Every Thursday that our local public school is in session, Vada now has speech therapy sessions at a local school. Her appointment's are in the mid morning time frame which cuts into our normal class time and with the weather warming up, I will walk her there as much as possible, just to get the exercise. Yesterday was very nice out, so we did walk and then met up with some friends for lunch, so we didn't do school at all. Which meant that today we had some make up work to do! We ended up doing days three and four of Letter of the Week all today. I also decided to skip doing any Rainbow fish activities other than taking a break to read the Rainbow Fish book and have some Gold Fish crackers as a way of taking small break in between the two days of curriculum, I thought that it would be too much for V.
We started with the Alpha Pattern Block work sheet.
We talked about shapes and colors and how we were making an Upper case letter 'A' and an Lower case letter 'a'.
Since Vada is still learning her shapes and her colors I kind of turned this into a game. I used the laminated worksheet as our "game board" and the wooden shapes as our "game pieces". I would alternate back and forth between the game board and the game pieces. I would ask Vada to pick a shape and once she had I would speak out loud the color and the shape that she choose and then I would push the rest of the shapes out of reach. Next, I would pull the game board back within our reach and I would place it onto a matching spot and say something like "The blue rhombus goes on top of the blue rhombus " I would then repeat the whole thing over again and we did this until all of the pieces had been placed onto the game board.
Once we had filled the game board I then asked Vada to put the pieces away.
We moved onto the color matching game. I decided to cut the apples in different areas this time instead of just straight down the middle -to keep it a little more interesting.
I began by showing Vada how they all went together to create an apple and then I showed her how I wanted her help to slide the pieces together with me.
In the picture below, she's being such a stinker(!), she looks like she is staring off but really she is pretending and making a snoring sound!!! I'm thinking that she was trying to tell me that she was bored!
And when the snoring bit didn't get her point across -that she really didn't want to do this activity, she began to pray again! She is too funny! This girl, I tell you! When she gets older, I really think she's going to give me a run for my money!
Our next activity really caught and kept Vada's attention!
Letter 'A' Do-A-Dot paint page. She loved it and it will go on our "I did that!" wall.
We even used every color in the box as well as colored in every circle on the page!
We spent quite a long time on our next activity. Patterns.
On a side note, i've realized, now that I am almost through our first week of Letter of the Week that there is so much more that I personally can add to this curriculum. More games, more books and more activities. As V and I were doing the patterns I was thing about this game called Attribute Apples or the Counting Bears and how I could use them to help teach patterns or with the apples games just the apples concept in general. Throughout this week I have completed binders 'B' and 'C' so I have a head start already and I am planning ahead. With this first week I really just dove in with no real plan at all. I like having a better idea of what to expect in Vada, myself and the curriculum. Now I feel as if my feet are wet and I am ready!
I don't believe that Vada understands what patterns are or even what is that we were doing but she listened and paid attention and when I asked her to put the cards down on the sheet, she did. She's a great student.
Milk cap Letter Match was another activity that we spent a good length of time on.
We went back and forth between upper case letters and lower case letters and their corresponding worksheets.
We talked about each letter and the sounds that they make and when they are all put together how they create the word "apple".
We did lots of cutting and pasting today!
Vada is very crafty. It really must be possible for something like that to "run in the family", because she really, truly loves doing crafts!
I only had V cut three apples out verses the six that were on the worksheet. She had already held the scissors and did the cutting motions for the whole tree, plus all of the previous work she had already done. In everything I have read about teaching people with Down syndrome (and especially with math) their low muscle tone is brought up. Often times I have read suggestions on not having individuals write mathematical problems down straight from a book (like problems 1 through 25) because of their possible lower muscle tone it may cause too much stress on their hands. Anyway, keeping what I have read in mind as well as what work Vada had done already and would be doing after this project, I thought having her cut only the three apples was plenty.
After we had the apples glued onto the tree we counted the apples and then put the newly created masterpiece up on "I Did That Wall" which we will be clearing and adding newly made crafts to each week. Vada always points to it and laughs, she knows that it's her stuff that's hanging there!
We worked on math with math with some seed counting. There are more sheets and the apple seeds actually go up to ten but we only counted up to five today. (I plan on using this curriculum more than one time and in different ways each time that I use it!)
I used Vada's pointer finger to count the seeds out loud and then had her hold onto the matching numeral card and place it onto the correct spot.
When we got to number five it got a little interesting. I counted five on my fingers and showed all five of my fingers. She then held her hand out just as I had mine and flexed her fingers out in the same way, so I said "That's right Vada, five!" I don't think this was a fluke.. I think something clicked today!
We worked on more matching puzzles but instead of with colors with shapes. I played this one the same way that I did the above color matching game.
We did lacing again today. I like lacing. I'll admit, it's kind of boring but I think that it is also super great for fine motor and attention for Vada as well as building muscle strength in her hands.
She's getting much better at it as well! She put up some fuss at the end of this one but I made her finish it. I knew that she was tired but a mom knows and a teacher can learn to know when a child is putting up a fuss for temperamental reasons (er' being a little teensy spoiled) or being truly overworked and the fuss was more so on wanting her way -at least I would be willing to bet it was! However, I will say this, She was worked super hard today! She is forever making me proud! I constantly wonder how there could ever be "bad" teachers out there. This feels so rewarding!