Joey is your definition of a book lover. When he sees a book, his face lights up. When a book ends, he often cries. He is perfectly happy having a book be read to him over and over (and over and over). I am sure anyone in his family can recite Pete the Cat or Little Blue Truck in their sleep. Joey’s love of books works out quite well, as I love books almost as much as Joey, and I particularly love adapting books so they are more accessible, engaging, and powerful for children with special needs.
Those Small Moments of Great Success
I’d just sat down with Joey to read Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed. He was working hard on pulling off the monkeys I’d velcroed into the book when suddenly he stopped and looked at his AAC device.
Joey loves books. Of course, he loves some books more than others (I’m looking at you, Pete the Cat), but I don’t think I have ever read a book with Joey that he did not like.
To build on this love, we use books as a foundation to teach Joey.
More than what you see:
Communication is how we interact with the world. It is how we tell those around us what we like and don’t like, it is how we express our thoughts, wants, desires, and dislikes. It is how we tell people we are tired, and how we communicate to others how much we enjoy being around them. Communication is different from language, and many of us communicate with both words, gestures, and facial expressions on a daily basis.
Joey and I sat side by side, staring at the screen in front of us. Or at least, I was staring at it. Joey was staring anywhere else.
“What do you want?” I asked again.