Friday, January 23, 2015


Jennie was 3 yrs old.Her mom and grandma waited on her hand and foot.When she pointed to something or made grunting type noises they knew just what she wanted. Jennie did not talk. Occasionally the only words she spoke was ma and no. A young neighbor who lived next door to this family offered to babysit for Jennie free. So the mom and grandma could go to church on Sundays. The 16 yr olds name was Shelly. Shelly emailed us and asked if we had any children's books. We happened to receive a lot of books that year from Melodi in Jackson. We packed up a box of the books. And we delivered them. When Shelly babysat she would read to Jennie. Two favorite books  that Jennie liked was an alphabet book and an Elmo book. Jennie was encouraged to point to the pictures and repeat the words. Shelly also made her say cookie when she grunted and pointed to the cabinet. It took several months but Jennie learned to talk. In fact Shelly said she started talking so much you couldn't shut her up. Never underestimate the power of a child's book. It definitely can help in learning social skills .It opened a whole new world for Jennie. Perhaps by the adults in the house always grabbing whatever Jennie wanted she had no need to talk. Either way this 16 yr old babysitter helped Jennie to find her voice. And this is also another  reason we always add a few books in drop offs where children are involved. There just might be another Jennie.

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