This paper report a workshop of a child health programme in Honduras. Previous attempts to keep health diaries to record illness, and how illness was treated within families and communities had failed. Workshop participants were rural illiterate women. The aim of the workshop was to take a case history of children under five years and to record both illness and developmental milestones over the previous 12 months. The women were first asked to draw pictures to represent each month of the year. Below each picture they were asked to draw what happened to their child during that month. This was followed by a discussion to explain the drawings. The paper discusses some of the problems the women had in drawing these calendars, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of the technique. One of the strengths is that the technique enables the women to explore patterns of illness and analyse them, drawing on the knowledge acquired by their participation in the programme.