FCSD3 Opens Second Sensory-Motor Room

FCSD3 Opens Second Sensory-Motor Room
Posted on 04/08/2019

Florence County School District Three officially opened its new sensory-motor room for students Monday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Dr. Ronald E. McNair School of Digital Communication and Leadership.

The new sensory room, the second in the district, “provides a therapeutic way for students to de-stress and enjoy activities that stimulate all of the senses,” said Cheryl Hubbard-George, director of the district’s Office of Exceptional Children.

The goal of the sensory-motor room is to use sensory-motor strategies to help all students to change their alert levels to optimal promoting student engagement and academic achievement.

A sensory room is an umbrella term used to describe a specifically designed space used to promote self-organization and positive change. Some children are almost always in a high alert level while others stay in a low alert level. Some children have difficulty with self-regulation and are unable to attain, maintain and change their alert levels appropriately for a task or situation. Therefore, they have trouble functioning optimally.

When a student is not in optimal learning state it can look like impulsiveness, fidgeting, low frustration, poor task initiation or persistence, incomplete work, distractibility, falling asleep or looking drowsy in the classroom.

Using sensory-motor activities can help students to get, and stay, in an optimal alert state for learning, playing and socializing throughout the day.

In one half of the room, the lights are dim and the gentle sound of a bubbling brook fills the room.  Everything about the room’s contents and ambiance screams “relax,” which is the entire point.   

The second half of the room promotes action based learning. Action Based Learning™ is based on the brain research that strongly supports the link between movement and learning, according to Mrs. Hubbard George.

“We know that healthy, active students make better learners,” she said. “The Action Based Learning room provides educational training that focuses on creating optimal learning environments for all students, through movement. Our hope is that when students are engaged in Action Based Learning they will have improved memory retention, increased focus and attention, improved grades, and less behavioral issues.  Many of the activities foster teamwork and collaboration,” she added.

The room was completed in collaboration with Spears Beckham, owner of EdSoulutions in Florence.

The sensory room isn’t just for students. If faculty or staff members are in need of a place to de-stress, the sensory room is available to them as well.

The project was funded by the state’s Maintenance of State Financial Support spending plan to improve student outcomes for students with disabilities.  The space is created to promote inclusive practices and positive behavior intervention and supports for all students.

Image of sensory-motor room opening
Image of sensory-motor room opening
Image of sensory-motor room opening