After four years of being held virtually, Visual Impairment Enrichment Weekend (VIEW) was held in-person at the Montana School for the Deaf and Blind (MSDB). In partnership with MSDB, Northwest Association for Blind Athletes (NWABA) provided cooperative games, swimming, goalball and a Showdown and a Showdown tournament during the weekend of April 21 & 22. VIEW is an event held annually by the Montana School for the Deaf and Blind (MSDB), which is open to any student K-12 throughout the state of Montana, with a visual impairment. During the weekend, students participated in a wide range of activities educating on the Core Curriculum and Expanded Core Curriculum in addition to NWABA’s programming.
NWABA started the weekend off with ‘Ship to Shore’, a cooperative game using audio cues to break the ice with participants. This game is similar to Simon Says and works through communication, strategy, and auditory cues, all while having fun!
That afternoon, the young athletes participated in a Showdown tournament; a fun and fast-paced table game specifically designed for individuals with blindness or low vision. Showdown consists of a table (similar to that of an air hockey table) with a screen extending vertically across the width of the table, two goals at opposite ends, eyeshades, protective gloves, a Showdown bat (paddle) and ball, which makes a rattling noise when in motion. The objective of the game is to hit the ball with your paddle across the table, under the centerboard into your opponent’s goal. All players wear eyeshades during game play to ensure the level of vision is equal. NWABA donated the Showdown table to MSDB in 2013.
Students also had the opportunity to jump in the pool, where they practiced water skills, stroke development and cooperative water games. Concluding the weekend event on Saturday, students were introduced to goalball and had the opportunity to participate in a mock tournament with all the weekends participants.
We are grateful to be able to participate in this incredible weekend in person and for one of our longest standing partnerships with MSDB, an offer additional programing in the state of Montana.