Tag Archives: beads

Louisiana

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img_3261img_2983We traveled again this week but a little closer to home—-the great state of Louisiana! Our sensory groups explored boxes related to facts and symbols of the state. The fine motor groups used markers and crayons to complete their projects and the language group led a Mardi Gras parade.

img_3667It was a really fun week that both students and staff enjoyed—–so let the good times roll!

 

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

img_2611img_2929This box was filled with symbols of Louisiana including the state bird (pelican), beverage (milk), amphibian (frog), honey bees (insect), and mammal (black bear). We also recorded a version of “You are my Sunshine” one of the state songs, on a voice output device. All of this was put on a base of paper shred in state colors: blue, white, and gold!

img_2779Recognize a model of a really object is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

img_3354img_2603We made 3 discovery bottles made using the state colors. One was all gold and one was all blue. The third was a mixture of white, blue, and gold beads floating around in gold glitter. VERY eye catching!

img_3295The science access point track objects in motion can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

img_2144img_2891New Orleans, Louisiana is known for its Mardi Gras celebrations and the colorful beads thrown from the floats during parades! This box was filled with beads in Mardi Gras colors. Fun to look at, wear, touch, or watch move when pushed or shaken.

img_2733Track the movement of objects that are pushed or pulled is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

img_2214img_2251Looking super cute while wearing Mardi Gras beads–

img_2881                                                                 that’s just how our students roll 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

img_2641img_3291This Mardi Gras rice was made for a unit we did a while ago and it was fun bringing it out again. It really is one of our prettiest mixtures and is just so eye catching! We put in letter L’s and a map of Louisiana for the students to find.

img_2172The social studies access point, associate an object, picture, or symbol with a location can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

img_3353img_2169We made some sunshine yellow play dough for the state song “You are my sunshine”. The students had fun squeezing together, pulling apart, or rolling the play dough into balls. We also included a little textured rolling pin to make some “sun rays” and a cookie cutter letter L to add to the fun.

img_2719Recognize that pushing and pulling an object makes it move is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

img_2220img_2240For our messy play we went back to the Louisiana state colors—-we sprinkled BLUE and YELLOW glitter into WHITE shaving cream! The students had fun making swirls, lines, letter L’s, or just squishing it between fingers 🙂

img_3316The science access point recognize pushing and pulling an object makes it move is again addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

img_2771img_3245We put some plastic crawfish and a rubber alligator to swim around in our water this week. Bath and BodyWorks vanilla sugar bath gel was also added because we thought it smelled like beignets—-those yummy New Orleans donuts!

img_2187The science access point match animals that are the same can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

img_3387img_3399The matching lotion was a hit with our students this week. They really liked its sweet aroma and after having it rubbed on hands and arms they left the group smelling like yummy beignets!

img_2266Recognize one or more external body parts is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday we made some trumpets in honor of Louis Armstrong who was born in Louisiana. We used the state colors again for this project!

img_3036We started by asking the students to identify a rectangle——the shape of the paper we were going to use.

Recognize objects with  two-dimensional shapes is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

img_3086img_3094Then they used markers and crayons to color or draw on their papers.

img_3096Recognize a change in an object is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

img_3179img_3127The drawings were wrapped around paper towel tubes that had been taped to paper bowls and……….TA DA!

img_3190                                                       Our students are ready to play a little jazz!

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

On Tuesday the students decorated a pelican, the state bird, using this: pelican-template

img_2286img_2277First we discussed the state colors and asked the students to identify the color blue using communication symbols.

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

 

 

 

 

 

img_2352img_2336Then the students scribbled on their penguins with blue and yellow markers. One of our students scribbled using a pressure switch activated vibrating massager with a marker glued to it. He activates switches using his elbow and is getting really good at it!

img_2321Recognize a change in an object is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

img_2333img_2378TA Da! We love the Pelican State!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

Since Mardi Gras is coming up, we decided to have our own Mardi Gras celebration!

img_3416img_3470Our language group entertained the entire elementary staff and students with a small parade around the building.

img_3436Our students dressed up in hats and boas and gave out beads to all of the spectators.  We even put on some zydeco music to walk to!

 

 

 

 

img_3482img_3579It was a fun crowd after all——– everyone loves a parade!

img_3533                                                                    We are a really fun bunch 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Once we rounded everyone up, we gathered together in the multi-purpose room for our party!

img_3636img_3639What is a party without cake and ice cream! We had King cake of course and topped with vanilla ice cream (thanks Jeannie) with apple juice to drink. The students requested what they wanted using communication symbol sentence strips.

img_3927                                                                                       YUMMY!!

 

 

 

 

img_3996img_3842With zydeco music playing, we had to start dancing 🙂

img_4013                                                                              Our students have moves!!!!

 

 

 

 

img_3994img_3936Whether sitting and listening to music or getting their groove on—–

img_3951                                                                       the students had a blast!

 

 

 

 

image002img_3628The photo booth was also so much fun and we had lots of colorful props!

img_3984 Lots of opportunities for communication as the students had to communicate which props they wanted for their photos.

 

 

 

 

 

img_3973img_4142All of the dancing and fellowship was awesome and we all had a great time!

img_3969                                                         We hope your week was as fun filled as ours!

 

 

 

 

img_3697img_4010Be sure and join us next time for fun and learning——Group by Group!

We’re FROZEN!

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IMG_2214The movie Frozen is SO popular with our students that we decided it was the perfect unit to end our semester! We had so much fun putting this unit together, collaborating with both the PE and Art departments made it even more special!

The sensory groups explored boxes with lots of different textures. The fine motor groups used markers and glue to make fabulous art projects and the language group conducted some frosty experiments.

Of course, our book was extra special for this unit so be sure to check it out also!

