Updated: Apr 9
Teaching ideas and inspiration to celebrate the month of February including Candlemas, St Brigid's Day, Tu BiShvat, National Wear Red Day, Parinirvana Day, Valentine's Day, Shrove Tuesday, Design a Book Cover Competition and more!
Dates at a Glance
1st Feb - St Brigid's Day
2nd Feb - Candlemas
3rd Feb - National Wear Red Day
5th Feb - Tu BiShvat
13th Feb - World Radio Day
14th Feb - Valentine's Day
18th Feb - Discovery of Pluto
21st Feb - Shrove Tuesday
21st Feb - Losar
27th Feb - International Polar Bear Day
St Brigid's Day
St Brigid lived around the same time as St Patrick and was influenced by his teachings to become a Christian. She was known for her generosity.
Celebrate by making/tasting potatoes with butter, add cabbage to make colcannon and serve with soda bread.
St Brigid once gave away her mother's entire store of butter!
Churn you own butter
You will need:
A small, lidded jar
Whipping cream A clean marble
1/4 fill the jar with whipping cream
Add the clean marble
Secure the lid
It will take approximately 15 minutes for the cream to solidify so this is an ideal opportunity to practice turn-taking skills!
Taste the butter on a toasted soda bread.
Flavour your butter by adding fresh chopped herbs: Coriander, parsley or add spices or honey.
Make a St Brigid's Cross
Traditionally made from woven rushes, when displayed in the home, the cross is thought to keep evil, fire and hunger.
Explore making a cross using different materials: card, grasses, pipe cleaners, raffia, ribbons, straws.
A Christian holy day which also draws some of its roots from paganism (in pre-Christian times Candlemas marked the mid-point of winter.)
Traditionally, people bring candles to church to be blessed or light candles and place them in their windows at home.
Light a candle (or use an LED candle. Can the student explore the cause and effect of the ON/OFF switch?
If you have an interactive whiteboard dim the lights and play an image of a lit candle to meditative/calming music.
In France and Belgium, it is traditional to eat crepes.
Explore different toppings: chocolate sauce, cinnamon, cheese, cream, cream cheese, ice-cream, honey or fruit.
In Luxembourg children sing in exchange for coins.
Explore coins. Make coin rubbings, count them or post into a tin. Alternatively, explore chocolate coins.
National Wear Red Day
Raising awareness of heart disease.
Wear an item of red clothing.
Explore red fabrics: chenille, cotton, felt, flannel, jersey, leather, nylon, silk, suede, tartan, wool
Explore red shiny items: baubles, buttons, foil/sweet wrappers, foil, glitter, ribbon, tinsel.
Explore red hues through a piece of artwork: burgundy, cerise, crimson, fuchsia, magenta, maroon, ochre, plum, red, raspberry, rose, ruby, russet, rust, salmon, scarlet.
Go on a red colour hunt. Place items around the room/outdoor area for the students to find. You can either provide a bag/basket to collect the items in, a list to tick off items when they have been found or create a picture matching board. Here are some ideas: balloons, chalk, crayons, lipstick, plasticine, Play-Doh™, rose/rose petals, sock/mitten.
Taste red foods: apples, beetroot, cherries (remove stone), cranberries, pink grapefruit, radicchio, radish, raspberries, red cabbage, red grapes, red potatoes, strawberries, tomatoes.
Red colour sorting activity: Provide a range of sensory items to sort into colours: bowls, buttons, feathers, straws, chalks, crayons, cups, flowers, leaves, Lego (build a tower), Math Link, pegs, pipe cleaners, pom poms and socks.
This is the Jewish New Year for Trees. Many fruits associated with the Holy Land are eaten, in particular the ones mentioned in the Torah, such as pomegranates, dates, figs, grapes and olives.
Some people will try a new fruit.
Engage the Senses & Try New Foods
Explore the texture, smell and taste of pomegranates, (de-stoned) dates, figs, grapes* and (de-stoned) olives. (*Be aware of choking hazards)
Explore food containing dates, figs, grapes, and olives:
Pomegranate: Chutney, Juice, Sorbet, Tea.
Dates: Cereal Bars, HP Sauce!
Olives: Bread, Butter, Oil.
Figs: Fig Roll Biscuits, Dried Figs, Chutney, Fresh Figs, Jam, Yogurt, Relish.
Grapes: Grape Juice, Raisins, Sultanas.
Try a new exotic fruit:
Chayote, Coconut, Kiwi, Kumquat, Mango, Papaya, Persimmon, Physalis, Pomelo.
