Jake's Journey with Apraxia

And the Friends We Met Along the Way

I couldn’t let the 108th anniversary of Dr. Seuss’ birthday on March 2nd, pass without blogging about it. To celebrate the occasion, Jake’s school had “Who Hair” day this past Friday, which simply meant the kids must show up with some type of silly hair style. LD was so excited to fix his brother’s hair that the first thing he said when he woke up that morning was, “You haven’t fixed Jake’s hair yet have you?!!?”

LD and I assumed Jake would be elated over the opportunity to form his thick, dark head of hair into a mohawk for school. Long story short, we were wrong. Jake hated the gel, hated the mohawk, and by the end of his styling session, his hair actually looked better than it usually does most mornings. Go figure!

‘What to do for Who Hair?!’ I frantically thought to myself about ninety seconds before we were supposed to leave. Thank goodness my mama brain was operating at full throttle that morning because after a quick shuffle through my memory bank, I remembered a pink/lavender wig that a neighbor had left at our house. Hooray! Success! I searched through our dress-up box, and a few moments later Jake was sporting some pretty fabulous hair.

All of last week, Dr. Seuss talk was everywhere I turned and therefore, I decided to get out Hop on Pop and read it to Jake.

hop on pop

As I read the first sentence in this book to Jake, his eyes lit up and he gave me a big grin as if to say, ‘Hey! I know these words!’ I suddenly realized that when your child has a tiny vocabulary, reading words that he can actually say is a huge deal. No other books that we have been reading come close to competing with this Seuss classic. Not only are these words simple for beginning readers, they are ideal for beginning talkers also.

The following words in Hop on Pop coincide with the words that Jake is currently practicing in speech therapy: up, pup, house, mouse, ball, wall, day, play (pay), night, he, me, him, bee, three, how, bed, ned, pat, sat, hat, no, don’t, dad, bad, had, hop, pop, and bit. This book also teaches colors and spatial concepts like on, in, out, up, and down.

Fortunately, Jake is a lot more parrot-like these days and if I break sentences down in this book, he can repeat most of the words, one-by-one. And then I thought, If he can repeat the words, maybe, just maybe, my boy can also learn to read them, which gave me a whole new sense of hope and motivation to keep reading this book on a regular basis. What a fantastic way to strengthen the words that he is working on without flashing a card in front of his face.

Thank you Dr. Seuss for sharing your clever words with us!

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