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

IMG_2155IMG_2150Aqua, blue and purple basket filler was the base of this box—-so pretty!  The students had lots of fun discovering all things we had hidden in it. Well, perhaps the 3 giant snowflakes weren’t that hard to discover 🙂

Also hidden in the colorful filler were snowmen, “snowball” beads, and some cute little Frozen play figures.

The math access points differences in size of objects and associate quantities with number names can be addressed here.
IMG_2228IMG_2460We had 2 fascinating discovery bottles. One turned into a glittery snow flurry when turned or shaken. The other bottle was filled with some glass beads which looked like little chunks of ice.

IMG_2399Initiate a change in motion of an object is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_2169IMG_2407The students were pretty intrigued with our “reindeer fur” Sven box. This fake fur was long and a little coarse which we thought was a pretty good stand in for the real thing. A cute little plush reindeer was included for cuddling fun 🙂

IMG_2382Recognize common objects related to science by name, such as animal, is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_1120IMG_2454Do you want to build a snowman? Our students did! We put some potato head pieces and fake food carrot into our box of white Floam. It was fun to see the different creations the students made.

Recognize that the human—-and snowman :)—-body is made up of various parts is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_2221IMG_1292We brought back our snowflake umbrella yet again and as usual, it was a huge hit. It really is so pretty!

Because no one has heard the song “Let it Go” enough 🙂 we recorded a verse on our voice output device. Needless to say, none of the students passed on their turn to hit the button lol.

IMG_2233Recognize objects that create sounds is a science access point.

 

 

 

IMG_2241IMG_2217This box was filled with some Insta-snow, since we don’t have much access to the real stuff here in Florida! It had an interesting texture that wasn’t a hit with everyone, but most of the students had fun with it. They used their hands or the melon-baller to make snowballs.

The science access point identify different types of precipitation, including rain and snow can be addressed in this activity.

 

 

 

IMG_1070IMG_2394Hands were rinsed in water scented with Bath and Bodyworks juniper breeze scented water. There were a variety of foam snowflakes scattered in the water and a measuring cup was included so the students could scoop them out.

IMG_2414Since the snowflakes could be counted the math access point associate quantities with number names can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

IMG_2511IMG_2505The matching lotion was used as a sweet remembrance of all the fun we had today. We chose this particular scent because we figured that junipers MIGHT grow in the cold climes of Arundelle!

IMG_2248Recognize and respond to one type of sensory stimuli is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

On Tuesday we used markers to color a Frozen picture. We found this PERFECT free printable at http://yourtherapysource.com

IMG_2025We started by discussing the shape of our paper and asking the students to identify a “rectangle” using communication symbols.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_2059IMG_2060Then they used purple and blue markers to make fabulous scribbles and swirls on their paper.

The students did a really great job with this and had such great concentration!

IMG_2032Since they had to share the markers with their friends, the science access point share objects with a partner is addressed with this activity.

 

 

 

IMG_2039IMG_2041After they were finished coloring, they got to add some snowflakes to their pictures. We applied glue to work on 1:1 correspondence. Of course, it was a great opportunity to practice pincer grasp skills as well (and the OT really likes that!!!).

Match one object to a designated space to show one-to-one correspondence is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

IMG_2082IMG_2095Ta Da…….

 

IMG_2054                                                              …..let it go, let it go, let it go………

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday we continued talking about shapes while making Olaf!

IMG_2265We started by discussing the shape of the boxes we were going to use (cereal boxes covered with white paper) and used communication symbols to identify their shape.

The math access point recognize a common three-dimensional shape was addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_2341 (1)Then the students used adaptive scissors to cut out another shape——this time a TRIANGLE—–out of orange paper and used glue sticks to attach it to their box.

The science access point recognize a change in an object and the math access point recognize a common object with a two-dimensional shape are addressed in this activity.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_2293IMG_2307Next they added 2 eyes and identified the number 2 using communication symbols.

Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_2333IMG_2271The students used a black marker to draw a mouth to the face, then added a small RECTANGLE tooth that they cut out using the adaptive scissors.

It was fun to see the different expressions they came up with for their snowman 🙂

The science access point recognize one or more external body parts can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

IMG_2362 (1)IMG_2302A brown chenille stem was added to the top of the box and the cutest Olaf you have ever seen!

IMG_2285                                    TA DA!!!!

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

Since we are experiencing 70+ degree weather in the middle of December, snow—-or even cold weather—-seems like a distant dream, we decided to make some snowy experiments!  Here are the experiments we did: Let’s Make Snowy Experiments.

IMG_2521We started out making a snowstorm in a jar.  First, we poured baby oil in a cleaned out peanut butter jar.  Our students got to take turns smelling the baby oil first and they all seemed to like the clean smell of it!

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

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_2540Next, we put water and white paint into a bowl.  Our students had to mix it all up until the water was nice and white.  Then we poured it into the jar and added some glitter—-we never pass up the opportunity to add glitter to a project 🙂

The science access point recognize that the appearance of an object or material has changed is a science access point is addressed here.

 

 

 

 

IMG_2555IMG_2552Not much of a snowstorm UNTIL we put half of an Alka Seltzer into the jar.  Once it started going, we had our version of a Florida snowstorm!

Track objects moving up and down is a science access point.

Pretty darn cool!!!!

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_2577IMG_2568After we were done oohing and ahhing, we started on our second experiment, homemade snow.  This one was pretty easy.  We used a WHOLE box of baking soda and about HALF a canister of shaving cream and stirred it all together.  We divvied up our mixture into a couple of small bowls and our students got to feel our “snow”.

Very cool feeling—–literally 🙂

The science access point recognize parts of whole objects and parts of sets of objects can be addressed in this activity.

