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!

 

You’re Going Camping – A Social Story

 

You’re Going Camping – A Social Story

Camping Social Story & Activities

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Hello, Everyone!

I LOVE social stories and I use them frequently in my special education classroom.  All children can benefit from the use of social stories to help make new experiences/places less scary and events more meaningful.  I use social stories before each of our community outings to help increase independence with the specific goals that my students are working on.  We’ve used social stories before going to restaurants to practice appropriate table manners before generalizing them into the community.  We’ve also used social stories to promote street and parking lot safety.   I’ve used dentist social stories that I found on YouTube before taking my son on his first dentist trip so that he knew what to expect.  Social stories are an extremely powerful tool, but they can be very challenging to find for specific situations.  My family and I recently went on a camping trip and had a wonderful time.   When we came home I thought about how students on the autism spectrum could benefit from a camping social story.  I looked for a camping social story on Pinterest, but I was unable to locate one. I decided to create a camping social story with actual pictures from our camping trip.  I like to use real pictures so that children can visualize what the experience will look like before it occurs.    I really enjoyed creating this social story because I was able to include my family in the pictures!  if you’re interested in using this social story in your home or classroom click the link below.  The social story also comes with a vocabulary page with pictures, a word to picture match activity, a 1:1 correspondence activity and a writing prompt to help promote generalization.  I hope to create additional social stories in the near future.  At the conclusion of our extended school year program my class is going to the local ice cream shop!  I’ll share a social story and corresponding activities from that experience soon!  Once again, thank you for joining me on my journey!

Sincerely,

Dana Grasso

Camping Social Story & Activities

Preview Page from Camping Social Story:

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