Alternative Activity to Food Tasting
Offer a hand massage using fruit scented and olive hand creams, lip balms*, hand wash/bubble bath (pour a little into a foot spa) and explore essential oils.
*Be Allergy Aware
A day to promote good oral hygiene.
Take a virtual trip to The Dentist with this FREE multisensory story!
Set up a Dentist Role Play Area
Role play is a crucial part of development and provides opportunities to practice imaginative play, communication and language skills building narrative thought acting out scenarios.
1. Create a 'waiting room' with magazines, colouring and puzzle sheets.
2. Create a reception area. Provide a diary for writing appointments and a telephone.
3. Assign roles. The receptionist, the dentist, dental nurse, and the patients. Encourage students to swap roles. This sharing of roles and turn taking will develop awareness of others’ thoughts, feelings, and opinions.
4. Provide craft materials for students to make badges to identify their job role.
5. Provide a blue, white, or green shirt, goggles and face masks for the dentist and dental nurse to wear and props such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, mirrors, a small torch, fake 'toy' teeth, a bib, goggles, masks.
6. Setting up a dental surgery role play area provides an excellent opportunity to work with money, whether it is calculating change or devising a price list for services. Set up an area to sell products (toothbrushes, toothpaste, dental floss)
World Radio Day
Raising awareness of the pleasure and importance of the radio.
Listen to a range of radio clips: music, sports, news, weather to communicate the diversity of the radio.
Explore the cause and effect of a wind-up radio.
Become radio presenters!
Valentine's Day Sensory Bag
Sensory bags are a cheap and fun way to engage the senses and develop language skills. Choose a non-see-through bag that is tactile and catches the eye. (If you don't have a bag then use a pillowcase)
Place a variety of Valentine's Day themed items inside the bag: Rose Petals, Chocolate, Edible Flowers, (Costume) Jewellery, 'Love' Letter/Card, Rose Scented Candle/Wardrobe Hanger Sachet/Essential Oil/Handwash/Cream/Lip Balm, Perfume, Teddy Bear, Rose Water (or foods containing rose water (Turkish Delight, Rose Cordial, Rose Lemonade, Rose Tea, Rose Shortbread.)
When choosing items think of engaging all the senses: Add items that stimulate the vision, tactile items that feel nice to the touch, items to smell and taste and items that make interesting sounds.
Give the bag a gentle shake to gain the student's attention.
Invite the student to place their hand into the bag and select an item.
Encourage the student to use their sense of smell, touch, hearing and taste to guess what the item is (If the student is unsure then provide plenty of clues.)
Build Functional language skills.
Ask the student to tell you or show you what you might do with the item and where you might find it.
(If the student is unsure, model what to do with the item and see if they can copy your action.)
Allow the student time to explore the item and process the information then shake the bag again for them to select another item.
Keep language simple.
Focus on phrases such as 'Choose' or 'Take one' when presenting the bag to the student.
Focus on the name of the object e.g., 'Heart', 'Chocolate' and two-word phrases e.g., 'Red Rose'.
Model verbs: 'Smell' 'Eat'.
Parinirvana Day marks the death of the Buddha who is believed to have entered a state called Parinirvana, the final goal of Buddhism, 'Nirvana without end'.
Re-Create a Visit to a Buddhist Temple with a Guided Relaxation Adventure
Guided relaxation is generally considered a safe activity as it is the practice of relaxation, stillness and calmness.
By adding props you can create a wonderful sensory experience.
Preparing For Your Guided Relaxation Adventure
1. Find a comfortable place that is free of distractions.
2. Settle the student into a position that is comfortable for them.
3. Provide pillows/beanbags/cushions and blankets.
4. Dim the lights.
5. Tell the student that if at anytime they wish to stop the activity to tell you, raise their hand or open their eyes.
6. There is an option to incorporate props such as mini cymbals, incense sticks, a gong/drum, a money box and coins.
7. Using a calm and gentle voice, slowly read through the guided adventure below pausing between sentences.
'Close your eyes and take a slow, deep breath.
I want you to imagine a magic carpet has floated into the room.
Climb onto the carpet. It is soft and comfortable.
You feel safe as the carpet gently rises, floats across the room, and leaves the building.
The carpet flies into the sky and gently glides over the rooftops.
You feel excited as the magic carpet sweeps over towns and villages, fields, and farmland.
The sheep and cows look tiny below.
You are now travelling over the sea.
Can you see how blue the water is?
Can you feel the warmth of the sun on your back?
You feel very relaxed and happy riding on your carpet.
In the distance you see land approaching.
