My little girl loves to have someone read her stories from her books. A few months back, someone gave her a zoo animal book. I noticed she started pointing to the pictures and saying their names and sounds.
A few weeks later, I was cleaning out my photo box and came across pictures we took at the zoo. I decided to go and get copies made for her to have as her own. Standing in line I saw a cheap little photo book and decided this might extend the life of these pictures.
When I gave her this cheap little book she loved it. I even put pictures of her daddy and me with her in there. Needless to say this is her favorite animal book. Another positive note is now she sees what real animals look like and not the cartoon or drawn animals.
I have now adopted this project for every event that we do together as a family. We recently went to see Sesame Street Live and I made her an Elmo picture book. She loves having her own picture books from all family outings.
A Picture Book is simple to make: Take pictures from an event, pick up an inexpensive photo album or "brag book" (I prefer the ones that can not be ripped apart easily), place the pictures in the book, and give it to the child. It is also a fun project to do with a toddler.