IMG_5246We explored a galaxy closer to home this week—–our own! Each box in the sensory group was related to one of the planets. The fine motor groups made some out of this world art projects and the language group made a yummy “spacey” snack.






Sensory Group

IMG_5256IMG_5028Before we got to our groups we brought out our cool solar system umbrella. It was easily made with some battery operated lights, yellow craft foam, and some super cool hanging planets (thanks Ms. Kim). The students totally LOVED it!



IMG_4791Recognize a space related object is a science access point.






IMG_5283IMG_5115Jupiter is the largest of the planets and Mercury is the smallest. With this box our students sorted BIG shaker balls and SMALL pompoms.

IMG_4832Recognize differences in sizes of objects is a math access point.


IMG_5060IMG_5120They REALLY had fun with the big shaker balls 🙂











IMG_4869IMG_5287One of the most recognizable planets is Saturn with its famous rings. Our students used fluffy chenille stems to make circular shaped rings of their own.




IMG_5082Recognize an object with a two-dimensional shape is a math access point.






IMG_5112IMG_4797Mars is known as the “red planet”. We made used black cherry Koolaid to make the play dough this week and we think the color turned out really well and smelled nice too! A cookie cutter letter M was included.

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






IMG_4808IMG_5314We learned that Venus is a very hot planet with lots of volcanic activity. We made an orange and yellow discovery jar that looks like the planet’s surface using a technique that we found at The jar was so much fun to make that we made 2 more with different colors 🙂


IMG_5096Recognize and respond to one type of sensory stimuli is a science access point.






IMG_4863IMG_5064Since our planet Earth has a moon, we HAD to bring out our MOONSAND this week! The students used a round shape sorter to make circle shaped craters in the sand.

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








IMG_5290IMG_4817Our “deep space” black kinetic sand contained some fun things to find including a blue-green planet—— Saturn!




IMG_5277Recognize a space related object is a science access point.







IMG_5141IMG_5154The planet Neptune is a beautiful blue color like our water this week!  Since it is the furthest planet from the sun we figured it would be an ideal place to view other galaxies (lighted swim rings)!

There was also a scoop for pouring—-lots of splashy fun 🙂

IMG_5324The science access point observe and recognize a predictable cause-effect relationship related to a  science topic can be addressed here.






IMG_5155IMG_5338There are a lot of pretty noxious odors associated with some of the planets we explored! So rather than go realistic, we decided that midnight by Bath and BodyWorks was a pretty good choice—–after all, midnight is the perfect time for star gazing 🙂

IMG_5171Applied to hands, necks, or arms—–the science access point recognize one or more external body parts can be addressed here.






Fine Motor Group

IMG_4910IMG_4912On Tuesday our students made space shuttles using this template: space shuttle  Recycled toilet paper rolls used to complete the project gave us a chance to discuss the Unique Curriculum theme for this month.

This group LOVED our solar system umbrella too!







IMG_4914We started our art project by asking the students to identify red and blue using communication symbols.

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









IMG_4928IMG_4951The student used red and blue markers to scribble on their rockets. We used Pipsqueak Markers by Crayola because their size is perfect for our students.

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







IMG_4921To finish off the project, the students added a circle “porthole” with their photo. Nice pincer grasp practice!

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










IMG_4933IMG_4944We attached the space shuttle to a toilet paper roll to help it stand up and 10, 9, 8, 7,6…..





IMG_4956                                                                Ta Da we have lift off!






On Wednesday our students made a solar system!

IMG_5178We started by discussing the shape of our planets and asked our students to identify it using communication symbols.

Recognize an object with a three-dimensional shape is a math access point.









IMG_5191IMG_5204To make our planets we used styrofoam balls cut in half so that they were easier to glue down. The students then painted their planets and sprinkled on some confetti to add a little texture.

This gave us lots of opportunities to work on the math access point solve problems involving small quantities of objects or actions using language, such as enough, too much, or more.







IMG_5216IMG_5226Then the students glued their planets around the sun. Stars were added with  some glue and glitter!

This activity addresses the math access point match one object to a designated space to show one-to-one correspondence.









IMG_5234                                                  TA DA——-welcome to our solar system!







Language Group

In our true language group style, we made a treat for the students this week——– a Saturn Slush!  We got special help from one of our other SLPs this week, Judy, who came in and helped with the lesson.

IMG_5373IMG_5383To start off, we checked out the frozen strawberries and blueberries we were going to use for our recipe. We asked the students if the bags felt WARM or COLD!

Recognize objects or materials as warm or cold is a science access point.







IMG_5365IMG_5385We put some frozen strawberries in the blender.   Then our students helped POUR some orange juice into the blender.  We talked about how the colors of strawberries and the orange juice were different.

Recognize differences in objects is a science access point.






IMG_5391IMG_5397After that, we put in some confectioners sugar.  Our students got to have some fun taking turns activating the blender.




IMG_5406The science access point recognize that electrical systems must be turned on in order to work, can be addressed with this activity.





IMG_5423IMG_5428Once the mixture was nice and smooth we POURED it into a bowl.

Then we put some frozen blueberries,  more orange juice, and confectioners sugar into the blender and blended again until it was smooth.







IMG_5444IMG_5456We alternated the strawberry and blueberry mixtures into cups for our students (of course, counting the cups out first) so that they could see the different layers—–or at least that was the plan! Our pouring efforts ended up with everything kind of mixing together.

On the bright side the Saturn Slush tasted really YUMMY so no one really minded 🙂







IMG_5103IMG_4874We had so much fun learning about the planets this week! Be sure to join us again next time for more fun and learning——Group by Group!

2 responses »

  1. Hey! I have been receiving your emails for so long now and LOVE all of your awesome ideas to reach these unique learners! I was wondering where you are all located? And how you go about creating all of these awesome materials? Do you keep them for next year? I have been doing a little bit of these but really want to get involved next year with a specialized program like this to reach my students! Thanks!

    On Sun, May 15, 2016 at 4:53 PM, Group by Group wrote:

    > jd785 posted: “We explored a galaxy closer to home this week—–our own! > Each box in the sensory group was related to one of the planets. The fine > motor groups made some out of this world art projects and the language > group made a yummy “spacey” snack. &nb” >

    • Hi Beth and thank you for your comments! Joy sent you a longer private email but here is the short version: we are located in Florida and are lucky enough to have a portable that we can store our materials from year to year. We found the recipes for coloring our rice and play dough on the internet. If you have questions about specific materials just let us know!

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