Friday, May 27, 2016

A very BUSY month of May!

This has been a very busy month in our classroom! In preparation for the track meet and in celebration of spring, we've covered a variety of topics across multiple curricular areas.

Butterflies and Life Cycles

This month we learned about the life cycle of butterflies with a hands on experience. We got caterpillars and watched them build cocoons and on a bright sunny day released them outside. The kids were very excited to, "say goodbye" to our new friends.

School Spirit and Safety

Every year at the track meet, we are encouraged to demonstrate school spirit by participating in a theme. While this is a fun, community building event for all, I also use this as a way to cumulatively review important safety skills we've been working on all year long. It is our sincere hope that our children are never separated from us, but the reality is that kids impacted by disabilities end up in scary situations sometimes. In efforts to make sure our kids are prepared as possible, we talk about important community helpers that they can talk to, and also practice answering important questions that could help emergency personnel get help for our student. These questions include: full name, last name, parents' names, school name, principal's name and teacher's name. Practicing these skills with trusted adults and practiced community helpers will help give them tools should these situations ever arise. This month, we've made this a fun and exciting game to identify their parents, principal, school and teacher and they've done a great job! I'm so proud of their awareness of the people in their lives!

For more information on this topic, please visit:

Tips from the CDC

Helpful list of resources from Autism Speaks

Washington County Developmental Disabilities Info. Page


This month we also talked about space! Over the years, this has been one of our favorite units, so when the track and field meet theme was announced to be outer space, we were thrilled to bring the love of the solar system to a new group of students! Our kids learned about the sun and what it provides us, Earth and what is on our planet, the moon and it's explorers, and some basic information about the other planets in our solar system. This gave us the opportunity to talk about concepts such as gravity, orbiting and being in the center. I'm sure if you ask your student about their favorite planet, you'll get some awesome information! :)

Beaverton School District Track and Field Invitational

As always, we had a wonderful day at the track meet at Beaverton High School. Students participated in a running event with their peers as well as field activities such as archery, long job, frisbee, underhand toss and overhead throw. This gave our students a wonderful opportunity to showcase the skills they have been practicing in APE all year. They did a fantastic job!

Shirts painted, capes on, ready to go!
Big smiles on the bus ride over!
Talking about the planets in our tent
Soccer ball kick
Getting ready at the starting line
What a great run!
Happy runners!
So proud of our medals!
Group photo after our big run! 
Our mascot, Sparky the eagle, ready to explore space 
Words of love and encouragement from our amazing buddies here at school! 
Words of love and encouragement from our amazing buddies here at school!
Words of love and encouragement from our amazing buddies here at school!
Words of love and encouragement from our amazing buddies here at school!
Perfect overhand throw!
Focusing hard to hit the target!
Lots of love on this special day