 

 

 

IMG_2586We used our homemade snow for our final experiment, EXPLODING snow.!!!!! We put the bowls with the homemade snow onto a tray, sprinkled some glitter, and then poured some vinegar into each bowl.  Tada!  Exploding snow!!!!!!

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE FUN CONTINUES….

Our PE department has a fabulous winter wonderland unit going on this month and this coordinated perfectly with our Frozen theme! The students were having  so much fun, we had to include some photos.

IMG_1460IMG_1758They got to experience some blizzard conditions (the teachers used a hairdryer and some fake snow to create this).

IMG_1999                                                                      There were LOTS of giggles 🙂

 

 

IMG_1673IMG_1845There was an Aurora Borealis area activated with switches!

IMG_1877                                  And finally ICE SKATING in shaving cream—–how fun is that!

 

 

IMG_2432IMG_2205Well that wraps up our first semester. Apart from an After Party post, we will be gone for a few weeks, enjoying our winter break.

IMG_2441From all of us here, we wish you Happy Holidays and be sure to come join us in 2016 for more fun and learning——Group by Group!

 

Mardi Gras

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IMG_6111We celebrated Mardi Gras this week! Our sensory group explored colorful green, gold, and purple boxes. The fine motor group made some festive party props. The language group led a parade around the elementary building handing out beads to their friends. It was a fabulous and fun week filled with smiles!

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

IMG_5758Green, gold, and purple are the colors of mardi gras and our rice this week. It is just the prettiest box—-one of our favorites! This rice was so colorful and VERY eye catching with 2 letter M’s and a sparkly crown picture to find!

The science access recognize that pushing and pulling an object makes it move an object is addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5795IMG_6121Speaking of fun—-what could be more fun than FEATHERS! Ticklish, floaty and completely irresistible——this box invites touch! Of course, there were things to discover such as masks, beads, clown figures—-and totally fabulous glittery sunglasses which turned out to be the favorite item in the box.

Our students certainly KNOW how to rock a pair of sunglasses!

Recognize common objects in the environment is a science access point that can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

IMG_5817We made mardi gras play dough by adding purple and green glitter to a yellow base color. Quite festive although it did have a slight poppy seed look to it 🙂

The students cut fleur d’lis shapes into the dough—–and then counted them of course!

The math access point associate quantities with number names can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

IMG_5770IMG_5857So mardi gras is all about BEADS and we had them! This box contained lots of gold, green, and purple beads—-perfect for shaking, sorting, and wearing!

Another irresistible box filled with color and fun!

Identify objects by one observable property is a science access point that can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5868IMG_6126We let the good times roll with some zydeco music recorded on a voice output device. There was a fabulous hat (thank you Dr. Hamilton) and a mardi gras shaker bottle to help the students get in the groove.

Everyone had a rockin good time 🙂

IMG_5884                                     Appy a push to move an object is a science access point addressed here.

 

 

IMG_5865IMG_5798Gold, green, and purple glitter swirled around the oobleck this week, very cool looking! We made the batch a little thicker this week so it really oozed—–can we say FUN 🙂

IMG_5843With all glitter swirling around this was a great activity for tracking objects in motion and tracking falling objects, both are science access points.

 

 

 

IMG_5901A yummy vanilla sugar scent was used in our water play this week. There was a big measuring cup and small spoon for scooping fun and a perfect way to address the math access point recognize differences in size of objects.

Use senses to recognize objects is another science access point that can be addressed in this activity.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_6146The matching lotion was so delicious smelling. There was lots of giggling as the lotion was rubbed on various body parts such as hands, arms, legs—–and behind the occasional ear 🙂

Our students left the group smelling like sweet beignets!

This activity addresses the science access point recognize one or more external body parts.

 

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

IMG_5978On Tuesday we made some super fun mardi gras masks! These craft foam masks were found in a dollar bin and made for a really quick and easy art project.

We started by squeezing glue into a large jar lid—-a great activity for hand strengthening!

Then the students dipped feathers into the glue and attached them to the mask. They chose which colors they wanted using communication symbols and we counted each feather as it was placed.

The math access points associate quantities with number names and indicate desire for more of an object can be addressed in this activity.

 

 

 

IMG_5998IMG_6005A straw was glued to the back of the mask and……

IMG_6009                                                                                 TA DA! We are ready for mardi gras!

 

 

On Thursday we made some fun mardi gras shakers using small paper plates starting by discussing the shape of the plate and the number 3—–since we were going to count to 3 A LOT in this activity.

IMG_6253We have found that our students do really well with number and color identification when given a choice of two but have a tendency to go to the middle symbol when there is a choice of three—-but we are going to keep practicing 🙂

The math access point associate quantities with number names is addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_6271The students did a SUPER job using 3 colored markers——yelbow, green, and purple—–to color their paper plates. They really are getting more proficient with writing tools!

Communication symbols were used to practice color identification, addressing the science access point identify common objects by one observable property, such as color.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_6337IMG_6285Then we used the adaptive scissors to cut 3 pieces of crepe paper streamers—-mardi gras colors OF COURSE! The paper plate was folded in half and we used the electric stapler to staple the plate together and the streamers to the plate.

Activate a device that uses electricity and recognize a change in an object are both science access points addressed in this activity.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_6317We left an opening at one end of the plate so we could put 3 small sections of broken mardi gras beads before finishing stapling.

Take a look at the concentration and fabulous pincer grasp pictured here—–the OT is so proud 🙂

Again, the math access point associate quantities with number names is addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_6310TA DA!

This project was a hit!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

IMG_6174IMG_6246Our students in the language group put on a Mardi Gras parade for all of the elementary students and BOY was it fun!

