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Wyoming, MI: Fundraiser to raise $$$ for elementary school sensory room; help for kids with trauma

June 9, 2018, Fox17, Grand Rapids, MI: Playing drums and raising funds for West Elementary http://fox17online.com/2018/06/09/playing-drums-and-raising-funds-for-west-elementary/ A fundraiser was held at Tip Top Deluxe Bar & Grill on Saturday to support students at West Elementary in Wyoming…. The goal was to raise $600 to help create a sensory room for elementary students, as well as raise money for an emergency fund for families in need of assistance. Erika VanDyke is the community school coordinator for Kent School Services Network (KSSN) at West Elementary. She said adding a sensory room would be beneficial for students having a hard time sitting for long periods of time. "We found if they have the opportunity to engage in sensory stuff, some of our kids, maybe for example that have autism, and they have sensory needs where they need to feel supported like physically, they need to be squeezed, we might have resources for that," said VanDyke. The sensory room would provide students with a number of resources. “Sometime it’s a swing, rock climbing wall, inflatable tunnel things, ball pits," said VanDyke. "Really anything that gets them back in touch and grounded. VanDyke said creating a sensory room would allow them to move their bodies when needed, something she said helps in a various ways. “I think the mental health is really big because we know that having the ability to sit all day is a struggle," said VanDyke. "Especially for younger kids that have experienced trauma, all these things that have affected them, it’s really important that they have the ability to just take a break sometimes and we know that can improve academic outcomes.” …