Vision Skills Needed For School Success
There are many visual skills beyond seeing clearly that team together to support academic success.
Vision is more than just the ability to see clearly, or having 20/20 eyesight. It is also the ability to understand and respond to what is seen. Basic visual skills include the ability to focus the eyes, use both eyes together as a team, and move them effectively.
Other visual perceptual skills include:
Recognition (the ability to tell the difference between letters like "b" and "d")
Comprehension (to "picture" in our mind what is happening in a story we are reading), and
Retention (to be able to remember and recall details of what we read).
Every child needs to have the following vision skills for effective reading and learning:
Visual acuity — the ability to see clearly in the distance for viewing the chalkboard, at an intermediate distance for the computer, and up close for reading a book.
Eye Focusing — the ability to quickly and accurately maintain clear vision as the distance from objects change, such as when looking from the chalkboard to a paper on the desk and back. Eye focusing allows the child to easily maintain clear vision over time like when reading a book or writing a report.
Eye tracking — the ability to keep the eyes on target when looking from one object to another, moving the eyes along a printed page, or following a moving object like a thrown ball.
Eye teaming — the ability to coordinate and use both eyes together when moving the eyes along a printed page, and to be able to judge distances and see depth for class work and sports.
Eye-hand coordination — the ability to use visual information to monitor and direct the hands when drawing a picture or trying to hit a ball.
Visual perception — the ability to organize images on a printed page into letters, words and ideas and to understand and remember what is read.
If any of these visual skills are lacking or not functioning properly, a child will have to work harder. This can lead to headaches, fatigue and other eyestrain problems. Parents and teachers need to be alert for symptoms that may indicate a child has a vision problem.
Vision may change frequently during the school years, regular eye and vision care is important.
Signs of eye & vision problem:
1. Frequent eye rubbing or blinking.
2. Short attention span.
3. Avoiding reading & other close activities.
4. Frequent headaches.
5. Covering one eye.
6. Tilting the head to one side.
7. Holding reading materials close to the face.
8. An eye turning in or out.
9. Seeing double.
10. Losing place when reading.
11. Difficulty remembering what he or she reads.
Regular checkup necessary, Realize it's IMPORTANCE
Most refractive errors are sporadic, just a nature's play. Only 3-4% are hereditary.
Glasses Number changes during growing age (till 18 yrs) despite wearing glasses & needs to be changed.
Refractive errors should be detected early in age & glasses MUST be worn to prevent amblyopia.
Watching TV from close distance is a symptom rather than cause.
Today's children have high visually demanding tasks & hence even a small refractive error can give them eye strain.
Watching TV from close distance results in glasses
Most number defects are hereditary
Glasses once worn are permanent
Glasses not in young age
Eating carrots/vegetables/vitamins can take away glasses
Squinting is a sign of luck
Glass number decrease with constant wear
If Parents are not wearing glasses, so children must be normal
Availability of magical medicines/drops/alternate therapy for glasses
Both eyes have same number
NOTE: Your child should receive an eye examination at least once every two years, more frequently if specific problem or risk factors exist. The earlier a vision problem is detected & treated, the more likely treatment will be successful.
Impact of computer use on children's vision:
Accommodative problems may occur as a result of prolonged activity without a significant break, the focusing system "locking in" to a particular target and viewing distance.
1. Excessive eye strain.
2. Dryness due to infrequent blinking.
3. Uncorrected farsightedness can cause eye strain, even when clear vision can be maintained.
Steps to visually friendly computer use:
1. Have the child's vision checked.
2. A brief break every hour.
3. Carefully checking the height and position of the computer screen.
4. Carefully check for glare and reflection in the computer screen.
5. Adjust the amount of lighting in the room for sustained comfort.