IMG_7921It’s turkey time around here! Cara’s book explored directional concepts and our students had fun putting a stuffed turkey in the different positions from the book. We explored a variety of Thanksgiving related items in our sensory groups. We made cute little turkeys in the fine motor group and our language group went on a turkey hunt!

The social studies access points recognizing a past event and recognizing an activity associated with a national celebration are both addressed in all our groups this week.




Sensory Group

IMG_7926IMG_8046This first box was filled with Thanksgiving related items nestled in the silk fall leaves, gourds and pine cones. There were some dimensional felt pilgrims and a discovery bottle with beads to remind us of the Wampanoag tribe of native americans who feasted at the first Thanksgiving.

A toy car and toy airplane remind us that some people travel to their Thanksgiving feasts. A toy Tweety Bird and clown puzzle piece are like the big balloons and people on parade floats. A little football was included because that’s something people like to watch on tv after the big feast. It’s usually chilly this time of year so there was a tiny scarf and pieces of yarn!

Speaking of feasts—we had to include some play food and a grocery store “gift card”! And finally a cute plush turkey—-the symbol of Thanksgiving, along with the words HOME and FAMILY.

This box was filled with opportunities to address the language access point respond to new vocabulary that is introduced and taught directly. It also addresses the science access point recognizing a model of a real object.





IMG_7806Corn was one of the items on the first Thanksgiving menu! We put in some play food to find and hide again in the popcorn kernels. One of the cobs actually could be broken apart into 2 pieces and then put back together—-great for bilateral coordination!

Whether running fingers through it or exploring the play food, our students really enjoyed exploring the contents of this box.

The math access point recognizing parts of whole objects and parts of sets of objects is addressed here. Solving simple problems involving putting together and taking apart small quantities of objects is another math access point addressed.






IMG_7945Our next box contained turkey feathers (a brown feather boa). This was fun to wrap around, wave in the air or just TOUCH—oh so soft!

Using senses to recognize objects is a science access point addressed here.

IMG_7811Of course, some of our students got quite creative—deciding our little stuffed turkey needed some more feathers 🙂

Just too cute!!!

The science access point: explore, observe, and recognize common objects in the natural world is addressed with this activity.






IMG_7800IMG_8022There are lots of big football games coming up around Thanksgiving and we have lots of fans around here! We included a variety of colors in this pom pom shaker box so everyone could cheer for their favorite team!

Our students LOVE the pom pom shakers and had the best time with them as you can see!

The science access points recognizing that pushing and pulling an object makes it move and identifying objects by one observable property, such as color are addressed here.





IMG_7794We made some pumpkin pie scented playdough this week. Hmmm, it had such a wonderful aroma!

This turkey cookie cutter is very versatile—for either cutting out shapes in the playdough…….







IMG_8010 OR being stuffed with it 🙂

This is a great activity for addressing hand intrinsic functions—strengthening, finger individuation, pincer grasp etc.

The math access point solving simple problems involving putting together and taking apart small quantities of objects is addressed in this activity.

The science access point recognizing that the appearance of an object or material has changed is also addressed.





IMG_7925IMG_7981Pumpkin pie needs some whipped cream! Shaving cream made a perfect stand in and as usual, our students had a great time squishing, smooshing—technical terms 🙂 —it about.

Recognizing that pushing or pulling an object makes it move is the science access point addressed in this activity.




IMG_7783Cinnamon pumpkin scented bath gel from Bath and Bodyworks made our rinsing water smell just delicious! Our students had fun playing with the different sized measuring cups.

Recognizing differences in sizes of containers that hold liquids (capacity) is the science access point addressed here.






IMG_7820The cinnamon pumpkin scented lotion left our students smelling like yummy pumpkin pies!

Recognizing one or more external body parts is the science access point addressed with this activity.

Recognizing and responding to one type of sensory stimuli is another science access point addressed.







Fine Motor Group

On Tuesday we made some cute little turkeys. We started by discussing how we cut a circle plate into 2 pieces to make semi-circles.

IMG_7840IMG_7852Then we decorated the feathers using a variety of colorful markers. These fat markers are nice because they can be gripped at the top which is easier for some of our students. For our students with physical disabilities we used Joy’s adapted switch toy—-always a huge hit!

The science access points recognizing that the appearance of an object has changed and sharing objects with a partner are addressed with this activity.

The switch toy addresses the science access points tracking objects in motion and applying a push or pull to move an object. It also addresses the math access point of indicating a desire for more of an action.




IMG_7871Next we glued down a toilet paper roll…..

and attached a pre-made turkey face with googlie eyes. We discussed the different parts of the turkeys face and pointed out those parts on ourselves—-recognizing external body parts is a science access point!






IMG_7889                                                                  TA gobble, gobble DA!








Our Thursday art project was a pilgrim ship! This was constructed with cardboard, paper, and a wooden dowel—a true trash to treasure project!

IMG_8117We started by showing our students a bottle of brown paint and asking them to show us the color brown on the communication board. They did a great job!







Identifying an object by one observable property, such a color is a science access point.

IMG_8138IMG_8130Then we proceeded to paint the ship. We mostly used a variety of fat handled brushes to get the job done. A brush taped to a paint stick made for an excellent adaptation.

The science access points recognizing that pushing or pulling moves an object and recognizing a change in an object are addressed in this activity.




IMG_8159When the ship was painted we added a sail and some pilgrims and native americans (thanks to Sarah, our volunteer, for making them for us)! We added both students and staff faces to the figures—our students were pretty tickled with them.

For our Ta Da shot, our plan was to take a group shot of all our happy little pilgrims…..

Yes, lets try to get 5 little kids ALL looking at the camera and smiling at the same time—-yep, GOOD PLAN lol 🙂



Language Group

IMG_8068IMG_8075After reading Cara’s book we had our own turkey hunt! Cara made clues and hid laminated pictures of turkeys around the room.

Our students acted like pilgrims on the first Thanksgiving and searched for the turkeys using the clues they were given.  Some examples of the clues were, “look UNDER the table; look ON the chair; look IN the box”.  Our pilgrims did well with following the clues to find the turkeys.  Way to go!





IMG_8094The last turkey was outside the door and BESIDE a tree located in the hallway.  Lo and behold, the turkey brought a snack with him so that he wouldn’t be eaten!

This activity addressed the language access point respond purposefully to referent objects or pictures of objects or actions in a familiar read-aloud text.






IMG_8101The students enjoyed the cheeseballs and didn’t seem to mind that they weren’t getting a turkey dinner.  We let the students request how many they wanted to eat by indicating on a number board if they wanted 1, 2, or 3. Our student with a visual impairment used a number stick to select his choice.

This addresses the language access point of effectively communicating wants, and needs using referent objects, gestures, signs, pictures, symbols, or words.




IMG_8111IMG_8115Yum! Even our turkey joined the feast 🙂

We won’t be having groups next week because of the holiday. We hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

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