Did someone mention pancakes?
Whether your residents are religious or not, the opportunity to make and enjoy pancakes on Shrove Tuesday is not one to be missed and it covers many of the sensory areas that stimulate.
Discussing ingredients and how they use to make pancakes makes for good social interaction.
Measuring and mixing ingredients. If they do it by hand they will get the feel of the mixture. Who cares if it's messy if they enjoy it?
Cooking. OK, you will have to judge the capability and risk assess this but with the right assistance, it can be done. If you don't have the environment for it, discuss with the chef for the kitchen to make pancakes to swap over for the residents to eat.
Fillings. It's a very British thing to just have sugar and a squeeze of lemon but there is so much choice that would spark tastebuds from sweet to savoury. Cream, fruits, berries, chocolate to cheese, cheese and pickle, fish. The world of flavour is your oyster. Mmmm...oyster pancake anyone?
An array of fillings will bring a new dimension to the residents day, even if you just have a choice of sugar, lemon and cream. Allowing residents to choose what they want is very important especially in memory care; it keeps their independence. See the Members Area for Pancake Activities.
One thing to insist on...you must taste test one!
Staff Morale [and pancakes]
We all get caught up in our roles but factor in a bit of fun for your team, organise a pancake toss!
Now, this can get a bit messy but the competitive side comes out in most people. I cheat for this one and buy a couple of packs of cheap pancakes. Borrow a frying pan from the kitchen, preferably not too heavy or bring one in from home. Randomly approach staff to see how many pancakes they can flip. Residents love watching and counting and usually find it funny when it drops on the floor. The first time I did this, a young carer flipped over 50 times before I said stop and gave her a certificate [See the Members Area for Template] and a small prize. She was so proud and it was great for team morale.
Oh but the mess! Be prepared for over-enthusiastic flipping! All 24 pancakes ended up shredded to pieces and all over the floor like a spilt jigsaw. But it was great fun.
Have a great month and keep smiling.