If you are trying to find engaging lessons for your students with mod-severe disabilities, I have a really fun winter activity that you can do in small groups or for your push-in lesson.
There are so many great snowman books to use with your students, so why not add in a simple paper plate snowman craft to build language!? All you need is a paper plate, a black hat, scarf, and carrot nose for this paper plate snowman craft.
Today, I am going to show you my lesson plan for using snowmen with your mod-severe students and how a simple paper plate snowman craft can create a lot of communication opportunities.
This lesson plan would work well with the Self-Contained classrooms k-4. Use your judgment if your 5-8 Self-Contained classrooms would enjoy this activity.
Pick Your Snowman Book
Most often when I do a whole class lesson, I start by reading a book. My biggest tip for you is that if your students struggle with attention, still include the book time, but shorten what you say on each page. If your friends can only handle one sentence per page, talk about the picture.
I like to model the phrase several times as I show the picture to the whole class.
Here is a list of my favorite snowmen books to use in therapy (Amazon Affiliate links included for your convenience):
Snowmen at Night by Caralyn Buehner
Sneezy the Snowman by Maureen Wright
Snowmen All Year by Caralyn Buehner
Just a Snowman by Mercer Mayer
The Biggest Snowman Ever by Steven Kroll
The Snowman by Raymond Biggs
The First Day of Winter by Denise Fleming
You Make Me Smile by Layn Marlow
There Was a Cold Lady Who Swallowed Some Snow by Lucille Colandro
Use YouTube Read Alouds on the SMARTboard
Use a read aloud on YouTube if you don’t have a copy of the book you want. If you are going into the classroom and the teacher has a SMARTboard, this is an easy way to read the book. Here is an example with the book Sneezy the Snowman.
Whole-Class Lesson Plan for the Paper Plate Snowman Craft
After I read the snowman book, you can show your students this quick “How to Build a Snowman” video on YouTube, so your students can see what a real snowman looks like.
Then you can have them play “I Spy” with different Snowman Stock Photos. We went looking for items that can be used to decorate the snowman like this red shovel. If you need this Google Slide presentation, it is in my Snowman Push-In Language Lesson Plan Guides.
Show Your Students a Real Snowman
You can talk about the verb actions and vocabulary needed to make a snowman. This video also has different versions of snowmen, so you can talk about how they look by color and items they are wearing.
Target Spatial Basic Concepts with a Snowman Popsicle Puppet
As a class, use the snowman popsicle puppets to work on spatial basic concepts. Have your students also say, “Hi,” to the snowman to work on greetings.
You can make things fun by naming your snowman. I named mine Frank. So, the students said “hi” to Frank. Some of my students were very motivated by the snowman puppet.
For my friends that struggle with sitting, I let them hold the snowman puppet during the lesson if they remained seated. The classroom teacher used the snowman puppet to also lead the children to lunch because it was so motivating.
Need this activity for your small groups or whole class instruction? Just click the pink button to download for free.
Paper Plate Snowman Craft Activity for Your Mod-Severe Students
Then, break up your students into small groups. You can either pair students that work well together no matter the skill set or create groups that are leveled by language abilities.
The higher skilled students will be requesting, and sequencing the steps for how they made their craft. Encourage your students to discuss snowman by attributes after the craft is finished.
The other students will be making simple requests with their communication board or AAC device. If you need low-tech AAC books and boards, check out my starter kit HERE.
You can use the visual step-by-step directions for the craft on the Google Slide included in the free lesson plan download to help your students know what to do next. It can also help them with answering comprehension questions about the craft and with retell.
Grab your FREE lesson plan guide below by clicking the pink button.
More Winter-Themed Activities
If you need more winter-themed activities, this blog post has free and paid resources listed by target area for easy planning. What activities do you use with your mod-severe students? Share in the comments!