Tag Archives: play dough

Day of the Dead

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We had fun learning about Day of the Dead this week. It is a holiday celebrated November 1st and 2nd in Mexico. Our sensory groups explored boxes related to different facts about the holiday. The fine motor groups and language group made art projects inspired by sugar skulls!

 

 

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

The students sorted pompoms in the colors of the Mexican flag—–red, green, and white.

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

These eye catching beans reminded us of all the colorful decorations and costumes seen in pictures of Day of the Dead celebrations.

The students searched for letter D’s of different sizes or watched them sift through fingers.

 

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

 

 

 

 

This box had different items related to Day of the Dead. We put in some toy people and the word FAMILY since the holiday is all about ancestors. There were also some flower petals, beads, skeletons, and musical instruments—-including a maraca that named colors and numbers in Spanish when shaken!

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

 

 

 

 

 

Salt, representing the “salt of life”, is also a part of the celebration. In this box we put salt and some tools the students could use to explore it. There was also a picture of a calaveras or sugar skull to find underneath.

 

 

Recognize that pushing and pulling an object makes it move, is a science access point. Track objects in motion is another science access point that can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

Lots of candles are placed on altars during the Day of the Dead. Since we can’t use real candles at school, we used our Wikki Stix and some light toys to simulate them.

The students really had a lot of fun with this box!

 

Some of the students preferred the Wikki Stix…….

but the lighted toys were also a big hit of course!

 

 

 

 

 

Recognize a source of light is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

Colorful flowers are seen everywhere during Day of the Dead celebrations. Our students used a flower shaped cookie cutter with red and yellow play dough to decorate this eye catching sugar skull tray we found at the Dollar General store.

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

 

 

 

 

 

There were some fun lighted flowers to look at in our water basin this week. We also included some different sized scoops.

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Bath and BodyWorks vanilla sugar was the perfect scent for us this week. This sweet scent is always popular with the students—-whether rubbed on hands, arms, or behind ears!

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

On Tuesday the students decorated a sugar skull picture we found on the Coloring Castle website.

We also used some stampers we made using dish scrubbers and craft foam flowers.

 

First the students chose which color paint to start, either RED or YELLOW, using communication symbols.

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

 

 

 

 

We applied the paint to the stampers and encouraged the students to stamp UP and DOWN, helping them as needed.

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Ta Da!!!!!

 

 

 

 

                                                         Check out our sugar skulls!

 

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday the students decorated these huge felt sugar skulls we found at the Dollar Tree store. Since they were one dollar a piece it was a little bit of a splurge for us but we couldn’t resist!

First, using communication symbols, the students identified the colors of the glitter we planned to use.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then the students painted their skulls with glue.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Time to “shake, shake, shake that glitter”!

The science access point recognize an action as fast or slow, can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next they glued some silk flowers onto their skulls. After each flower was glued down we asked the students if they were “all done” or wanted “more”. Of course, we also counted how many flowers each student put on their skull.

 

 

Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

Ta DA!!!!!!

 

 

 

 

 

                                     Such colorful calaveras!

 

 

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

We put our own spin on edible calaveras this week and made our version of sugar skulls.  Here’s the recipe: Lets Make Our Version Of Sugar Skulls

We started out by pouring some milk into a small cup and then made it edible paint by adding food coloring.  Our students got to STIR the food coloring around and watched as it turned our white milk different colors.

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

 

 

 

 

Once the “paint” was all mixed up, we counted out how many plates and pieces of bread we needed for all of our friends. Each student got to paint a piece of bread, requesting the colors they wanted using communication boards.

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

 

 

 

 

 

After they finished painting their bread, we started to make the face.  We had to count out 2 banana slices for the eyes.  We talked about how the eyes had to go on the TOP of the bread.  Then we counted out 2 blueberries to put on TOP of the banana slices.

 

 

 

 

Next, we added the nose.  Each student got 1 half of a strawberry.  We talked about how the strawberry goes in the MIDDLE of the bread.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally, we used 5 miniature marshmallows for the teeth.  Students had to indicate that they needed MORE marshmallows if they did not receive the correct amount.  We talked about how the marshmallows go on the BOTTOM of the bread.

