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Old 08-17-2012, 06:08 PM   #11
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Re: how to handle color blindness in a 6 year old

I should also mention that I worked with his teacher. I also teach but in a different department. I did not feel like I could advocate for my son the way I needed to because we worked together, which is also a contributing factor for my moving him to a different school. Now I just have to deal with not being able to go to school with my DS


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Old 08-17-2012, 11:23 PM   #12
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Re: how to handle color blindness in a 6 year old

I haven't read all of the responses, but my almost-6-year-old is "as color deficient as they come" according to our eye doctor. (Bonus: he has eagle vision, and can see teeeny tiny things from incredible distances) We suspect our younger son is too, but not as severe. Anyway, once our doc explained that he can probably see hues far better than we can, and explained the nuances behind some of his color labels and experiences, it really helped. When I look at things as a hue instead of a color, I can "see" colors like he sees them. As for school, his teacher for the last 2 years has known and just glosses over things as needed, and sometimes helps guide him towards the right color if need be. There should be no punishment!

Our doc explained that color-blind people can see someone wearing camo in the woods, because they stick out like a sore thumb with the hue differences, whereas normal-color folks wouldn't see them at all. My son cannot locate a bright orange crayon on dark burgundy carpet, even while staring right at it! One day at school last year, there was a bottle of brown tempera paint and it looked pink to me and to the other 15 kids in DS' class, but he saw it correctly as brown! Thankfully I was there to witness that moment and pointed out to his teacher that, when you consider the hue and not the color, it is obviously brown, and it clicked with them, and they understood where DS was coming from.

My father is color blind, too, and so he has a very limited wardrobe and often asks for help. We explained to DS that he sees colors differently from a lot of other people, but that his grampa sees them the same way, so that helped. He will often point out something by color, like last night we saw a pink car and he commented on the "purple car" to which I replied, "actually that car is pink, and it is really neat, isn't it!". Sometimes he insists that something is a particular color (if he is in "that" mood) and so we don't argue. After all, to him it IS that color, and WE are seeing it "wrong". :-)

Patience is key, and your DS' teachers need to understand that it isn't just about coloring - they may ask him to do something or pick something up off the floor or clean up something and he may literally not be able to see what they are talking about, like the bright orange crayon. I would have a good sit-down with them and explain these things.
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Old 08-17-2012, 11:56 PM   #13
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If he is diagnosed, I would assume that it could be added to his IEP through special education. This would allow you to sit down with his team periodically (I think twice per year?) and discuss what accomodations should be made by the teacher and to the environment. They would be minimal, but the meeting should give you a chance to voice your concerns more formally and have the accomodations in writing and not just at the teacher's discretion.

I agree with teaching the color words right away and making sure that his crayons are labeled (not having to dig through a shared box for a naked crayon and guess its color). I'd also teach him that he sees differently, that its no big deal, and to ask for help if needed.

My dh is color blind too and does just fine. He actually has very exceptional vision outside of that. It's just a minor annoyance to him.

Last edited by mamaspice; 08-17-2012 at 11:59 PM.
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Old 08-20-2012, 08:11 PM   #14
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Re: how to handle color blindness in a 6 year old

You've gotten some great advice but I would be one MAD mama if either of my color blind boys were punished for their eyes! I am colorblind so I know exactly what they're going through...the colorblind leading the drives my hubby crazy, lol! With kindergarten starting next week, I do have a little fear that there could be issues. Although, none of us have a severe case, just mainly hue differentials.
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