Sensory learning materials supported by Children in Need

As part of our Let Need Your Senses project, support from Children in Need enabled the development of sensory-rich learning and play materials and activities on the themes of food, farming and nature for children with a range of disabilities. They have been used during visits to working farms so that children could participate fully and get the most from their visit.

Making the Discovery Bags

Materials include worksheets, puzzles and word games. Activities include making and growing things and the use of Discovery Bags. Discovery Bags contain items that encourage children to interact with nature. Written items are available in a range of formats suitable for children with different sensory, intellectual and linguistic ability. 

We were able to expand the remit of our Discovery Bags to develop new materials and activities with children, adults, teachers and carers, which we tested with special needs schools in Cornwall such as Doubletrees special school in St Austell. As a result we have refined the items to make them suitable for different disabilities and ages of children.

Exploring with the Discovery Bags

They have been used on farm visits involving at least 500 children and 100 staff/family/carers over the course of the project. Funding from Children in Need has given Sensory Trust a great opportunity to take what we have learnt over the past years, develop it further and make it available to disabled children with different abilities, across England.

We have been helped enormously by a team of volunteers from St Austell and surrounding area. This committed group has been coming regularly to help make the activities and assemble the Discovery Bags. Volunteer Cornwall and the Eden Project have been most helpful in spreading the word amongst their volunteers for assistance.

The dedicated volunteer team

 

BBC Children in Need logo Big Lottery Fund

Links

Let Nature Feed Your Senses - about the project

Discovery Bags - bags designed to make visits engaging and sensory-rich for all groups.

Benefits of contact with nature for everyone? - article outlining barriers that prevent some groups accessing the benefits

Children and the natural world - article arguing that children are not over-stimulated by computer games and television as is often claimed in the media.

For more information visit our Let Nature Feed Your Senses web site

Let Nature Feed Your Senses

LEAF

Natural England