Mount Everest


This week we went to the top of the world—-Mount Everest!  We had a lot of fun learning about a place so different from the one where we live.


IMG_3715When you think of Mount Everest you think of the snow that covers it. We had two snow boxes to explore. Our first one contained white floam—perfect for making snow balls…..

…..or a snowman!

Isn’t that what you would want to do on the mountain ? 🙂

Floam is a purchased moldable substance (non toxic but not to be eaten so we watch our students very closely). It has a slightly sticky feel which can be aversive to some of our students (and staff also!). Hand skills such as palmer arching  and bilateral coordination can be addressed when molding it into shapes.

Recognizing a 3 dimensional object such as a sphere is a math access point.

Recognizing when an object is added or taken away from a situation is another math access point.






IMG_3557We brought back our fun snow from a couple of weeks ago. Keeping it refrigerated makes for some chilly fun……Brrr!!!!!!!

Again, while non-toxic, this substance is not meant to be consumed so we watch our students closely.

Fun to explore alone but even more fun when shared with a partner!

Distinguishing between items that are wet and items that are dry and recognizing materials as warm or cold are science access points that can be addressed here.

Sharing objects with a partner is also a science access point.





IMG_3694After that cold snow, it was nice to rinse hands in some nice warm water. Our water was scented with Old Spice Denali scent—-we thought it had the appropriate rugged aroma for mountain climbing 🙂

A large measuring cup and a small spoon were placed in the water for scooping and pouring fun. This addresses the math access point of recognizing differences in sizes of containers that hold liquids.

Of course, just splashing around and checking out the bubbles with friends is fun also— addressing the science access point of applying a push or pull to move an object.





IMG_3550IMG_3657he country of Nepal borders Mount Everest. It’s flag has two colors, red and blue. We filled this box with a variety of textural objects such as shiny basket filler, hard blocks, soft pom poms, large chenille stems, rough scrubbers, soft plush toys etc. So many fun things to explore, compare and have FUN with!

Recognizing and responding to different types of sensory stimuli is a science access point.

Identifying common objects by one observable property is also a science access point.



IMG_3523Lentils are part Dal,  which is a soup eaten in Nepal.  Lentils feel so cool as they slip through your fingers, quite soft and silky! Once you put your hands in you just want to keep playing with them—–kind of a zen thing 🙂

Hidden in them were the letters N and T. We used ones with some nice textural bumps which added an extra sensory element (thanks to our intern for suggesting this!)

N for Nepal and T for Tibet the other country that borders Mount Everest.

Tactile and visual discrimination is addressed when locating the letters in the lentils.

Discussing the different countries addresses the social studies access point of recognizing a cultural characteristic of a population.







IMG_3549IMG_3669A lot of people in Tibet put prayer flags around their house. Our students had so much fun exploring these colorful flags we found at an import store.

We also included a voice output device with a Tibetan zymbol recording. The zymbol has a really unusual sound that our students found really appealing. We found the recording on Sound Bible—-check it out!

Some of out students really like draping or shaking the flags, while others were more intrigued by the music.

This activity also addresses the social studies access point of recognizing a cultural characteristic of a population.





IMG_3760IMG_3750For our lotion we used Bath and Body Works Be Enchanted——because wouldn’t it be ENCHANTING to visit Mount Everest? Ok, YES a bit of a stretch lol, but we went with it 🙂

As usual, the lotion helps address the science access point of using senses to recognize objects and the science access point of recognizing one or more external body parts.







IMG_3588On Tuesday we made a mountain for our art project—-OF COURSE!!!!

We started by turning a rectangle into a triangle with our paper cutters. Our students with physical challenges used an adapted switch operated electric scissors—-totally cool!

Recognizing a change in an object is a science access point.

Recognizing a common object with a two-dimensional shape is a math access point.









IMG_3594We glued our triangle mountain to a piece of blue rectangular paper. We used our communication symbols and asked our students to “show us blue”.

Identifying common objects by one observable property is a science access point.

IMG_3633Then we started adding snow to the mountains with our shaving cream and glue mixture. We have done this before and when the mixture dries it has a spongy texture to it—-very, very cool!

A brush was taped to a paint stirrer to make it easier to hold for some of our students.

Tracking the movement of objects that are pushed or pulled is a science access point.

Solving problems involving small quantities of actions using language, such as enough, too much, or more is a math access point.





IMG_3646TA DA—-

Mount Everest!!!!





IMG_3827On Thursday we got our students ready for a mountain expedition by making parkas! We started with an orange circle plate (using our color communication symbols again to reinforce color concepts) with a precut hole. We chose an orange plate because……… well, that was the color we had!

Then we counted out 5 cotton balls and had the students show us number 5.

Recognizing a common object with a two-dimensional shape is a math access point.

Counting from 1 to 5 using objects is also a math access point—-we probably didn’t need to point that one out 🙂






IMG_3844We glued the cotton balls onto the plate, adding more to the first 5. This is a great activity for practicing pincer grasp and eye hand coordination skills.

Recognizing when an object is added to a situation is a math access point that is also addressed by this activity.








IMG_3871Ready to climb that mountain…….

Ta Da!














IMG_3773We decided to help the teacher, Mrs. Robin, summit Mt. Everest in our language group.

Joy made a replica of Mt. Everest using a big cardboard box that she cut into the shape of triangle and covered it with some brown paper. White paper was crumpled and taped on the top to create snow.  She drew a person with a snowsuit and added Robin’s face to it.  The students really got a kick out of seeing their teacher on a cutout 🙂

We used a big die that the students rolled to see how many steps Robin could go UP the mountain.

Applying a push or pull to move an object, such as the die, is a science access point.





IMG_3807IMG_3797We emphasized that she was going UP by writing the word and holding an arrow to show “up”. The students then had to use the dots that were located on the mountain and move Robin the exact number shown on the die up the mountain.

After Robin safely summitted Mt. Everest, it was time for her to go DOWN the mountain.  Our students rolled the die to see how many steps she could go DOWN and got her safely back to the bottom of the mountain.  Again, we used an arrow to show “down” as well as wrote the word.

Using pictures, symbols, gestures/signs, or words to communicate meaning is a language access point. Matching objects to marked spaces to show one-to-one correspondence is a math access point.

The students really seemed to enjoy this activity and did a GREAT job with helping their teacher climb Mt. Everest!

IMG_3771This was another great week at Group by Group, join us again next week—-its going to be so much fun!

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