Monday, November 27, 2017

SENSEational Story Time: "Harvest Time"

One Red Apple book cover with apple tree and kids playingScarecrow, Scarecrow, What do You See? cover
Last Saturday was a celebration of the fall harvest. We talked about what harvest time means. "Does anyone have a garden at home? What is your favorite vegetable or fruit? What fruit grows in a tree? What else do you see in the garden? What does a scarecrow do?

Here's the plan:

Visual schedule for Harvest Time story time

Welcome song: "The Story Time Ball"
Tune: "Wheels on the Bus"
(Roll ball back and forth to each child)
The story time ball rolls back and forth,
back and forth, back and forth.
The story time ball rolls back and forth,
Let's see who it found. Hi ______!
Now roll it back to me.
(Keep rolling back and forth until each child has said their name.)

Yoga pose: "Scarecrow" (Mountain pose with arms extended out)

Finger puppet rhyme: "Two Little Blackbirds"
(Do motions with puppets or fingers)
Two little blackbirds sitting on a hill,
one named Bob and the other named Bill.
Fly away Bob.
Fly away Bill.
Move fingers behind back.
Come back Bob.
Come back Bill.
Move fingers back in front.

Story: Scarecrow, Scarecrow, What Do You See? by Lisa Erwin, SLP
I love using adapted books with simple, repetitive stories and interactive images (attached with velcro). I enlarged this book and interactive image pieces to poster-size, looped ring clips through the top and attached it to our story time easel to flip through.
(source: My Speech Tools)
first page of Scarecrow, Scarecrow, What do You See? book

Stretch band rhyme: "Way Up High in the Apple Tree"
Way up high in the apple tree,
two little apples smiling at me.
I shook that tree as hard as I could,
and down came the apples.
Mmmm... they were good!

Story: One Red Apple by Harriet Ziefert
I gave everyone a di-cut apple on a stick to hold up every time they heard the word apple, repeated frequently throughout the story. This engaging idea came from the book Nonfiction in Motion: Connecting Preschoolers with Nonfiction Books through Movement by Julie Dietzel-Glair, which I highly recommend for more sensory story time activity ideas. (ALA store)

After reading the story, I passed around a big, red apple so everyone could see, feel and smell the apples. I then passed around an apple that was cut open to show the apple seeds that were scattered by the wind in the story.

applesdi-cut apples on sticks

Parachute activity: "Popcorn, Popcorn"
(Kids can walk around holding the parachute or sit underneath as we "pop" the corn over their heads.)
Popcorn, popcorn,
sizzling in the pan.
Shake it up, shake it up,
bam, bam, bam!
Popcorn, popcorn
now it's getting hot.
Shake it up, shake it up,
Pop, pop, pop!
(source: unknown)

Goodbye song and stretch: "Tickle the Clouds"

Tickle the clouds.
Tickle your toes.
Turn around and tickle your nose.
Reach down low.
Reach up high.
Story time's over.
Wave goodbye!

Sensory craft: "Veggie painting"
We dipped pre-cut potatoes and carrots into washable paint to create these harvest works of art!

child painting with carrots and a potato 

vegetable painting

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Outreach: "Mid-Fall Favorites" Sensory Story Time

Ed and I were back at Wing Lake Developmental Center today and we brought some "mid-fall favorites" with us. We visited two groups of students, ages 3 - 26 years, with multiple disabilities. To ensure visibility for everyone, many in wheel chairs or specially adaptive seating, we scan the books and project them from a laptop.

Here's the plan:

Welcome: "Let's talk about things that happen in the fall. What do you like about the fall? (cider mills? cider mill donuts?!) Look out the window. What is happening to the leaves on the trees outside? Do you like the cooler air? What holiday is coming up next week? (Thanksgiving! What's your favorite food at Thanksgiving dinner?)"

Song: "The Leaves on the Trees"
(tune: "Wheels on the Bus")
The leaves on the trees turn orange and brown,
orange and brown, orange and brown.
The leaves on the trees turn orange and brown all over town.

The leaves on the trees come tumbling down,
tumbling down, tumbling down.
The leaves on the trees come tumbling down all over town.

The leaves on the ground go swish, swish, swish
swish, swish, swish
swish, swish, swish.
The leaves on the ground go swish, swish, swish
all over town.

Story: In the Middle of Fall by Kevin Henkes
One of my new favorite fall stories! Beautiful "age respectful" illustrations and a simple story, with many points to add sensory experiences, made this a great choice for these students. We brought in a plush squirrel (to feel the frisky squirrel's tail), pumpkins (from the pumpkin patch), apples (the ones hanging in the tree "like ornaments"), dry leaves (from the leaf pile that the girl and her dog were playing in), and bags of artificial snow (that the squirrel sees falling outside his tree at the end). We take these items around to each student to touch/feel/smell. Some students have low or no vision, so these tactile and scented experiences (we loved smelling the apples!) make the story more engaging and help to reinforce comprehension. As we are reading, we also describe the illustrations in the story so everyone can "see."

Flannel rhyme: "Five Little Leaves"
Five little leaves so bright and gay
were dancing about on a tree one day.
The wind came blowing through town
and one little leaf came tumbling down.
(keep counting down until all leaves have fallen)
(source: unknown)

Non-fiction picture book: Thanksgiving by Rebecca Pettiford
This simple picture book has great photograph illustrations of all the things we might see/hear/taste at Thanksgiving!

Song: "If You're Thankful and You Know It"
If you're thankful and you know it, clap your hands.
If you're thankful and you know it, clap your hands.
If you're thankful and you know it,
then your face will surely show it.
If you're thankful and you know it, clap your hands.
(can repeat with other actions, depending on audience abilities)

Sensory craft: "Squished paint autumn trees"
We drew tree outlines on gallon-size sealable bags, squeezed drops of fall-colored, washable tempera paints inside and sealed the bags. Students loved "smoooshing" and smoothing the squishy colors inside to turn their tree into a beautiful autumn tree. This is a great craft for all abilities.
(source: Crafts on Sea)