Soon after that blog post, I found the old game Guess Who at a thrift store and grabbed it. I didn't totally remember how the game worked, but I know that it's a favorite among SLPs and teachers because it can be used to practice labeling with adjectives, discussing characteristics, and asking questions. I knew that Guess Who would be most compelling for Maya if the human faces were replaced with some of her beloved characters . . . and so that's what we did.
It took a little fiddling to get the dimensions right, but eventually they were perfect.
The document containing all of the characters above can be downloaded here . . . and if you don't like those characters, feel free to use the grid and just add pictures for your preferred people! Hint: Print this on cardstock so that you can easily slide the characters in and out.
Oddly, it's taken a year to post this---I have no idea why I didn't put it up when it was first created (I think that maybe I shared it on my Facebook page and forgot to write something here?). I only noticed today because I scrolled back through my blog to find the printable sheet (we needed some replacement tiles) and realized that somehow I never put it up. In case you're curious, this is what Maya's character page looks like today:
And we've got a new one growing, too:
(we also have Disney princesses, but they started out on a separate page)
For what it's worth, we still walk the line of figuring out when to add every-single-new-character she encounters, and when to wait a bit. But these pages sure are invaluable when she wants to chat with new kids in a waiting room or other similar situations. I imagine she uses it with her friends at school, too. Kids need the vocabulary of other kids, even when that vocabulary includes hoards of cartoon characters :)