March Madness


IMG_0210It is that time of year——time for March Madness! So we are all about the NCAA basketball tournament this week! Our sensory groups explored basketball themed boxes. The fine motor groups painted their basketball themed art projects. The language group made bouncy balls!







IMG_0238IMG_9895Lots of college teams compete in the tournament and UCLA has won the most championships! This box contained pompoms and beads in the team’s colors—–blue and gold. In addition to the color, the items can be differentiated by texture.

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






IMG_0331IMG_9961Blue and white rice represented The University of Kentucky which has had the most WINS of any university—–how cool is that! We put in the letters N C A A for our students to find and there was a little picture of a basketball player at the bottom of the box.

IMG_0289Match objects by an observable property, such as size, shape, and color—-in this case the letter A’s—is a science access point that can be addressed here.





IMG_0287IMG_0077Everybody has a favorite team to cheer for so we put a bunch of colorful shaker pompoms into this box. Of course we made sure to include some in the colors of our favorite teams 🙂

We also included a goofy fan hat for the students to wear and our fans had a blast with this box!

IMG_0097Initiate a change in the motion of an object is a science access point.





IMG_0257IMG_9915The students had fun with this bright orange play dough—–very eye catching! We encouraged them to try to roll the play dough into balls or to use the cookie cutter to cut out letter B’s.

IMG_0135Recognize changes in observable properties of materials is a science access point.





IMG_9892IMG_9954This year the final four games will be held in Houston, Texas so we dedicated this box to the state. We used paper shred in the colors of the state flag (red, white, and blue) and put in a big white “lone” star that is also seen on the flag. We also included a cowboy, horses, and cows—-other things we associate with the state.




IMG_0259IMG_0082There was a fun little cowboy hat (thanks Ms. Kim) which our students

—–and teachers :)—–thought was lots of fun.

IMG_0105The science access point recognize a model of a real object can be addressed with this activity.








IMG_9913IMG_0300The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) was founded by President Teddy Roosevelt so we went “all american” with some red and blue glitter sprinkled into our oobleck this week 🙂 As usual the students had a blast with it and those little bits of sparkle made it even more inviting!

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





IMG_9964IMG_0156We went with a “sporty” scent for our water play, hands were rinsed in Old Spice Denali scented water. You may notice we even tied our circle shaped bowl into the theme—-rather clever, if we don’t say so ourselves 🙂 Since getting the highest score is the object of the game, we included some numbers for our students to scoop out and SCORE!

Recognize quantities 1 to 3 using sets of objects, pictures, or number names is a math access point.





IMG_0342IMG_0346Instead of lotion this week we used some Coca Cola scented lip balm. We figured all that cheering would make any fan want a nice cold soda! The students loved the scent which we applied to wrists, ears, or hands—–NOT lips of course!!

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







On Tuesday our students painted paper plate basketballs.

IMG_9996First we discussed the shape of our plate and asked the students to identify a CIRCLE using communication symbols.

Recognize a common object with a 2-dimensional shape is a math access point.






IMG_0004IMG_0001Then students also used communication symbols to identify the color ORANGE.

The science access point identify objects by one observable property, such as color is addressed here.






IMG_0018IMG_0024We wrapped some bubble wrap around a scrubber sponge and encourage the students to stamp UP and DOWN.




IMG_0013Recognize a movement that reflects a spatial relationship, such as up and down is a math access point.





IMG_0017IMG_0022Ta DA—–

IMG_0011                                                                  let’s play some B-Ball!





On Wednesday our students made some basketball jerseys  using paper bags.

IMG_0177First the students identified the color of our paint using communication symbols.

Identify objects by one observable property is a science access point.








IMG_0187Then they started painting their “jerseys”.

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









IMG_0194IMG_0198Next they identified their number and placed it on the wet paint.

Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.








IMG_0217IMG_0222TA DA—-

IMG_0228put me in coach——






IMG_0216—–I’m ready to play!













To celebrate March Madness, we made our own bouncy balls!  We actually used 2 different recipes so that we could COMPARE them to see which one worked better.  These are the 2 recipes that we used: DIY bouncy balls  Since both of these recipes contained borax, we VERY closely supervised our students!

IMG_0357IMG_0360We started by asking our students to choose which 2 colors they wanted the balls to be (since we were making 2 different recipes).

After we tallied up all the votes, we discussed which 2 colors had the MOST votes: blue and pink it was!

Compare quantities using language, such as more, less, or the same is a math access point.





IMG_0369IMG_0376We started with the first recipe in the link above.  Our students helped us POUR the ingredients into each of the different cups.  We observed the white glue change colors when we put in the food coloring.  When we poured the glue mixture into the cup with the borax/water, we observed the glue becoming solid—–how cool is that!

IMG_0379The science access point recognize a change in an object is addressed here.





IMG_0406IMG_0407Once we took the glue mixture out of the water, we had to squeeze the water off and form the ball (this was done by an adult). After the ball had hardened somewhat, everybody got to touch it!

IMG_0403Recognize 3-dimensional objects, such as balls (spheres) is a math access point that can be addressed here.






IMG_0388IMG_0397Then we made the next recipe. We talked about how the amounts of ingredients were smaller and how the steps were DIFFERENT.  We also got some good math skills in by discussing how we needed 2 half tablespoons to make 1 whole tablespoon while measuring out the ingredients.

IMG_0392Distinguish half from whole using objects is a math access point.





IMG_0408IMG_0414Once both balls were made, we compared the 2 by bouncing each of them.  Before we bounced them, though, we HYPOTHESIZED which one we thought would bounce higher.  Although they bounced about the same height, we think the blue one (from the first recipe) went a little bit higher! The students loved this part of the activity 🙂

Distinguish between objects in motion (kinetic energy) and at rest is a science access point.




IMG_0277Thanks for joining us this week for March Madness and we hope  your bracket did well 🙂

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


7 responses »

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s