Since April was Autism Awareness Month, we partnered with Aspen Speech Therapy to host a special event called “Pasta with a Purpose.” Our guest of honor was CSU Professor Temple Grandin. I think I can speak for all of us at Ginger and Baker when I say, it was one of those really amazing days when after it was done you think, “Wow!”
We held four classes of 16-plus kids who are on the autism spectrum, along with their siblings and supporters and the sole purpose was to play with flour and pasta dough!
We rolled, stretched, pinched and shaped pasta by hand to create a fun tactile project for kids, young adults and many of the parents and volunteers.
At the end of each class we challenged the group to help us roll the “world’s longest noodle.” Flour was everywhere as the noodles stretched out of the teaching kitchen, through the barn doors and into our coffee bar!
When we all began to create a super super long noodle together, I silently thought, “How many of us get to make a HUGE mess, do something silly with food, and not worry about getting it right or wrong?” It doesn’t happen often, yet here we all were!
One of the memorable comments I heard from Dr. Grandin was, “ It’s so good to engage kids in a tactile way instead of having them look at screens all day.” I agree. If food is love for many of us, maybe playing with it can be magic and freedom for others. All of us want to belong to something, and for a little time in April… we all connected through flour, pasta and an attempt to make some of the longest noodles ever seen. 🙂
Thank you Aspen Speech Therapy, Dr. Temple Grandin and our pasta making, flour covered kids! “WOW!”