We’ve talked about great books to read with your children in the last four months. And there will definitely be more lists to come; however, it is just as easy to make your book and the benefits outweigh the energy and little cost it requires to make.
So why make your own book? It goes along with the idea of repetition, shape/color/object recognition, motivation, and bonding. If children are helping co-author the book with you, they will be more likely to recognize the shapes or objects in the book. If they are able to choose the topic, there is more motivation to want to read it–over and over again. And if they are reading it over and over again, there is repetition–a key skill in the early literacy process.
Making your own book requires just a few things: pictures, markers or crayons, glue, paper, and a stapler or rings to bind it. Next, you need to choose a topic. This can range from going on a walk and taking pictures of things you see together to cutting out pictures from a magazine to letting your child draw the pictures (or illustrate). If you are going to take pictures, try letting your child take a couple photographs or at least let them point to the things they want to have photographed. If you are going to cut out pictures from a magazine, let your child try using the scissors–guide them, but let them do the work. This helps build small muscles and leads to better handwriting. After you have your pictures, glue them on construction paper or cardstock. Make sure you label each page with a specific word or sentence–depending on the age of your child. Then staple the book together or punch holes in the pages and keep them together using a ring from the office supply store.
The possibilities are endless. Some suggestions though…if you are doing a shape book, take pictures of familiar places and then have your child point out specific shapes in the pictures. Outline them and label the page with the shape name. Go on a nature walk and take pictures. Ask your child what each picture is about and write down what he/she says. Write a sentence leaving out one word. Let your child fill in the blank and then color a picture to go along with that sentence. Use old greeting cards, paint samples, wallpaper books, junk mail, cereal boxes, book covers (free at the library!!), or pictures from those books from your collection that are falling apart to save them from the trash.
Here are so more tips for creating your own homemade book.
And don’t forget to show your local librarian what you made!!