Settling into the OSHC environment with sensory spaces and emotional regulation strategies.
Settling into a new school year can be daunting. Adjusting to unfamiliar spaces and new faces can be a monumental hurdle to overcome for children that need a bit more help to settle into their environment.
At OSHClub, we respond to each child’s needs individually, modifying our practices to help our most important customers relax and feel at home. Our tailored OSHC spaces and resources can help overwhelmed children to regulate their emotions and decompress after a busy day at school.
Leticia Hutchinson, our Regional Operations Manager in Perth’s North, shares some strategies and resources she’s recently implemented in one of her services to help create a true home away from home for those children that need it the most.
- We keep communicating with children, families and teachers to extend strategies from the home and classroom into OSHC. We modify our practices to suit the individual, creating consistency and familiarity.
- ‘How are you feeling today?’ labelled Emotion Jars provide a visual sensory activity to help children acknowledge their feelings. Children add a marble to the jar that best suits their feelings (e.g. happy, sad, nervous, angry) as they enter the OSHC room, which prompts open conversations with our team about emotional regulation.
- Chillout zones and quiet areas, kitted out with soft rugs, cushions, tents and beanbags help create cosy, peaceful places for children to unwind.
- Sensory rockers and mini ‘Egg’ swivel chairs with pull-down shades provide a sensory-cool down environment for our children, allowing them to shelter safely from the outside world, just for a little while. We find children that retreat into these chairs return to the OSHC group refreshed and ready to join their peers.
- Our team prepare individualised sensory boxes with noise-reducing headphones, squishy balls and mindful colouring packs for children to open when they arrive at the service. We create these boxes in the children’s preferred colours and materials, providing a personalised experience.