Play It Forward Therapy

Classroom Sensory Strategies

Classroom Sensory Strategies

Before you decide what types of tools and sensory strategies to use in the classroom, you must first be able to answer these questions:  Let’s start with these questions…

  • What’s going well for your student in the classroom?
  • What type of sensory input does your student enjoy?
  • What types of sensory input does your student seek or crave? (e.g. movement, touch etc)
  • On the other hand,  when does your student’s performance fall apart?
  • What type of sensory input is avoided?
  • When do you see behaviors such as  avoidance, tantrums or shutting down?
When you observe problems in the classroom, it’s very important to take a step back and ask yourself these questions whether you are the OT, teacher or parent.  Your answers to the questions will help you decide what sensory tools or strategies to try first.

An OT is trained in making this type of assessment, the feedback from parents and teachers regarding a child’s daily routines at home and school are key pieces of information to formulate a treatment plan or what I call a “Sensory Strat Plan” (SSP).

In some cases, you may need to add an extra (S ) for “Sensory Survival Strat. Plan” (S.S.S.P.)!

Test your School Sensory Smarts

Match the piece of equipment or tool to the sensory system it supports.  If you need a quick review of the Sensory Systems click here 
  1. Vision
  2. Hearing
  3. Touch (Light Touch)
  4. Taste/Oral Motor
  5. Smell
  6. Proprioceptive (Deep pressure touch and body awareness)
  7. Vestibular (Movement and Position in Space)
  8. Interoceptive

How did you do?

To be continued…. Discover how these activities and pieces of equipment can support your student’s learning, attention and performance at school.


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