Apples to Applesauce & All Things Fall

Hello, Everyone!

Fall is here!  I LOVE everything fall and I’m excited to share how my class is celebrating the new season.  Our class focuses on a new theme each month that is aligned to every area of our curriculum to help promote generalization of skills.  This month we’re focusing on apples and all things fall.  We’ve  participated in several different fall activities to immerse our students in new experiences and promote growth in academic skills,  language skills, and social skills.

We kicked off our fall theme by walking down to the local supermarket and purchasing apples.  Our students worked on labeling street signs, greeting community members, following a shopping list, navigating through a grocery store,  and paying for their purchase.  We made applesauce with the apples that we purchased using the visual recipe listed below.

Apples to Applesauce – A Visual Recipe

 

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We’ve been working on building our language skills with a fall sentence to scene match.  I located various fall and cooking scenes to help increase communication and tact (labeling) skills.  I read the sentences aloud and the students matched them to the corresponding pictures.  This activity helped to increase spontaneous verbalization about various fall activities that they participate in with their families and classmates.

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The students were really into the squirrel eating an acorn picture prompt and were talking about it frequently.   “Squirrels eat acorns.” was a phrase that was repeated quite frequently.  I took the spontaneous language and ran with it!  We have a family favorite board game about squirrels eating acorns so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to incorporate the social skills that board games require.  I highly recommend The Sneaky, Snacky Squirrel gameimg_4438.jpg

This game incorporates fine motor skills (squirrel tweezers) to grab the acorns, matching colors, following 1-step and 2-step directions as directed by the spinner, turn-taking, etc.  Our class loves earning prizes in the form of stickers or edibles if they win the game!

Our class has also been working on weekly STEM challenges and these activities have really increased our motivation to tinker with materials.  Our students were each presented with a bag of objects that would either sink or float in a bowl full of water.  They all created their on apple boats as well and thoroughly enjoyed placing or dropping the various objects in the bowl.

 

Many of our students went on apple picking excursions with their families and benefitted from the use of a social story that I created for this experience.  Click on the link below if you’re interested in using this social story with your students or family!

Apple Picking Social Story

Thank you for joining me on the fall tour of my classroom!

 

All About Me Banner

 

 

I spent this rainy Tuesday afternoon in my classroom putting the finishing touches on my bulletin boards and lesson plans.  I’m really looking forward to a new school year and working with a new group of students.

I’m always looking for projects that my students can create to express their interests.  This can be a challenging process due to limited vocabulary and expressive language.  I decided that this year I would create my own All About Me Banner that includes pictures of real-life objects that my students can use to express their hobbies, favorite holiday, favorite food, etc.  IMG_4278I’m excited for my students to create their very own banner & to display them in the hallway of our school!

Click on the link below if you’re interested in using this product with your students!

 

All About Me Banner

 

I’m currently working on a fall social story about an apple picking experience!  I’m excited to share it with you soon!

 

Sincerely,

 

Dana Grasso

Back to School Bingo

Hello, Everyone!

Three weeks until the 2017-2018 school year begins!  I’m currently planning as much as I can before September is upon us!  I’m always looking for interesting and fun ideas to start off the school year.  I usually begin the first day by allowing my new students to become familiar with the classroom, school building, and general routines.  We have a social skills group at the conclusion of the day and my students LOVE to play bingo during this time.  They love the magnetic chip set that we use as well as winning their favorite candy as a prize.  I’m always looking far and wide for bingo games that build in language for my students.  Many of my students work on several language programs that address filling in the function of items. (e.g. “What do you do with a scissors?” (cut paper))  I find that my students show the most success with these programs when we work on them incidentally instead of during direct instruction.  I decided to create a school supply bingo game with function call out prompts to make this program more meaningful and interesting.  This game can be used throughout the school year to work on labeling the function programs.  Click the link below to try this product out in your classroom or home!

School Supply Bingo

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I hope that you’re enjoying these last weeks of summer!  Thanks for joining me!!

 

Sincerely,

 

Dana Grasso

Ice Cream Shop – A Visual Menu & Verbal Prompt Card

Hello, Everyone!

Today was the last day of our extended school year program.  I can’t believe how fast our program went this year! We went on a community outing to get ice cream so that we could celebrate all of the hard work that our students put in this summer!  We prepared for our community outing by reading stories about ice cream shops and explored various ice cream menus.  We also completed a survey and each of our students stated which flavor/toppings that they liked the best.  Then, I created an ice cream menu with pictures of the flavors and toppings to help promote independence.  I also added a verbal prompt card with blanks so that the students could role play ordering their preferred treat of choice.  This card can be taken to the ice cream shop to help increase independence with communication skills.  If you would like to use this *FREEBIE* with your students and/or children click on the link below.

Ice Cream Shop – A Visual Menu and Verbal Prompt Task Card

My students did a tremendous job generalizing these communication skills into the community.   Who doesn’t love ice cream on a hot summer day?

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