Analysis of Dynamic Sensory Board on the Behavior of Special Needs Children

Concerned parents and teachers continue to search for ways to assist the development of special needs children. A local educational center seeked help with their students who were struggling with focusing in class. In order to occupy the children, the educational center asked for a new sensory board. Current sensory boards have stationary toys. So, if a certain toy does not appeal to a child, then the board goes to waste. Therefore, the researchers created a board that allowed the toys to be interchanged.

The purpose of this experiment was to determine which toy on the sensory board created eased distraction and discomfort in children with special needs the most. To discover the effect of the board, preschool children from special needs classrooms were taken one at a time to interact with the board for five minutes. The number of times a toy was interacted with and any notable emotion or activity like calmness or fidgeting was recorded.

With the observational study, the number of times each toy was used was recorded and a bar graph of the average number of interactions was created. In general, the students were enthusiastic to interact with the board. The textural toys were most popular with the children. The squishy ball was used the most by all the children with an average number of interactions of 4.6 per child. Additionally, out of all the special needs groups the Speech and Language Impaired students interacted with the board the most at 35.4 times per child on average compared to the students with Early Childhood Developmental Delay, Autism, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, a Physical Impairment, or Down Syndrome.

Research Conducted By:

Elisa Monteiro
Warren Mott High School

Sara Schultz
Sterling Heights High School