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Reindeer Treat Bags

My kids run a treat cart every Monday. Next Monday is the last Monday before winter break and we wanted to do something fun and festive. After a lot of searching, I came up with these reindeer treat bags.

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The supplies are super simple. You need

  • Baggies
  • Red Candy
  • Popcorn and other treats
  • Brown pipe cleaners
  • Google Eyes

Pastry or piping bags were recommended, but I bought twist tie bags from Walmart that worked just as well. I ended up using Brach’s cinnamon hard candies for the reindeer nose, although any red candy would work. We also mixed preztels into our popcorn mixture. You can tweak the popcorn mixture or just leave it as popcorn if you want!

The kids need to put a red candy in the corner of the bag, then fill it with the popcorn mixture. The red candy will be the nose and the popcorn will make up the body.img_6409

Once the body is made, the kids need to tie off the “reindeerr”. This was tough for my kiddos, but a couple of them were able to figure it out. It was great fine motor practice! If your kids cannot get it, they can also tie it off with a twist tie. img_6417

The last steps are to wrap a brown pipe cleaner around the top and add googly eyes. We did use a hot glue gun for the googly eye. We learned that the hot glue itself will not melt the plastic baggie, but the tip of the glue gun will. It worked best when we put the glue on the back of the eye, then stuck the eye to the baggie.

 

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Want to try this recipe in your classroom? Grab the visual here for free! Let me know how it works for you!!


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Homework-Love it or Hate it?

I have a love/hate relationship with homework. In some ways, I love how my kids are able to go home and showcase their skills with mom and dad. In other ways, I feel like my kids already have so much going on and the homework is just an added level of stress. Either way, EVERY SINGLE PARENT in my self-contained class wants homework-so I do it every week.

I send home one homework packet a week on Mondays. My students can complete these anytime during the week, but are expected to turn them in no later then Fridays. for my more academically based students, I like to include a mix of reading and math skills, something related to the content lesson of the week, some work to focus on IEP goals and seasonal activities from time to time.

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I love using the News 2 You articles as the reading homework. They usually have two different articles up, each one offered in several levels. My kids use either the regular or the simplified article and I send home the game page, the review page and the think page for homework. The regular version has more questions and the simplified version is reduced for that level!

For kids who need extra comprehension practice, I will supplement with either my comprehension worksheets or my main idea worksheets, depending on their need. For my kids who need some higher level thinking, these Problem and Solution worksheets can be the answer!

My math homework tends to be directly related to the math lesson of the week. If we are working on graphing in school, I will put  graphing worksheet in the backpack. Sometimes I supplement with no-prep packs-you can find some great options on TPT. Right now I’m using packs from My Special Learners and Especially Education and they are a perfect fit! I also send home touch money for one of my kiddos-she actually gets a print off from my file folder pack!

But what about the kids who are not on that level? I have a couple of friends who are not ready for reading and math skills. These kids are at a pre-academic level and need more focus on foundation pieces and fine motor skills. I feature one letter a week from my Alphabet Weekly Work pack for their homework. I also love to supplement with the preschool printable packs from Little Monkeys Printable!

All of my featured resources will be 50% off through this Friday! Tell me how you do homework in your self-contained classroom!


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Great Resources from TPT!

I shared this photo on social media last night and I got a lot of questions about where I got the materials. I thought this format would be easiest, look below to see links to all the resources featured in this photo:

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The colorful book in the bottom left corner is the Three Little Pigs Adapted Book from Creative Curriculum Adaptations-Ginger Joyce. She also created the blue cover book in the top right corner, that’s her School Rules Adapted Book.

The file folder games with the yellow and green tabs are the Basic Concepts File Folders (Christmas) from Adapting for Autism.

The file folder games with the white tabs are the Happy Holidays File Folders from My Special Learners-Kayla Coffman.

The green and orange half sheets are the Telling Time to the Hour Flipbooks from You Aut-a Know-Erin Hagey.

The colorful shapes sitting next to it are the Beginning Sound Clothespins Tasks from Teaching Special Thinkers.

The half sheet with the Orange and Blue monsters in front of the shapes is the Monster Themed Basic Math Adapted Book from Delightfully Dedicated Special Education.

The gray colorful mat is part of the Color Sorting Mats from Mrs. D’s Corner.

The sheet with the boy’s face on it is from the Getting to Know You Interactive Book from Cat Says Meow.

The book below it with the boy in the blue shirt is from the Whole Body Listening set from Especially Education. The product printed on the hot pink card stock is also from her-that’s her Hands on Phonics: CVC Bundle.

That white sheet with the small red oval at the top is the Colors from School Bells and Whistles.

These are AMAZING TPT authors-I’ve put a lot of money in but every single penny has been worth it. Check out their stores, they each have fabulous offerings perfect for the special education world. Happy shopping 🙂

 


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Easy Weighted Lap Animal for Sensory Needs

When I found this video from Early Venton LLC on Mrs. D’s Corner’s Facebook page I knew I had to try it myself. As a teacher of students with Autism-I have a TON of sensory needs that I need to meet. As someone who doesn’t know how to sew-I needed an easy way to make weighted materials. This weighted lap animal was the answer!

You need 4 materials-Skinneez Jumbo Bite Dog Tot, a filling of your choice, duct tape and zip block bags. It is important to get the Jumbo Bite dog toy-the others won’t work. You can find the dog toy for about $8 on Amazon.

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Some people use River Rocks to fill because its more weight per volume-I choose to try rice because it is softer and molds more to the student’s lap. The process is pretty simple-fill zip block bags with your chosen stuffing, fill the dog toy with the bags and Velcro closed!

** Update-wrap the ziplock bags in duct tape before you fill the dog toy. Otherwsie, the bags will bust and spill rice!

If you want, you can wrap the bags of stuffing in a dish cloth and drop essential oils on it. This will add a nice scent component too.

All in all very easy to make!

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