Communication Cards (PECS)
Several months after beginning formal speech therapy, it was clear that Felix was becoming frustrated at his inability to communicate his desires and needs. His speech therapy at that time was highly focused around prompting eye contact and vocalizations, and while I fully support the development of these skills, his desire to communicate was outpacing his ability to perform the actions.
When my request to begin using a card-based communication systems were denied because "he didn't have the necessary skills for that level of communication," I opted to assume competence and pursue the next level of communication exchange myself.
After reading the training manual for the popular Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) -- and after discovering how insanely expensive (and outdated!) the professional software for creating these cards was -- I began creating my own cards just for Felix.
Knowing that many other parents and caregivers may be in the same boat, I've made all of our cards available for download. Click through the gallery below or download the cards here: Set 1, Set 2, Set 3, Set 4, Set 5, Set 6.
Go forth and thrive!
To learn more about how to initiate communication exchanges with your own children (verbal or not!), check out this excellent training/explanatory video for PECS, presented by Lori Frost, co-developer of the Picture Exchange Communication System:
Here is another great video demonstrating how to expand PECS vocabulary when the child may not know the word or symbol yet (such as colors or size):