On Old McDonald’s Farm book

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This week we’re celebrating Farm Animal Awareness Week (Sept. 16-23).  Our book covers lots of different farm animals like pigs, horses, sheep, and cows.  We have several students who dressed up as the farm animals and also have some students dressed as a farmer and a scarecrow.  Take a look and see some different types of farm animals!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is a link to the book:  On Old McDonald’s Farm

On Old MacDonald’s Farm

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September 16-23 is Farm Animal Awareness Week and we thought what a perfect time to do a unit on Old MacDonald! The sensory groups explored boxes with a variety of farm related tactile experiences. The fine motor groups used paint to create their art projects and the language group made yummy edible mud pies!

 

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

In a base of raffia “hay” we put a variety of farm related items including play animals, fruit, vegetables, and a toy tractor. We also included a colorful red bandana and a dog puppet that sang when its muzzle was pressed—–too cute!

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

 

 

 

 

 

This box of corn contained the letters F, A, R, M for the students to find. Of course, they also had fun pushing their fingers and hands through the kernels. Visual and tactile discrimination skills can be addressed with this activity.

The science access point match objects by an observable property, such as shape, can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

It was all contrast and compare with our fur and feather box! There were a variety of fake fur swatches along with some feather boas. A great opportunity to talk about which farm animals had fur and which had feathers. They made some great fashion statements also lol.

Sort objects by an observable property, such as texture, is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

We put some play food for the students to plant and harvest in our coffee grounds “dirt”. There were also pictures of fruit to find at the bottom of the box.

The science access points match plants that are the same and recognize that plants grow, can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

Wheat flour was used  to make our play dough and this gave it a slightly grittier, more crumbly texture. Another interesting tactile experience!

We put in some farm animal cookie cutters (turkey, sheep, and duck) to add to the fun.

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

 

 

 

 

 

This week we put cocoa powder in the oobleck to make MUD. The students had fun helping our little foam piggy get a mud bath. It really smelled much better than the real thing too 🙂

Track objects in motion is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

Our duck pond contained 2 rubber ducks—–1 big and 1 small. There was also a measuring cup for scooping fun!

Recognize differences in size of common objects is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

A fruity scent seemed the perfect choice for a farm unit so we used Bath and BodyWorks pearberry scent this week.

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

 

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

On Tuesday the students made “hay” using a rolling pin wrapped with some rubber bands.

We started by discussing the color of our paint and asked the students to identify it using communication symbols.

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

 

 

 

 

 

The students needed to hold the rolling pin with both hands in order to make it roll properly—–great bilateral coordination practice!

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

 

 

 

 

 

To finish, they got to choose some farm animals (cut from the Ellison machine) to put on their pictures. Of course we  counted how many each student added!

Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ta Da!

                                                                   E  I  E  I  O

 

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday the students used a craft foam tractor stamp. We hot glued a plastic thread spool to make it easier for them to hold.

First the students drew ACROSS lines on their paper using a pencil. These lines were the “furrows” in the field. They really did a great job with this!

Recognize the change in appearance of an object, is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

Then we discussed the color of our paint and asked the students to identify it using communication symbols.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next the students stamped UP and DOWN to put 1 tractor on their fields.

Recognize a movement that reflects a spatial relationship is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

TA Da!

                                                         Look at our cute little farmers!

 

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

We made a very tasty dessert this week!  We made Animal Cracker Caramel Mud Pies.  Here is the recipe that we used: Let_s Make Animal Cracker Caramel Mud Pie

During the recipe, we focused on the following words that were located on each of our student’s cooking communication boards: make, put, turn, more, all done, like/don’t like.  Each week, these are the most frequently used words.  Other words located on the boards are fringe vocabulary words such as the different ingredients used as well as the utensils and appliances used.

We started by making our chocolate pudding.  Our students helped put the pudding mix and 2 cups of milk into a bowl.  Then they took turns pressing the wireless switch used to turn the mixer on.  Our students helped to indicate if we needed to mix MORE or if we’re ALL DONE.

Solve problems involving small quantities of objects or actions using language, such as enough, too much, or more, is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

Next, we melted the butter talked about how it changed from a solid to a liquid. We put our -already-crushed-up animal crackers in the butter and added some sugar.  Then we stirred it up and put it in the pan

Distinguish between water as a solid or liquid is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

Then we put cream cheese and powdered sugar into a bowl and mixed it up with the mixer, giving each student a turn.  We were SUPPOSED to add caramel to this part, but I missed that page so we added it at the end 🙂  You can do it any way you’d like!  We added some whipped cream and mixed it up again.

Solve simple problems involving putting together and taking apart small quantities of objects is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

We put that mixture on top of the animal cracker mix in the pan and added the chocolate pudding to the top.