The plan was for the students to follow the directions “STOP” and “GO” while we all paraded down the hallways to the different classrooms—-it ended up a little like herding cats but we all had a blast anyway 🙂  The students handed out beads to all of the spectators who waved and cheered us on and we also gave some of our students voice output devices programed to ask, “do you want beads?”

 

 

IMG_6179IMG_6219The leader of the parade had a voice output device with zydeco music programmed on it and she was in charge of keeping the music going for the parade by activating the device. Our students did a wonderful job of walking together and giving out beads, of course with a few prompts here and there.

 

 

 

 

IMG_6204Everyone had so much fun at  our Mardi Gras parade that there were calls for it to become an annual tradition!

IMG_6150Join us again next time for more fun and learning—–Group by Group!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Springtime in Tallahassee

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IMG_6176Flowers, birds, butterflies, eggs—-its springtime in Tallahassee! Spring is a really special time in our hometown and we had a great time celebrating the season this week. Our sensory group boxes were filled with bright colors and textures. The fine motor group made some fabulous butterfly and bird art projects. The language group dyed eggs in different ways and decided which way was the best!

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

IMG_5767IMG_6022We used some bright yellow basket filler as the base for this box. Then we put in a variety of flowers, carrots, eggs, bunnies, chicks—-all symbols of spring! There was also a little toy clock to remind us that daylight savings time happens around this time of year. We also included a pair of silly glasses with a flower motif, just for fun 🙂

Distinguishing between a plant and animal, which is part of learning about the organization and development of living organisms, is a science access point addressed in this activity.

 

 

 

 

Colorful beans—-what would we DO without food coloring!—-looked like tiny eggs scattered on our green rice lawn. Ok, this may totally be our new favorite rice box!

IMG_5688Visual and tactile discrimination skills are addressed as students find the letter S hidden amongst the beans and rice.

 

IMG_6149Springtime in Tallahassee means the Rough Riders are coming to visit our school before marching in the Springtime Tallahassee parade. These people are really wonderful as they bedeck everyone at the school with beads and give a teddy bear to each of our students—-how cool is that! In their honor, this box is filled with colorful beads and teddy bears. There were 2 bears in the box, 1 little and 1 big one to compare and contrast.

The access point recognize differences in size of objects, related to ordering objects by measurable attributes, is the math access point addressed in this activity. Another math access point addressed is recognize length of real objects, such as big, little, long, or short.

 

 

 

IMG_5755This lovely spring weather we are having, makes everyone think about planting gardens. Our garden box contained coffee ground dirt and some “carrot seeds” (actually brown beans) to plant. We also included some toy carrots and a little scoop. Our students had a great time with this box, they especially loved scooping up the dirt and filling the tops of the carrots!

Recognize that plants grow is a science access point addressed in this activity.

The math access point associate quantities with number names can also be addressed.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5749While some people plant vegetable gardens, other plant flowers in hopes of attracting butterflies! We have used our colorful pasta box before and we really love it——pink butterflies and green spiral pasta, just so pretty. A laminated butterfly picture and wooden caterpillar were also tucked into this box.

Students were encouraged to match the different pastas which addresses the math access point recognize two objects that are the same size or color.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_6053Store shelves are filled with yummy spring treats including marshmallow peeps in a rainbow of colors. We mixed shaving cream, cornstarch, and some yellow food coloring to make our peeps. This mixture really does end up with a marshmallow consistency. It is light, soft, and moldable—–completely cool!

This is a totally fun and messy way to explore the science access point apply a push to move an object. Most of our students LOVED this gooey mess………others not so much 🙂

IMG_5702

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_6077Well,  that marshmallow mixture is quite messy so we rinsed our hands off in sun-ripened raspberry bath gel from Bath and Bodyworks! We thought a fruity scent was perfect since it reminded us again of spring gardens. Along with 2 different sized measuring scoops, we included a little carrot shaped container for more scooping fun.

Recognize differences in sizes of containers that hold liquids is a science access point addressed. Another one is recognize one way people use water.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5816We finished with the matching lotion—-leaving our students smelling like yummy little raspberries! The students  liked the scent this week, it was quite a hit. Some of our students really anticipate this part of the group and immediately start putting out their hands when they see us bring out the bottle. Rubbing lotion on different body parts is a fun way to promote body awareness.

Recognize one or more external body parts is a science access point addressed in this activity.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

IMG_5909Our Tuesday art project evolved from an idea we got from Mr. Chris (thanks again!). We started with these cute and colorful butterfly placemats we got 2 for a dollar at Target—-we may have mentioned how much we love the dollar section before 🙂  We cut a butterfly stencil out of some black poster board (a freebie on the giveaway table—–another score!) using one of the placemats as a pattern.

Each student got a placemat and when it was their turn, we put the stencil on their placemat while they colored their butterfly with Crayola Pipsqueak markers. We like making our stencil black because we thought it helped reinforce where we wanted the color to go. The markers were used for 2 reasons. First, we like their size which works well for our students little hands. Second, markers have low friction and bright color—-as opposed to crayons—- which is more visually appealing to our students.

 

 

 

 

IMG_5864We also used our communication cards to work on color recognition as the markers were passed around the table.

This activity worked on lots of science access points including share objects with a partner, recognize a change in an object, identify objects by one observable property, and recognize a change in an object.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5969IMG_5929TA DA—-

IMG_5919                               our artists were just so proud!

 

 

 

 

IMG_6310IMG_6313For our Thursday art project we made little bird nests! We saw this idea on Pinterest and thought it fit perfectly with our springtime theme. Our students started by gluing green paper shred onto a small paper plate.  Squeezing the glue works on hand strengthening and eye hand coordination is addressed as the paper is put onto the glue.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_6323Next we used our adaptive scissors to cut 1 diamond shape into 2 triangles—–perfect little wings! Then we did it again because we are making 2 birds!

