Two of my braille students made “Happy New Year” Trail Mix last week. Basically it’s just trail mix with the message of “Happy New Year” said as the student hands out their bags.
We started off by researching what items are typically found in trail mix. We created our own list, based on our research. One student brailled his list of what he wanted in his trail mix. The other student is a life skills student still learning to spell/braille words, so she gave me her list verbally.
(Note that original spelling and formatting has been transcribed below.)
- banana chips
- butter scotch chips
- peanut butter chips
The day we made the trail mix, we learned about food safety:
- Having clean surface for preparing food
- Washing hands
- Wearing gloves when handling food for others
- Wearing hair nets (we didn’t) or tying longer hair back
- Securing food in a bag/container for storage
- Following a recipe
Following the Recipe in an Accessible Format
While making the trail mix, one student followed his braille recipe that was put on Permabraille. The sheet was cleaned with a sanitized wipe prior to cooking.
The other student used a talking photo album, as her braille skills are still emerging. I secured a sample of the food item to each page and then recorded the message.
In the video you’ll see me assisting her in accessing the information. Next time I will put an indicator dot on the play button to assist her in finding the correct place to press, as there is a specific spot on the bottom of the page that activates the voice. This was our first time trying it and, despite the initial difficulty of finding the play button, she did really well! After the first couple of pages, she was able to locate the play button more easily. This process enabled her to be more independent in making her trail mix, which is a huge win for her!
Video of Using Talking Photo Album to Follow a Recipe
Transcript: Trail Mix
Measuring and Scooping the Trail Mix
Once the trail mix was made, they used a 1-cup metal measuring cup to scoop the mix up into quart size ziploc bags. I used this size to make it easier for the students to pour their mix into the bags. The zipper bags are easier for them to close than the that need to be pinched to close.
The students then went about their campus delivering their goodies to their teachers, principal, paras, etc. and told them all “Happy New Year”. This was huge for one student, as he is typically very quiet. One of the groups he delivered the trail mix to was a class of students who are deaf and hard of hearing, so he really had to speak up in order to be heard.