Sensory Processing

Sensory circuits are set up in two main rooms across the school, in individual class rooms and outside. All circuits contain trampettes, spinners, rockers, therapy balls, mats, weighted blankets, stepping stones and hurdles. The main focus for sensory circuits is the activities and equipment that promotes alerting, organising and calming.

Sensory circuits are part of the children’s daily routine. By alerting their bodies and brains, the children improve their concentration, focus, organisation and communication. Through the use of sensory circuits during the day at regular times, the children will feel ready to learn and will have a greater knowledge and understanding of themselves and their environment.

We also have some great gym equipment to help improve

  • Gross motor skills
  • Co-ordination and balance
  • Organisation and motor planning

Have a look at some great photos of the children having lots of fun during sensory circuits.

“How does your engine run?”

The Alert programme “How does your engine run?” helps support children to recognize, understand and change their own level of alertness, so that it is appropriate to a situation or task.

The Alert programme, through fun, active, visual and motivating activities, supports children to learn to develop an awareness of how their “engine level” speeds feel. The children start to explore their central nervous system and identify their own sensorimotor preferences. They are supported to learn how they can adjust and regulate their systems to match the needs of the situation.

Children learn to identify and label their own engine levels:

“Too Low, Just Right, Too High”

 

Sensory Motor Input

Oral Motor Input: activities to encourage blowing, chewing, sucking, crunching, biting and licking.                     
Vestibular Input: activities to encourage spinning, rolling, jumping, sliding, swinging, rocking and bouncing.
Proprioceptive Input: activities to encourage heavy work, pushing, pulling, stretching and crawling.
Tactile Input: activities to encourage touching, rubbing, holding, tickling, squeezing and squashing.
Auditory Input: activities to encourage sound, variations in noise level and variations in rhythm.
Visual Input: activities to encourage looking, variations in light and variations in colour.

Have a look at some great photos of children in action doing the Alert Programme.

Fun food groups are set up for children who sensory avoid foods because of touch, texture, smell, colour or taste. During food groups, the children engage in fun, active and messy activities exploring foods. While the child is participating in the activity he or she will be experiencing touch, texture, smell, colour, and taste.

Groups are set up with no more than three children per session and are carried out in a calm and low stimulus environment. Sessions can run for 6 weeks or more depending on the child’s sensory needs. Goals are set between the sensory coordinator, Occupational Therapist and staff team. Evidence of progress is shown through observations, photos and video.

The food groups are proving to be a great success, with all children who have participated achieving, and sometimes exceeding the targets that were set.

Have a look at some of our great photos of the children enjoying sensory fun activities;

  • Painting with sauces; “very smelly!”
  • Jelly castles, whose will wobble first?
  • Pond dipping; “what will you find?”

 

Sensory diets are based on the Childs individual sensory needs and how the child responds and reacts to sensory input.

Children who seek or avoid sensory input and find it very difficult to process sensory information, will be provide with a planned and scheduled activity programme to help the child become more regulated. 
All sensory activities are encouraging, motivating and fun.

Sensory diets provide opportunities for the child to experience a variety of controlled sensory input, which will help and support a Childs response to different challenges in their environment.
Resources and equipment that children may use as part of their sensory diet are,

  • Weighted jacket, vest, bear hug, cap, blanket, snake and ankle weights.
  • Trampoline, swing, spinner, rocker, ball chair, sit and move cushion, wedge cushion and therapy ball.
  • Chewy tubes, deep pressure and massage, fidget toys, therapeutic listening, therapeutic brushing, ear defenders, crunchy and chewy snacks.

Sensory diets will support and encourage body awareness position and balance, making transitions from one situation to another less difficult, also supporting the ability to regulate and organise reactions to sensory input.

Have a look at our great photos of children working through their daily routine while receiving their sensory diet.

During Music and Movement the children are able to explore and develop their Sensory System, by experiencing movement with music and focussing on the tactile, vestibular and proprioceptive senses the children will develop a much greater awareness of their body position, balance, strength, control, sense of movement and touch.

Children make excellent progress by having fun while practising skills like, pushing, pulling, rolling, sitting, fast, slow, stop, looking, listening, anticipation, attention, and hand and eye coordination.

Music and Movement provides the children with lots of multi-sensory learning helping them to make sense of their environment.