The carpet glides along long winding rivers, and across vast grasslands then sweeps up to the highest part of the hillside, where you see a temple.
Your magic carpet lands outside a gate.
You see a kind man with a shaven head. He is wearing an orange robe.
The man greets you by placing his hands in front of his body, palms together and bows his head slightly.
Would you like to greet him back?
He asks you to take off your shoes. He will keep them safe.
You follow him through the gate and onto a path lined with colourful flowers and trees bearing fruits. Their leaves dapple in the sunshine.
The path is lined with blossom, the petals are soft on your feet.
You enter the temple.
It smells of perfumed incense (option to light an incense stick or to lightly spritz perfume)
Gold statues line the room.
It is so quiet in the room you can hear yourself breathe.
At the front of the room is a Buddha statue sat on top of wooden platform with two long candles.
You feel very relaxed as you watch the orange flames flicker.
Take a few minutes to relax.
It is almost time to leave.
You turn to leave and next to the door you see a small wooden box.
Would for you to post some coins through the slot in the box?
Listen to the rattle they make as they hit the bottom of the box? (Option to create the atmosphere by dropping coins into a money tin)
There is a gong hanging from the ceiling.
You can gently ring it if you like (option to hit the gong to re-create the sound)
As you leave the gate you take one last bow.
Your magic carpet has returned to take you home.
Climb onto the carpet and make yourself comfortable.
The carpet rises slowly into sky and retraces its journey down the hillside and across the land.
You cross the sea feeling very calm and relaxed as the magic carpet glides over fields and farms, villages, and towns.
You recognise the rooftops of the shops, school, and houses where you live.
Picture the room that we are in now.
The magic carpet gently lands in this room, and you climb off and lie on the floor.
Your journey is over for today but remember, you can take a journey on your magic carpet whenever you like.
When you are ready wiggle your fingers and your toes then gently open your eyes.'
Former Planet, Pluto was discovered By Clyde Tombaugh in 1930
''The last stop is Pluto, it has five moons
They orbit the planet like water balloons''
You will need:
5 x Balloons
Washing up Bowl
Ball Pit Play Balls/Ping Pong Balls
Fill the water balloons with different quantities of water and secure with a knot.
Can the student(s) handle the water balloons without them bursting?
Place ice cubes into the washing up bowl then float ball pit play balls/ ping pong balls
Explore items that sink and float: Aluminium Foil, Cork, Feather, Foam, Leaf, Lego, Confetti, Glitter, Pulses, Wood.
Explore liquids that sink and float and those that disperse: Baby Oil, Food Colouring, Honey, Olive/Vegetable Oil, Washing up Liquid, Corn Syrup
This space themed activity also links with the birthday of Galileo Galilei on Feb 15th
Watch the video!
Originally recorded for The Sensory Festival, this video is packed with sensory ideas and activities.
(Note: I recorded this the day after I had been in hospital so was feeling a little under the weather but there are some fun ideas in there!)
Smell, touch and taste pancakes.
You can use ready-made shop bought pancakes, make your own pancakes using an instant batter mix or make a batter mix from scratch.
Batter Mix Recipe
225g (1 3/4 cups) plain flour
500ml (2 cups) milk
2 large eggs
Explore 'Sweet' and 'Savoury' Pancake Toppings.
Can the students make a 'sweet' pancake and a 'savoury' pancake by selecting the correct ingredients?
Sweet Toppings: bananas, berries, caramel sauce, chocolate sauce, cream, honey, ice-cream, jam, maple syrup, strawberry sauce.
Savoury Toppings: aioli, avocado, baba ganoush, cheese, spices cinnamon/nutmeg, garlic dip, guacamole, houmous, marmite, mushrooms, pesto, sour cream, taramasalata, tzatziki.
Be allergy aware!
Can the sensory explorer express a preference between sweet and savoury?
Can the sensory explorer identify the 'healthier' choices for the pancake toppings?
Eat Your Way Around the World!
Pancakes are a global treat! Explore the different pancakes and toppings.
Bananas and cream
Cherries and raisins
Coconut, condensed milk
Spinach and chard
Sugar and jam for dipping
Lemon and sugar
Chocolate sauce & raisins
Spinach and ricotta
Shredded cabbage & spring onion
Celebrate Tibetan New Year.
Traditionally, people would pass a fire torch through the crowds.
Can the students pass a torch/LED battery candle around their peers?
This three-day festival sees the exchange of gifts.
Play Tibetan traditional music and promote turn-taking with a game of 'pass the parcel'
Dough balls are eaten. Ingredients such as coal, wool, chillies and rice are placed inside.
