NFB BELL® Academy

The NFB BELL Academy provides children with Braille and nonvisual skills instruction through fun, hands-on learning activities.

NFB BELL Academy has helped me achieve goals in Braille and discover new things about myself, I didn’t even realize. And make new, great friends.

A young girl smiles as she spells her name using colorful ping pong balls in egg cartons resembling Braille.The NFB BELL Academy—which stands for National Federation of the Blind Braille Enrichment for Literacy and Learning®—is a nationwide (United States and Puerto Rico) summer program that prepares blind and low-vision children to grow into confident and independent blind people who live the lives they want.

Activities are provided in a day program or residential setting, depending on location. In addition to Braille crafts, games, and other engaging projects, children learn vital independent living skills, interact with blind adult mentors, and enjoy field trips to sites related to the NFB BELL Academy curriculum. Through these activities and interactions, the children learn that blindness or low vision does not define them or their future. 

NFB BELL Academy typically runs Monday through Friday for six hours each day for two weeks.

Who Should Attend

Blind and low-vision children, ages four through twelve, who:

  • Do not receive enough Braille and nonvisual skills instruction in school
  • Could benefit from more Braille exposure over the summer
  • Would enjoy connecting with blind role models

To be honest, for a mother with a low-vision child, I was very uneducated by the blind word, and I didn't think he could attend an event like it…A friend that was taking her son, told me that I should try and we did. The first day was like a whole new world of possibilities and knowledge opened up for me.

Register

An NFB BELL Academy instructor adds print to Braille flashcards in preparation for the 2020 NFB BELL Academy.Registration for our final session (July 27-August 7) of NFB BELL Academy In-Home Edition has now closed. Please join us in the summer of 2021 for our next season of bell ringing! 

Supporters

Thank you to the following organizations for their generous support of the NFB BELL Academy.

As a coordinator I was so happy to see how excited each child was each morning when they came into the BELL classroom. Each child was willing to try new things and they are excitedly looking forward to next year's BELL Academy.

Wells Fargo logo.   Seedlings, Braille Books for Children, logo.   American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults logo.

More Information

For more information about the NFB BELL Academy, please contact us at BELL@nfb.org.