Creepy Crawly Critters


IMG_6169Many of our students are learning about animal habitats with their Unique Curriculum unit this month. Since it is October which has us thinking about things that bump in the night, a creepy crawly critters theme seemed like the perfect complement ! Our sensory groups explored boxes related to different animals. The fine motor groups painted their animal themed art projects using unusual tools and the language group went on a creepy, crawly critter hunt—-read along to see all the fun we had!





IMG_6172IMG_6290Spiders—-well those are some pretty creepy crawlies and we put an assortment in this box! One of the spiders scuttled across the table after a string was pulled, which of course elicited a few nervous giggles—-from both students AND staff 🙂 We also included a discovery bottle with some floaty spiders that wiggled up and down as the bottle was turned.

IMG_5902Track objects in motion is a science access point.




IMG_5865IMG_6152This little desert habitat was home to some snakes and lizards. There were 3 of each for sorting and counting. The students also had fun sliding them around making paths in the sand.

Solve simple problems involving joining or separating sets of objects to 3 is a math access point.







IMG_6299IMG_6158Owls aren’t really creepy but their hoots can give you a little shiver if you are out in the woods at night so we went ahead and included them. We put in our fabulous “owl” feather boa and a super cute, totally NOT creepy plush owl.

Recognize a model of a real object is a science access point.







IMG_6307IMG_6292Put some battery operated lights and black paper shred in a box——it looks just like lots of little bug eyes staring back at you! Light boxes are always a hit with our students and this was no exception. Pretty cool—-if we do say so ourselves 🙂

IMG_5862                                    Recognize sources of light is a science access point.




IMG_5911IMG_5939We brought back our black play dough from a couple of weeks ago but this time our students used a bat cookie cutter to make the classic creepy night critter.

IMG_6300The science access point recognize a change in an object is addressed here.




IMG_6304IMG_5859A black light helped make both our oobleck and the 3 centipedes crawling around in it GLOW! While we couldn’t make the classroom completely dark the effect was still—–WAY COOL!

Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.






IMG_6301IMG_6209There was an ENORMOUS water beetle to find in our “pond” this week. Our students quite enjoyed checking out this really big bug! The water was scented with  Bath and Bodyworks twilight woods scented bath gel which seemed like the appropriate scent for this unit 🙂

The science access point match common living things with their habitats can be addressed here.






IMG_6220IMG_6229The matching lotion was a hit. The students liked the scent and, as usual, we asked them if they “wanted” some and “where” they wanted it applied—-hands, arms, neck, noses, or toes 🙂

Recognize one or more external body parts is a science access point.








IMG_5992We made spider webs using marbles on Tuesday! First we counted out 3 marbles into a cup of white paint and asked our students to show us the number 3 using communication symbols.

The math access point associate quantities with number names is addressed here.






IMG_6015IMG_5998Then the students scooped out the marbles and dropped them onto a piece of black paper that was placed inside a lidded box. Of course the shapes of the paper and marbles were also discussed!

IMG_6051Recognize an object with a two-dimensional shape and recognize common three-dimensional shape are math access points.




IMG_6007IMG_6002We closed the lid and started shaking the box! The students REALLY had fun with this part 🙂

Recognize that pushing and pulling an object makes it move and track objects in motion are science access points addressed in this step.

IMG_6040After the lid was taken off it was pretty exciting to see how it turned out!




IMG_6034IMG_6021We removed the marbles and the students glued fuzzy pom pom spiders onto their webs—–great for practicing pincer grasps!

This was another opportunity to address the science access point match animals to their habitats.





IMG_6003IMG_6014TA DA—–

IMG_6061                                                         ——–such creepy crawly spiders 🙂




On Thursday we painted with SPRAY BOTTLES!

IMG_6242We started by discussing the color of the paint we were going to use and asked the students to identify it using communication symbols.

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







IMG_6246IMG_6252The students dropped this rat stencil(made with: rat template) onto a piece of black paper and began spraying! They had so much fun with this and really did a great job of spraying onto the paper and NOT the floor or their friends 🙂

IMG_6264Recognize a change in an object is a science access point.




IMG_6276IMG_6278Ta ratty Da!

IMG_6255                                                              Pretty cute—-for a rodent 🙂




For the language group this week, we went on a creepy, crawly critter hunt.  While the students were out of the room, we hid 6 different animals and insects from our book all around the room.

IMG_6359We turned off the lights to read the book and kept them off so we could use a flashlight to find the critters.  We had real pictures of each of the critters hidden around the room, so one-by-one, we LOOKED for each of them.

Recognize sources of light is a science access point.






IMG_6326IMG_6390If the students needed clues, they had to request HELP and we would give them a clue about where the critter might be.

IMG_6348For example, for the centipede on the refridgerator, we said “it’s where we go to get COLD food and drinks” or for the owl we said “it’s somewhere UP HIGH”.

Seek assistance to clarify the meaning of pictures, symbols, gestures/signs, or words in classroom activities with prompting is a language access point.



IMG_6371IMG_6394Once our students located the critter, we caught it and let each of our friends look at it and feel it.

We counted all the critters we found at the end to make sure that we had the SAME number of real critters and pictures of critters.

We did it!  The classroom is once again critter-free thanks to our critter catchers 🙂



IMG_6287Join us again next week for more fun and learning——Group by Group!

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