Valentine’s Day


IMG_2234Love was in the air this week as we celebrated Valentine’s Day. It was all hearts, flowers, and chocolate in our sensory group! Our fine motor group made valentines and a box to put them in. A MadLib valentine was a fun project in the language group.

Throughout our groups we addressed the social studies access point associate an object with an event. Read along to see all activities.




IMG_2277IMG_2183Our first box was filled with a variety of red and white valentine themed objects. We had red paper shred, paper valentines, ribbons, garland, teddy bears, and a variety of hearts of all different textures and sizes. There were even some little valentine rubber duckies—-so cute!

Lots of things to look at, feel, and explore—-it was hard to pick a favorite item!

The science access point recognize common objects in the natural world through observation is addressed here.



IMG_2194Hearts are EVERYWHERE this time of year and we had a whole string of them! Ms. Kim found these fabulous felt hearts at Target and they were an instant hit with the students. They were so pretty and colorful. The hearts were strung on the string in such a fashion that they could be slid back and forth, which was pretty cool.

The science access point track the movement of objects that are pushed or pulled is addressed here in addition to the science access point identify objects by one observable property, such as color.




IMG_2507Some people give their valentines roses and jewelry. Our next box was filled with red silk rose petals and beads of gold, silver, and pearls. Of course the beads were popular but we had great fun picking up handfuls of petals and watching them drop to the ground.

The science access points recognizing two objects that are identical to each other and track objects that fall to the ground are both addressed here.






IMG_2171Other people like to give their valentines chocolate! Our chocolate scented play dough looked and smelled like the real thing—–VERY tempting not only for our students but also the adults 🙂

Fortunately most of our “tasters” have learned all that salt in the recipe makes for a particularly yucky morsel!

We included some hugs and kisses cookie cutters which gave the students the opportunity to recognize differences in the shapes of objects and also to recognize objects as the same which are science access points.

Of course, the shapes can also be counted addressing math access points.





IMG_2196 This box was filled with red and white beans.  It was a really pretty box with a nice contrast between the colors, the photo doesn’t really do it justice! We included two fun heart shaped spoons in different sizes. As scooping skills were practiced the math access points recognize when an object is added to a situation and associate quantities with language, such as many, a lot, or a little are addressed.

IMG_2189Putting your whole arm in instead, addresses the science access point apply a push to move an object 🙂







IMG_2511We used  a package of red velvet cake mix to make one ingredient cloud dough and it works quite well. There were 2 different sized heart cookie cutters with which to stamp impressions and to address the math access point recognize differences in size of objects.

Of course what our students really enjoyed doing was grabbing handfuls  and squeezing—-it is kind of irresistible 🙂






IMG_2182In case you were wondering, YES that powder IS messy—–fortunately we had some cinnamon candy scented water with which to rinse it off! We got this scented bath gel at Target a couple of years ago and it is a great scent that smells just like cinnamon red hots!

Recognizing when something has been taken away from a situation—–in this case, the red powder—-is a math access point.






IMG_2348IMG_2316We used 2 discovery bottles with our group this week. One was filled with gold glitter and jewels and the other with a collection of hearts and beads in valentine colors.

Some of our students were able to turn the bottles around themselves—-addressing the science access point recognize that pushing or pulling an object makes it move.

Others enjoyed just watching the contents swirl around—- addressing the science access point track objects in motion.





IMG_2335We finished our session with a yummy chocolate scent to remember all the fun things we learned about Valentines Day. We used a chocolate scented lip balm (thanks for the donation Ms. Elaine )to apply the scent to wrists and hands—-letting the students smell the sweet aroma. For obvious reasons, it was not applied to lips 🙂

Some visitors from E.H.Miller school gave us the idea to use lip balm because it comes in such a variety of flavors—-genius!

Recognize and respond to one type of sensory stimuli is a science access point.








IMG_2211On Tuesday we made some fabulous valentines. This project has been all over Pinterest and we knew it would be perfect for our students.

We started by talking about the heart shape of our paper and its color. Then we asked our students to show us the color “red” using our communication symbols.

Identify objects by one observable property, such as color, is a science access point.






IMG_2222IMG_2237Then we glued puzzle pieces onto the heart—-a great way to work on pincer grasp skills and eye hand coordination!

We also glued a sentence strip with the words “I love you to pieces” onto the heart.

This addresses the science access point recognize a change in an object.

It also addresses the math access point recognize quantities 1 to 3 using sets of objects.





IMG_2247Happy  Valentine’s Day!

IMG_2436On Thursday the students decorated coffee containers to hold all the valentines they received from their friends. We started by giving the students a choice of 3 paper colors. After they had chosen their paper, we asked them to identify the color using communication symbols.

Identifying an object by one observable property, in this case color, is a science access point.





IMG_2431We used our paper cutters to trim the strips of paper to fit the container. After the paper was trimmed we noted that we had turned the strip into a rectangle and a square. The students were asked to show us the “square” and they did a pretty good job!

Recognizing a change in an object (as the paper is cut) is a science access point.

Recognizing objects with 2 dimensional shapes is a math access point.





IMG_2444 IMG_2459The rectangle was taped to the coffee container and then decorated with all sorts of heart shaped foam stickers. Holding onto those stickers is a great activity for promoting pincer grasp skills!

Before given another sticker, the students were asked if they wanted “more”. Indicating a desire for “more” or “no more” of an object is a math access point.







IMG_2492The students really loved their boxes!

We are ready for the big day 🙂











Since we were celebrating Valentine’s day,  we decided to make make a Valentine for someone we love. To make it even more personal, we did them in a Mad Libs fashion!

IMG_2367IMG_2372Cara created a letter with some words missing.  Here is the document: My Valentine mad lib.  For each word missing, the students had the option of using 2 or 3 different words in place.  Here are the words from which the students chose: My Valentine mad lib 2.  Our students chose a piece of construction paper and then glued their letter template down.

Communicating a preference for an object is a language access point.




IMG_2407We then started choosing words to put in our Valentines.  When going through the letter, we talked about what an adjective is, what a verb is, what kind of feelings people have.

Our students were given a choice of 3 words which we read to them and then asked to indicate which word they wanted. The students have a variety of ways they communicate, including eye gaze, pointing, and vocalizing. Our student with a visual impairment made his choice by pressing a voice output device to say “that’s the one I want”  as we read his choices.

Using pictures, symbols, gestures/signs, or words to communicate meaning is a language access point.

Using technology resources to support learning is also a language access point.




IMG_2380The students then cut their chosen words using tabletop scissors and glued them onto their papers. It may be a language focused group but we never pass up an opportunity to incorporate some fine motor skill building 🙂

Using pictures, symbols, gestures/signs, or words to communicate meaning is a language access point.

Using the scissors addresses the science access point recognize that pushing and pulling an object makes it move.





IMG_2388When the students completed their Valentine, they each signed their name at the bottom.

For privacy we blurred this students signature but take it from us, he did an excellent job!

They were so proud——and rightly so 🙂








IMG_2359We loved all our activities this week and hope your Valentine’s Day was just as fun filled as ours was! Join us again next week for more smiles, fun, and learning.

Hugs and kisses from Group by Group xoxoxo

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