Konnichiwa! Since May is Asian Pacific Heritage month, we decided to learn about the fascinating country of Japan this week. The sensory groups explored boxes related to facts about Japan. The fine motor groups made Japanese inspired art projects and the language group made a tasty Japanese inspired treat.
The students sorted pompom’s in the colors of the Japanese flag—-red and white. We added some “training” chopsticks (tongs) to the box. Most of the students needed a little help using the tongs but some of them were able to manipulate them independently.
As a nod to the millions of lights in Tokyo, the capitol of Japan, we had a light box and some lighted toys for the students to explore. The students had so much fun with all the different light sources!
This box contained a variety of objects that are related to Japanese culture including a “lucky” black cat, video game characters, toy cars, and cherry blossoms. We used red and white paper shred because those are the colors of the Japanese flag. Sesame Street characters were also included as a nod to Japanese-American actor Alan Muraoka who owns Hooper’s Store on the show.
There are lots of different types of tea grown in Japan. The students searched for letter J’s in this box of tea leaves. We put in a little rake to give it a little “zen” feel. There was also a Japanese flag to find at the bottom of the box. The tea leaves had an interesting aroma and texture that our students found intriguing.
The character Hello Kitty originated in Japan and is now popular around the world! She loves the color pink so we had to use our pink rice for her box 🙂 In addition to some Hello Kitty toys and a picture at the bottom of the box, we put in 2 different sized scoops. This one was lots of fun!
Ramen noodles are very popular in Japanese restaurants, so for our water play we used our plastic “ramen” noodles. They gave a really interesting textural feel to the water this week. For added fun, there were 2 little koi fish swimming around that squirted water when squeezed!
For both our water play and lotion we used Bath and BodyWorks cherry blossom scent. The students really liked the aroma! As usual, we used our Pixon board to help them communicate WHERE they wanted the lotion placed.
FINE MOTOR GROUP
On Tuesday the students made cherry blossom pictures!
He is getting really good at using his switch!
We directed them to stamp UP and DOWN with their bottles.
On Wednesday the students made a koi pond using this: koi template
Identify objects by one observable property, such as color, is a science access point.
Recognize when an object has been added to a situation is a math access point.
It was a bit of a challenge coming up with something that we could cook that doesn’t require heating things up, but after some research, we found that in Japan they eat cheesecake for dessert. Since cherry blossoms are in abundance during the spring, we decided to make mini cherry cheesecakes. Here is the recipe we used: Let_s Make a Mini-Cherry Cheesecake.
Recognize objects or materials as warm or cold is a science access point.
Recognize when an object is added to a situation is a math access point.
Then, they each counted out 3 cherries to go on top.
Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.
Then it was time to EAT.