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>> It’s me, Henry, with another story. Get ready for this one. It’ll be a glory. Fun4theDisabled presents this series to you, Children’sBooks4theDisabled. Please join our crew.

Today’s book is ‘Close Your Eyes’, written by Michelle Friedman and illustrated by Nicole Fiddler. In this story, a little girl tells us all about her life as a blind person. She tells us about all the things she loves to do, how she’s just like us. She just cannot see.

Now, here’s our host, Vanessa.

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>> Thanks, Henry. Welcome, everyone. In this story, a little girl tells us all about her life as a blind person. She also tells us all about the things she loves to do, and the things she would love to learn to do, and that she’s just like us. She just cannot see.

Today, our story will be read by LaDonna Friedheim, who is a professional wheelchair dancer. LaDonna will read ‘Close Your Eyes’ by blind author, Michelle Friedman, and illustrated by Nicole Fiddler.

I trust you will enjoy LaDonna’s reading of this great book.

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>> Close your eyes. What do you see?

Nothing, right? Now you’re like me.

I am blind. I cannot see.

With your eyes closed, you’re just like me.

Close your eyes and build with blocks.

Make a puppet with your socks.

Close your eyes. We’ll climb a tree.

Just take my hand and come with me.

I will learn to dance ballet.

I’ll just learn a different way.

I just learned to ride my bike.

Now that is something that I like.

I love games and never quit.

Let’s play tag. Now you’re it.

So many things I like to do.

I bet you like to do them too.

Do you like to read a book?

Me too, but at the pictures, I can’t look.

I’m going to learn to ride a horse.

A gentle one, I hope, of course.

Would you like to roller skate?

We’ll do it soon. We’ll make a date.

I’m like you, and you’re like me,

Except that I just cannot see.

I love to swim in Grandma’s pool.

No running, though. That’s the rule.

Red and yellow, blue and green.

These are colors I’ve never seen.

But even still, I draw with chalk

All along our front sidewalk.

What are things you like to do?

I bet that I would like them too.

Do you like to hide and seek?

We could play, but you can’t peek.

Do you have a favorite teddy?

I have one. His name is Eddy.

The things you see and like so much

Are things I like, but I must touch.

We all learn to read and write.

I’ll just learn without my sight.

I’ll use my fingers to read Braille.

They’ll move across the bumpy trail.

I can count from one to ten.

Then I start all over again.

My ABC’s I sing out loud.

My mom and dad are oh so proud.

I have four senses I use well.

I touch, I taste, I hear, I smell.

I love to hear the ocean’s roar

And sit upon the sandy shore.

I love the smell of chocolate cake.

Would you like to help me bake?

One day, I want to learn to ski.

It must be hard. Would you agree?

When I grow up, I want to be

So many things. It’s up to me.

I’ll hold your hand, and we can walk.

I’ll show you how, and we will talk.

I’d like to be your friend today.

What do you think? What do you say?

I’m like you, and you’re like me,

Except that I just cannot see.

The End.

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>> Thank you, Ladonna Friedheim, for reading that wonderful story. Michelle Friedman, the author, wrote this book with the hope it would bridge the gap between disabled kids and non-disabled kids. Like the little girl in the story, disabled people really can do anything they want to do. Disabled people are just like you. They like to have fun and make friends, but they just happen to live their lives a little differently.

If you have a question or a comment, we’d love to hear from you. Ask a family member to help you leave a comment in the comment section below. If you enjoyed this video, please subscribe to our newsletter, and check out more of our Fun4theDisabled Presents Children’s Books4theDisabled series.

Henry, will you close us out? Bye-bye.

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>> Thank you for watching ‘Close Your Eyes’ by Michelle Friedman and illustrated by Nicole Fiddler.

Hey you. Grab you a scoop, ‘cause blind and disabled people can do anything they wanna do. People of all abilities are talented and take on challenges. They’re interesting and important in their own way and live life to the fullest every day. That means there’s no stopping, and hey, thanks for watching.

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