You will need an old notebook or scrapbook, or you could make your own book. For example, by joining some paper or card together with string.
Have a large photo (or several small ones) of your child ready for them to stick on the front cover or ask them to draw a picture of themselves to stick on. While they are drawing explain to them that this is going to be their special memory book. Tell them that you’re going to stick some photos in, and some of their drawings, and that you will collect things while you’re out and about to put in there too.
It might be a good idea to have a few things ready for them to stick in. For example, a photo of them or some people special to them, a drawing, and maybe something that will remind them of a recent event or outing. This could be a leaflet, bus ticket, photo, or even a leaf!
While they are cutting and sticking ask them what else they would like to stick in their book next time you work on it.
You could include:
- Photos of important people, places or events.
- Pictures of their favourite toys or their favourite TV or book character.
- Leaflets, tickets, and other items that will remind them of places they’ve been.
- Listen to your child's ideas, if they want lots of dinosaurs or unicorns in their book, then that's okay!
- Don’t worry if the cutting out isn’t perfect or the sticking isn’t straight! This book belongs to your child and they will be proud of it if they’ve done most of the work themselves.
- Adding a few words or a sentence on each page will help your child begin to understand the link between speaking and writing. If you write the words for your child, remember to use lower-case letters. If your child wants to have a go at writing, that’s okay too, even if they can’t really write yet ('pretend' or 'play writing' is an important stage of learning to write).
- Encourage your child to read the book with other people in your family. Your child will become the expert at reading their book and talking about the things in it.
- Keep adding to the book. When you’re out and about collect items to stick in.
- Or, if you have a special event, such as a farm visit, family wedding, or a holiday, you could make a book all about that event.
Good to know
Children love to read about things they have done or about people who are important to them. Making a memory book is a way to build their self-esteem and confidence.