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(Australia) Ballarat school gets sensory room for students to "'reset' their emotions"

May 8, 2019, Ballarat Courier: Alfredton Primary School's new sensory room helps children regulate their emotions Pupils struggling in the classroom at Alfredton Primary School now have access to an innovative room where they can take a "sensory break" and control their emotions before returning to class. The school's new sensory room, believed to be the only one of its type in Ballarat, allows pupils whose senses are overwhelmed during the school day to regulate and "reset" their emotions. Teachers can send a child to the room if they see them struggling to control themselves, or children can tell their teacher directly or by using a discrete card on their desk. "Some students come to school and for one reason or another are not quite ready to go in to the classroom ... and during the day some kids get sensory overload," said student wellbeing coordinator Judy O'Grady…. "If they're in the red zone they might need to do some breathing exercises first, because we believe breathing is our number one way to calm down," Ms O'Grady said. … "The room offers appropriate strategies and tools that can be used for self regulation, ensuring participation as active, calm learners within their school and community," Ms O'Grady said. Ms O'Grady saw the need for the sensory room after seeing a pattern among the dozens of students she was counselling through difficulties, and others needing extra support within the school. "I was seeing a lot of students one on one who were having issues just sitting in the classroom. If they're going through loss, or friendship issues, or things aren't good at home they're not learning at school if they are thinking about that. "There's a lot of kids the same and we need to put them in an environment where we can teach them how to self regulate. …


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