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When I was in graduate school at MTSU, I took a class in teaching exceptional children. That was the label they used in the ‘80's for “special needs” students: you know, those children who were mentally challenged, were blind, were deaf, or could not walk. It was a very interesting and sometimes eye-opening class. I remember one night that we got to class and the professor (who was a woman) told us that we were going on a field trip. Then she produced blind folds and she paired us up. One person was to be the guide and the other person was to be “blinded.” I hadn’t had the sensation since I was a kid playing “pin the tale on the donkey.” I still remember how weird it felt not to be able to see while I was led around by someone. I remember that I felt very disoriented. The world was completely different than before. I still remember making it to the University’s student center where we sat around the table and debriefed the experience. The teacher observed that, while I was blindfolded, I had not said a word. I realized she was right. Something about being blinded had isolated me into my own little world. My perspective had really been challenged by the experience. Things change when you begin to see them, or in this case, when you don’t see them differently!

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