Associate quantities with number names and identify spatial relationships, are both math access points.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wow!!  These turned out great and were lots of fun to make.

                     Pretty tasty too!

 

 

 

We enjoyed learning about Dia de los Muertos this week and hope you did too.

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

Johnny Appleseed

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Johnny Appleseed Day is September 26 so we decided to learn a little more about him this week! Our sensory groups explored boxes that were all about apples. The fine motor groups made apple themed art projects and the language group made a yummy apple snack.

 

 

 

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

We turned one of our umbrellas into an apple tree this week and it was a total hit with the students! There were 3 different apples to find and a voice output with the song “Don’t sit under the apple tree with anyone else but me”—–an oldie but a goodie!

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

 

 

 

 

As we said, this umbrella tree really captured the students’ attention.

So we couldn’t resist adding a few more super cute photos 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

A is for APPLE——the students searched  for letter A’s in green rice with black bean “apple seeds”. There was also a map of his home state to find at the bottom of the box.

Identify objects by observable properties, such as shape, is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

Apples come in lots of different colors but mostly RED, YELLOW, or GREEN. In this box the students sorted colorful “apple” pompoms into matching plates.

The science access point identify objects by one observable property, such as color, and the math access point recognize objects with three-dimensional objects, such as balls (spheres) can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

The students used apple shaped cookie cutters to make BIG and LITTLE apples in red moon sand. We didn’t actually have apple cookie cutters so we used the pumpkin cutters we had on hand since they are a pretty similar shape—–sometimes you just have to make do with what you have 🙂

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Apple seeds are kind of black and brown so we thought these small beans would work as a nice stand in for them. There was a little dish to fill and a measuring spoon for fun scooping practice.

 

 

The math access point recognize when an object or person is added to or is taken away from a situation, can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

We added some green food coloring to shaving cream this week. We encouraged the students to draw apple shaped circles or straight line stems.

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

 

 

 

 

 

Hands were rinsed in apple scented water with a floating plastic apple, watering can, scoop, and an apple shaped sponge. Lots of different things to interact with here and the students had a blast.

The math access point recognize differences in sizes of containers that hold liquids, can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

The watering can was especially fun and

the students were fascinated by the streaming water!

 

 

 

 

 

Our apple scent this week was country apple from Bath and BodyWorks.

It was a pretty yummy scent that left our students smelling like delicious little apples 🙂

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

On ‘Tuesday we made apples using this template: apple

We started by identifying the color of our paper shred.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next the students painted glue (watered down a little bit to make it easier to spread) with a sponge brush.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then came the fun part—–dropping handfuls of paper shred onto their apples! They really liked this part.

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

 

 

 

 

 

A little green leaf was added and ………..Ta DA!

                                                                   Just delicious!

 

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday the students made apple trees. We used green plates from the Dollar Tree (a whole stack for $1, how can you beat that!) and leftover corrugated cardboard for the tree trunks. This was a really cheap craft—–and we like that 🙂

First the students identified the shape of the plates and the color of our “apple” pompoms

Recognize an object with a two-dimensional shape such as a circle, is a math access point.

 

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

 

 

 

 

Then they practiced eye hand coordination skills by dipping red pompoms into glue and then gluing them onto their “trees”. Of course, we counted the number of apples on each tree!

 

The math access points recognize when an object is added to a situation and associate quantities with number names, can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

Ta Da!

 

 

 

 

                                                        Look at our apple orchard!

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

This week we made our own applesauce!  We also learned a lot about patience since the food processor was acting up a bit during group.  Here is a link to the recipe we used: Let_s Make Cinnamon Applesauce

We started out by peeling the apples.  We got to use an apple peeler which was pretty cool to our students.  They helped us turn the handle to make the peeler work.

 

 

 

We found that the peeler also cored AND cut the apple so we got to skip that step 🙂

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

 

 

 

 

We checked out the string of apple peel!

Some of the students thought it was pretty fascinating but others weren’t quite so sure about it.

 

 

 

 

Next, we had to add some lemon juice.  Each of our students got to try a little taste of the lemon juice.  We talked about how it tasted SOUR.

 

 

Then we added some lemon juice to the food processor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our students helped turn the food processor on.  We found that we had to add a little bit of water to help get the mixture going.