Recognize an object with a 2 dimensional shape is a math access point. In addition, associate quantities 1 and 2 with number names is another math access point addressed in this activity.

The wings were attached (with tape and a little help) to the 2 halves of a plastic egg that had been pre-decorated with googlie eyes and a beak.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_6363IMG_6386Ta da, our little birdies are now tucked into their nests looking quite adorable!

Just like our students 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

We decided to have a little spring experiment!  Since people dye eggs during the spring, we decided to find out which way is the best way to dye eggs.  We used the colors pink and purple for our experiment.  To obtain those colors, we used PAAS Egg Decorating Kit, McCormick’s Neon food coloring, and Kool-Aid.

We used small, clear, plastic cups so our students were able to see the eggs change color.  Each cup had a label on it to show us which dye we were using.

IMG_6265IMG_6238We started by taking out a boiled egg which had been in the refrigerator and letting each student feel it.  They were asked if it was WARM or COLD and also if it was HARD or SOFT.  Then we brought out a plastic egg—-in some ways it was the SAME as the real egg but it was DIFFERENT in other ways!

Recognize the temperature of items as cool or warm is a science access point addressed by this activity.

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

 

 

 

IMG_6254After touching the eggs, the students each picked which color they wanted their real egg to become.  Identify classroom objects by one observable property such as color is a science access point.

Very CAREFULLY, and without a lot of adult assistance, the students put their egg in the dye.  Yes, we do like to live life on the edge 🙂

We used small, clear, plastic cups so our students could see the eggs as they changed color. Every few seconds, we used a spoon to stir the egg around.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_6272After a few minutes, we lifted the eggs out of the dye and put them in the egg carton.  They all came out so differently and SO colorful!

The students told us which egg they liked the BEST.  After the eggs dried a little bit, the students put a sticker on the egg they liked the best to decorate it.

It was a neat experiment!  The boldest colors came from the PAAS and the neon food coloring, while the Kool-Aid eggs had texture on them.  It was lots of fun to see the differences!

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_6227IMG_6201As with all our groups this week, we finished by doing the chicken dance along with our dancing chicken 🙂

Fun! Fun! Fun!

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

 

IMG_6185

New York Vacation

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IMG_5021It was back to school but spring break vacations were still on our minds with our New York City theme.  It is a popular vacation spot and such an exciting place to visit——we had so much fun planning the different group activities! Our sensory group activities included a trip to Time Square, the fine motor group made art projects related to New York City symbols, and the language group explored tourist destinations on the Smart board.

All our activities focused on looking at the world in spatial terms and the social studies access point associate an object, picture, or symbol with a location.

 

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

IMG_5246
IMG_5266We started our tour with the most exciting place in NYC—-Time Square! We put 5 strands of battery operated lights on our umbrella and it really gave a fabulous “Time Square” effect. Needless to say this was a HUGE hit,  our students really loved all the lights and could hardly wait for their turn!

The lights were attached using good old twist ties and we used velcro to attach the battery packs as they were a little heavy.

The science access point recognize sources of light is addressed in this activity.

 

 

IMG_5027We also pulled out our battery operated spinning lights so that students could put on their own light show. The science access point apply a push to move an object while also working on fine motor skills is addressed.

 

 

 

IMG_5001IMG_5299NYC is filled with skyscrapers. Our students made their own cityscapes using Duplo blocks to make “building” impressions in moon sand. The blocks shape made them easy for our students to hold and manipulate—-they worked perfectly!

Again the science concepts of forces and changes in motion are addressed as students apply a push to move an object.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5330Bright yellow and black taxis are EVERYWHERE in the city and a great way to get from one destination to another! We put some soft yellow pom poms and hard black beads in this box to compare and contrast. The colors gave this box a pretty striking contrast and most of our students found it intriguing.

As the students sort the items they can address the science access point recognize 2 common objects that are identical to each other. They can also address the math access point recognize 2 objects that are the same color.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5211IMG_5296Central Park is one fabulous place a taxi might take you! Besides lots of grass, the park is filled with trees and flowers so we put silk ones on a layer of basket filler. We also included a bunch of animals—–zoo animals, butterflies, dogs, ducks, squirrels, birds—–you can find all of them in Central Park!

With all that walking, you might want a snack and a NYC hotdog would certainly hit the spot 🙂 The play food hotdog usually elicited smiles when found in the box.

Recognize the leaf and flower of a plant are science access points that can be addressed in this box as students explore organization and development of living organisms. Recognize a model of a real object is another science access point addressed.

 

 

IMG_5321Another exciting thing to do on a NYC vacation would be to see a Broadway Show. For this box we brought back our Wizard of Oz discovery bottle with it’s green glitter and red Barbie shoes! Music from The Wiz—-found via a Youtube clean video search—- was recorded on our voice output device.

As the students turn and shake the bottle tracking objects in motion, a science access point, is addressed.

 

 

 

 

IMG_5615Our students—–and teachers 🙂  had a blast rocking out to “Ease on Down the Road” from The Wiz and showing their moves.

Attending to sounds from various sources is a music access point addressed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5280Our students searched for the letters N Y C in rice. As the rice was shifted aside, a picture of one of the biggest symbols of not just NYC but our country was revealed——the Statue of Liberty! This box didn’t have a lot of rice, so it made it especially easy for the hidden items to be revealed.

IMG_5063Recognize a symbol that represents America, such as the Statue of Liberty is an access point related to the understanding of structure and functions of government.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5228IMG_5259Finally, the scent of the week—–APPLE, of course 🙂  A fitting end to our tour of the Big Apple. A fabulous yellow ducky floated in our scented water and the students had a great time using the big apple sponge to give him a shower.

