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We were asked to design and install two new Sensory Rooms for Market Field School. A special day school in Colchester for children and young people between the ages of 5 and 16 who experience moderate learning difficulties. It also has enhanced provision for pupils with Autism. The school is prestigiously rated as ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted.

Having a ground floor and a first floor both sensory rooms were to be different in layout and products, but both were to be designed to create a versatile space where the children could either relax or be stimulated by the various sensory products.

Sensory Rooms for Market Field School – Part One

The Ground Floor: All of the interactive products are wired back to one central location as you enter the room. Supervisors can then easily select which products they would like to use depending on the single pupil or group they are working with. We also gave the option to have the children enable the interactive products. This allows them to take control of their own environment, providing great cause and effect learning whilst also being extremely good fun.

We firstly installed our best selling new product the ‘Borealis Tube’ this creates an amazing dancing light effect throughout the tube. It has 16 built-in sequences that can be speed controlled and selected to suit either a calming or active session. With Acrylic Mirrors positioned behind the tube that reflects the lighting this gives a wonderful glowing effect. The plinth located at the bottom of the tube has been extended into an L-Shape to provide a great seating area for the children. Coming out of the seating plinth we installed a Fibre Optic Harness which provides a great tactile product for the children to interact with whilst they are on the plinth. Above the seating area a Fibre Optic Ceiling has been created. This again is a wonderful effect for the children when they lie back and look up at the twinkling stars above their heads.

To theme the room we included a Solar LED Projector and a media projector.  The media projector enables them to play any relaxing image or  DVD alongside the Solar Projector. Colour Changing Down Lights have also been fitted into the suspended ceiling around the room to wash the area with vivid colours. These can be a single colour or switched to colour scrolling. The Softplay Cube supplied can be rolled by the children to determine the colour setting. Great for some fun learning.

On the wall we installed our fascinating Infinity Tunnel which can be controlled by the children with the built-in microphone. The lights dance to any sound it picks up.

A folding resonance curved foam seat was positioned within the room. The seat is made from firm foam and wipe clean vinyl. This allows the children to totally relax as the gentle vibrations produced, create an all encompassing sensory environment. Two points were installed in the room to enable them to use the seat in different positions.

Finally but by no means least our fantastic Sensor Floor™ system was installed into this room. Our interactive video floor provides hours of fun but also gives the children an amazing learning platform with interactive, audio and visual learning all in one product. The system comes with over 150 games but also has the ability for new games to be added to suit curriculum learning. The system has been connected to the main installed speakers to give a clear sound that can be heard throughout the room. To enable the system to be customised to a particular session a sound system has been installed which consists of an input panel that connects to four speakers. The supervisors can then simply plug in their Apple or Android phone or tablet and the selected playlist will be heard through the speakers.

The walls behind the seating plinth have been padded with 50mm thick pads with reinforced vinyl covers up to a height of 500mm. All our Wall Padding is produced to order in-house so can be manufactured in any colour you wish. On this job we recommended light cream as this colour allowed the most from their installed visual effects.

You can read Sensory Rooms for Market Field School Part Two…
‘The First Floor Sensory Room’ in our next Case Study….. It will be well worth the read, if only to see how two Sensory Rooms can be so differently designed for one school but still have the same versatility of a relaxing or stimulating environment.

For information on Market Field School in Colchester – Check out their website