Recognize a way to stop an object from moving is a science access point that can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

We poured the mixture into a bowl.  Next, we added some sugar and cinnamon.  Our students smelled the cinnamon and we talked about how it smelled sweet.

We stirred everything up and voila!  No-cook applesauce!

 

The math access point solve problems involving quantities of objects or actions using language, such as enough, too much, or more, can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

Yummy deliciousness

this was a hit 🙂

 

 

 

Hope you enjoyed learning a little bit about Johnny Appleseed.

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

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!

What Teachers Do For Fun!

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Our staff are such a fun loving group that we decided to showcase them for our first theme of the year! We thought our students would also get a kick out of seeing the adults around them being a little goofy 🙂 The sensory, fine motor, and language groups this week were all related to the different ways the staff have fun!

So, welcome back to school and let the fun and learning begin!

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

Every time we have an event at school, someone dresses up as Hootie the Owl—-our school mascot. For Hootie we put a little owl and the letters O-W-L in a box filled with birdseed. We don’t use birdseed a lot but it has a really cool feel that our students really loved exploring.

The science access point recognize common objects in the environment is addressed here.

 

 

 

 

Digging holes on a sandy beach is a fun way to spend an afternoon! Our little beach contains kinetic sand which is always a lot of fun especially with the little shovel and rake we put in this box.

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

 

 

 

 

Playing with their dogs is another way some of our teachers have fun. The students used a dog shaped cookie cutter to cut out some green play dough puppies. We chose the unusual color because it’s Ms. Robin’s favorite color and she gave us her picture for our book 🙂

The science access point apply a push to move an object is addressed here. The math access point associate quantities with number names can also be addressed.

 

 

 

 

Our annual Talent Contest is always a hit with both students and staff showing off their talents! The Dancing Divas were totally fun and this box contained some props and voice output device with recorded music letting the students channel their own inner divas!

Recognize and respond to different types of sensory stimuli is a science access point that can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 


Joy got to hang out with some Norwegian mountain trolls last summer—-how cool is that! In this box, 3 laminated trolls were added to climb around or hide in our grey Floam mountain.

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

 

 

 

 

Everyone knows teachers LOVE to glitter things—–so this week we glittered our shaving cream! We chose a bright pink glitter that was REALLY eye-catching.

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

 

 

 

 

Our water play basin was a little smaller than the water slide from Fun Day but there was still fun to be had. The students were pretty intrigued watching the spinning water wheel.

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

 

 

 

 

 


Ms. Maria sure looked like she was having fun eating her Columbian mango dessert so we used Bath and BodyWorks mango scent for both our water play and lotion this week. It was a nice sweet scent that the students really liked.

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

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

On Tuesday our students used glitter to decorate some “Dancing Diva” musical notes made from black construction paper using this: music note

We started by letting our students choose which color glitter they wanted to use. They had a choice of green, red, or purple—–with the overwhelming favorite being PURPLE!

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

 

 

 

 

After squeezing out some glue, the students used a brush to spread it around.

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

 

 

 

 

Singing to the tune of that KC and The Sunshine Band song it’s “Time to SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE, SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE, Shake that glitter”!

The math access point solve problems involving small quantities of actions using language, such as enough, too much, or more can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

TA la la DA!

                                                                 So sparkly!

 

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday the students again used glitter but this time they decorated some wooden door hangers. These were left over from another project and we had just enough for this group!

First the students chose their door hanger and then used  brushes to “paint” them with glue.

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

 

 

 

 

 

Next the students identified each glitter color using communication symbols.

Match objects with similar observable properties, such as color is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then the students used the different colored glitters to decorate their door hangers. Shaking that glitter again 🙂

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

 

 

 

 

 

Ta DA!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                             Glitterville!!!

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

It is SOOOOO hot here, so our recipe was a cold one that was very appreciated!  This week we made mango frosties.  Here is the recipe we used: Let_s Make a Mango Frosty!

Throughout the group, picture symbols were presented to the students to help them locate the appropriate symbols on their communication boards.  The adults in the room helped model the use of the boards.

We started by measuring out the coconut milk.  We talked about how we needed a measuring cup rather than measuring spoons.  We then added the honey, vanilla, and salt.  Our students were great helpers and poured each ingredient into the food processor.

