Making Circle Time Accessible for All Students
By Caroline Bradford
This lesson plan from UAH Rise School incorporates the Lily LightAide into the 2-year old class’s daily morning circle time routine. During this group instructional time, the students are exposed to both verbal and sign language, social interaction and weather identification. Math readiness skills such as calendar concepts, counting and number recognition are also included in this lesson. The addition of the LightAide device allows students with low vision, cognitive disabilities and other special needs that respond to interactive displays of colored lights participate more independently in the morning circle time activities.
Alabama Early Childhood Standards
|Developmental Domain||Alabama Early Learning Guidelines (Birth – 2 Years)||Alabama Developmental Standards for Preschool Children (3-5 Year)||Teaching Strategies GOLD Ongoing Child Assessment|
|Social Emotional / Social Development||SD: Children learn about other people
2) imitate the actions and activities of others
6) show interest in children of the same age
|SE Goal 3: Children will develop interpersonal and social skills for relating with other people
3.1) sustain interactions with peers by cooperating, playing and interacting
|2. Establishes and sustains positive relationships
c) interacts with peers
d) makes friends
3. Participates cooperatively and constructively in group situations
a) balances needs and rights of self and others
|Motor Development||PD: Children learn to move and do
10) reach for objects
11) improve in eye coordination
|PD Goal 2: Children will develop fine motor skills
2.2) Develop hand-eye coordination in a purposeful way
|7. Demonstrates fine-motor strength and coordination
a) uses fingers and hands
|Language Development||8. Listens to and understands increasingly complex language|
|Cognitive Development||CD: Children learn to think
4) follow a moving object
11)imitiate simple movements
|AL Goal 1: Children will develop curiosity, initiative, self-direction and persistence
1.1 Makes and expresses choices, plans and decisions
AL Goal 2: Children will develop positive attitudes, habits and learning styles
2.1 Demonstrates an eagerness and interest in learning
|11. Demonstrates positive approaches to learning
d) Shows curiosity and motivation
|Literacy Development||LL Goal 2: Children will develop phonological awareness skills to discriminate the sounds of language
2.1 Discriminates and identify sounds in spoken language
LL Goal 7: Children will develop alphabet knowledge
7.2) Show progress in identifying the names of letters and sounds they represent
|15. Demonstrates phonological awareness
a) notices and discriminates rhymes
b) notices and discriminates alliteration
16. Demonstrates knowledge of the alphabet
a) identifies and names letters
b) uses letter-sound knowledge
|Mathematics||LLD: Children learn to communicate
4) become interested in how many objects she/he has
5) begin to name and match colors, shapes and sizes
|M Goal 1: Children will begin to develop an awareness and understanding of numbers
1.2 Show increasing ability to count in sequence to 10 and beyond
|20. Uses number concepts and operations
|Science Knowledge and Skills||S Goal 4: Children will acquire knowledge related to earth and space science
4.2) Identify types of weather and impact on environment
|27. Demonstrates knowledge of Earth’s environment|
|Creative Arts Expression||LL Goal 4: Children will develop speaking skills for the purpose of communication
4.5) Participates in classroom activities that are repetitive in nature such as songs, rhymes and finger plays
|34. Explores musical concepts and expressions|
Classroom Learning Objective(s)
- Students will follow verbal directions related to daily routine of the classroom.
- Students will participate in singing/signing circle time songs.
- Students will say good morning verbally, through sign language or by locating and hitting the BigMack switch.
- Students will recognize their picture or track the picture when it is placed in their line of vision.
- Students will identify the weather.
- Students will identify the day of the week.
- Students will verbally count 1-10.
- Students will recognize and identify colors verbally and through sign language.
LightAide Learning Objective(s)
- Students will stabilize their gaze on the image on the LightAide screen.
- Students will track and scan (from left to right) images.
- Students will activate the switch with guidance throughout the LightAide activities.
- Brown Bear, Brown Bear class book
- Student picture cards
- BigMack switch
- Weather Cards
- LightAide device and switch
- Calendar (includes days of the week)
- Verbally prompt students that it is time for circle time.
- Have students find a cloud on the carpet.
- Begin singing “Brown Bear, Brown, Who Do You See?”
- When the child’s picture is shown, have the student say or sign “good morning.” JB, T and V will use the BigMack switch to say “good morning.”
- After each student has had a turn, begin singing/signing “Who Came to School Today.” Show each child’s picture and encourage them to to say or sign their name. JB, T and V will attempt to track their picture.
- Sing/Sign “Hello Song”.
- Have J come up to help with the weather (jobs change daily).
- Sing/Sign “What is the Weather?”
- Ask J to look out the window and describe the weather. Show two weather cards to choose from. Prompt as needed.
- Confirm the weather and have J show the card to T.
- Tell the Weather LightAide Activity – An adult will guide T’s hand toward the switch. T will hit the switch (with physical prompts as needed) until the appropriate weather scene comes on the LightAide screen.
- Confirm the weather again and sing/sign the song for the day’s weather. (Ex – “You are My Sunshine” for sunny)
- Have G come up do that days of week.
- Sing/Sign “Days of the Week” song.
- Have G point to each day of the week as the class says them until the current day is reached.
- Sing/Sign “Today is ____” song.
- Have E come up to be the calendar counter.
- Have E use the pointer to count from 1 to the current day’s number. Hand E the number to add to the calendar.
- Identify the Color LightAide Activity – An adult will guide V’s hand toward the switch.
- The class will identify the color and the adult will again guide V’s hand to hit the switch to change to the next color until all the colors have been reviewed.
Counting 1-10 Practice
- Learn the Numbers LightAide Activity – An adult will guide JB’s hand toward the switch to lead the group in counting numbers 1-10.
- As, the numbers appear on the LightAide screen, the class will practice counting together.
- Have I wash her hands and help Mrs. Sandra hand out snacks.
- Ms. Amanda and other adults in the room will help other students wash hands and prepare for morning snack at the table.
Students will be assessed through observation and data collection of individual learning goals.
- JB, T and V will use adaptive seating during the morning circle routine.
- JB, T and V will use the BigMack switch to say “good morning”.
- Accommodated Weather Board and Calendar will be used as needed based on the job helpers for the day.
iPad Apps and Accessibility, Math and Science
These iPad apps from Sonokids feature the astronaut character CosmoBally who teaches blind children about space and sonification.
Braille and Literacy, Education
Children with dyslexia have difficulty remembering words that don't follow conventional rules, such as high-frequency sight words.