Week 22—Mardi Gras and the Letter V


This week the theme for our Sensory and Fine Motor Groups was Mardi Gras. Letter V was the theme for our Language Group.

Sensory  Group—Mardi Gras

Cara’s book “At the Mardi Gras Parade” had such bright colorful pictures that our students loved. We continue to encourage them to press the voice output device to help read the story.

Our first box focused on the Mardi Gras colors of purple, yellow, and green. We included yarn, garland, curling ribbon, feathers, beads, small toys, and crowns. We also included a little toy baby because of the Mardi Gras tradition of luck coming to the person who finds it in their piece of King Cake.

This box helps work on color identification skills. All the different textures explored properties of materials (science access point). Fine motor skills are addressed while reaching for, grasping, and releasing the different objects. And, of course, talking about all the different objects addresses language skills.

This was such a colorful box and we all loved it!


We continued exploring textures and colors

with our next box. Easter grass made a great stand-in for cotton candy that you might buy some from a street vendor while watching the Mardi Gras parade!

Its light and easy to grasp and Pulling the it apart encourages bilateral coordination.




There are lots of lights on the floats at the Mardi Gras parade so course we had to have some! We included some of our spinning light up toys as well as these battery operated lights we found at Target.

Our students had fun touching them or having them draped around their shoulders.

Looking at the lights encourages visual attending and tracking.



Our next box contained some purple“macaroons” that you might find at the French Quarter! Well, actually, its a substance called “Bubber”  which can be purchased from a variety of catalogs. It has the most amazing feel—light and silky just like a macaroon! The adults loved it as much as the students —-you just can’t stop touching this stuff!






Of course we had to have beads, its Mardi Gras! We filled a box with them and to say our students loved them would be an understatement. Everyone had to grab one or two or a handful 🙂

The beads are excellent for addressing color identification and size comparisons. Their shiny texture makes them very eye catching when shaken and an auditory component is included when rolling across a table.



We looked for the letter M in our Mardi Gras rice—green, yellow, and purple of course! We loved the way it turned out, reminding us of a box of confetti.


Scooping, pouring, sifting—FUN!







King Cake is always served at Mardi Gras. Its yummy and topped with a sweet white sugar glaze that was easy to imitate with our oobleck!

Playing with the oobleck improves tactile awareness and provides a medium for practicing prewriting strokes—or you can have fun just watching it drip off fingers.






After playing with the oobleck, our students rinsed their hands in vanilla sugar scented water and then rubbed  on some hand lotion.

Everybody left smelling like sweet yummy King Cakes to remind them of all our Mardi Gras fun!






Fine Motor Group—Mardi Gras

On Tuesday, we read Cara’s book and learned about all the things we might see at the Mardi Gras parade. Then we decided to make some masks.

First we let our students choose whether they wanted a green or purple mask. We found these foam masks at Michaels on clearance after Halloween.

We counted the masks to work on one to one correspondence.




Then we added some

glue. Squeezing the

glue helps improve

hand strength

and eye hand







Now for the fun part —decorating! We decorated the masks with feathers, glitter, sequins!

Our students had fun choosing which items to include on their masks. This student especially LOVED the glitter 🙂

A variety of fine motor skills are addressed during this activity from a pincer grasp to pick up feather to shoulder stability needed to shake the glitter.






Jeannie got some great pictures of her students holding their masks in front of their faces. They are going to look so cute in the yearbook.

Aren’t they just so bright and colorful!






Snack time comes after our fine motor activity and we just had to include a picture of this students spontaneous food art.

Isn’t it just fabulous—he was just so proud 🙂






On Thursday we read our Mardi Gras book again and then made some jester hats.

We started by letting our students choose which color to use for their hat band. After they made their choice, they practiced writing their names on their bands.

We made sure to reinforce color identification skills by naming the colors and encouraging our students to vocalize the color names when possible.




Then we used our paper cutters to cut out purple and green triangles. We really like using these paper cutters. They make it so easy for the students to cut straight lines and they really enjoy using them.

Identifying the triangle shapes addresses math access points.





We cut out yellow circles with our hole punches.

By either squeezing or pushing down on the hold punch our students are working on strengthening their hands.

Counting and identifying the circle shapes—more math access points!




Next, we taped the triangles to the band in an alternating pattern.

After 3 triangles, we asked the students to pick which color in the pattern came next.

Sequencing is another math access point. Putting the triangle beside the previous one addresses spatial relationships.




We added a yellow circle to the point of each triangle. Picking up the circle promotes a pincer grasp and placing it on the glue promotes visual spatial skills.

Its starting to come together!






Our hats are all done!

Time for the Mardi Gras parade 🙂



Language Group—Letter V

We started our group by talking about the letter of the week and we practiced forming the letter V with our fingers.

Making letters and other signs gives our students an opportunity to practice finger individuation skills.







Then we made Vertical

lines on the magna

doodle to practice

pre-writing strokes.

We Voted on

which line was the longest!





We opened the Velvety bag by pulling apart the Velcro.

Then we reached in and pulled out one of the Vehicle beads.

Reaching into the bag and pulling out a bead without seeing it helps address tactile discrimination.

We purchased the bead set at Target.




He put a vibrant Van on

the string—Vroom Vroom!

After everyone had  a turn, we counted  the beads, working on one to one correspondence.

We really like this bead set because the end is a wooden dowel which makes it easier for our students.



We started our next activity with a Vulture that Joy drew—thanks for the inspiration Ms. Cathie 🙂









Our students tore black paper into Very small pieces to make “feathers”.

Tearing the paper helps improve bilateral coordination and pincer grasp.

The feathers were glued onto the Vulture working on eye hand coordination and visual spatial skills.




We like this View of the Varmint 🙂












We played Cara’s latest sound game.

This game addresses listening and language skills.








We finished by looking at our V words. The post -its work so well in our group. Sometimes it hard to write down the words fast enough! Another advantage of them is that they are easy to move around and stick to different objects. They are also easy for our students to pick up and point to.





What an awesome week, we really enjoyed it! Please join us again next time for more fun Group by Group.

One response »

  1. My daughter and I just found and read “Bartholomew and the Oobleck”. I saw oobleck on your site and thought that was neat. 🙂

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