Each month, at BEST Academy, we complement our ABA based education with a hands-on, project based curriculum, focusing on Science or Social Studies. For our monthly project in October, we embraced the bounty of the season-pumpkins. Each classroom explored the 5 primary senses through a number of different activities, culminating in a project that allowed for experiencing a pumpkin through sight, touch, taste, hearing and smell.

Many of the students picked a pumpkin from our own small garden. We cut them open and felt the guts, listened to the squishy sounds, separated out the seeds, smelling the earthy scent and then tasting the delicious baked seeds with just a touch of salt. Our students interact with the world around them in many unique ways. Slowing down and responding to every bit of sensory input is the simplest form of mindfulness, which is a powerful cognitive behavioral tool that can lead to greater contentment. If you look at these exploring moments, you will see a number of different sensory responses!