Bookmaking 101


Here are some great ways to make your own books for your child.

1. Food Storage Bag Books
Best For: Babies and Toddlers

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Cut pictures of familiar objects, family members, other babies, etc out of magazines or photographs.
Glue each picture onto a square piece of paper.
Slide each piece of paper into a separate food storage bag.
Tape bags together with sturdy tape.
(This was one of Logan's favorite books as a baby... these were also some of the first words he started saying!)

2. File Folder Books
Best For: Preschoolers and Early Readers
Cut several file folders apart.

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Stack together and staple.

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Cut off edges to make even.

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(This is my new favorite way to make a book. I love how the book lays flat when you open it because of the creases in the file folder. If you don't like the sharp staples, try covering over the edge with heavy tape. You could also punch holes in the side and lace it up with ribbon or yarn.)
** I got the idea for making this book from Baby Read Aloud Basics

3. Construction paper/Plain paper Books
Best For: Early Readers (reading levels A-D, 1-4)
Give your child some unlined paper and let them go to town making books. Unlined paper is best for early readers and writers. It is also helpful to early readers to have the text placed on the left page with the corresponding picture on the right page. (This helps to enforce left to right directionality in text.)
Some ideas of books you and your child could make together:
  • I see a (color word) star--- child puts in colored star stickers
  • This is a (object's name)-- child glues in pictures of objects
  • I go to (place name)-- cut out logos of familiar places such as Walmart, McDonald's, Target-- this was the favorite book when I taught first graders!
  • (Child's name) is (jumping, dancing, sleeping, running, etc)-- child adds pictures of himself doing the activity mentioned.
4. ABC Books
Best For: Preschoolers and Early Readers
Put twenty six 3X5 index cards on a ring. Add letters to the book as they become known to the child. Let your child choose a picture to correspond with the letter. These homemade books are so much better than professionally produced ABC books, especially when your child chooses which picture to include. You can even get FREE stickers here. Print them onto mailing labels and then your child can just choose one and stick it in the book!

5. Mini Books
Best For:  Early Readers
Make your own book with no gluing, stapling, or taping. All you need is paper and scissors. Check it out here.

6.  Photo Books
Best For: All ages

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I made this photo book at snapfish.com but there are lots of sites that allow you to create this type of product. I based my book off of the book, Brown Bear, Brown Bear What do you See? Except I used, "Logan, Logan, what do you see?" and put in pictures of Logan's family members. There are many things you could do with photo books.

7. Touch and Feel Book
Best For: Preschoolers and Early Readers
Create a book that your child can actually feel using yarn, fabric, buttons, beans, sequins, feathers, etc.
Here is one that we created (Directions are here.)
Teaching Tiny Tots has a lot more suggestions for creating touch and feel books.
I also liked this idea at Red Ted Art for using pictures of family members to create touch and feel books.

8. Backwards Book
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I will update this page frequently with other books you can make so check back!!

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