Winter holidays are so much fun that we had to spend another week learning about them! We kept our same book but added different sensory boxes for and art activities for our Sensory and Fine Motor Groups. Our Language Group looked at words that start with the letter O.
Sensory Group—Winter Holidays Around the World
Our first box was filled with all things Christmas. We included jingle bells, Santa and Nutcracker figures, reindeer, christmas trees (felt and plastic), stars, garland, a doll sweater, and the word “HOME” all in some red paper shred …..to remind us of all those exciting packages !
Some of the items made noise, like the jingle bells and squeaky toys. The squeaky toys were VERY popular!
The students were able to explore different ways to apply force either by shaking or squeezing the items to make noise. This addresses the science access point of identifying objects that create specific sounds.
In Mexico, they celebrate Las Posadas as part of their Christmas celebrations with processions, carols, and PINATAS! At the bottom of our red, white and green rice we placed a picture of a pinata which could be uncovered as the rice was moved aside.
It was so pretty and festive looking…..
Visual discrimination skills are addressed when differentiating the hidden picture from the colored rice.
We also put in 2 different sizes of measuring spoons. While playing with them our students have the opportunity to learn about capacity—differences in sizes of containers which is a math access point.
We can’t get enough of them! This week we put them in a box which reminded us of the luminaries used during Las Posadas.
This addresses the science access point of recognizing sources of light.
The ribbon was soft as compared to the rough feel of the raffia. Finding the pieces of fruit hidden amongst the ribbon and raffia addresses visual and tactile discrimination skills.
Comparing the texture of the ribbon and raffia addresses the science access point of comparing the different properties of materials.
Dropping the raffia onto the floor allowed them to address the science access point of tracking objects that fall to the ground.
If they let us know what they did…..
it addresses the science access point of indicating that an object has fallen
Bodhi celebrations often involve decorating trees with colorful beads. In this box we added lots of colorful beads and pompoms.
Sorting these objects addresses the science access point of recognizing objects by one observable property.
Our students are just so
We mixed some cornstarch, shaving cream and fake snow. Its about 2 boxes of cornstarch to 1 can of shaving cream. We found the idea at this website http://growingajeweledrose.com.
This stuff was so much fun, similar to cloud dough but with a little wetter feel. Totally cool— the students just loved running their fingers through it, squishing it, pushing a letter W for winter into it, or watching it as it fell down (addressing the science access point of tracking a falling object).
When molded into little “snow balls”, the math access point of recognizing a common three dimensional object.
Measuring cups allow our students to practice scooping while addressing the math access point addressing capacity.
This student is addressing the math access point of indicating a desire for more of an action by reaching out his hands as the water is poured on them.
As this student is cupping his hands, he is also working on developing his palmer arches—nice!
We present the lotion and give the students an opportunity to indicate their desire for more by facial expression, gestures, body movements or vocalizations.
Our students left the group smelling like delicious peppermint candies to help them remember all the different winter celebrations we have learned about the last 2 weeks.
Fine Motor Group—Winter Holidays Around the World
On Tuesday we started by reading Cara’s book again before starting our art project—–turning into Christmas Santa’s!
First we used our paper cutter to turn a red rectangle into a triangle. This addresses the science access point recognizing a change in an object. It also addresses the math access point of recognizing an object with a 2 dimensional shape.
To do this we had to make 2 cuts with our paper cutter. We counted the cuts—-addressing math access points again!
We glued the triangle hats onto the circle.
We pulled apart some fiber fill and glued a big piece onto the circle and then a smaller piece at the top of the hat.
This activity addresses spatial relationships as pieces are placed down. In addition, fine motor skills are addressed as the pieces of fiber fill are pulled apart.
On Thursday we celebrated Hanukkah by making menorahs.
As our students point to the color and word “yellow”, they are addressing the language access point of attending to print materials by touching, looking, or listening.
By picking up the card and handing it to an adult, they are building communication skills.
Tearing the paper helps build bilateral coordination and pincer grasp skills. It also addresses the science access point of recognizing a change in an object.
Placing the pieces into the bowl addresses eye hand coordination. Deciding when we have enough addressed the math access point of solving problems involving small quantities of objects using language, such as enough, too much, or more.
We colored 8 popsicle sticks. We adapted this activity for our students by taping the sticks to a piece of cardboard (a cut up cereal box). Taping the sticks down helps to stabilize them and is easy to remove when done.
The sticks were counted……
We also used some rounded animal markers from Roseart which are easy for our students to grasp.
This activity addresses math as the sticks are counted and helps our students practice with writing tools.
The base was made from a section of a pool noodle cut in half. We also cut a slit across the top to make it easier to insert the popsicle sticks.
Fine motor skills such as eye hand coordination and pincer grasp are addressed as the “candles” are placed into the menorah.
We then added our 9th candle (pre-made by gluing 2 popsicle sticks together). This addresses the math access point recognizing when 1 item has been added to a set.
Language Group—Letter O
This addresses the math access point of recognizing a movement that reflects a spatial relationship. Counting the blocks also addresses math concepts.
Eye hand coordination is also addressed in this activity.
This addresses the science access point of applying a push or pull to move an object.
Needless to say, some of our students REALLY enjoyed this part of the
….and pulled Out One Orange pom pom.
We used a plastic peanut butter jar because it has a nice wide opening making it easier for our students hands to fit.
We adapted this activity for some of our students by pulling out the pom pom for them and then encouraging them to visually track the pom pom, addressing the science access point of tracking a moving object.
We also adapted this activity for our students who have visual impairments by encouraging them to explore the pom pom with their hands.
This addresses the science access point of recognizing and responding to one type of sensory stimuli.
To start, we crumpled 5 pieces of scrap paper and put them into a bag which we closed it with a rubber band. We found these blue lunch bags at Target.
We noted that the number 5 is an ODD number.
Bilateral coordination skills are addressed when crumpling the paper and placing it in the bag.
We used decorative scissors to cut some strips at the bottom of the bag.
and a happy smile drawn with a marker!
Ta Da—-a cute little Octopus
On a cute little student’s head
in our Language group.
……it is filled with light and laughter.