purpose: the functional vision assessment (avif-2 to 6 years)'s capacity to differentiate visual ability levels in children with low vision was analyzed. the avif-2 to 6 years was created at the infantile low vision sector from s？o geraldo hospital, brazil. methods: after a debate among professionals from different areas regarding the appropriateness of the test items, avif-2 to 6 years was applied to 40 children aged from 2 to 6 years; twenty children with low vision (group 1) and twenty without it (group 2) were assessed. group 1 was recruited from the infantile low vision sector from s？o geraldo hospital. group 2 comprised children from two different public day care centers and children were matched by age, gender and social level with group 1. seven domains were studied: visual fixation, visual following, visual field confrontation, eye-hand coordination and surrounding locomotion, contrast vision and color vision discrimination. group 1 children were submitted to a complete ophthalmologic exam and group 2 to ophthalmologic screening. children with low vision and neurologic disease were excluded. comparative analyzes were performed for both groups and for distinct subgroups classified by age (24 to 35 months, 36 to 59 months and 60 to 78 months) and by visual acuity subgroups (<1.0 logmar and >1.0 logmar). results: the scores at total avif-2 to 6 years and its domains were statistically significant (p<0.05), except for the contrast vision and color vision discrimination domains. the total avif- 2 to 6 years median was lower for group 1 at the three interval ages. conclusion: avif- 2 to 6 years can discriminate different levels of functional vision of low vision children, however the authors emphasize that although the results are encouraging, further studies shall be done until the test is ready for clinical use.