Dr.Martin Luther King and Letter Q


This week we celebrated Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthday in our Sensory and Fine Motor Groups and looked at words starting with letter Q in our Language Group.

Sensory Group—Dr. Martin Luther King

IMG_5231Both students and staff really enjoyed Cara’s book this week. Its really a great book with many interesting facts about Dr. King. After reading the book we began exploring our boxes.

We filled this box with some rainbow colored easter basket stuffing and other rainbow colored items. Rainbows are symbols of diversity, an important concept in which Dr. King believed.

The slinky toy and a ball filled with colorful beads proved particularly attractive to the students!

A school bus, little people, and the word FRIENDS helped us learn about integration. We also included peach colored paper twist and play fruit as the peach is a symbol of Georgia—where Dr. King was born. And finally, peace symbols and doves to commemorate his winning of the Nobel peace prize.

These items gave us lots to look at, feel and discuss.  The social studies access points of recognizing an object related to a person or event and associating a celebration with an event are addressed in this box.




IMG_5229Just like our box of multicolored pom poms—-while we are all different on the outside—-inside we are all the same.

Great for counting and color identification, pom poms are also spheres….

and recognizing that is a math access point!

Of course, they are also just so delightfully soft to the touch 🙂










IMG_5235Candles are associated with both birthdays and memorials. We can’t light candles at school BUT we can pretend with our wikki stix. A whole boxful in a rainbow of colored strings with an interesting waxy feel…..oh so tempting to reach out and touch!

In addition to identifying colors, the wikki stix can be twisted into shapes such as circles addressing the math access point of identifying 2 dimensional shapes.










IMG_4995The rainbow theme continued with our rainbow rice. Our student searched for the letters MLK among the grains and looked for a picture of Dr. King at the bottom of the box—the same person we just read about in our book!

Recognizing a person from a story is a social studies access point.

From a fine motor perspective, tactile discrimination skills are built as little fingers pick up grains of rice or sweep them aside to look at the picture hidden beneath.







IMG_4952We remembered Dr. King’s home state Georgia, with a box filled with peach jello. It had a VERY peachy aroma in addition to its lovely color. It was definitely an attention grabber!

Our students used cookie cutters to cut out the letters M, L and K…or used spoons to scoop the jello into the letters!

This box gave the students practice with letter identification in addition to an opportunity to practice scooping with a slightly resistive, slippery substance.

With its strong visual and olfactory impact, the jello helps address science access point of recognizing and responding to different types of stimuli.

Of course, some of our students quickly recognized the additional potential of taste stimuli 🙂






IMG_4990The students got an opportunity to make the color “peach” by mixing yellow and red food coloring into shaving cream. We started by putting drops of the food coloring on the white shaving cream and hypothesized if it would change color when mixed together…hmm I think we are doing a little science experiment here!

Recognizing that the appearance of an object or material has changed is a science access point.

Shaving cream is not just a great tactile medium to explore but its also great for practicing prewriting strokes—the kind of stuff OT’s live for 🙂









IMG_4989Recognizing water as a liquid is a science access point and we get to explore its properties every week as we wash our hands after messier explorations.

We make sure to keep lots of towels handy……. and sometimes it takes a couple of adults to avert disasters……… but its marvelous splashy fun so we ALWAYS include it.









IMG_5009Then we finished with—what else—peach lotion (thank you Ms. Kim for the donation) to help us remember all the inspirational words and deeds of Dr. King.

Responding to one type of sensory stimuli is a science access point.

Responding to all the smiles—–a bonus 🙂











Fine Motor Group—Dr. Martin Luther King

IMG_4935We read Cara’s book  and then proceeded to our art project— making a picture of Dr. King!  Jeannie has had this printable for years but unfortunately can’t remember where she found it 😦

This activity works identifying body parts (a science access point)and spatial relations skills.









IMG_4938First the students used communication cards to indicate which crayon they wanted (addressing the language arts access points of expressing wants and needs AND responding to familiar print media…

IMG_4951….and then they colored Dr. King’s suit. The different body parts on each page help our students practice coloring in a designated area.













IMG_5023After coloring, it was time to cut out the pieces. Most of our students are still at the emergent level of cutting, so the adults cut out the more complex shapes. Some areas appropriate for straight cutting were left for our students to cut using the paper cutter.

Look at this concentration!!! We love how their tool use skills are improving and responding to a familiar object used in routines is language arts access point!








IMG_5038The students got another chance to communicate their choices while picking which color background paper to use. And, of course, practice writing their names!

Then it was time to assemble Dr. King! Jeannie used her model to help the students place their pieces (attending to informational materials is a language access point).

As the students assemble their puzzle, they are learning about movements that reflect a spatial relationship which is a science access point.








IMG_5043TA DA!

Happy Birthday Dr. King!!!












On Thursday we read Cara’s book again and we were so excited EVERYONE pressed the voice output device for the repetitive line.

The language art access points of responding to a technology resource and responding to a familiar object used in routines—–NAILED 🙂

IMG_5201Okay, on to our art activity——doves in honor of Dr. King’s wish for peace.

We started with a simple bird pattern cut out from poster board. We counted the birds as we passed them out, addressing one to one correspondence.

After writing names on the back, we turned them over and covered them in glue. Squeezing the glue helps work on hand strengthening.

Coloring the glue (with food coloring) makes it so much easier for our students to see where they have placed it.






photo-16One person’s trash is another’s treasure is a true statement—– we took paper punch outs (the little circle left over when holes are punched) from our make and take lab. This stuff was totally headed for the trash and we turned it into something beautiful!

Not only are we creative, but we are OH so green 🙂

Picking up and sprinkling the tiny circles is great for working on fine motor skills and eye hand coordination.









photo-17An adult made a slit on the back of the bird while the students crumpled and folded some paper doilies to make wings.

Our students are really good at crumpling up paper and its a great activity for building hand intrinsic skills.













photo-15Ta Da!

Just beautiful.












We don’t include—-well, at least not deliberately :)—a lot of tasting opportunities in our groups because some of our students are restricted from oral feeding. However, we just couldn’t resist this peach soda we found at Walmart.

IMG_5236IMG_5010Some of our students

thought it was really


…………..others, not so much 😦











Language Group—Letter Q

IMG_4930We started in the sensory room and sat Quietly watching the bubbles moving Quickly in the light.

Tracking objects in motion is a science access point. In addition, recognizing sources of light is a science access point.






Back in the classroom we played Cara’s sound game—

and we found out, Q is kind of a Quirky letter 🙂

Recognizing and responding to common sounds is a science access point. Communicating recognition of familiar persons or objects is a language arts access point.



IMG_5069Then we asked our students a Question—“what’s in Ned’s head?’ This game is really fun but some of the items you find might make you Queasy 😦

Using senses (in this case, touch) to recognize objects is a science access point.








IMG_4922Next we drew a letter Q on our Crayola Beginning’s board. It plays music and the Quicker you write, the Quicker the music plays—-

Recognizing an action as fast or slow is a science access point.








IMG_5174Finally, we wrapped ourselves in a warm and cuddly Quilt…..

…..just to stop any Quivers.












IMG_0154It was tricky but we did find Quite a few Q words today!

and that wraps up another fun week!

Join us next time……. Group by Group.

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