Uses for a Picture Dictionary

Lately I have been staring at my little one’s picture dictionary and deciding that I am not going to let it collect dust when there ARE plenty of uses for them….no matter your child’s age!







In case you don’t believe me, I was sitting in the back seat with my 15 month old the other day and the only book I had in the back to get him out of his cranky mood was a picture dictionary that I bought at a garage sale.  SO, I decided, let’s practice his oral vocabulary and build on it a little. * I know I know….only a mommy teacher would think this way.  I picked it up, opened to a page with a few familiar images (ball, balloon, banana, etc.) and I started pointing and naming the images he knew with clear enunciation of each word – giving him enough time to repeat me.







He is really articulate for 15 months and has a great memory; so, I thought, hmm…I wonder how long I can make this last if I make a game out of it.
Starting with the pictures he knew, I asked him “Where is the ball?”  I watched his eyes search the page, and then, a light bulb went off!  He pointed to the ball and said “baaaaaaaaawwwwww” in the long, dragged out way he always says ball.  I was so proud, as every biased mother would be! We did this same routine for several other pictures that he knew, for about 10 minutes, and every time we repeated this process on a new page I would introduce one unfamiliar picture.

For those of you cheering “more more!” here are some more ideas:

1)   Have your little one use it as a research tool when they want to find out how to spell something “let’s find the picture under the letter that it starts with and see how it is spelled in a book!”

2)  Play “I spy” a picture that is made up of the sounds /b//e//d/ or /b/ /ed/

Or I spy a picture that has that word “at” in it’s name “bat!”

3)  Get ideas for a letter study….help your little one make a “B” (or any letter) poster and get ideas of what you might draw on the B poster from the picture dictionary.

4)  With your little one’s eyes closed, open the book and randomly place their finger on a picture, see if your little one can sound it out without looking at the word and then check the word beside the picture to see how many sounds “matched.”



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