Resources for parents and teachers

“Axel’s Chain Reaction” app includes three hands-on activities in the Extras section. The reason for this, is that as much as we all love interactive media, I think we need to try to strike a balance so kids interact physically with the world around them. Making or building not only develops planning and motor skills.  It’s also a good way for kids to experiment, and practice perseverance away from the screen…And I’d like to remind parents that it offers a good  opportunity to create collaboratively with their kids.

My intention is to propose hands-on activities that are flexible enough for kids to modify, and use whatever materials they have. These activities are also meant to be used by teachers in their classrooms –specially in education systems that have Integrated or Cross-Disciplinary curriculum programs in place.  Fifteen years ago, I became a believer in the Constructivist approach to education, so naturally I welcome Project-Based Learning as an excellent entry point for concrete learners who learn better by doing (this benefits kids on the Autism Spectrum tremendously). 

In this section we’ll be including lesson plans, step-by-step activities, and recommendations of children’s books, games, and apps we like, as well as any links to other resources. Most of the information you’ll find here will be related to the themes included in “Axel’s Chain Reaction”: art, science, making and tinkering, bullying, and supporting kids with special needs (i.e. Autism Spectrum Disorder, Sensory Integration Disorder, language delays, ADHD).

We hope you enjoy them!

Optical illusion disc down an inclined plane

Optical illusion disc down an inclined plane

This activity can be used to talk about the force of gravity, inclined planes, and optical illusions.

What you need:

  • 1 cereal box
  • scissors
  • ruler
  • pen or pencil
  • color markers or poster paint
  • small piece of poster board or card stock.
  • masking tape (the wider the better)
  • round lid to trace a circle (of around 3 inches or 7.5 cm)
  • optional: glue and a small piece of white paper