Sensory Rooms in the Special Education Setting

I have some more work in progress going on in my classroom. We are creating a sensory room in my classroom! This is a lot of work, but we are very excited about the progress that we have been making.

There is a little side room attached to my classroom that houses our washer and our dryer. We used to have an aquarium in my classroom that we had to move out of my classroom due to safety concerns. We decided to move the aquarium to the little side room. This sparked the idea of creating a sensory room for my students. The theme is “UNDERWATER WORLD”. It is a work in progress, but coming along very nicely.

I did some research on multi-sensory environments. I wanted to see what the benefits are to our students. Here is what I found.

Multi Sensory Environments can open up a whole new world for individuals with cognitive and physical impairments. Providing a stimulating environment can:

  • Increase concentration and focus attention

  • Develop or reactivate senses of hearing, sight, smell, touch, and taste

  • Heighten awareness and improve alertness

  • Improve coordination and motor development

  • Promote cognitive development by increased brain function

  • Lead participants to explore their environment

  • Provide security

  • Be an unrestrained atmosphere where participants feel able to enjoy themselves.

  • Improve creativity

  • Stimulate the sensory building blocks

  • Develop of a sense of cause and effect

  • Develop language – more vocalization

  • Promote social interactions

  • Promote mental and physical relaxation  – Stress levels drop dramatically

  • Result in more calmness and lower aggressive behaviors

  • Increase opportunity for choice and self-determination

  • Improve communication and sharing

  • Lead to non-responsive patients becoming communicatative

  • Provide relief from pain and painful physiotherapy

I cannot wait to let the students use this room. I would love to hear what type of equipment you use for sensory experiences in your classroom!!!