The Bucket Time – Attention Autism in Room 8

One of our favourite activities in Room 8 is ‘The bucket time’.

Attention Autism is an intervention model designed by Gina Davies, Specialist Speech and Language Therapist. It aims to develop natural and spontaneous communication through the use of visually based and highly motivating activities.

This activity helps the children in Room 8:

  • To engage attention
  • To improve joint attention
  • To develop shared enjoyment in group activities
  • To increase attention in adult-led activities
  • To encourage spontaneous interaction in a natural group setting
  • To increase non-verbal and verbal communication through commenting
  • To build a wealth and depth of vocabulary
  • To have fun!

The Attention Autism programme progresses through a series of stages, building on each skill level. Each new stage is introduced when the group is ready to expand attention skills. Room 8 has reached stage 3.

Stage 1: The Bucket to Focus Attention

Our purple bucket is filled with visually engaging objects and toys, aiming to gain the shared attention of the group.

First, a song is sung: ‘I’ve got something in my bucket, in my bucket, in my bucket. I’ve got something in my bucket, I wonder what it is?”

Next, the adult leader shows each item to the group and uses simple repetitive vocabulary to comment on the various objects. Our favourites are the naughty monkey, the pig, and the horn.

Stage 2: The Attention Builder

Visually stimulating activities are shown to the group by the adult leader, aiming to sustain attention for a longer period. The activities are fun, visually engaging and can often involve delightful mess! The favourite in room 8 is “Splash the cake!’.

Stage 3: Turn taking and Re-engaging Attention

The adult leader demonstrates a simple activity, often modelled with another adult in the group. Some children are then invited to have a turn, but only if they are comfortable to do so.

The children in our group get a turn, which then teaches important emotional regulation skills, as well as the essential skills of waiting, turn-taking and learning through modelling. I could say the favourite activities have been ‘Make your cake – Halloween party’, ‘The bread shop’ and ‘Choose an instrument’.

So far, the Bucket time sessions have been fun and “offered an irresistible invitation to learn”!

The Very Hungry Caterpillar And Celebrating Bonfire Night In Room 11

We have been having lots of fun in Rm 11 recently. Children have been enjoying participating in a range of the activities around the story   “The very hungry caterpillar”. We have been tasting different foods, using different resources to paint caterpillars and enjoying messy play!

We have also remembered to celebrate Bonfire and had a great fun splashing balloons filled with paint onto a big sheet of paper and creating lovely fireworks!

Join In The Festive Fun!!!

This festive season, our expressive arts elves – sorry, team 🧑‍🎄 – have been busy supporting classes in creating videos for a Christmas Countdown Calendar. However, for the final video they need your help!

They are looking for as many people as possible to be involved in the ‘Rockin Around The Christmas Tree’ video including all staff, parents and partner agencies.

To get you started, Keith and Emmeline have filmed an example including makaton signing.

To get involved we would like you to film excerpts of yourself signing or dancing along with the song which will then be edited together to create the final window on the Orchard Brae advent calendar.

Here is some filming information on the best way to film your excerpt.

Once you have your final video, please email it to Keith or Emmeline via their gw emails:

keith.bell@ab-ed.org
emmeline.mccracken@ab-ed.org

Hallowe’en In Room 6

Room 6 had a great time during the week of Hallowe’en!

Early in the week we made our own pumpkin – we scraped out the seeds, drew a number 6 on one side and a face on the other, cut them both out and then put our pumpkin in the school “pumpkin patch”.

On the Friday we had a Hallowe’en party!! We dressed up and played Hallowe’en games. We played dookin’ for apples and bagel on a string. No-one wanted to stop bagel on a string – maybe because the bagel had biscoff on it!!

Orienteering In Room 2

With Scott, room 2 have been learning the skills involved in Orienteering.

We all enjoy learning outside; following the route; looking for the orienteering flags in the playground; being first to find the flag; selecting the flag numbers (and correct colour) and matching them to the appropriate number on the orienteering board.

Room 2’s class team are very proud of all the pupils and how quickly they have learnt the skills involved.

Exploring Autumn In Room 4

In room 4 we have been learning about Autumn and Halloween!

We have carved our pumpkin and explored the inside of it!

We did activities based around the book “Room on the Broom”.

