Improve Concentration & Focus With A Calming Area, Relaxation Station Or Concentration Station
Create a Relaxation or Concentration Station in your classroom, clinic or home to help your child have a safe place to calm and self regulate.
It's a challenge for anyone to focus in an exciting learning environment. It's an even bigger challenge if the child's body processes sensory information inefficiently. If their body cannot filter out irrelevant stimuli, a sensory "traffic jam" won't allow them to participate and be productive in various settings.
Did you know that 1 in 10 children have a severe problem with "filtering out" sensory input (i.e. they hear noises in the background as loud as the teacher's voice, they see fluorescent lights flickering like a strobe light, they are constantly bothered by visual movement in the periphery of their vision, they feel light touch like PAIN).
Their Central Nervous System is not mature enough to filter out this "extra" information and so their attention is constantly called to "pay attention to this input" causing severe internal stress and therefore an external explosion of behaviors!
It is important to have an Occupational Therapy evaluation to determine what is calming for your child. What may be calming for one child, may stimulate another.
Here are 3 of the most common ways these wonderfully sensory calming spaces are used:
1- As a means to calm children so they can re-emerge when ready to come back to the activity. No one learns well when under stress!
2- As a peaceful and encouraging environment for completing tasks.
3- As an ideal, closed environment for teachers and therapists to work with one or more children without interruption.
These are simple to use and cheap to make!
Ideas include: tent like area with dark sheets with a bean bag chair, vibration massage mat, weighted blanket and figet toys, or a large tupperware container the child can "cozy into" with weighted objects or favorite blanket and vibration stuffed animal. There are lots of great resources on Pinterest as well and online if you google "sensory calming spaces"!
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