Recognize when an object is added to a situation is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

A little caramel sauce and we were ALL DONE!

We counted out how many bowls we needed and then ALL enjoyed eating these yummy mud pies 🙂

 

 

 

 

Thanks so much for joining us on Old MacDonald’s farm! Join us again next week for more fun and learning——Group by Group!

Best Laid Plans

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Sooooo we had a visitor to our state last week, you may have heard of her—–her name was IRMA! Well she blew in, blustered about and caused a lot of mayhem. Due to the damage she left in her wake, school was cancelled most of the week. We are definitely luckier than many in our state because things are pretty close back to normal now. Needless to say there were no groups this week but this is a picture that was going to go with the book for our theme.  Just an FYI, Cara worked her photo magic on this one—–the outside of our school is not a giant field of flowers lol. We planned a great unit and so it will be put back on the list for next year.

We will be up and running next week so be sure to join us for more fun and learning——Group by Group.

California book

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We’re learning all about California this week.  One of our elementary teachers, Mrs. Jen, was nice to let us use some of her pictures from her trip to California this summer!

The book has some facts about California like the state gemstone, some famous Californians, and some neat places you can visit.  It even features one of our students “visiting” California on the “The End” page!

 

 

 

 

Here is a link to the book: Let_s Learn About California!

California

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We are California dreaming this week! Ms. Jen’s vacation to California inspired us to learn more about the Golden State. The sensory groups explored boxes related to facts about California. The fine motor groups made art projects related to state symbols and the language group dressed up like movie stars!

 

 

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

This box was of blue and gold paper shred—-California state colors had lots to discover. Many foods are grown there so we put in a variety of plastic fruit and vegetables. We included state symbols such as the grizzly bear, the dog faced butterfly, a discovery bottle with “benitoite”, the state gemstone, and a picture of President Nixon who was born there! We even included some movie star sunglasses 🙂

The science access point recognize a model of a real object can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

Death Valley is the driest place in North America! We used play sand for this box and added a funnel and small scoop. There was also a map of California to find at the bottom of the box. They had really had fun with this box!

Track objects in motion is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

The oldest operating McDonalds is in California! The students used a letter M cookie cutter to make some “golden arches” in yellow moon sand. There were also a couple of different sized scoops added to the fun.

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

 

 

 

 

 

The California gold rush started in 1848 and California is known as the Golden State! This box was filled with a variety of gold items included beads, fabric, and holiday garland. Lots of different textures to touch and explore!

Use senses to recognize objects is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

Sally Ride, the first American women in space, was born in California. For her box, we put a little astronaut and 2 big stars to discover in a box of “outer space” black beans.

Recognize objects as the same is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

We sprinkled blue and yellow glitter into “Pacific Ocean foam” shaving cream this week. As usual, our students had a blast with messy play 🙂

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

 

 

 

 

 

California borders the Pacific Ocean so for our water play we put in some dolphins and sharks—- animals that might be seen swimming along the coast. There were also 2 different sized scoops for added fun!

The science access point recognize a model of a real object and the math access point recognize differences in sizes of containers that hold liquids, can both be addressed with this activity.

 

 

 

 

Bath and BodyWorks ocean scent was perfect for our water play and lotion. The scent was a hit with pretty much every student!

Recognize one or more external body parts is a science access point that can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

On Tuesday we made some giant redwood trees—-redwoods are the California state tree!

We started by identifying the color green and the number 3.

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

Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

Next we used paper cutters or switch operated scissors to cut out BIG green triangles counting each side as it as cut.

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

 

 

 

 

 

The triangles were glued to paper towel tubes and——–TaDA!

                                                                          It’s a giant redwood tree!

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday we made bunches of grapes—-one of California’s largest crops!

We started by identifying the color purple.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then the students used a kitchen scrubber to make circles by stamping UP and DOWN onto a piece of paper.

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

 

 

 

 

 

To finish off, we asked the students to identify the number 2. Then they glued 2 leaves onto their bunch of grapes.

Associate quantities with number names, and recognize when an object has been added to a situation are both math access points.

 

 

 

 

 

TA DA!

                                                Some yummy looking grapes!

 

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

This week, instead of making something to eat, we dressed up Hollywood style!

Each of our students got to take a turn pressing the switch to activate an All-Turn-It spinner.  On the spinner we had different things that they can wear: hat, gloves, necklace, sunglasses, and a fur stole.

 

 

 

 

Once our students landed on a picture, they had to indicate where they would wear it.  We had a board with the symbols for “where put” and then symbols for these options: head, hand, neck, eyes.

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

 

 

 

 

Our students needed some help with indicating the appropriate body part to answer “where”.  They sure knew where to put them when they wore them though!

We had some pretty classy ladies and gents today 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hope you learned a lot about California this week, we sure did!

