One of my wonderful classroom Aides, Dawn Dill, put together this apple activity to introduce our students with Autism to the taste, smell, texture, sound, and sight of apples in a few different varieties, namely red delicious, golden delicious, and granny smith.
It’s a great opportunity to document student opinions regarding their likes and dislikes versus those of their classmates. It’s also a way to introduce graphs and charts to your students in a fun and entertaining environment. Often my students are apprehensive about learning a new skill, but this teaches it to them without it feeling like they are learning. The following apple graph can be found at http://www.teachwithme.com/downloads/item/3767-apple-activities-and-crafts.
- Alphabet of Thankfulness: F is for Freebie’s! (acrowdedclassroom.wordpress.com)
I am thankful for teachers who post free items on their blogs and their Teachers Pay Teachers sites. So, to pay this forward, the following Dolch Sight Word Read Trace Write Paste are all FREE on my TpT site:
My students typically cut the Read column into individual words and paste them on the paste column in line with the correct word so they are also doing a matching exercise with this activity. Each link takes you to the entire set of words for that level. There are 7-9 pages for each set. My students do a sheet a day while we are working on these words in isolation before we move into putting them into sentences. Enjoy!
- Alphabet of Thankfulness – E is for Electronics (acrowdedclassroom.wordpress.com)
Children learn best through repetition. So, it is important to offer repetitive activities for reinforcement of skills you are teaching. In younger grades and in every level of special education, a morning calendar time is important for so many areas of learning. Click here to for more on Morning Meeting – Circle Time.
In addition to morning meeting or calendar circle, there are other daily routines that students need to be taught. These include social skills and things as simple as toileting or hand washing. When students of any age or level know what is coming next or what is expected of them, they find it easier to focus on what they are doing now. Many times, student misbehavior is caused by perceptions of things to come. To alleviate negative behaviors, students need a routine in which they can relax and know their time frames and boundaries. Some example of these would be as follows:
These picture cards were created in Board Maker, but could easily be created with clip art or by taking actual photo’s of activities and locations. Each has velcro on the back so it can be removed and manipulated as needed.
Today and every day, I am thankful for bubbles. Reinforcers are very important in a classroom of students with Autism Spectrum disorders, or really any classroom. For some students bubbles are a powerful reinforcement solution. Every student in my class responds to bubbles in a positive way, but for some, they are worth doing work that nothing else will motivate them to do. I introduce the bubbles at the same time as I introduce the task to be completed by setting both in front of the student and showing the student a first-then board.
My first-then boards are nothing more than velcro on a laminated page. They should be very simple as to not distract the student from the reason for the choice board; getting them to learn. These work great at home as well. In fact, having students use the same supports at home as they use in the classroom are a powerful aid in their learning process. They learn to follow instructions the same way wherever they are. They begin to realize that Mom, Dad, Teachers, everyone wants them to follow the same task for reward system and it becomes not only easier for the student to follow, but easier for parents and teachers to manage. Most people, including our students, are creatures of habit. The more the habit crosses from school to home, the more quickly they will master it.
So, today I am thankful for bubbles, bouncy balls, fidget boxes, and other powerful reinforcers in my classroom!
First-Then Board FREEBIE! http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Editable-First-Then-Board-958613
- My New Classroom (acrowdedclassroom.wordpress.com)
Custodian Appreciation Day was October 2nd, but we didn’t know about it until the middle of the month. So, the Special Education Department joined together to create a way to recognize the custodial staff at NRES. Without them we could not effectively do our jobs; they are the core of our campus. They keep our building running, keep our floors shining, and make sure every detail is taken care of in the appearance and maintenance of our campus. They don’t get enough recognition and typically work behind the scenes before and after school when others are not around to witness their hard work. When we walk into our building each day we just expect things to be in their place and don’t consider how that occurred. I am thankful for our custodial staff and helped my department to show our appreciation in the bulletin board depicted in the attached pictures. I hope you also take the time to thank them for everything they do or at a minimum, learn their names and treat them with the respect that they deserve.
- Alphabet of Thankfulness – B is for Bubbles (acrowdedclassroom.wordpress.com)