On Friday afternoon, Sam’s teacher had a special assignment.
“Next week, we’ll be studying humanitarian efforts around the world since the time of the Renaissance, including those to help the blind,” she said. “Over the weekend, I want each of you to wear a blindfold for an entire day. The premise of this experiment is that it will help you understand what it’s like to be blind,” she said.
Sam was a skeptic. He really didn’t think the assignment would be too challenging. On Saturday morning, Sam took a piece of cloth and tied it around his head to cover his eyes. Then he went into the kitchen for breakfast. He heard the voices of his parents and brothers but couldn’t specify where each voice was coming from. He thought about how important hearing is for blind people.
“Could you pass me the newspaper, please?” he asked. Just then, he remembered he couldn’t see the words on the page. He wondered if Braille newspapers were ever made.
After finishing breakfast, his brothers asked him to play soccer. As he followed them, he accidentally walked into the baker’s rack. He also found that he couldn’t play soccer. He wouldn’t be able to coordinate his actions without being able to see. Without his optic senses, he had no spatial awareness. Furthermore, he couldn’t do simultaneous activities because he had to make sure he was safe first.
He sat on the lawn. Suddenly, he realized that though he couldn’t see, his other senses worked perfectly fine. In fact, he began to realize new and different aspects of common objects. For example, he took a flower bud and felt it with his finger. He realized for the first time that it seemed to be covered with wax.
His hypothesis about being blind was disproved. The informative experiment had an imprint on him. It showed him sight was an asset that should be appreciated and taught him to revere the talents of blind people.