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Sensory Room Relaxes Pupils For Better Learning In School

Maddison Whitlock (Year 2) checks out the Lava lamps in the new Sensory Room at Pilgrim Academy.

A new Sensory Room is meeting the social and emotional needs of children at Pilgrim Academy.

The Sensory Room, which teachers have called ‘The Space Station’ because of its starlit ceiling and lava lamps, is a therapeutic space with a variety of equipment that provides all pupils, and especially those with special needs, with sensory input, helping them to calm and focus themselves so they can be better prepared for learning and interacting with others.

The room will be used by everyone at the Academy to fulfil a number of roles. It can be used for play therapy, for small group working or reading, and for relaxation sessions to meet the individual needs of some pupils.

Carolyn France, Assistant Principal of Pilgrim Academy and SEND Co-ordinator, said the COVID pandemic has had a range of negative effects, particularly on younger children, because of its restrictions on their social integration with others, which can sometimes manifest in difficulties when they go to school.

“The Sensory Room is a calming space where we can take children for some break-out time. It has gentle music and a wide range of sensory experiences, including a lego wall, lava lamps and a fantastic projector which turns the room into a night sky filled with dozens of stars,” she explained.

“We anticipate a great deal of use from this room for children throughout the academy because it is multi-functional and can fulfil a wide range of needs. The new facility is part of significant financial investment by Tollbar Multi Academy Trust to improve resources and facilities for all of our children here at Pilgrim Academy.”

Zlatimir Tenev (Year 2) is entranced by the starlit ceiling.

Teaching Assistant Lianne Senior in the new Sensory Room at Pilgrim Academy with Year 2 pupils (l-r)  Maddison Whitlock, Chloe Steward and Zlatimir Tenev.