Recognize when an object is added to or taken away from a situation is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

Since Cara accidentally forgot the lime at home (whoops!), we skipped that part and went onto the frozen mangoes and bananas.   We brought the frozen fruit around and each student touched the bag.  We talked about how COLD the bags were.

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

 

 

 

 

 

Once all the ingredients were in the food processor, our students helped turn it on by activating a switch.  It took a little while to get really smooth so each student had a chance to help out.

The math access point solve problems involving small quantities of objects or action using language, such as enough, too much, or more is addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

When the frosty was ready, we counted out cups for each of our friends.

                                                         We needed 7!

Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

 

Then, our favorite part, we got to eat!

YUM!!!!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What a great start to the school year!

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

National Siblings Day

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April 10 was National Sibling Day and we thought it would be a fun way for staff and students to participate in a unit. The sensory groups explored boxes related to siblings of some of our staff members. The fine motor groups made some fun art projects to share with their siblings. The language group performed science experiments!

 

 

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

Ms. Cara has a sister who lives in South Africa. This box was filled with a variety of animals found in Africa including large, medium, and small zebras! There was also a purple lei with flowers that resembled jacaranda which are grown in South Africa.

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

 

 

 

 

Ms. Jane’s brother works for NASA so we made a space themed box for him. In the black kinetic sand were an astronaut, star, and planet to find.

The science access point recognize a space related object can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

Both of Ms. Thea’s siblings graduated from the University of Florida. Our Go Gators box had orange and blue play dough along with a little gator cookie cutter!

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

 

 

 

 

 

Ms. Caressa and Ms. Elaine both have sisters who are involved in music. This box was filled with some fun music instruments as well as some colorful scarves to wave around.

The students had fun with this one!

Recognize objects that create sounds is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

Ms. Jen and her brother are from Iowa which is famous for its corn. We put 3 colorful letter I’s to find in this box of corn kernels.

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

 

 

 

 

Ms. Vicki and her sisters like to get facials together. We put some food coloring into our shaving cream so the students could give our cartoon Ms. Vicki a facial. This was silly, messy, and LOTS of fun!

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

 

 

 

 

Ms. Joi and her sisters are from Miami. We put some colorful flashing lights and a letter M to fish out of the warm blue water.

The science access point recognize sources of light can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

Since apple blossoms are the state flower of Arkansas—where Ms. Robin’s sister lives—-we chose Bath and Body Works country apple for our 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 door hanger presents for THEIR siblings!

First they identified the circle shape that was cut out from the top of the door hanger.

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

 

 

 

 

Then they got to choose which door hanger to decorate!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next they used paint brushes to apply glue.

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

 

 

 

 

Time for glitter—-lots of it!

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ta Da—-we love how these turned out!

Our students are going to have some very happy siblings 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday the students made picture frames for their siblings!

First they identified the color of our paint—-sunshine yellow!

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then they applied the paint to their frames and added a cute smiley sun craft foam sticker!

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

 

 

 

 

Ta DA—–so colorful!!!!

There are going to be some more happy siblings!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

We thought it was really neat that Mr. Noah’s sister is a scientist, so we decided to do some experiments ourselves since we haven’t done them lately.  To make it EXTRA awesome, though, we used a black light so that we could have glowing experiments!

Here are the experiments that we did: Glowing Experiments.  These experiments were found on http://www.growingajeweledrose.com website.

We started off by doing our Glowing Oil and Water experiment.  Our students got to HELP squeeze some glow in the dark paint into 3 small cups of water.  They had to STIR it all up so that it was completely MIXED.

  They were so cool looking when they were placed by the black light!

 

 

 

 

 

Next, we put vegetable oil in a pie pan so that it completely covered the bottom of the pan.  Then, our students took turns SQUEEZING the paint water into the pie pan.  We observed how the oil and water never mixed.

Really neat!

 

 

 

 

 

The next experiment, Glowing Volcano, was even more neat!  Our students helped POUR some baking soda into a plastic container.  They got to SQUEEZE some paint in and also just a bit of dish soap.

