Jenny Clark


Theme-Based Lesson Plan: Witches

Every October children get excited about dressing up and pretending to be a character in costume and get candy Trick-or-Treating. Be mindful of children with sensory processing difficulties and make accommodations to help all children celebrate comfortably. Some children have tactile sensitivities to scratchy fabrics. Find soft fabrics for costumes or place cotton underclothing under the costume so the itchy fabric does not touch skin. Masks can limit vision, and children who have poor sensory integration (vestibular/ocular) may have poor balance when walking with limited vision, especially over uneven surfaces when Trick-or-Treating. Consider alternatives to masks, such as face paint, but only if the child tolerates tactile input to the skin. Some children are sound sensitive and may have a sensory meltdown when a large group of children yell “Trick or Treat!”, so go Trick-or-Treating with only 1-2 children. Have fun and stay safe!

Theme: Witches

  1. Warm-Up: Witches action song and fingerplay. Three Little Witches (Sung to The Paw Paw Patch. Count with fingers)

1 little, 2 little, 3 little witches. Fly over haystacks, fly over ditches. 1 little, 2 little, 3 little witches. Hey, ho! Halloween’s here! 1 little, 2 little, 3 little witches. Flew on their broomsticks, flew over ditches. Slid down the moon and tore their britches. Hey, ho! Halloween’s here! 1 little, 2 little, 3 little witches. Fly over haystacks, fly over ditches. Fly over moonbeams without any hitches. Hey, ho! Halloween’s here! 1 little, 2 little, three little witches. Fly over barb wire and tore their britches. Had to go home and get some stitches. Hey, ho! Halloween’s here! Hey, ho! Halloween’s here! Hey, ho! Halloween’s here!Telehealth Share:

2. Vestibular: Pretend to be a witch flying on a broom. Locomotor movement galloping around objects. Optional: Use pool noodle for broomstick.

3. Proprioception: Make a magic potion and carry the witch’s cauldron. Pretend to fill a witch’s cauldron to make a magic potion. Fill a large bucket with heavy items (i.e. bean bags, wood blocks, etc.) and have child carry the heavy bucket across the room and back.

4. Balance: Walk on pretend broomstick (balance beam). Pretend the floor is a hot boiling cauldron and have the children walk across a balance beam. Alternative: Place 6’ painters tape on floor in place of balance beam.

5. Eye-Hand Coordination: Ring toss on a witch’s hat.

6. Cool-Down: Read the book Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson

Telehealth Share:

7. Fine Motor: Pipe cleaner witch broomstick craft. Fold yellow construction paper in half. Draw a line about 1” from folded edge. Have child cut straight lines and stop at black line. Roll paper to create the broom’s brush. Secure onto pipe cleaner (broom stick). Lace with beads.

Materials needed: pool noodle, Balance beam or painters tape, Witches hat and rings to toss, Book Room on a Broom by Julia Donaldson, Pipe cleaners, Yellow construction paper, Scissors, Black marker, Craft beads

Sensory Strategies for Social Emotional Learning

  1. Kid-Friendly deep relaxed breathing exercises
  2. Gentle pressure on closed eyes
  3. Jenny’s rhythmical clap/pat pattern words “I am calm and ready to learn”

Click to watch video on how to perform these sensory social and emotional regulating activities: Sensory Regulation and the Sequence of Engagement

Sensory Regulation and Social Emotional Learning

Social and emotional learning (SEL) is the process of developing self-awareness, self-control, and interpersonal skills that are vital for a youth’s success in school, at home and in the community. Successful SEL is interdependent upon healthy sensory processing. 

Click here to watch Jenny’s video on sensory and SEL therapeutic benefits of exposure to nature and outdoor activities youth can engage in every day.