How many of us are always ready to face new challenges, or brave enough to boldly taste new foods? Learning to enjoy new experiences is becoming second nature to the 6:1:2 students at Westview in the Department for Exceptional Children.
One of the group lessons class members are exploring is “Autism…What does it mean to me?” Recently, they studied how sensory input can affect the development of personal likes and dislikes. The curious students decided to combine an experiment using their own five senses with a life skills cooking lesson.
First, Westview staff explained how to properly use electric skillets and cooking utensils, and then students jumped in and cooked breakfast by themselves. They made eggs, bacon and pancakes, along with something none of them had seen or tasted before – venison sausage. Everyone tried the new food, studying its smell, taste, texture, look and sizzle. They discovered that they liked it. Along the way, they also learned how to make a great breakfast safely and independently.
More life skill practice followed breakfast with a lesson on ironing. “Staff brought in button-down shirts and dress pants,” said teacher Kim Stephenson. “Students learned how to use a hot iron and ironing board and were able to press wrinkle-free clothes without burning them.” The next exciting challenge for these intrepid students? Iron-on patches!
Feature photo: Culinary success is sweet for Chef Nathaniel.
This page: Christopher enjoys the breakfast he made by himself.