New Stauth Museum exhibit explores low vision education

Garden City Telegram
The Stauth Memorial Museum is located in Montezuma.

MONTEZUMA -  “Child in A Strange Country: Helen Keller and the History of Education for People Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired” is the next exhibit, on loan from the Museum of the American Printing House for the Blind in Louisville, Ky., will be on display from Oct 26 to Jan. 22, 2022 at the Stauth Memorial Museum in Montezuma.

In 1891, teacher Anne Sullivan described her famous student, Helen Keller: "For the first two years of her intellectual life she was like a child in a strange country," wrote Sullivan, realizing that for Helen, no learning was possible until she could overcome the communication barrier posed by blindness and deafness.

“Stauth Memorial Museum is excited to bring this exhibit for all ages to Western Kansas.” Heather Urich, interim director of Stauth Memorial Museum, said. “This will be a great experience for children and adults to learn about adaptive education possibilities for those with vision impairments.”

The exhibit explores four primary subjects: Reading, Science, Math, and Geography. 

Using Helen’s educational journey as a lens, “Child in a Strange Country” uncovers the roots of modern education for children with vision loss. 

The exhibit is designed to be fully accessible, and each section concludes with a sit-down touch table with interactive games and activities which spur the sensory imagination.

In the Reading and Writing area, Museum guests can try writing braille by hand using a slate and stylus or use the Braillewriter. 

The Scientific Study panels include a tactile model of the human eye, a relief picture of the eye, and natural specimens that can be explored by touch. It also includes an APH Light Box which was invented for low vision students to help develop awareness of light, color, and visual discrimination.

In the Mathematics area, guests can use an abacus to add and subtract. With stationary pins and rubber bands, geometric shapes can be constructed. A Talking Scientific Calculator provides a prime example of how technology plays an important role in helping blind and low vision students learn mathematics today. 

Textured relief maps, a relief globe, a Talking Tablet, and a modern geography puzzle round out the Geography section.

For more information, or schedule a tour, call 620-846-2527. Business hours for the Stauth Memorial Museum, 111 N Aztec, are: 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. The museum is closed Sundays, Mondays and all major holidays. Admission is free, but donations are accepted to help with the costs to hosting exhibitions. 

Check out the museum’s website for more information about this and other events and exhibits at www.stauthmemorialmuseum.org.