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Ilana Danneman
BY Ilana Danneman

10 Must Have Items for the Dream Sensory Room

A bit back, we spoke about creating a sensory corner on budget, but let’s imagine for a minute that you had all the time, space, and means for creating the perfect sensory room. Using light, sound, and a variety of specialized equipment, you can create a dream environment where children can calm down, self regulate, learn coping skills, and nurture independence.

Here are 10 amazing additions to any sensory space.

Light it up

1. THE SOLAR 250 PROJECTOR Light_It_Up

The perfect place to start when designing a new room. Using Effect Wheels, various sensory images can be reflected off the walls and ceiling, creating both a mesmerizing and calming effect.

2. THE FIBER OPTIC SENSORY LIGHTING KIT  
FiberOptic_Sensory

This kit is made up of polymer strands encased in plastic sleeves that change colors as they light up. These sparkly strands of light have so many applications and can be used both for relaxation and tactile and visual stimulation as well. They are very durable and can withstand even the toughest chews, and are perfect for engaging and initiating play.

3. A BUBBLE TUBE
Bubble_Tube

As ascending bubbles gurgle to the top, the tube scrolls through hundreds of different shades of light, helping set a quiet and restful tone for the room. Most tubes come equipped with a ‘color stop’ mode that can be used for storytelling casting a blue light when you are at sea, or a white light when there is snow. They are bright and crisp and invaluable in helping with exploration and development.

Keep Things Moving

4. THE MOOVIN AND GROOVIN SWING 
MovinANDgroovin_swing

A therapy swing like no other, sneaking in a gross motor and bilateral coordination workout while kids sit, stand, or hang, as they swing and spin. Made from 3 high-quality wooden rings that are rather spaced apart, it can easily and securely hold three children at a time so there is lots of group cooperation and problem solving going on in addition to all the other therapeutic effects.

5. THE SUPERACTIVE LED INFINITY TUNNEL LED_infinity_tunnel

A real crowd pleaser for children of all ages and abilities.  The tunnel provides gentle motion and the impression that the LED’s are never ending, combining both visual and sensory experience. It is an excellent addition to any multisensory environment.

6. THE AIR-LITE ROCKING RAFT Row

Provides a huge oversized surface for great solo or social fun. It encourages motor planning, balance and coordination, and inspires creative play. Kids can rock in almost any position, and it is gentle enough for even the more timid who may be hesitant about trying the more traditional rocking boards. The rocking raft provides an excellent workout while the kids quite literally Rock n Roll!

Squeeze and Shake

7. THE SQUEEZER Squeezer

The ultimate hug machine, providing deep pressure as kids squeeze their way through the foam rollers that are held together via heavy duty bungee cords. Kids craving sensory input will naturally migrate towards it receiving a heavy workout replete with motor planning to boot. The pressure can be easily adjusted so you can be sure that nobody will say no to a hug from the squeezer.

8. THE SOMATRON CLOUD CHAIR somatron_cloud

The sensory integration winner. While sitting in the bean filled chair, a vibroacuostic (vibration combined with music) is felt throughout the body, providing a relaxing space for just chilling, or a great place for doing homework and learning. The chair utilizes the patented Somatron Second Diaphragm Vibroacoustic System which makes it the ideal solution for any child with sensory processing challenges, but I think we can all use one of these.

9. THE AIRWALKER SWING 
airwalker

Made of heavy Lycra that surrounds and cocoons the rider, providing the best of both worlds, providing a deep sensory pressure as kids float, swing, or bounce. Because it is made of stretchy yet super heavy duty material, the swing encourages the rider to work on motor planning, vestibular orientation, and sensory integration. Alternatively, they can just roll up into a ball and quite literally and comfortably, just hang out. Did I mention this swing is machine washable? Life does not get much better than that.

10. Crash
crash_mats

It goes without saying, that every sensory room worth its salt is completely lined with CRASH MATS so kids can go a  rollin and a tumblin wherever they would like. These mats come in accordion style and Velcro at the end, so they can expand to cover the entire space.

Perhaps after reading this list, you are dreaming of the perfect sensory room, where your child is just free to be his/herself. Read about the incredible story of two moms who did more than just wish, through the raw power of faith, community, and lots of work and love, they actually made their dream come true. And you can too. Get started here.

Ilana Danneman

Written on December 30, 2013 by:

Ilana Danneman is a pediatric physical therapist with over 25 years experience in the special needs field developing 100's of products, blogging, providing customer education, and catalog direction. She has worked for both School Specialty and Fun and Function and currently is a contract blogger and product developer as well as home health pediatric and geriatric physical therapist. She is currently the owner of the idea therapist and can be reached at [email protected]
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