Tuesday, December 25, 2012

What My Boy Got for Christmas

Since my older son ignores most toys, he mainly
gets books. He asked for Qwirkle 
(which he mostly ignored)
and Christmas books this year, and especially wanted 
a Christmas song book. His first question Christmas morning
was: "Did I get a Christmas Song book?" and he
would not open stocking or Santa presents until
assured, yes, he did.
My sister gave him
"Easy Piano Ultimate Christmas" (hereinafter
called the Green book) and my husband found
him "Easy Christmas Fake Book" (the red book).
These provided some moments of amusement. 
He also received Silver Packages (a Christmas 
picture book by the incomparable Cynthia Rylant) 
and poetry books and joke books. 
I did not give him anything challenging except
a book with writing prompts, which he would
not use today. I'll keep asking. I'll try to figure
out what to do with Qwirkle too, he likes 
the colors and shapes, but he's not so interested
in the game. Perhaps we can use the tiles for 
pattern matching.
He spent a happy hour under the tree looking
at his books. By this afternoon he was back
to older favorites in his room. He read
Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree out loud
to me from inside his new (collapsed on
floor) Hugglepod.
He did play a game of "Guess Who" with his dad, 
which is a logic and recognition game that two of
his speech therapists have used with him.
Hoping you had a lovely and peaceful day,
Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.
-Spectrum Mom

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree and Other Gifts

Like many of you, I'm in a bit of a rush right now, 
so I just asked my son which is his favorite 
Christmas book.
"Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree," he said,
"Did you know it was a book?"
I did know it was a book by Robert Barry, 
but not until years after I first
saw the delightful muppet version with (really, I'm not making 
up) Robert Downey, Jr. as Mr. Willowby.
"It's in verse you know," says my son, 
explaining the book's appeal.
The video is not in verse, but has songs and is very 
Want more gift ideas? 
Here's my post from last year's holiday. 
And please, please, comment with
your own child pleasing gifts - 
they need not be books.
(My son wants Qwirkle this year)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

D is for Dreidel

D is for Dreidel crosses an alphabet book with a holiday book
for a rhyming introduction to the Jewish holiday of Channukah
(or Hannukkah).
And who doesn't love a dreidel?
Both my kids love the four-sided top with hebrew characters. 
Look up the rules, and play the dreidel game.
"A is for afternoon
Sundown is near
Hanukkah's starting
The family's all here!
B is for bracha
The blessing we sing-"
The School Library Journal says "there is no pronunciation guide and most of the Hebrew 
words are not fully defined."
To which I say, Bah Humbug!
(sorry, mixing holidays here).
This is a fun little book and the illustrations and rhymes make it very accessible to kids.
Here are the lyrics to the dreidel song, and
the rules to the dreidel game.

Happy Hannukah!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Snowmen at Christmas

Every day my boy with autism asks when I will be getting out more Christmas books. I usually get all the Christmas books down December 1, and he races through them. 
He may look at them more than once, but
he does not read them in a way I recognize as reading. So I am trying to slow down the pace. 
He finds this frustrating. Hence the daily query,
oft-repeated and varied a bit - 
"Are you getting down more books today?" 
"How many will you get down?"
I handed him Snowmen at Christmas yesterday.
This bright and bouncy book by both Buehners rhythmically 
and in rhyme recounts the story of the secret snowman celebration
held every year at this time.
Every double page spread contains hidden pictures, so there
is lots to engage almost every child personality.
And, oh my gosh, you can even buy matching pjs.
That and another gift idea below.
-Spectrum Mom

Featured Book:
Snowmen at Christmas
by Caralyn Buehner
pictures by Mark Buehner
Dial Books for Young Readers
Jack and Jill offers this & other book/pj sets
Snowmen at Christmas is Day 9