Explore, observe, and recognize objects in the natural world is a science access point addressed in this activity.

Our students enjoyed this week’s scent and as usual, we gave them an opportunity to communicate where they wanted the lotion.

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

IMG_5101IMG_5145On Tuesday our art project focused on the Statue of Liberty! We started by making the torch. The first step was using our paper cutters to cut green paper into a rectangle shape.

Once again, working on the math access point, recognize a 2 dimensional shape and the science access point recognize a change in an object.

Then we taped the rectangle to a toilet paper roll and ROLLED!!!! Our students did a great job and showed such concentration.

This was great for working on bilateral coordination.

 

 

 

 

IMG_5165Time for the really fun part—–stuffing tissue paper in the top to make our flame! Our students certainly did a great job demonstrating the science access point apply a push to move an object!

Prior to the group, we had cut the center out of a paper plate and stapled on some green paper that we had freehand cut for the statue’s crown.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5137                                                                                             Ta DA—–welcome to New York City 🙂

 

 

IMG_5496IMG_5455For our art project on Thursday we used apple stamping to decorate a cityscape!

We started by gluing a precut cityscape—-here is the pattern Joy drew SKMBT_42314032815140—–onto a piece of white rectangular paper. In addition to the math access point recognize a 2 dimensional shape, the science access point recognize a change in an object is also addressed.

Then we discussed the different paint colors we were going to use and asked the students to choose which color they wanted.

Recognizing an object by one observable property, such as color is the science access point addressed. Using body movement or nonverbal expression to communicate preferences is a language access point addressed.

 

 

IMG_5468Little hands and big slippery apples are not a good combination so we stuck a fork into the apple which made it so much easier for our students to handle!

So did we count the numbers of apples stamped?

OF COURSE 🙂

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5507IMG_5521Ta Da! These cityscapes turned out pretty fabulous—-the Big Apple never looked so good!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

IMG_5411After reading Cara’s book about the sights to see in New York, we decided to take a closer look with a virtual tour.  We had the students gather around the SMART board for this group.  We printed out some pictures of places from our book, such as the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, and the Brooklyn Bridge.

These pictures were put on an All Turn It Spinner so that our students were able to pick a place to go.

Cara found a couple of websites with virtual tours of New York.  The one she had planned on showing, http://www.airpano.com, didn’t end up working on our SMART board; however, it has an amazing virtual tour.  Instead, we used http://newyork.arounder.com.  This was also a virtual tour, but wasn’t an eagle eye view like airpano.

 

IMG_5393Our students loved being able to experience seeing New York with a 360 degree tour.  We used different adjectives to talk about what we were looking at.  We commented on the TALL building, the LONG bridge, and the BRIGHT lights.

Developing an understanding of language concepts related to linear measurement is addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5403The final consensus was that we all wanted to travel to New York on our next CBI trip:)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5057Hope you enjoyed our geography themed activities this week! Join us again for more fun and learning Group by Group!

The Oscars

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IMG_3839With the Academy Awards all over the news these past couple of weeks, the Oscars seemed like a perfect theme for us!  Cara’s book was a huge hit and as usual, our groups were tons of fun! In our sensory group each of our sensory boxes represented a different Oscar winning movie. In the fine motor group our students made some movie star art themed art projects. For our language group it was all about the red carpet experience! Read along to see all the fun we had.

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

IMG_3698 IMG_3889Popcorn—-gotta have some at the movies! Our first box was filled with popcorn kernels and items related to our theme including: Disney princess figures, a pirate ship wreck, pirate beads, and an Indiana Jones duck! There was a “Music Man” maraca to shake and an Alice in Wonderland cupcake that squeaked. Since the Academy Awards take place in California, we tossed in a state magnet and finally—–a mini Oscar statue (thanks Ms. Caressa!) This was a great box—-something for everyone!

In addition to lots of opportunities for vocabulary building, science concepts of forces and changes in motion were explored with some of the items. Specifically the science access point recognize that pushing or pulling an object makes it move is addressed.

The world in spatial terms is also explored and the social studies access point associate an object, picture, or symbol with a location is addressed.

IMG_3758The students got to make their own Shrek ogres using our green Floam, some potato head features and 2 plastic pegboard pegs—–perfect ogre ears :). Floam has an interesting texture and while you can mold it, it doesn’t “feel” sticky. Pretty cool stuff!

It’s great for working on bilateral coordination as it is squished and molded into roundish heads.

We explored organization and development of living organisms addressing the science access point recognize one or more external body parts.

 

 

 

 

IMG_4038We loved the way our Wizard of Oz discovery bottle turned out! We mixed some green tinted hair gel with water and green glitter. Then we put in 3 red Barbie shoes—–they looked just like ruby slippers!

The Unique Curriculum intermediate unit this month explores the theme of movement so this bottle, along with other items in our boxes compliments it.

Science concepts of forces and motion are explored. In addition motion of objects is explored with the science access point track objects in motion.

 

 

 

IMG_3996IMG_3738Our Wizard of Oz box also included a slinky rainbow and this was a HUGE hit with our students! Some of them loved SLOWLY pulling it apart. Others pulled it as wide as they could make it and then shook it to see it vibrate. Either way——–fun was had!

Of course forces and changes in motion were explored with the science access point recognize that pushing and pulling an object makes it move. Forms of energy are explored with the access point recognize the change in motion of an object.

 

 

 

IMG_3707The students had so much fun with our Pirates of the Caribbean box! Along with tons of sparkly gold beads were an eye patch and hook so they could get into character if they wanted.

Again the science access point recognize external body parts is explored. In addition tool use is practiced as the hook plunders for beads—-arrgg!

