"We can stay a bit longer and visit classrooms after giving workshops,"
Henry said. This personalized, on site approach should encourage teachers and
administrators to ask questions and closely examine their sensory environments.
CIRCLE TIME...Students use stuffed animals during this exercise
to create sensory safe spaces for learning, attention and sharing.
Schoolwide sensory approach
Henry has found that once teachers have the information they need they are
eager to implement new strategies and tools in their classrooms. However, their
excitement and efforts can be dimmed by an administration that doesnt understand
what theyre trying to accomplish.
"How are we going to convince our administrators?" is a question Henry
often hears from teachers.
One of her missions while going about the country is to convince administrators
to listen to their teachers.
"Our teachers are wonderful. We need to give them a lot more support and
recognition," Henry said. She advises administrators to give teachers school
time in order to consult and collaborate, allowing people to easily "go through
the stages of change."
"Its not about fixing something thats not working, but about
problem-solving to make something functional," Henry said. "Thats
where (occupational therapy) comes in its about occupation. The students,
the teachers and the administration all working together."
The Henrys hope to be on the road by the beginning of April, in time to attend
the national occupational therapy convention in Seattle, Wash.
Click here to find your own sensory
Additionally read about the tools
developed by Diana Henry.
Reprinted with permission from Counterpoint. Copyright 2000 by LRP Publications,
747 Dresher Road, PO Box 980, Horsham, PA 19044-0980. All rights reserved. For
more information on products published by LRP Publications, please call 800-341-7874,
ext. 275 or visit Education Administration Online -LRP Publications' electronic
network of education resources at http://www.lrp.com/ed.
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