Creating a Sensory Room At Home

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Today I am going to share some tips and ideas for creating a sensory room in your home. If you are unfamiliar with sensory rooms or spaces, this is a great place to start.

What is a Sensory Room?

A sensory room is basically a safe and quiet place/space in your home for your child to go when they either need a break or need to self-regulate.

Having a sensory room gives them a safe place to collect themselves and work on self regulating their behaviors.

My friend Sharla at the Chaos and the Clutter used her closet to create an amazing sensory space. You can check it out here.

Creating a Sensory Room at Home

A sensory room is really a little misleading in the name. It does NOT have to be an entire room in your home. It could just be a certain area in a room, a safe corner, or designated space.

The first thing you need to do is make sure the area that you pick is completely safe for your child. No sharp corners, outlet covers in place, cords and other objects that could cause harm if you child is having a particular bad day. There are times when children may be so upset that they will throw themselves into things or throw things at other people. So just make sure that this area is free from any objects that could cause harm to them or others.

The next step would be to make sure there are no fluorescent lights in the specific area. Many times fluorescent lights can be irritating for children with visual and auditory sensitivities. If you don't have an option with changing out the lighting, simply cover the fluorescent lights with heat safe paper to help cut down on the glare, or just don't turn them on.

Include soft lighting such as Christmas lights along the ceiling, or a dim lit lamp. A light table would even be a good option.

The color of the room should also be calm and soft colors. The brightest shade of red would definitely not be appropriate. Ask your child what colors help them to feel calm and base your color choices on their suggestions. Pale or natural colors often work best: tans, blues, greens, or light yellow for example.

What Items To Include in Your Sensory Room

Here are some ideas of items to include in your sensory room at home:

Another great company to get items from is Fun and Function. They have some great sensory break boxes, weighted blankets and vests, lap pads, body socks, and more. If you are looking to support a small business and not buy from Amazon, I would highly recommend them.

These are just a few ideas to get you started. If your child is seeing an Occupational Therapist, talk to them and see what they recommend for your child to use in a sensory room at home. They will be able to advise on what products would be beneficial based on your child's unique reactions and behaviors.

For more ideas like this one, check out the links below.

Heather Greutman, COTA

Heather Greutman is a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant with experience in school-based OT services for preschool through high school. She uses her background to share child development tips, tools, and strategies for parents, educators, and therapists. She is the author of many ebooks including The Basics of Fine Motor Skills, and Basics of Pre-Writing Skills, and co-author of Sensory Processing Explained: A Handbook for Parents and Educators.

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  1. My children would benefit greatly from a sensory room. I have two that has sensory issues as well as one with ASD so he already uses weighted blankets I would love to try the weighted gel lappad, and I would definitely want to get my hands on a weighted vest for him.

  2. Deceptively Educational says:

    You have so much great information and advice! A sensory area seems like such a great idea for my boys. Thanks for the suggested items and how to create the best environment. (Oh, and thanks for sharing at the After School Linky Party, too!)

  3. I have been thinking about turning a spare room in my house into a sensory room for some time now. Thanks so much for your suggestions! I have a non-stop schedule, and I often take advantage of sensory breaks. I am a COTA and currently work in the school system. Hopefully from my own tinkering and experimenting I can make suggestions to parents for their own homes!

  4. My son would absolutely benefit from a sensory room. I am in the process of buying a house, and will be slowly building a sensory/play room for him. The number one thing he needs is a place to crash! So it will be padded accordingly. I am so excited!

  5. My son could definitely benefit from his own sensory room! He is the oldest of four and the noise and movements of his younger siblings make it hard for him to concentrate. We’re new to the SPD, so every bit helps!

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