Lexington, MA: High school gets "sensory space" for autistic students to relax and refocus

Feb 2, 2018, Lexington, MA, Wicked Local, Arlington: Get to know the new Arlington Education Foundation grant projects Taking a sensory break Until now, Arlington High School did not have a formal space for students on the autism spectrum to take sensory breaks. In response, Magali Olander, a clinical social worker with the REACH program at AHS, created ChillVille. “The idea behind a sensory space is that there is a dedicated physical space that allows students to meet their sensory needs,” said Olander. “It’s all about helping students cope, re-regulate if they’re disregulated, either physically or emotionally or behaviorally and have a dedicated space to do that.” Students who need a break from overwhelmingly loud and overstimulating spaces in the school or who need a place to more physically can come to the sensory space and have some time to relax and refocus. They’ll use items like video game rocking chairs, a mini trampoline, stability seat cushions and weighted blankets in the sensory room.