"Cake Day" has been a favorite in my house over the last few months. It turns out my kids like reading about cake almost as much as they like eating it! "Cake Day" is the story of a young boy and his Grandma baking a cake for a special occasion. Throughout the story we see the warm and easy interactions between the boy and his loving Grandma, as well as the multitude of every day learning opportunities. Grandma is constantly helping the boy to make observations, asking questions, answering his questions and responding to his thoughts. She also models conventional grammar and speech patterns as she talks naturally with the youngster.
|I wonder who will clean up all that flour?!|
Many parents worry that they have to do something special to "teach" their children to talk, as a parent of a child with a speech delay, thoughts about what I can do to help improve his speech are always on my mind. "Cake Day" helps to point out that simply speaking to little ones frequently, and in the proper patterns and conventions is a huge part of "teaching" language development. Rather than worrying about giving an outright correction to short sentences or incorrect grammar, the Grandma models longer phases and sentences, and includes proper speech in her conversation with the little boy. The story is very cute and one that children and adults alike will enjoy reading. The conversation modeling and included professional note about language development are an added and appreciated bonus-as well as the cake and frosting recipe, so that you can have your very own cake day at home!
|Grandma has some great helpers!|
To celebrate our (many) readings of "Cake Day", I created some cake themed sensory trays for E and C. These were our first attempt at "Cloud Dough"-there are many recipes available on the internet and a few variations you can try. We started with the 8:1 flour:oil recipe, we used regular all purpose flour and vegetable oil. I found that the dough was a little drier than I wanted, so I added a little more oil, simply mixing the two ingredients together. I added a few sprinkles of cocoa powder and cinnamon to the mix, which gave it a little variation in color and a nice scent to start out with. The dough lasted in our sealed containers for about two weeks, and may have lasted longer but we were ready to move on to something else ;)
|Ready to make some cakes|
|Taste Safe, but sadly doesn't taste like cake|
With each tray I also included sprinkles, birthday candles, cookie cutters, plastic cake toys, and muffin trays. WE had fun making our own little cakes and decorating them in the muffin tins, squishing and spreading the "dough", filling the tins, making shapes, and of course E discovered that the dough was a great new thing to drive his trucks through!
|C's Decorated Cupcakes|