Sensory Break Ideas for the Classroom

Instructor: Elizabeth Hemmons

Beth has taught early childhood education, including students with special needs, for the past 11 years. She has a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education.

Providing sensory breaks for students is important, especially for students with special needs. This lesson presents ideas to help students of a variety of ages to relax and refocus during lessons.

Sensory Breaks

As a teacher, you can see when your class is having trouble focusing on a lesson. You try to speak louder, change your tone of voice, maybe even redirect by giving a few compliments or writing some information on the board. The truth is, more than likely, your students are in need of a sensory break.

A sensory break is a short break given during a lesson in which the students are sitting or listening for a certain period of time. This break usually includes some type of movement or physical activity for a short while to help students recharge and refocus. Sensory breaks can be given frequently throughout the day and can be used for all age groups.

Early Childhood and Elementary Ages

Early childhood and elementary-age students are going to require more sensory breaks than older students. Because their attention span is shorter, they may even need a few sensory breaks within one lesson. Sensory breaks can make the school day more fun for this age group. These breaks also help build gross motor skills and core strength. Here are some sensory break ideas for early childhood students.

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