medical Professionals, and much more.
· Eye Spyisan eye health and safety education programdesigned specifically for children. Through this free, online program, children have an opportunity to learn about eye anatomy, how the eye works and eyesafety. This is more than fun and games. Teachers may also use the program in the classroom.
· Designed specifically for educators, Prevent Blindness offers the Star Pupils Eye Health and Safety Curriculumfor grades K-2, 3-5 and 6-8. The program, which is available free for download upon request, provides teachers with interactive materials that help students learn the importance of sight, components of the eye and how we see, and how to identify objects and situations that can be dangerous to eyes. The program meets National Health, National Science and National Physical Education standards and includes presentation guides, eye exam diagrams, in-class worksheets and an activity book for children to take home.
· The Eye Patch Club is a program geared towards children with amblyopia and their families. Eye doctors commonly treat amblyopia by having the child wear a patch over the unaffected eye for extended periods of time. The Eye Patch Club program is designed to encourage the children to wear their patches as prescribed by their doctor. Among other materials, members of the club receive their own special calendar and stickers. The Eye Patch Club kit may be purchased for $12.95 by calling (800) 331-2020. Proceeds will go to support the sight-saving programs of Prevent Blindness.
By working with teams of experts in the fields of education and vision and eye health, we’ve put together a variety of engaging and informational programs that are appealing and user-friendly for kids, their parents and teachers. By everyone working collectively, we can give our children the best chance at success both in and outside of the classroom!
For more information on Prevent Blindness Iowa and our children’s eye health and safety programs, please call 515-244-4341 or 800-329-8782.