Want a printable Santa emotion worksheet designed to support facial expression identification? This Santa emotion PDF is just that! And even better yet, if you are looking for ways to address visual discrimination using visual scanning activities with your students, this Santa Claus Emotions I Spy will check all the boxes! Not only will you be able to address visual discrimination and visual scanning skills with this fun printable, but you can easily incorporate many other skills addressed in occupational therapy including fine motor control and emotional regulation. Not to mention, this feelings worksheet is an easy way to have some fun this Christmas season in your treatment sessions with your students!
Visual discrimination is one skill that makes up our visual perception. Visual discrimination is an essential skill for students to participate in school in both their roles as a student for tasks such as reading and writing, as well as their role as a friend. We use our visual discrimination skills to read others emotions or changes in the environment. As you can see, it is so important to address visual discrimination skills using scanning activities. This printable Santa Emotion worksheet I Spy activity will make it easy!
What is visual discrimination?
Visual discrimintation is the ability to recognize similarities and differences between visual images or objects. Visual discrimintation is an important skill for students in school because of its link to reading and writing. When looking at words on the page, readers need to be able to discriminate between subtle differences in letters like “b” and “d” or “5” and “S”. Providing opportunities to build visual perceptual skills helps students engage in their occupations as a student!
Why is visual scanning important?
Visual discrimination is a component of visual perception, but in order for students to use visual discrimination skills effectively, they also need to use their visual scanning skills. Visual scanning sends the visual information to the brain, visual discrimination tells us why that visual information is important. In order for the visual system to work, we need both! Visual scanning is an important component of visual perception and there are so many fun ways to address scanning in your treatment sessions. Try marble painting, using a flashlight, or looking at a Christmas I Spy book to address visual scanning.
As mentioned before, students also need to rely on visual discrimination skills when reading other’s emotions. When you begin this activity with your students, start by reviewing the pictures of Santa at the bottom of the page. Talk about the similarities in the pictures, then talk about the differences. Have the students select a color to match with each emotion. This would be a great place to include Zones of Regulation colors and terminology if you use that program. Emotional regulation is essential for social participation and this is a great way to hit on that skill with your students.
identifying emotions worksheet with a Santa Theme!
Once you have reviewed the visual information and the emotions and filled in the coordinating colors, now it’s time to start coding or coloring in the Santa faces! As the student scans and discriminates each Santa, watch to see that their visual system is working to support their performance. There are many ways you could adapt or modify this activity to meet the needs of your students.
Here are some ideas to support visual scanning:
- Use another paper to cover some of the visual information
- Teach a strategy to help scan by making a mark on the page to indicate which row they are working on
- Use a ruler to help students keep their place as they are working
More ways to use this feelings worksheets pdf
- Use bingo daubers for students who have not yet developed fine motor precision skills
- Use tape or sticky tack to secure the printable Santa emotion worksheet to a vertical or inclined surface to address shoulder strength
- Set up a container of markers on one side of the room and put the worksheet on the other side. Have the students use a scooter board back and forth to retrieve the markers they need.
- Use tongs and pom poms or beads to work on fine motor skills at the same time
If your focus is on emotional regulation, you can easily extend this activity to target the student’s ability to identify their emotions. When discussing Santa’s emotions, ask your students to think of a time when they felt happy, sad, excited, or mad. It may also be fun for students to think about the self regulation tools Santa might use to help him regulate his emotions throughout the Christmas season!
Free Printable Santa Emotion Worksheet
Do you know a kiddo that would love this printable Santa emotion worksheet? You can download this emotions PDF and start working on skills like visual discrimination, scanning, coloring, feelings identification, and more!
Katherine Cook is an occupational therapist with 20 years experience primarily working in schools with students from preschool through Grade 12. Katherine graduated from Boston University in 2001 and completed her Master’s degree and Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study at Tufts University in 2010. Katherine’s school based experience includes working in integrated preschool programs, supporting students in the inclusion setting, as well as program development and providing consultation to students in substantially separate programs. Katherine has a passion for fostering the play skills of children and supporting their occupations in school.