Thursday, March 31, 2011

Oscar Anyone?

Last night we watched one of the most riveting movies we have seen in a long time. The characters were well developed, the story kept us engaged and the scenery made us feel like we were at home. Are you at the edge of your seat, waiting for a title you can add to your NetFlix queue? Or perhaps you cannot wait and have to run to Redbox for viewing tonight?

Ahhhh - I have tricked you a bit, although I speak the truth when I say we loved every minute of our home video. Yes, it was a home video from 2007 and 2008. I had all our Hi8 tapes turned into DVD movies so we could finally watch them. Our original camera broke a few years ago so we lost the ability to see them.

Recently, I heard from one of my readers that they had not thought about the benefits of videotaping their child, and I want to share with all of you that it is important to videotape your children, not just for the memories but as a way for your child with special needs to see themselves interacting within their environment.

You do not need any kind of expensive equipment - most digital cameras will allow you to take videos. Once taken, download to your computer and put on a DVD-R disk and then let the kids watch. If you get really creative, add music and then you have keepsakes for family members.

I find it best to take many short snippets of 1-2 minutes than long 5-10 minute views of the same activity. It is also easier to grab the camera once or twice a week and record for one minute than thinking you have to invest long periods of time into videotaping.

Most importantly, it is a great way to record memories and also see how far your child has come. Last night, Ryan and I were reminded how Ben used the commando crawl to get around, mostly using his arms to pull his weight across the floor. Now Ben uses his entire body, legs and arms, lifting his torso to move very quickly from room to room.

Other things I noticed was that Ben used to make consonant sounds and put his lips together more often. It makes me wonder why his speech skills changed. It helps me remember this information, and puts it in a time sequence with regard to his age and what is happening in our lives.

Another reason for videotaping - a great way to show therapists and teachers what your child is capable of doing. Often, I find people do not believe me when I say Ben can climb into a dining room chair or onto the sofa, but seeing is believing.

Ben thoroughly enjoys watching himself, his brothers and cousins on video. He laughs and smiles when appropriate and he sits for an entire hour on the sofa with me without moving a muscle, something he does not even do for Bob the Builder.

I think we will have an encore tonight.


  1. My daughter is 19 months and LOVES watching little videos of herself. I like how you made them into one big movie.

  2. I use Windows MovieMaker and Windows DVD Maker - they came with the computer. Easy to use too!


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