special needs or not, all children learn language through sound, image, and imitation. and, there are an abundance of picture books out there with numbers, letters, animals, people, cars, trucks, houses - well, pictures of just about everything in the world you can imagine so that our budding readers and speakers can see a word and the image and learn.
but, none of these hundreds of thousands of books have pictures of apple cheeks' mama, dada, grandma, doggies or, well, of her.
and, emma's early intervention therapists have been telling us repeatedly how important it is that emma have her own book of pictures of mama, dada, grandma, the doggies, and her - her immediate, daily world - to aid her in her identifying familiar people and objects and begin to put word to image.
when emma was really young, we kept reminding ourselves that we needed to take pictures and put them in a small photo album for her to use. but, in the midst of all of the other things we were juggling at the time, we never did.
then, on emma's birthday, my sister and brother-in-law gifted us a wonderful picture book they created using Shutterfly.
and, it is perfect. emma has used it on a near daily basis since that time to put the image of herself with the word/name emma, the picture of mama to the word mama, etc...and, is now, learning to point to the appropriate picture when prompted. same with dada, the doggies, her aunt and uncle and the list goes on. the picture book also encapsulates some of the sweetest pictures of emma in her younger months, from birth till very recently, which i treasure.
reflecting on the book recently made me think about how i could use it to create other picture books of things in emma's world, that she would directly recognize to eventually learn those words. i haven't done so just yet, but once she masters this one, i will.
how about you? have you used Shutterfly or something similar to create a picture book for educational purposes for your child? if so, please share!
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since i love the book so much, i thought i'd invite you to look at it with me, so you too can see select images of our little apple cheeks from some of her earliest moments through this past June. i haven't included the book in its entirety and i have excluded some personal identifying information, but here are some of the more endearing parts.