This is going to be a short post, but I thought this idea was worth sharing. I have a student who is completely non -verbal that really struggles to discriminate between Boardmaker photos in his PECs book. So, I have been putting in real picture of things, and that has helped a lot!
However, it is actually kind of hard to always have every picture available that he might want. He especially loves candy, and since our classroom supply is always changing, I don't always have a picture for everything. The other day, he brought me the picture for the color "red" because he wanted a fruity tootsie roll, but didn't have a picture for it in his book. In these moments, I am always so proud that he is trying to communicate, and also feel bad, because I don't want to reinforce an inappropriate communication attempt.
So, to make his life, and my life easier, I made him a generic candy picture. I found a bright yellow basket to keep my candy in, so it would be recognizable and easy to discriminate for my student. I took a photo and made a picture (actually, I made about 10 copies of this picture in case we lose some!) for the PECS book.
He has already used it to request a lot of goodies in the last week, so I think it was a good decision. Not only is he communicating more clearly his wants, but I am only reinforcing appropriate communication attempts.