Bringing Holiday Baking Fun to Your SLP Sessions
Kids love to bake, and a lot of skills and goals can be worked on while doing this type of activity. Unfortunately, most settings do not have the facilities to accommodate baking during a session. In addition to this, time with the kids is not usually long enough. If you are ambitious, you can break baking into chunks over time if you see a child enough during a week. Otherwise, here are some possible alternatives to try. Although these utilize cookies and candy to make them, it is a small amount, and the holidays warrant some special fun as long as there are no dietary restrictions to worry about.
Gingerbread Style Houses
Gingerbread and candy houses are part of a lot of holiday stories that kids hear about. Why not make a small one to practice taking turns, following sequential directions, and asking questions? To do this you will need graham crackers, white frosting, plastic bags (to pipe the frosting), a plastic knife, and different candy types for decorating the house.
Before meeting for your session, cut the pieces of graham cracker like shown on the Graham Cracker Gingerbread House Tutorial. These can be placed into baggies to distribute with each child. Model how to construct the house. Be sure to allow for repeating directions, time to ask questions, and describing how they are decorating their masterpiece.
Sugar Cone Christmas Trees
For younger children, it may be best to do a smaller edible project. Sugar cone Christmas trees are a great way to accomplish this. You will need to purchase a package of sugar ice cream cones, vanilla frosting, green food coloring, plastic knives, and assorted candy. To begin, you can make the vanilla frosting green to look like an evergreen tree. This can be done ahead of time. Next, frost the ice cream cones to make them look like a tree. To secure them you can put some frosting on the round part of the cone to secure it to a paper plate. Once the trees are ready, it is time to decorate them. You can use candy items, sprinkles, chocolate chips, and even coconut to look like snow.
To extend either of these activities, you could have the children make holiday cards. They can draw what their gingerbread house or sugar cone Christmas tree will look like. This can then be taken home as a craft for their family.
When using these activities remember to focus on sequencing, following directions, phrasing practice, using new vocabulary, and having fun. If there will not be time to enjoy the creations during the session, be sure to have items to pack up whatever you make to go home with each child. Think about sending home a sheet of instructions for families to try this again and share these fun more traditional holiday non-baking fun. When working with food items, check to make sure there are no food allergies or special dietary restrictions before planning your edible lesson.