The ingredient contained within your doughball is said to reflect your character!
Chilli Pepper - Chatty talkative person
Rice - A Good person
Wool - Kind person
Make Playdoh or Plasticine 'Dough' Balls
You will need:
Playdoh/Plasticine (blue, yellow and red represent the colours of the Tibetan flag)
Chilli Pepper (plastic 'toy' chilli or substitute for cubes of red bell pepper or use peppercorns)
How to make Playdoh/Plasticine 'Dough' Balls
Promote fine motor skills as the students roll their Playdoh/plasticine into balls.
Make a hole in the centre of the ball using a finger/thumb or a wooden dowel rod.
Place grains of dried rice, a piece of wool or chunk of pepper (or peppercorns) into the hole.
Recover the hole with Playdoh/Plasticine to hide the item placed inside.
Place the balls together, then as a group, take turns in selecting a ball and peeling it open to reveal the contents.
Can the students remember the characteristic said to be reflected according the to item inside? (Chilli Pepper - Chatty talkative person, Rice - A good person, Wool - kind person.)
Can the students think of other characteristics and corresponding items to place inside the balls?
Here are some examples:
Feather - Soft hearted person
Daisy or dandelion - Flower lover
Toy animal - Animal lover
Spinach - Strong person
Leaf - Nature lover
Other ways to celebrate Losar
People engage in activities that symbolise purification and welcoming in the new.
Buildings are whitewashed and thoroughly cleaned and people wear new clothes.
Engage in outdoor learning.
Provide paintbrushes and rollers for students to 'paint' the walls, fences and railings. Add washing up liquid to create white soap suds.
Buddhist monks adorn the monasteries with the finest decorations, and conduct religious ceremonies.
Make a Tibetan Prayer Flag
You will need:
Rectangles of material (explore different colours, fabrics and textures)
Length of string
Lay a rectangular piece of material onto a flat surface.
Place the length of string on top of the rectangular material 1/4 of the way from the top edge of the material.
Tuck the top of the material over the string then glue to secure.
Repeat until you have a length of prayer flag.
International Polar Bear Day
Lets' Explore....Polar Bears!
Learning about animals and habitats teaches about Conservation and Respecting Wildlife
Promote Communication Skills (Listening & Speaking)
Play an audio clip of a polar bear 'chuffing', 'growling', 'grunting', 'hissing' and 'roaring.
Can the student communicate a request to listen to the sound again? (This could be through gaze, verbally or through sign)
If using a switch, BIGMack or Talking Tile, can the student activate the device independently?
Can the student imitate the sound using their voice?
Record their vocalisation and play it back.
Promote Physical Development, Coordination, Balance, Control & Movement & Imaginative Play
Watch footage of a polar bear.
Polar bear’s forepaws are directed inwards. They can gait and gallop swaying their hips but cannot trot.
Can the sensory explorer move their body like a polar bear?
Re-Create a Polar Bear Habitat.
Line a Tuff Tray with ice. Add fake snow (see recipes below) Add toy polar bears, and a bowl of water.
Female polar bears make a den in snow. Using fine motor tools (cups and scoops) can the student make a polar bear den in the snow?
Fake Snow Recipes
1. Add shaving cream to baking soda.
2. Sprinkle a sachet of gelatine into warm water and stir until dissolved. Add ice cubes.
3. Mix cornflour with hair conditioner until you reach the required consistency.
4. Mix cornflour with bicarbonate of soda (equal quantities e.g., one cup), add water a tablespoon at a time until you reach the desired consistency.
5. Mouldable snow: Mix three cups of shaving cream with 1/2 cup of glue and 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda. Stir in 1/2 cup of foam micro beads. Add 1 tablespoon of salt and water. Knead.
6. Add 3 cups of baking soda with 1 cup of hair conditioner.
DESIGN A BOOK COVER for my new multisensory story 'Shapes - A Multisensory Exploration'
The winning artwork will feature on the cover of my new release 'Shapes - A Multisensory Exploration
How to Enter: Using any medium, produce a piece of artwork with the topic of shapes.
I would love to see your shape monsters, shape themed artwork and any activities you would like to share.
A4 Portrait only please.
(You do not need to write the title on the artwork, please do not write any names of the students on the artwork.)
email your artwork to email@example.com
Please include in your email the first name of the artist, the name of the school and a contact name.
1. There is no age limit.
2. You may submit as many entries as you like.
3. The closing date is midnight 14th Feb 2023
5. The winner will have their artwork featured on the new release '
The stories are in the format of a digital download and can be printed out, used and shared throughout the school/setting in multiple classrooms.
