2022 Iowa Regional Braille Challenge

Braille Challenge LogoWe are excited to announce the 2022 Braille Challenge Page has been updated with the most current information about the event and how to register.

This year’s theme, chosen by the students, is The Magic of Braille.

Watch for more blog posts and updates to the 2022 Braille Challenge Page and for information about how to order this year’s Iowa Braille Challenge t-shirt.

2022 Iowa Regional Braille Challenge
Date:  Saturday, February 26, 2022 (snow date Saturday, March 5, 2022)
Where:  Iowa Department for the Blind, 524 Fourth Street, Des Moines, IA  50309
Testing Remotely:  Students can also test remotely with their TVI or paraeducator.  The remote testing window runs from February 1, 2022 – February 18, 2022
Registration Due:  Tuesday, January 25

For more information check out the 2022 Braille Challenge Page

The Great Reading Challenge Begins January 15th!

Clipart Image of books on a shelfThe Great Reading Challenge (GRC) is a six month long reading challenge open to adults 18 years of age or older who are a patron of the Iowa Library for the Blind and Print Disabled. 

To complete the challenge, you need to read 12 books between January 15, 2022 and July 15, 2022. 

The challenge of the GRC is to read books that fit into one of the many categories on the Mission page in ReadSquared.

This reading challenge will begin on January 15, 2022 but you can get signed up now! 

Go to www.iowablindreads.readsquared.com to create an account or log in and find out more information. 

Please contact Leslie at 515.452.1329 with any questions!

CHECKOUT January’s Makerspace Monday Workshop!

Image of Chocolate Soufflé Butter LotionMake Chocolate Soufflé Butter Lotion & Hot Chocolate Lip Balm!Image of a cup of hot chocolate

Do you ever wonder how making Chocolate Soufflé Butter Lotion and science may have a few things in common, well; you better sign up and discover the scientific softness featured in this month’s Makerspace Workshop to learn all about it!

This month, let your fingers swirl the surface of a bowl, while you whip together special ingredients, made by BEES!           

Time: 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm  
Date: January 10th 2022   
Ages: All Ages
ActivityFeatured Agenda – Chocolate Soufflé Butter Lotion and Hot Chocolate Lip Balm!
Location: Iowa Department for the Blind, 524 Fourth Street Des Moines, IA 50309 

If you are unable to join in person, no problem, just complete the online registration form and choose “mail activity kit and video link” directly to your preferred address. 

Please contact Denise Bean at denise.bean@blind.state.ia.us or 515-452-1338. SEE YOU SOON!

Library News Podcast: January 2022

Happy New Year!  Join library staff for January’s Library News podcast which features information on a new program starting this month called the Great Reading Challenge, the top ten fiction books downloaded on BARD last month, information about the 2022 Iowa Regional Braille Challenge, upcoming youth programs, and information about ongoing library events and programs.

Join the Thursday Book Club

Heart shape filled with books on shelvesJoin the Thursday Book Club on January 20th at 2:00 pm as they discuss The Library Book by Susan Orlean. The Library Book looks at the mystery of the 1986 LA Public Library fire that ruined over a million books. The Thursday Book Club meets on the 3rd Thursday of every other month at 2:00pm.

Here is a list of books for 2022:

  • January – The Library Book by Susan Orlean  DB92869     
  • March – End of Watch by Stephen King  DB85178  
  • May – My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry by Fredrik Backman  DB83204
  • July – Before and After: the Incredible Real-Life Stories of Orphans Who Survived the Tennessee Children’s Home Society by Judy Christie and Lisa Wingate  DB97454
  • September – The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah  DB102287
  • November – Finder Keepers by Fern Michaels  DB47416 

Contact Angie at 515-452-1330 or angela.houk@blind.state.ia.us for the conference call information.

Save the Date! 2022 Iowa Regional Braille Challenge

SAVE THE DATEBraille Challenge Logo

2022 Iowa Regional Braille Challenge
Saturday, February 26, 2022
at the Iowa Department for the Blind

The Braille Challenge is the only academic competition of its kind in North America for students who are blind or visually impaired. Braille Institute launched the Braille Challenge in 2000 to motivate students to practice and hone their braille literacy skills, which are essential to academic and employment success.

Any blind or visually impaired student in first through twelfth grades who can read and write braille is eligible to participate in the preliminary Braille Challenge regional events. All contestants are tested on fundamental braille skills such as:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Spelling
  • Speed and Accuracy
  • Proofreading
  • Charts and Graphs

We will have an exciting day of testing and prizes, as well as, parent sessions and sibling activities and finish up the day with a STEM Fest!

For Braille Challenge Finals, the top 50 students (10 in each category) with the highest scores are invited to Los Angeles for the final round – two days of competition, camaraderie and fun! (Braille Challenge finals were remote in 2020 due to COVID-19.)

Practice Contests
The Braille Challenge is designed to encourage students to practice their braille literacy skills. To hone your skills and prepare for the contest, see sample contests here. 

Watch the Braille Challenge page of our blog for more details on the upcoming Braille Challenge.

Questions?  Contact the Library at library@blind.state.ia.us or 515-281-1323.