Thursday, October 2, 2014


This week, the preschool made Jack-O-Lanterns!  They were given a blank pumpkin to color.  The students then searched the rug for various parts and glued them to the pumpkin.
A lot of orange!

Looking for eyes!

The stem looks like a hat!
A happy Jack-O-Lantern!

Look at our wonderful work!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Leaf Lanterns

In Kindergarten this week, we started working on our Leaf Lanterns.  We started off the class with a really fun movement song, Listen and Move by Greg and Steve.  The song tells us what to do and we follow along.  Then, the directions disappear and we have to remember what to do by just the music that accompanied each movement!

We then moved on to our lanterns, which were modified from DLTK's Crafts for Kids.  The students were given versions with their name in one of the "boxes" and asked to write their name two more times in the remaining boxes, using "Kindergarten writing" or "lowercase letters".

After writing their names, the students were asked to color the leaves using "fall colors", which we brainstormed together.  They worked hard to stay in the lines!  Next week, we'll work on turning these masterpieces into lanterns using scissors and glue!  If your child attends Kindergarten at Effingham Elementary School, they have already finished their lanterns, so ask to see them :)

Friday, September 12, 2014

Go Away Big Green Monster!

This week, the kindergarten classes and the preschool class met the Big Green Monster!  We read Ed Emberly's Go Away Big Green Monster! using the iPad app.

First, they were given a blank monster with circles at the top spelling out their names, as well as round stickers with letters.  The children needed to peel off the stickers and put them on the circles to spell their first name; in preschool, the letters were given in the right order, but in Kindergarten there was an added challenge of scrambled stickers!

Then we read the book one page at a time and the children colored their monster according to the narrator.  When the book was finished, we listened to the sing-along version of the book.  The children really enjoyed the animations that the app provided!

Laying on your stomach helps
to build muscle strength!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Welcome Back!

Welcome back!  I'm so excited to start our new school year!  I'm looking forward to a productive and FUN year with everyone.  Keep an eye on the blog to see our new adventures!

Here are some great resources for getting back into the routine for school:

Establishing Morning Routines
Teaching Kids to Dress Themselves
Teaching Your Child to Advocate

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Summer Vacation!

It's almost that time of the year!  The kids have been working hard all year and it's time to enjoy the weather :)  Some children have difficulty making this transition to more unscheduled activities and free time.  While there are some that come to school in the summer, these are still shorter, more laid-back days.

If your child is one that has difficulty, check out this site: Transitions from School to Home.  It gives some great ideas, especially for those with sensory processing challenges.

Summer is also a great time for play!  Here are some fun, outside ideas for the summer:

  • Swim!
  • Build sandcastles and dig in the sand
  • Make a "sand angel" at the beach
  • Draw with sidewalk chalk
  • Use squirt bottles, water toys, even a turkey baster!
  • Wash the car or toys with a sponge (be sure to wring it out first!)
  • "Paint the house" with water and a paintbrush
  • Play catch, throw a Frisbee, play freeze tag outside
  • Play hopscotch and jump rope
  • Blow bubbles and jump up to pop them
  • Go to the playground for an hour
  • Play balloon volleyball
  • Obstacle courses
  • Ride bikes
  • Weed and help garden
  • Go on a scavenger hunt 
  • Go on a PHOTO scavenger hunt: older kids can take pictures of what they find rather than bring it inside (something smooth/rough/green/slimy, two rocks of different colors, a small animal, a bird, a flower, etc.)
Here are some ideas for a rainy day!
  • Play dress-up
  • Dance!
  • Walk on pillows (it sounds funny, but it's fun, too!)
  • Build a tower.  No blocks?  Stack coins, books, cups, ice cubes - anything age appropriate
  • Use tweezers/tongs to pick things up
  • Have a toy car wash
  • Make origami animals - there are tons of instructional sites online!
  • Check out this site for movement games: Indoor Gross Motor Games

Most importantly - have fun with your child!

Monday, April 21, 2014

April is Occupational Therapy Month!

Happy OT Month!  Make sure to give your favorite OT a big hug :)

Here is a picture of the OT room door at NDS.  The little "game pieces" have faces of students and were colored by them and placed on the game board.

Occupational Therapy - Skills for the Game of Life!

When a child is determined to require occupational therapy services, I like to explain to the student (at their level) why they are seeing me.  We talk about what's hard and why and how we're going to work on making it easier.  Every April, I ask the students "What is OT?"  Some (typically the older students) can tell me what it is and why they are there.  Others can tell me why they come (after I remind them that coming to see me is "OT") and others don't remember :)  It's a good opportunity to review!  The kids were given a prompt of "OT is" and asked to finish the sentence.
OT is drawing. - Devin

OT is fun. - Joshua

OT is a time to learn and write things neat. - Dakota

OT is work hard. - Domenick

OT is fun! - Haleigh

OT is a time to learn time to work. - Nick

I got two "OT is fun!" me, that means I'm doing my job well :)

Friday, April 18, 2014

Duck! Rabbit!

We read the book Duck! Rabbit! by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld.   It's about two people who look at the same thing and see two different things - one sees a duck, one sees a rabbit.  They argue and show their perspective throughout the book.  "Two unseen characters debate the identity of the creature at the center of this clever book - is it a duck or a rabbit?  Readers will join in the discussion, because the creature could, in fact, be either.  Just as each of the debaters begins to see the other's perspective, the duck/rabbit runs away and they see an anteater.  Or is it a brachiosaurus?"  

After reading the book and talking about our perspectives, we made a duck/rabbit (or "drabbit" as one student liked to call it!)  

Coloring the duck
The duck!

But if I turn it around...
See my duck?

It will be this bunny!