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_3886The number 3 and 3 plastic snakes were buried in the sand of our Indiana Jones box—–guess he probably wouldn’t like this box very much 🙂

The science access point match animals that are the same can be addressed with this activity. This access point is related to the concept of diversity and evolution of living organisms.

Recognizing when 1 or 2 items have been added to or removed from sets of objects to 3 is a math access point addressed. This access point is related to developing understandings of multiplication and division and strategies for basic multiplication facts and related division facts.

 

 

 

 

IMG_3926IMG_4048Blue “genie” oobleck——for Aladdin of course!!!! We sprinkled blue raspberry Koolaid onto our oobleck observing as it changed from white to blue!

As usual, fun was had as our little scientists pushed, pulled, and grabbed handfuls of this gloppy goo 🙂

Recognizing that the appearance of a material has changed is a science access point related to the concept of changes in matter.

 

 

 

 

IMG_3730For our nod to Snow White we washed the oobleck off hands and arms using an apple sponge. The water was scented with lavender vanilla scented bath gel from Bath and Bodyworks chosen because when Snow White ate the apple she fell asleep…….and lavender makes you feel relaxed…… Ok, kind of a stretch but we went with it 🙂

Properties of matter are addressed with the science access point recognize water as a liquid.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_3773The matching lotion was used to send our students off with memories of all the things they learned. Recognize and respond to different types of sensory stimuli is the science access point addressed and is related to the organization and development of living organisms concepts.

FINE MOTOR GROUP

IMG_3822Our Tuesday art project had the students putting their own stars on the Hollywood walk of fame! The students counted the sides of our grey rectangular piece of paper—-and then we counted out one for each student. After they “wrote” their names, we painted their hands with dark grey paint and stamped them onto the paper.

Using appropriate vocabulary to compare shapes according to attributes and properties is promoted as the math access point recognize common objects with 2 dimensional shapes is addressed in this activity.

 

 

 

 

IMG_3791The students chose which glittery star they wanted and then glued a picture of their face onto the star.

Squeezing the glue is great for hand strengthening of course! Pincer grasp skills and eye hand coordination are promoted when placing the picture.

Effectively communicating wants and needs to a familiar person using gestures is a language access point.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_3858IMG_3881The star was then glued down onto the paper and——–

TA DA!!!!!

IMG_3840A few new stars on the Hollywood walk of fame!

On Thursday we made our own little Oscar statues!

IMG_4168Joy drew an outline of an Oscar onto gold colored paper. You can print out the outline here: oscar award. It was then glued onto a toilet roll so it could stand up.

Glue was diluted with water and the students used a paint brush to apply it to the paper.

Recognizing that pushing and pulling an object makes it move is a science access point addressed as the students paint with their brushes.

 

 

 

 

IMG_4203Gold glitter was then added for that authentic look 🙂

IMG_4161While some of our students were able to able the glitter independently, most of them needed a little help.

We stopped periodically to ask  them “do we need more?”. They used a Go Talk to communicate whether they needed to add more glitter or if they were all done.

Solving problems involving small quantities of objects or actions using language such as enough, too much, or more is a math access point related to understandings of addition and subtraction.

Using technology resources to support learning is a language access point.

 

The finished product looked fabulous!

IMG_4230                                                                                     We’d like to thank the Academy………..

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

We’ve talked about some movies that have won Oscars.  We’ve earned a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and received an Oscar.  Now it’s time to walk down the red carpet!  But of course, before getting near the red carpet, we need to be dressed for the occasion.

IMG_4066We printed out pictures of all of the different things we could wear and bring to the red carpet, such as sunglasses, sports coats, feather boas, top hats, and earrings.  The pictures were put on an All-Turn-It Spinner which was activated using a switch.

Our students took turns activating the switch and seeing what they would be wearing.  A couple of our students were able to verbalize what they landed on.

Using an input device, such as a switch to interact with a technology resource is a language access point.

 

 

IMG_4059IMG_4108We talked about putting the clothes/objects ON.  It was neat to see how many of our students got so excited to dress up! Such a fun way to practice dressing skills!

But really, who doesn’t get a LITTLE excited about getting all fancy 🙂

Communicating recognition of familiar objects and communicating about a selected object are language access points.

 

 

 

Time for a quick interview with Entertainment News…….

IMG_4116then off to the red carpet!

 

IMG_4132IMG_4120We had taped down some red paper to act as our red carpet.  One by one our little movie stars walked the red carpet and were photographed in their fancy attire.  They had fun with that!

After the red carpet they were treated to a movie on the smart board.  Our version of the Oscars was a success!  So much so that a couple of our students didn’t want to give back their costumes 🙂  Sadly, they had to and we talked about taking things OFF.

 

 

 

 

IMG_3969Hope you enjoyed seeing all the fun we had with the Oscars. Be sure and come back next week—–there will be more fun and learning Group by Group!

Christmas Traditions

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IMG_9092It was a busy week with a special program affecting our group schedule a little but we still had fun exploring our Christmas Traditions theme!  Cara used pictures submitted by staff members for her book and our students really enjoyed looking at the pictures and labeling things they saw—-such as the Christmas tree and Santa Claus. Our sensory boxes were bright and colorful with lots of Christmas related items to explore. The fine motor group had two cute projects and the language group went on a Christmas parade!

 

 

 

Sensory Group

IMG_9058Colorful lights are a Christmas tradition that we find decorating trees and houses. We  put 2 sets of colorful battery operated lights and some shiny garland in this box. The garland reflected the lights and made the box even more eye catching—–and mesmerizing 🙂

This one was a favorite!

