Learning Spaces

10 Sensory learning classroom additions your students will love

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Classroom tools for sensory learning have reached new heights of development, accessibility, and integration in recent years. Given the systemic increase in students' sensory needs, classroom additions must be innovative, effective, and diverse. These sensory learning classroom additions from School Outfitters are perfect for developing education beyond traditional academics. And they're essential for teachers who need new resources to improve learning recovery and support socio-emotional learning.

1. Sensory learning stations enhance classroom free time

A designated sensory exploration and learning space helps keep classrooms organized, especially with younger students. A sensory table featuring individual spaces within a communal area encourages parallel play interactions and individual exploration. Consider creating dedicated sensory learning areas within your classroom as comfortable spaces for students of all sensory profiles to learn and explore.

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2. Floor-level exploration facilitates experiences other than sensory learning

Floor-level activities are a great way to add a component of proprioceptive input to sensory exploration. For example, a gel mat can motivate gross and fine motor skill development while providing sensory feedback on tactile and visual information. Positional changes during the school day also help improve core stability and activation, which can in itself also be a regulating force. Find new ways to incorporate floor-based activities and exploration for your neurodivergent students!

Introduce floor-level exploration to your sensory students:

3. Integrate functional furniture within the classroom environment

Classroom furniture can be a great way to integrate sensory exploration and regulation into a daily classroom routine. Adaptive and quiet seating options can also help satisfy certain IEP recommendations for students without causing significant classroom disruption. Adding functional furniture pieces, either whole pieces or small accents like a pillow, also helps normalize alternative seating arrangements in a communal setting.

Get creative with your sensory classroom furniture additions:

4. Create dedicated sensory learning shared spaces

Larger sensory learning installations like sensory walls, tents, or cocoons are fantastic options for shared spaces. Multiple classrooms can use these areas throughout the week or as an exclusive feature of school programs that serve those with significant sensory needs. These sensory rooms can also be part of certain behavior management plans and support socio-emotional learning.

Reimagine your classroom with dedicated sensory spaces:

5. Smaller sensory products offer great low-threshold learning

Small sensory toys allow sensory exploration to remain under budget and at a low threshold. Students who explore fidget-type items can enjoy visual, auditory, and tactile input and learn about cause and effect. As another example, this tabletop texture sensory board is a great classroom addition, introducing students to the world of sensory learning.

Outfit your sensory learning spaces with all kinds of smaller products:

6. Themed sensory kits allow for more structured experiences

Themed sensory kits help students integrate associative experiences and can allow for more structured exploration. A garden or ocean theme may have differing textures, but they all tie into their respective environments. This can also help inspire students to engage further in relevant course material, like sensory kits focusing on skills development.

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7. No mess products are great for indoor or rainy-day plans

Many sensory learning classroom additions are no or low-mess, which helps keep learning spaces organized. Durable gel mats that are puncture-resistant, indoor sandboxes in a sealed tank, and tabletop sensory boards are all options to build a sensory experience without having to clean up the after-effects as often.

Embrace sensory learning without the mess:

8. Integrate emotional and sensory learning

Emotional education, especially for younger students, is an important life skill to develop in and out of the classroom. Tools like these sensory bottles can help foster communication skills about emotions and feelings and their effect on the students themselves and the people around them.

Browse these sensory products with emotional support benefits:

9. Emotional regulation tools offer even more sensory exploration opportunities

Sensory learning is a wonderful pathway to the world of emotional regulation for students. And regardless of ability, each student has varying sensory profiles to explore. Some students benefit from a deep-pressure input opportunity to help regulate feelings of frustration. Others find that a tactile fidget helps with difficulty focusing. Create emotionally supportive environments with all kinds of weighted, tactile, and visual sensory products from School Outfitters!

Bring these emotional regulation products to your sensory learning spaces:

10. Provide soothing aromatherapies

The sense of smell is a great way to explore environments, new foods, and educational concepts. Engage all the senses in your sensory learning classroom to create a welcoming space. Explore how to pair aromatherapies with other sensory experiences and curriculum topics to boost learning in a holistic way.

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FAQs about outfitting your sensory learning spaces

What are the best products for today's sensory-seeking children?

Students with sensory profiles will seek input for their systems and often benefit from classroom resources that provide deep pressure, vestibular input, tactile experiences, visual stimulation, and sensory engagement opportunities. Whether you're looking to inspire tactile exploration or calm anxious students, find sensory products that leverage unique sensory outcomes.

How do I make my classroom more sensory-friendly?

A few ways to start integrating sensory-friendly materials into the classroom include alternative seating, like beanbags or wobble chairs, and designated classroom sensory stations. Bubble tube lights are always popular. Consider using visual timers and carpets with varying textures are great options, as well.

How do I choose the best sensory toys?

Consider the diverse profiles of your students. Consider sensory toys that engage multiple senses simultaneously, such as tactile, visual, and auditory. For students who might not have as high of a tolerance threshold for multiple avenues of sensory input, a better option would be to choose items to separate these senses and allow exploration at a gentler level.

School Outfitters can help you design all your sensory spaces

School Outfitters strives to provide the most diverse product selection for educators and districts to support collective efforts in outfitting your learning spaces. From entire sensory rooms to individual sensory kits, our furniture experts are here to help. Get a free quote and start designing a sensory space perfect for students and staff alike.

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