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NAN: Working with Children Who Have Vision Issues

Nannies should be familiar with signs that a child could be having trouble with her vision. According to the American Optometric Association, signs of eye or vision problems may include:

Frequent eye rubbing or blinking

Short attention span

Avoiding reading and other close activities

Frequent headaches

Covering one eye

Tilting the head to one side

Holding reading materials close to the face

An eye turning in or out

Seeing double

Losing place when reading

Difficulty remembering what he or she read. 

If a child’s eyes are misaligned, for example, if they looked cross, turn out or don’t focus together, that could also indicate a vision problem, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. 

Nannies should report these observations to the parents who should in turn discuss them with the child’s pediatrician.

When caring for a child with low vision or is visually impaired, he may learn to read and write like his sighted peers or he may use a combination of print and braille, according to the American Foundation for Blind. If he has no vision, she may learn to read and write just using braille. 

When caring for a child who has low vision or is blind, nannies should be familiar with ways to adapt his environment for learning and best practices for fostering his language and literacy development. This may include using magnifiers or other low vision devices or using tactile books, like Pat the Bunny, or adding tactile drawings to enrich the child’s reading experience. Nannies should be familiar with the parental approach to language and literacy development and ensure that they are incorporating the preferred practices of the family into their daily care plan. 

Michelle LaRoweNAN: Working with Children Who Have Vision Issues