September 21, 2013

Check Out Our Sensory Break Space!

I'm doing my happy special ed teacher dance! You know....the one that goes like this?

Elaine Dance photo ElaineDance.gif
Yes, I'm a Seinfeld fan. I mean, seriously, how many moments in our lives are identified with Seinfeld references?! Low talkers, close talkers, fat free yogurt, "No soup for you!", Mulva, puffy shirt, Festivus for the rest of us, Junior Mints. In fact, when I searched for this image I started laughing so hard my TA thought I had lost my mind! I know, I know...Topic Twister invaded my brain for a minute. Sorry about that! Back to the topic ~ Our New Sensory Break Room!

This year our school had a classroom that was being used for other purposes. My brilliant and fantastic principal gave us permission to expand our sensory break space into this room since our space was so limited in our tiny little classroom. I'm counting my lucky stars to have it for as long as I get it. I know it is HIGHLY unlikely we will have it next year. So, we are enjoying it while we do!

Check out our Gross Motor Center (complete with racetrack!)....

Our Fine Motor Center....

And our Calm Body Center...

I change out the activity offerings in each center (except the gross motor center which remains the same) on a weekly basis so it can stay interesting to the kids.

The kids check in at the Learning Zone poster when they enter the room.

They then choose a center that will help get their bodies into the green learning zone.

We are also working with Leah Kuyper's Zones of Regulation curriculum to help us identify "tools" for our ready to learn toolbox.

This week, we will be working to identify the effect various "tools" have on our emotions. Each child will have his own "toolbox" available.  Click here to download a copy of the toolbox.

This space has been such a blessing! We are able to start our days feeling good, conduct periodic sensory breaks as needed (or as scheduled!) during the day, and end our day in the room while we wait out the noisy chaos of dismissal. This has helped us start and end our days feeling calm!

I know that it is unlikely that we will have this space every year, but even if we don't I can use the same centers model with smaller and easier to store activities.

Thanks for checking our our Sensory Break Space!


  1. What a great space! (P.S. I am also a Seinfeld fan! "But they are JUJYFRUITS!")

  2. I found your site.. Then lost it. I have searched nearly 5 hours and finally found it!! Then my phone died. I think that could be an episode of Seinfeld!! Great plan!! I love it!! Thank you for sharing. Definately worth my time.


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