This addresses the science access point recognizing sources of light.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_8848IMG_8877This box was filled with plastic pine branches and holly leaves. We also put in some red garland, shiny beads, and a little Christmas stocking. All sorts of fun textures and items to explore! Of course, we had to include a couple of Santas, a little elf, a wrapped present, a nutcracker, and some jingle bells—all traditional Christmas symbols.

We also included a voice output device with the song Jingle Bells—-it got played ALOT 🙂

Science access points addressed include recognizing common objects related to science by name, such as plant and recognizing a model of a real object.

This activity also addresses the social studies access point, associating a celebration with an event, such as a holiday.

 

 

 

IMG_9018Red and green are considered Christmas colors. We put shiny, hard beads and soft, round pom poms in this box.

Lots of opportunities to compare and contrast materials. It addresses the science access point identifying common objects by one observable property, such as color. It also addresses the science access point recognizing two objects that are identical to each other.

The math access point recognizing a 3 dimensional object (sphere) is also addressed.

 

 

 

 

IMG_8868Red and green are also the colors of our rice box—-red rice and green split peas! Wow, this was such a pretty  box—so eye catching! Hidden in the box were 3 letter C’s to find. We also taped some Christmas tree wrapping paper to the bottom of the box—-a fun picture to find as the rice was pushed aside.

In addition to tactile and visual discrimination skills, the science access point of applying a push to move an object is addressed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_9068A giant Christmas tree cookie cutter was used with our peppermint scented green playdough. Although is smelled pretty yummy, our students did a really good job of refraining from tasting it!

Recognizing that pushing and pulling an object makes it move is a science access point addressed in this activity.

As more than 1 tree is formed, the science access point recognizing two objects that are identical to each other is also addressed.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_8825IMG_9065We swirled red food coloring into our “candy cane” oobleck. It turned out pretty cool—starting out with swirling color and ending up a delightful pink!

As usual, our students loved playing with it—oobleck is simply amazing stuff 🙂

The science access points recognizing a change in an object and recognizing that pushing and pulling an object makes it move are addressed here.

 

 

 

IMG_9039IMG_8895This week, we found our scent at Joann’s—-Gingerbread!

We used the water to rinse the oobleck off our hands AND address the science access point recognizing water as a liquid.

As well as the science access point observing and recognizing that people need water —to clean off oobeck, of course 🙂

The matching lotion smelled very yummy and after the students had smelled the lotion, we asked them which body part they wanted the lotion rubbed on. This scent was a real hit, ALL our students loved it!

This activity addresses the science access point recognizing external body parts and the language access point communicating a preference for a familiar action.

 

 

 

Fine Motor Group

IMG_8923On Tuesday we made some super cool reindeer using floor puzzle pieces. We have done this before and we liked them so much, we decided to do it again! Our super volunteer, Sarah, glued the pieces together for us.

We started by using our sponge brushes to paint the reindeer brown.

Recognizing a change in a object is addressed as the white puzzle pieces become brown.

 

 

 

 

IMG_8949 IMG_8951Next we asked our students to find their eyes, then put 2 round googlie eyes on their reindeer. Placing the googlie eyes helps to promote pincer grasp skills.

It also addresses the science access point recognizing external body parts.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_8948IMG_8975Rudolph needs a bright shiny red nose, of course! We added a cute pompom noses after asking the students to find their own nose.

Again, this activity addresses pincer grasp skills and identifying external body parts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_8990Our students were thrilled with their reindeer!

Time to run, run Rudolph—-

TaDA!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Thursday, our students turned into little elves!

IMG_9188We started by discussing the color of the paper we were going to use. Our students did a great job of finding the color green. We were so excited when we realized that everyone had answered correctly!

Identifying classroom objects by one observable property, such as color is a science access point addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_9226IMG_9211Then we used our paper cutters and electric scissors to turn our green rectangles into triangles!

The science access point recognizing a change in an object is addressed here.

The math access point recognizing 2 dimensional shapes is also addressed.

 

 

 

 

IMG_9279Time to add some decorations—working on pincer grasp and eye hand coordination skills!

Of course, we counted each decoration as it was added to the hat.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We glued the hat onto our pre-made faces, made from paper plates (thanks again Sarah!).

IMG_9241IMG_9250IMG_9275Elves ready and reporting to work 🙂

IMG_9289IMG_9307                                           HO HO HO

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Language Group

IMG_9099After reading Cara’s book, we made Christmas cards for the other elementary classes.  The students got to pick what they wanted on the front of the cards by activating the All-Turn-It spinner.  The pictures on the spinner were: Christmas tree, Santa Claus, bells, angel, reindeer, snowman, and an elf.

Our students did so well watching the spinner and they are also learning not to hit the switch but to push it to activate it.

The language access point, use technology resources to support learning is addressed here.

 

 

 

IMG_9139After finishing up the cards, we dressed our students up with different Christmas props.  We let them look in the mirror to see themselves which is always fun to do.  The different props we had coincided with the different pictures that were on the spinner.  We talked about putting things “on” and trying not to take them “off”.

Responding to specific information about familiar objects and routines is a language access point addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_9133We also made sure everyone had some jingle bells 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_9160IMG_9143Time for a Christmas parade!  We went over who was “first” and who was “last” then we turned on some Christmas music, rang bells, and paraded through the halls to deliver the cards.  SO FUN!

Surprisingly, the props stayed on our students the entire time!  The students in the other classrooms loved watching our language group parade around their room!

The math access point, recognizing the next step in a simple pattern or sequence of activities is addressed here.

Responding to familiar persons is a language access point addressed.

 

 

 

IMG_9171It’s been a great celebration these past 2 weeks, but now we’re all ready for a break!  Since next week there are only 2 full days of school, we decided not to have groups.  We’ll see you in 2014 with some more fun Group by Group!