We decided to have a book birthday for our autistic grandboy, and I went looking for books with people in them. He’s working on verbs and on gender, so books with pictures of boys and girls doing things like running, swimming, whatever, would really help. But they have to be Real People, because he’s very concrete and literal in his thinking and can’t relate dressed-up animals to people. And it was Really Hard to find anything.
I found a book of Fischer-Price Little People at the various toy-places you can buy for them–at a farm, the fire station, a gas station, etc. They’re cartoon-y, but they look like people. And I found a “going on a picnic” book I thought would work. There were a few other books but the illustrations I thought leaned a little too far to the abstract, and some had just girls or just boys. All the rest were animals.
I couldn’t resist the book about how George Gershwin wrote Rhapsody in Blue–yes, there really is a picture book about that, and it comes with a CD of the music. The boy loves that music, from Disney’s Fantasia 2000–hums and sings it, makes pianos out of blocks to pretend to play it. And the other day, he asked his mom for Rhapsody in Purple. So of course, I had to get him the book.
They also have a pet guinea pig (more Mom & Dad’s pet than the boy’s), so I had to get the book about “I love guinea pigs.” (I got one of those books for the other two grandboys, too, since they also have a guinea pig.)
But I may write a children’s picture book next, with REAL children doing things. Maybe with photos. Surely autistic kids aren’t the only ones who’d benefit from that kind of book…