6. The 20 runners up will win a multisensory story of their choice.
7. The winner will have their artwork featured as the cover of my new release 'Shapes - A Multisensory Story'
* If the winner is home-schooled then the prize will be emailed directly to the winner.
Subscribe to the Members Library for unlimited access to all resources to view online, download and/or print plus FREE Zoom mini training sessions
£95 per year (school/setting site licence - multiple members)
Or buy individually at £3.98 each
Visit the shop
Full List of Titles
A Train Ride Through India
Chinese New Year
Dear Santa (Free resource)
The Gingerbread Man
Jack & the Beanstalk
Jobs & Work Experience
Journey into Space
Little Red Riding Hood
St Patricks Day
The Dentist (Free resource)
The Queens Jubilee - (Free resource)
The Three Little Pigs
The Weather (Free resource)
Washing Hands (Free Resource)
Visit the Story Library for your FREE resources
Download the latest catalogue
Training (1-1, Groups & INSET)
'An Introduction to Multisensory Storytelling' Course
Groups (Enquire for a price)
Book a course and receive a FREE 6-month subscription to the Members Library!
(Offer applies to bookings over £200)
Who is the Course Aimed at?
SEN Teachers, SENCOs, HLTA's, TA's, Mainstream Early Years Educators, Speech Therapists, Play Therapists, Parents, Guardians, Childminders, Carers, Support Workers, Activity Coordinators, Librarians, and anyone with an interest in exploring storytelling through the senses.
The benefits of multisensory storytelling.
Sourcing story props.
How to tell a multisensory story.
Adapting an existing story into a multisensory story.
Incorporating extension activities into your session.
Using the story props as a tool for individuals to explore & express their likes, dislikes and sensory preferences.
In addition to this we will explore a multisensory story in depth, how to deliver this story and how to use the story props promote communication and areas learning.
The current theme is 'Winter - A Multisensory Exploration'
How is the Training Delivered?
The training is delivered as a friendly and informal session via Zoom and can be tailored to meet your training requirements.
How Much Does the Course Cost?
£45 1-1 Training Session
£250 Whole School/Setting INSET
(For smaller group bookings please enquire for a price)
Book a course and receive a FREE 6-month subscription to the Members Library!
(Offer applies to group and INSET bookings and excludes 1-1 sessions)
1hour 45 mins plus Q & A.
Will I Receive any Course Notes?
Yes. Course summary notes will be sent as a word document.
Are There Any Other Free Resources Included?
You will receive a free digital download of 'Listen - An A-Z of Sensory Ideas to Stimulate the Auditory System'
This comprehensive guide explores fun and engaging sensory ways of stimulating the sense of hearing. The A-Z of sounds is divided into the following categories: Animals, Transport, Musical Instruments & Home. It also includes fun, motivating sensory themed extension activities. This resource is suitable for working with curious pre-schoolers to teenagers with complex needs.
You will also receive a free digital download of the focus story.
How Do I Book?
email firstname.lastname@example.org or send a message via the chat feature on the website or through social media
How Do I Pay?
Payment is accepted through BACS or Cheque.
I am a School/Company/Setting, can you send an Invoice?
Yes. Rhyming Multisensory Stories is fully registered with HMRC and can invoice.
Will I Receive a Certificate?
Yes. You will receive a digital certificate of completion
Get in Touch!
Your questions, queries, comments & feedback are always welcome!
Facebook Page: Rhyming Multisensory Stories
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The Health & Safety Bit!
Please Read Before Engaging in any of the Activities
Health & Safety Advice & Disclaimer
The author has used their best efforts in preparing the information on this website and makes no representation or warranties with respect to the accuracy, applicability, fitness or completeness to the contents.
The information is for pleasure purposes only.
If you wish to apply any ideas and activities contained in this blog, on the website or in any of the multisensory stories or resources, you are wholly responsible and take full responsibility for your actions.
The activities are designed to be led and supervised by a responsible adult at all times.
A Note on Allergies/Intolerances
If you have any doubts regarding any activity or prop used, then seek advice before starting.
Be aware of potential choking hazards.
Check the ingredients in any items you may be using for any potential food or skin allergies or respiratory reactions. If you see any signs of redness, swelling or other symptoms of a suspected reaction seek immediate medical advice.
The interactions should be led by the sensory explorer who should be allowed to participate without expectation.
Never force stimuli and stop the activity if the story explorer shows signs that they are not enjoying the session.
Thank you for your support
See you in March!
Your questions, queries, comments and feedback are always welcome!
Contact me via email
or send me a message via social media:)