St. Louis Regional Braille Challenge
The 2023 Saint Louis Regional Braille Challenge (STLRBC) and Awards Ceremony will be in-person at Missouri School for the Blind (MSB) (3815 Magnolia Avenue, Saint Louis, MO) on February 15, 2023, 9am-3:30pm CST.
To register, submit your registration and permission forms by January 6, 2023.
- Contestant Registration
- Parent/Guardian Permission Form – this form MUST be completed by a parent or guardian (or the contestant if they are a self-guardian) in order for registration to be considered complete
- Volunteer Registration
- Adult Attendees – anyone who will be attending but not participating as a contestant or volunteer
What is the Braille Challenge?
The Braille Challenge is a national braille contest created and sponsored by the Braille Institute of America. The Braille Challenge is a two-stage academic competition designed to support and enrich the reading and writing of braille. The STLRBC is Missouri’s preliminary round; the top 50 eligible contestants from across the United States will be invited to participate in the National Braille Challenge!
During the competition, students will participate in various tasks to test their braille skills. Categories include:
- Braille Speed and Accuracy: Students listen to a digital audio story and transcribe it – both speed and accuracy count.
- Reading Comprehension: Students silently read a story and answer multiple-choice questions about the story.
- Spelling: Students will braille vocabulary words in uncontracted braille. Extra points are given for the same words brailled correctly in contracted braille.
- Proofreading: Students will read a faulty passage and look for braille, grammar, punctuation, or spelling errors.
- Interpreting Tactile Graphics/Chart and Graph Reading: Students read tactile graphics to answer a variety of multiple-choice questions.
Who can participate?
Any student in the State of Missouri who loves reading and writing braille is welcome to participate! Contestants are divided into the following categories:
- NEW FOR 2023! Rookie: All grade levels (Students can choose contracted or uncontracted braille at this level. This contest level is appropriate for any student who is in the process of learning braille). Contestants will participate in adapted versions of spelling, reading comprehension, and proofreading, as well as a listening comprehension test.
- Apprentice: Grades 1-2 (Students can choose contracted or uncontracted braille at this level. Older students can also participate in this level but are not eligible for the National Braille Challenge). Contestants will participate in spelling, reading comprehension, and proofreading.
- Freshman: Grades 3-4 (Older students can also participate in this level but are not eligible for the National Braille Challenge). Contestants will participate in spelling, reading comprehension, and proofreading.
- Sophomore: Grades 5-6, contestants will participate in reading comprehension, proofreading, speed and accuracy, and charts and graphs.
- Jr. Varsity: Grades 7-9, contestants will participate in reading comprehension, proofreading, speed and accuracy, and charts and graphs.
- Varsity: Grades 10-12, contestants will participate in reading comprehension, proofreading, speed and accuracy, and charts and graphs.
What materials will I need to provide?
Each contestant will require a manual brailler. For contestants in the Sophomore, Junior Varsity, and Varsity levels, a Book Port Plus or Victor Reader digital player and headphones are also required to complete the contests. NEW FOR 2023! If you do not have a digital audio player, Braille Institute has approved the use of braille notetakers (using the audio function only) with headphones as a digital audio player during the Speed and Accuracy portion of the contest.
If you do not have the proper equipment, please notify the STLRBC Coordinator (contact information below) and we will assist you. All other materials will be provided by the STLRBC.
My contestant would like to practice for the Braille Challenge. What can we do to prepare?
Previous testing materials are available from Braille Institute. These materials allow contestants to practice for the 2023 Challenge, as well as prepare them for what to expect on the day of the event. These materials can be found on the Braille Institute’s Sample Contests page.
How can I volunteer for the Braille Challenge?
If you’re interested in volunteering at the event, we thank you for your help! Braille Challenge cannot take place without all of our wonderful volunteers. To volunteer for the STLRBC, fill out this form. You don’t need to register as an attendee if you’ve registered to volunteer. If you’re not sure what position you would like to volunteer for, contact the STLRBC Coordinator at the contact details below (email is the best method) and she will help you register and select an appropriate assignment.
I am coming to the event with my child/student. What should I expect? Who do I contact?
To register to attend the STLRBC, fill out this form. Braille Challenge provides activities and learning opportunities for parents, guardians, and educators while contestants are testing; during the 2023 STLRBC, caregivers will have the opportunity to learn about Fitness and Health for the Blind/Visually Impaired presented by Mary Morrell, MSB Outreach Family Engagement Coordinator. We also invite you to join us for shared activities, such as lunch, fun and games, and the STLRBC Awards Ceremony.
I have a question that wasn’t answered here. Who can I ask?
Please contact the STLRBC Coordinator or Assistant Coordinator at the contact details below (email is the best method).
Mandy Clayton, Coordinator
Missouri School for the Blind
Natasha Baebler, Assistant Coordinator
Missouri School for the Blind