Monday, July 29, 2013

A picture is worth a thousand words

Hi Everyone, I thought that I would write about something that Natalie's therapist and I are working on in order to establish communication with Natalie. It is called the  Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS). I've had a couple of mommies ask me what PECS is and I thought it would be good to discuss it here. 

PECS  is a binder that typically starts with pictures of desired objects (such as food, places, and people) and progress over time to pictures with sentence strips (for example: I want ice cream) and then, finally move from pictures to words. PECS can also be used to create schedule boards for providing a visual schedule of the child’s day. But for now we are working on a picture binder. Natalie's therapist has had me doing homework this past weekend. I purchased a small binder (5 1/2" x 8 1/2") along with dividers. I also purchased some Velcro  I printed pictures of familiar things around our house. These pictures are 2"x2" and I had them laminated. I then placed Velcro strips along the plastic sheets and attached the pictures to the Velcro  I divided the binder into people, places, food, animals. In people there is a picture of mommy, another of daddy, brother, grandpa, grandma  In foods there are individual pictures of Natalie's favorite foods and snacks. Once Natalie learns to use this system she will be able to, for example, pick a picture of her favorite cereal and give it to me to show that this is what she wants to eat. Or perhaps pick the picture of the pool, from places, to communicate that she wants to go in the pool.  The binder is small and easy to carry everywhere. This will be used at all times, during outings to the park, the mall, a restaurant or vacation. 

I believe that PECS will play an important part of Natalie's success and I am excited and hopeful to see this work.

Please help me reach my Goal!