 

 

 

 

Once the vinegar was POURED into the container was when the magic started. We did this experiment with each of the colors so by the end it was a mix-up of pink, yellow, and orange.

All of the colors were so COOL! It looked like a galaxy!

 

 

 

What a great week! Join us next time for more fun and learning—–Group by Group!

The History of Basketball

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With March Madness going on we thought it would be fun to learn a little bit about the history of the sport. The sensory group explored boxes related to different facts about the sport. The fine motor groups made basketball themed art projects and the language group played an adapted version of the game.

 

 

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

James Naismith invented the game of basketball. This box was dedicated to him and had lots of Canadian symbols since that is where he was born. We included a toy stethoscope because not only was he a PE teacher but he was also a physician—-how cool is that!

Recognize a model of a real object is a science access point that can be addressed with this activity.

 

 

 

 

Using Koolaid we made our play dough a nice bright basketball orange. The students could make balls, stamp letter B’s, or just squish and squeeze the play dough. They throughly had a good time.

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

 

 

 

 

Basketball is played with 2 teams consisting of 5 players each.We couldn’t pass up the opportunity to reinforce some math facts with this box! There were 5 blue and 5 red items for the students to explore and sort——-or shake 🙂

The math access point solve simple problems involving joining or separating small quantities of objects can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

There were more opportunities for sorting with this box filled with beads in the colors of the NBA—-red, white, and blue! Of course, it was mostly an opportunity to wear or shake the beads!

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

 

 

 

 

In 1936 basketball became an Olympic sport. Using giant fluffy chenille stems the students had fun making circles, joining them together, and taking them apart. The chenille stems also provided another opportunity to discuss colors.

Recognize when an object is added to or taken away from a situation is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

The students were encouraged to draw circles/balls in this orange tinted shaving cream.

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

 

 

 

 

We put some foam numbers in our water play this week. The students got to “score” by scooping up either 2 or 3 points!

Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

Since the original hoops were actually peach baskets, peach was the obvious scent to use this week for our water play and lotion! Our students are getting pretty good at using the Pixon board to tell us where they want the lotion.

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

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

On Tuesday the students made their own basketball playbooks!

We started with a rectangular piece of paper with a basketball court sketch and some X’s and O’s drawn on it by Ms. Zenia the fabulous OT intern!

Then the fun began! The students got to operate a switch activated drawing tool to illustrate their play calling. There were certainly some interesting strategies planned 🙂

Distinguish between objects in motion and objects at rest is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

TA Da—-game on!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday the students made paper plate basketballs!

We started by identifying the shape of our plates and color of our paint using communication symbols.

Recognize an object with a two-dimensional shape is a math access point. Identify objects by one observable property, such as color, is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

Then the students stamped their plates with a dish scrubber. We emphasized stamping UP and DOWN.

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

 

 

 

 

TA DA—-time to play!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

We had our own tournament today in honor of March Madness.  We used an All-Turn-It spinner that had 2’s and 3’s all around it to signify the points that basketball players make during a game.

Both adults and students got to be in the tournament.  We started out by picking 2 names out of a bag.  These 2 people would play against each other.

We had communication boards in front of each student so that they could convey “my turn”.  The 2 “players” took turns and had 3 times each to press the switch and see what points they got.

 

 

 

 

We used a white board to write down the points that each player made.  Once they each went 3 times, we added up the scores and talked about who had MORE points.

Once we figured out who the winner was, the next 2 players competed and so on until we finally had an overall winner.

 

 

 

 

This group was so great today because it gave the adults a great chance to model the use of the communication boards while they were playing the game.  Everyone got so excited, too, when we had to go into overtime if the players tied.

                                               Finally, we had a winner!

 

 

 

Of course, we can’t NOT have a little snack in this group so we summed it all up with some basketball shaped Vanilla Wafers 🙂

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

Youth Art Month

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March is Youth Art Month and to celebrate we learned about some famous artists. Each of the sensory group boxes represented a different artist. The fine motor group drew inspiration from some of the styles of famous artists to make their art projects and the language group made food art! This week was lots of fun and our theme also compliments the Unique Curriculum unit our students are working on.

