Phase I Interventions

Phase I: Building visual behaviors

(Ranges 0 to 3) 

Working on:

  • Consistent looking at a small set of objects 

  • Examples may be: pinwheel, familiar character (ex. Elmo), windsock, slinky, single colored spoon, etc.

  • Items can be used as part of a daily activity (ex. show the red spoon before using it to eat)

  • Can teach phonemic awareness and alphabet with auditory scanning- student will not be able to see or understand the visual letter, can use objects as anchors (ex. A for apple)


Guidelines for presenting items:

  • Use objects of a single, preferred color

  • Use objects that are shiny or reflective

  • Use a simple background (black or white)

  • Use objects that are familiar

  • Use of movement to gain and sustain attention

  • Presented in strongest field (usually peripheral)

  • Present objects on a light box or use a flashlight to cast light onto the item (make sure the flashlight is held from behind the child)

  • May be able to regard simple moving images on an iPad

  • Decreased background noise

  • Seated away from light sources

  • Materials present within 18 inches or less

  • Provide ample wait time, provide verbal prompt prior to presentation and then silently wait for visual attention, sometimes up to 30 seconds


Next steps...

  • Teach salient features of familiar objects (ex. what makes a spoon a spoon-see salient features books under the Adapted Books tab)

  • Add more objects

  • Add objects of another color

  • Try increasing the complexity of objects (ex. 2 colored objects)

  • Show similar objects to familiar objects (ex. other types of spoons) and talk about what makes them similar and different

  • Have students identify or select a requested object out of the group of preferred objects “Which one is your spoon?” 

  • Work on discrimination activities “Show me an object (spoon) like the one I am holding.” 

  • Work on recognition activities “Look at these objects and find the spoon” 

  • Work on identification activities (pairing with auditory scanning if needed) “What is this called?” 

  • With this specific instruction and practice, an individual with CVI will eventually learn to generalize visual information