I live in a tiny home, but we need a lot of supplies for my son’s sensory routines. So what do with do with bins of rice and play-doh and beans and kinetic sand? We stored all of these bins in a closet and created an activity photo library. This way, my house stays organized, but my son can still choose what to play with, without having to remember what we have.
Activity photos can also provide a great introduction to learning new skills. For example, we can practice requesting using signs or language. We can also explore early reading by using the labels with the activity photo. Another great tool is using multiple photos to practice a “First this, then that” to help learn sequence while working through transitions.
Getting set up is a chore, I’ll be honest. It took me a few nights of taking photos, printing, and laminating to get it all done. Now that we have our activity library, it’s working great! Here’s how to get started:
Take Photos or Save Photos From The Internet
A few of our activities, like the rice bin, is custom made so I had to take photos myself. Other supplies, like kinetic sand, I ordered online so I just saved the photo from Amazon to my computer.
Print 4×6 Photos With Labels
I used Photoshop, but other editing software like Paint will work just fine to add text to each photo. Since my printer at home sucks, I used Walgreens online photo service to print my photos. It’s super fast and easy and very reasonably priced.
Don’t go out and buy a machine, the laminating sheets will work just fine. You can get a 10 pack of laminating sheets at Walmart for $6 and it should cover about 30 pictures. You only need to laminate the front of the photo, to protect it from sticky jam hands on a regular basis.
Cut A Sealed Envelope To Organize Photos
I made two different packets of activities to choose from: our regular activities and our calming activities. You can even separate the activities into themes, or morning/afternoon activities as well.
Remember, the activity library will help you stay organized and can be used as a tool to teach your child some new skills.
Previously posted at Hudson Valley Parent Magazine.
*If you have any concerns about your child, please discuss with their pediatrician or contact your local school district or Early Intervention center for an evaluation.*