 

 

 

 

 

SENSORY GROUP

Salvador Dali has a very famous painting with some melting clocks in a desert landscape. We replicated it using kinetic sand and some craft foam clocks (drawn by Ms. Erika) so there were 3 “melting” clocks to find. It was a fun box and the students were pretty intrigued with the clocks!

Associate quantities with number names is a math access point.

 

 

 

 

The students cut different sized stars out of our Vincent Van Gogh starry night play dough! With the added blue and gold silver glitter, it sparkled quite nicely.

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

 

 

 

 

 

Harold Newton was one of the Highway Men famous for their Florida landscape paintings. This Florida box was fun to put together and filled with symbols of our state such as flamingoes, dolphins, pine trees, flowers, and oranges. Lots of things to explore!

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

 

 

 

 

 

Olivia is a character in illustrator Ian Falconer’s book series.  Since Olivia is a pig, we went all pink with this box. We pulled out our pink sand and included a cute little toy pig. This play sand is really fine and perfect for sifting—-our students LOVED watching it fall from the sifter back into the box!

Track a falling object is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

Piet Mondrian used primary colors for his grid paintings. We put blue, red, and yellow pompoms to sort into matching plates in this box. Some of the students could do this independently while others needed help.

Either way, this was a very bright, eye catching box!

Match objects by one observable properties, such as color, is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

Shaving cream was perfect for drawing geometric shapes—–like those used by Alexander Calder in his mobiles.

The science access point apply a push to move an object is addressed here.

 

 

 

 

Hands were rinsed in a seascape worthy of JMW Turner. There was a little sailing ship and octopus to find in the water. There were also 2 scoops, one of which had a hole in the bottom for some fun experimentation as well as scooping practice.

The science access point recognize differences in objects can be addressed here.

 

 

 

 

 

Flowers are the theme of some of Georgia O’Keefe’s famous paintings. She made one called Plumeria so we used that as our scent this week. We used Bath and Bodyworks plumeria and it was a light floral scent that the students really liked.

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

 

 

 

 

 

FINE MOTOR GROUP

On Tuesday the students made “drip” paintings like Jackson Pollock.

First we discussed the shape of our paper and identified it using communication symbols.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then the students used more communication symbols to pick colors to use.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We used these kids eye droppers that we found at Walmart.  They were fairly inexpensive and a nice size. Most of the students needed a little help with this part of the activity. They were all fascinated with the process!

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

 

 

 

 

Ta Da!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                                                                    So colorful!

 

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday the students made art projects inspired by Gustav Klimt.

We discussed the shape of our paper and identified it using communication symbols.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then the students used a variety of cutting tools—-paper cutters, adaptive scissors, and regular scissors—-to cut strips of colorful paper.

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

 

 

 

 

 

Next we mixed all the pieces together and shared them among the students to turn OVER and glue DOWN on to their paper.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Klimt liked to add gold leaf to his paintings. We didn’t have any gold leaf but we did have gold paint and that worked pretty well!

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

 

 

 

 

 

Ta Da!

                                                                                Just fabulous!

 

 

 

 

 

LANGUAGE GROUP

Since you know that we like to incorporate food into our language groups, it was a great excuse to use food to make art!

Each of our students got a piece of white bread which served as their blank canvas.  We started out talking about the primary colors: RED, BLUE, and YELLOW.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

We poured some sweetened condensed milk into 5 small cups.  We put RED food coloring into one cup, BLUE food coloring into another cup, and YELLOW food coloring into a third cup (we put 10 drops of each coloring into each cup).  Then the students got to stir the colors using brand new paint brushes!

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

 

 

 

 

 

We the talked about mixing the primary colors to make new colors. First we showed our students RED and BLUE and asked them to PREDICT what color it would make.  We did the same with BLUE and YELLOW.

Then the students mixed up the colors again—–they thought it was really neat to see the colors changing!

Observe and recognize a predictable cause-effect relationship related to a science topic is a science access point.

 

 

 

 

 

Next, each of our students used communication symbols to indicate what color they wanted to paint with.

The colors ended up being so vibrant on the bread—-they really popped!

We found that we have some pretty good artists in our group!

 

 

 

 

Finally, after their edible art was complete, they got to eat their masterpieces.

YUM!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We will be gone next week for spring break but will back in a couple of weeks with more fun and learning——-Group by Group!