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

Making Our Year Magical book

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The theme of our school year is “Disney” this year, so we decided to have our theme be about what we can do to make our year magical.  The book is so cute and features some of our students dressed up as characters from different Disney movies.  Each page has a different character with a different way that we can make our year great.  Some of the characters featured are Hercules, Aladdin and Jasmine, and Tinkerbell, just to name a few.  You’ll have to check out the book to see who else makes an appearance!

 

 

 

 

 

Here is a link to the book: We Can Make Our Year Magical

Making Our Year Magical

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Because our school is where magic happens every day, Disney was chosen as the school wide theme this year. Of course this is right up our alley and this week we went all out Disney with our activities! Our sensory groups explored boxes related to different characters. The fine motor groups made art projects with a Disney flair and the language group made a yummy treat you can buy when visiting Disney World.

 

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

This first box was filled with some Disney character figures, Mickey ears, a Minnie Mouse mirror box, and a magic wand. Lots of things to explore and discover in this box! Of course, the Mickey ears were particularly popular 🙂

The language access point communicate recognition of familiar persons or objects can be addressed with this activity.

 

 

 

 

 

The students had fun pressing Disney images into our Bippity Boppity Boo blue moon sand.

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

 

 

 

 

 

Our Prince Charming rice box contained some plastic knights in 2 different colors to match and sort. There was also a little horse and a picture of the prince to find at the bottom of the box.

Recognize 2 objects that are identical to each other is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

We put 2 stretchy toys to let the students practice being strong like Hercules! There was a soft starchy dog and a stretchy bug also vibrated when pulled apart——eliciting lots of giggles 🙂

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

 

 

 

 

 

Our Tinker Bell light box was a huge hit and very entrancing to the students. There were 3 strands of battery operated lights in the box so it REALLY eye catching!

Recognize a source of light is a science access point.

Pretty darn magical——–

                                           if we do say so ourselves 🙂

 

 

 

 

The fairy dust discovery bottles were also very intriguing to the students. They loved watching the glitter swirling around. Both shaking and rolling the bottles produced similar results.

Track objects in motion is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

We put some fluorescent paint into our oobleck to make it MAGICAL this week. It really looked pretty awesome under the black light. We also added a little glitter for some extra sparkle!

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

 

 

 

 

Hands were rinsed in Ariel’s mermaid lagoon! Along with a little mermaid toy, we put in a measuring cup for scooping fun.

The math access point recognize differences in sizes of containers that hold liquids can be addressed with this activity.

 

 

 

 

 

Our scent for the water play and lotion this week was Bath and BodyWorks One Thousand Wishes. We are not sure exactly what a thousand wishes smells like but the name kind of fit with our theme so— we went with it 🙂

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

On Tuesday we made some Mickey Mouse ears using paper plates!

First we identified our paint color using communication symbols.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then we counted our paper plates and identified the number 2.

Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Since we had two ears there was a lot of painting needed for this project, so we decided to use sponge brushes to get greater coverage.

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

 

 

 

 

 

We finished by stapling the “ears” onto  black paper plates (bought at the dollar store) with the center section cut out.

M I C —– K E Y

                                                           M O U S E!!!!

 

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday we made some magic wands!

The students got to choose a craft foam star and then identified the color using communication symbols.

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

 

 

 

 

 

Then the students decorated their stars using an assortment of stickers and putting them DOWN onto their stars.Peeling the backing off those stickers is a great way to practice pincer grasp skills!

Recognize a movement that reflects a spatial relationship such as up or down is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

TA DA!!!

                                           We going to make it a magical year!

 

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

This week, we made a cool treat that is actually sold in Disney World–a Pineapple Whip.  Here is the recipe that we followed: Let_s Make a Disney World Pineapple Whip!

We started by pouring in a small can of pineapple juice followed by 3 tbsp of honey.  We asked our students what we would use to measure out the honey: a tablespoon or a measuring cup.

Recognize differences in containers that hold liquids is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

We then added some frozen pineapple.  Each student got to feel the bag.  They conveyed whether it felt HOT or COLD.  Recognize the temperature of items, such as food, as cool or warm is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

Then we added the pineapple and some Cool Whip topping.

The math access point recognize when an object is added to a situation is addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our students then had to turn on the food processor using a switch.  Since it was a little runnier than it was supposed to be, we added some ice.

Observe and recognize a predictable cause-effect relationship related to a science topic is a science access point that can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

Once it was all blended and smooth, we counted out cups for each of our students——-7 cups for 7 students! Each student had to request a cup of Pineapple Whip and also a spoon if they wanted one.

                                                          YUMMMM!!!

The language access point adjust body movement or nonverbal expression with prompting as necessary to communicate wants and needs is addressed here.

 

 

 

 

This year truly is going to be magical!

Join us next time for more fun and learning——-Group by Group!