We have had lots of fun outdoors looking for signs of autumn!

Bonfire Night With Room 5

Remember, remember, the fifth of November
Gunpowder treason and plot
We see no reason
Why Gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot….

This week in school Room 5 have been learning about Guy Fawkes.

To mark this celebration we watched a short animated video about Guy Fawkes https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qGJ5G4UNFJI

We also created our own firework pictures. We think our night sky guy Fawkes picture are really effective.

Why do we learn about Guy Fawkes and the Gunpowder Plot?

In England, in 1605 during the reign of James I, an act of treason was planned that could have changed the course of our history. At the last moment, the Gunpowder Plot was foiled, and now we commemorate the traitors – and in particular, the scapegoat Guy Fawkes – every year with Bonfire Night!

Who was Guy Fawkes?

Guy Fawkes (1570 to 1606), also known as Guido Fawkes, was one of a group of Catholic plotters who planned, but failed, to blow up Parliament – now known as the Gunpowder Plot of 1605.

What was the Gunpowder Plot?

At the time, King James I was on the throne. England had broken away from the Catholic faith and the Church of Rome in Henry VIII’s reign (by 1536), but there were still many Catholics in the country. Guy Fawkes joined up with a group of thirteen Catholic plotters, led by Robert Catesby, who planned to overthrow the King and put a Catholic monarch back on the throne.

The plotters rented space in the cellars of the House of Lords and filled it with gunpowder. Guy Fawkes was put in charge. They planned to set off the gunpowder during the opening of Parliament, on 5th November 1605. One or more of the plotters, however, were worried that some of their fellow Catholics and friends would be at the opening and get caught in the explosion, and wrote to warn them not to be there that day. We know that a certain Lord Monteagle received a letter warning him to go to the country because Paliament would “receive a terrible blow”. Lord Monteagle showed the letter to the King, and the cellars were thoroughly searched and Guy Fawkes caught.

After several days of horrible torture, Guy Fawkes gave up the names of his fellow plotters and eight of them went to trial in January 1606. All were found guilty and executed in the terrible fashion of the times.

On 5th November 1605 Londoners were encouraged to celebrate the King’s escape from assassination by lighting bonfires, provided that “this testemonye of joy be carefull done without any danger or disorder” – and indeed an Act of Parliament soon followed, declaring 5th November as a day of thanksgiving throughout the country for “the joyful day of deliverance“.

Modern Celebrations

When we celebrate Bonfire Night now, it seems very far removed from the events of four hundred years ago! For centuries since then, communities have come together to build a big bonfire and make an effigy – a model – of Guy Fawkes using old clothes stuffed with newspaper, to burn on the bonfire (see Penny for the Guy).

Fun fact: When you use the word “guy” in your sentences, have you thought where it comes from? The “guy” tradition of Bonfire Night gradually found it’s way into our language, and by the 19th century the word “guy” was used to refer to a strangely dressed man. From there it was adopted into American English to refer to any man, and is of course still commonly used today!

Room 8’s Rocket Bat

There’s an old saying: what goes up must come down. This activity is a perfect chance to challenge that idea, shooting a rocket high into the air by rapidly squashing a plastic bottle launcher. We’ll never get this rocket into space, but some real rockets do go fast enough to prove the saying wrong.

What’s the science?

The bottle we used as the rocket launcher is not really empty: there is air inside it. Air is elastic (squashy), and when we compressed it, it pushed back and the pressure inside increased. In the activity, the sudden increase in air pressure inside the bottle pushed hard on the bottom of the rocket, sending it flying high into the air.

We challenge you to make your very own rocket mouse and launcher – see how high your bat can fly!

We needed:

  • An empty plastic milk bottle (4- or 6-pint bottles work best)
  • Things to decorate your rocket
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • A rocket bat template

We followed these steps:

  • Cut out a template along the dotted lines.
  • Rolled it into a cone shape and secured it with tape – this was our rocket.
  • Decorated our rocket adding some bat wings
  • Popped it on top of our bottle.
  • Hit the sides and launched our rocket into the air!

Science in our world

Just as increasing the air pressure in the bottle sends the rocket flying, we use air pressure when we squeeze shampoo or ketchup from a plastic bottle.