Archive for January, 2010

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Helen Keller

A couple of years ago, a new photo of 8-year old Helen Keller with her teacher, Anne Sullivan taken in July 1888. Apparently it had been in the private family collection of a gentleman for many years and was recently acquired by the New England Historic Genealogical Society.

Helen’s wonderful story of personal perseverance and triumph is inspirational. As an adult, Helen was a pioneer for the rights of the less fortunate and oppressed. The American Federation for the Blind has an on-line Helen Keller Kids Museum that is pretty cool.

Having grown up watching The Patty Duke Show as a youngster, I also remember seeing Patty‘s Oscar Award winning portrayal of Helen Keller in the movie, The Miracle Worker. The animated version of her story is very touching and resonates with young school girls and boys alike.

Go back in time and experience that moment when Helen learned to sign the word for “water” and “doll”, like the doll she has in the newly rediscovered photo – – click here to watch a snippet from the NestLearning Helen Keller DVD “Helen Keller video”.

One of our advisory board members, Dr. Reg Grant stars in an educational film series called “In Search of the Heroes.” He plays a mysterious librarian that transports troubled teenagers into the past to interact with history’s heroes. In “Tragedy to Triumph”, we meet Helen & Anne through a young man from the present time. This young man has little sympathy for those who are different from himself, until he enters a mysterious library. Somehow he trapped in the past and he too is blind! Fortunately for him, Annie and Helen befriend him and they help him find the key back to the present – – – which is learning acceptance and compassion, and that “the only true disability is a disability of the heart.”

How do we balance our children’s natural inquisitiveness of those different with sensitivity and acceptance? It’s up to us to help our children when they are young to deal with this aspect of life.


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