Meet Joey

Joey is a 12-year-old boy with a condition affecting his central vision. When he came to the Lighthouse a year ago, he had difficulty reading his assignments at school. The Lighthouse of Collier provided him with an electronic magnifier to use at school and a large CCTV (closed circuit television) to use at home to magnify print so he could do his homework. Joey is thriving academically with his new accommodations.

In addition to academic success, Joey has an ear for music. His mother asked Lighthouse staff to recommend a piano teacher. After interviewing several teachers, the perfect candidate was identified, a pianist who had volunteered to provide a music and poetry class to the children during the Lighthouse’s summer camp program. A Lighthouse instructor accompanied Joey to a few lessons and described the strategies to help Joey compensate for his vision loss. The piano teacher emphasized to Joey that the music is in his heart and not on paper, and she proceeded to teach him to play by ear and memorization.

After only a few months of instruction, Joey played Besame Mucho at his recital, complete with a violinist and another pianist accompanying him. Collaboration between the Lighthouse and the piano teacher was instrumental in creating a successful learning environment for Joey. At the Lighthouse, understanding vision impairment, finding ways to compensate, and connecting with community resources are key to helping children experience all aspects of life.