Happy New Year!


IMG_3225Happy 2016 everyone! To welcome the new year we thought it would be fun to take a look BACK at some things that happened in past “new” years.

Each of the sensory group boxes related to one of the historic events. The fine motor groups made art projects celebrating 2016 and the language group—-well they had a party 🙂






IMG_3035IMG_3170The marriage of Prince Ferdinand and Queen Isabella united the country of Spain. The red and yellow of this colorful box were a nod to the colors of the Spanish flag. In addition to sorting by color, the students were able to sort by texture since we included soft pompoms and hard beads.

Of course, the beads were also lots of fun to wear or shake 🙂

IMG_3162Identify objects by one observable property, such as color is a science access point.






IMG_3165IMG_2790In 1776 the Declaration of Independence was signed and in celebration of that historic event we made some red, white and blue play dough! We added snipped pieces of an old star garland and some glitter to give the play dough a patriotic sparkle 🙂

The students cut out stars using two different sized cookie cutters.

The science access point recognize differences in size of objects is addressed here.






IMG_2827IMG_3012At the turn of the century, people were thrilled with the construction of the Statue of Liberty. We thought our green Bubber looked pretty similar to the color of the statue as we see it today.

Bubber’s texture is a little like circus peanut candy so it is drier than play dough but it still sticks together really well.





IMG_2980IMG_3122 We also included a souvenir  hat just for fun——thanks Kira!

While making sculptures with the Bubber, the students addressed the science access point recognize a change in an object.

Trying on the hat addressed the “let’s have fun” access point 🙂







IMG_3146IMG_3021In 1955 the hit song Rock Around the Clock was released. Our students used finger drums and a maraca to rock out to the song we recorded on a voice output device.

The finger drums were a HUGE hit 🙂

IMG_2990The science access points recognize an action as fast or slow and recognize objects that create sounds are addressed here.




IMG_2857IMG_3030The movie Footloose was hugely popular in 1984 and we thought this neon rice perfectly represented the decade!

The little funnel and spoon made for lots of scooping fun and the students were especially fascinated as they watched the grains stream out the bottom. At the bottom of the box was a piece of paper with the numbers 1984—–written with neon markers, of course!

Track a falling object is a science access point.





IMG_3139IMG_3033The psychedelic 1960’s rang out with the Woodstock concert held in the summer of 1969. In homage to the fashion of the day, we made some tie dye oobleck! Watching the colors swirl around was just GROOVY 🙂

IMG_3013We got the tie dye effect by mixing the different colors in separate bowls and then pouring them onto a tray.

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




IMG_2839IMG_3157Another musician made history in 1977 with his concert in Hawaii—–the king himself, Elvis! Since lei’s are made from plumeria flowers we used that scent from Bath and Bodyworks for our water play scent this week. There was a “plumeria” blossom floating in the water and a bulb syringe to “water” it with.

IMG_3123Recognize that pushing and pulling an object makes it move is addressed here.





IMG_3180IMG_2866The students really liked the aroma of the matching lotion rubbed on their arms and hands.

IMG_3046Recognize and respond to one type of sensory stimuli is a science access point.






On Tuesday the students decorated signs made from paper plates and popsicle sticks.

IMG_2879We started by discussing the shape of plate and asking the students to identify it using communication symbols.

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







IMG_2886IMG_2919Then they painted the plate with GOLD paint—-this looked so cool!!! By having the students hold onto the popsicle stick handle we also addressed bilateral coordination with this activity.

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





IMG_2910IMG_2900We added even more sparkle with some glitter confetti and topped off the sign with a piece of paper with “2016” printed on it.

The paper stuck easily to the paint so we didn’t  have to use glue!

Recognize that objects can stick together is a science access point.




IMG_2896TA DA—–Happy 2016!










On Wednesday we used the numbers 2016 again, but this time we put them on a SHIELD—-kind of like the one Henry VIII might have used!

IMG_3060We started by identifying the number 6 on a number line—-the students did a really great job with this!

Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.






IMG_3081IMG_3064Then we got out some BIG brushes and painted the shields with silver paint. Some of the students are still learning to use paint brushes but most of them  got to work without any help from us!

Recognize that pushing and pulling an object makes it move is a science access point.




IMG_3095IMG_3110We used the Ellison machine to cut out the numbers 2-0-1-6 and the students placed them on their shields.

To make it easier to hold, a toilet paper roll was hot glued to the back of the shield by an adult, then…….

IMG_3105                                                                Time for a 2016 royal TA DA





In our language group this week, we made some yummy cornbread. It is a traditional Southern food eaten for good luck because it’s supposed to resemble gold!

IMG_3186We started by counting out the cupcake liners while placing them in the cupcake tin.  We used a visual of the number 6 to help reinforce number recognition.

The math access point match one object to a designated space to show one-to-one correspondence is addressed here.






IMG_3191Then, we followed the directions on the Jiffy cornbread mix box and put all of the ingredients in a bowl.  We made sure to talk about the COLOR of the cornbread mix and also how it was DRY.  When we cracked the egg in, we talked about how the mixture was now WET.

Distinguish between items that are wet and items that are dry is a science access point.






IMG_3199IMG_3202When it was time to pour in the milk, noting that it was a LIQUID, our students got to feel the temperature—-it was COLD!

IMG_3206Recognize the temperature of items, such as food, as cool or warm is a science access point.






IMG_3210IMG_3215We mixed up the ingredients and counted out how many spoonfuls we needed to put into the cupcake tin.  Once finished, we put them in the oven to bake.

Apply a push to move an object is a science access point.





IMG_3240IMG_3234While we were waiting, we had a small New Years party of our own.  We got out party hats, boas, and princess crowns.  Our students then got to make some “fireworks” by walking or rolling over bubblewrap-IMG_3262                                                               —they had a BLAST!




IMG_3278IMG_3268Finally, we got to eat our “gold”.  Cheers to a lucky 2016!!









IMG_3135Well, it was back to school with a blast and we had tons of fun welcoming in the new year! Join us again next week for more fun and learning——Group by Group!

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