Valley Elementary Sensory Path

The open­ing of the Valley Sensory Path took place on Tuesday, January 15th at Valley Elementary School. This Sensory Path is one of a few cur­rent­ly in schools.

The Valley Sensory Path was cre­at­ed and installed by Special Education teacher, Lori Hill to meet the diverse needs of the Valley stu­dent pop­u­la­tion.  Ms. Hill states, “Students often come to school with a wide range of obsta­cles to face which makes learn­ing dif­fi­cult for them.  Some of our stu­dents have exces­sive ener­gy that needs to be released before true learn­ing can take place or have dis­abil­i­ties that impede their learn­ing. The Sensory Path helps to address some of these needs.”

The Sensory Path con­sists of a series of fine and gross motor activ­i­ties where stu­dents are guid­ed to com­plete phys­i­cal move­ments that are sensory-based, which help to increase focus and reg­u­late emo­tion. Research has shown that com­plet­ing these phys­i­cal move­ments pro­motes pro­pri­o­cep­tive sen­so­ry input, which builds con­nec­tions with­in the devel­op­ing brain’s neur­al path­ways. This will help the stu­dents stay calm and reg­u­late their bod­ies effec­tive­ly. “The sen­so­ry path will be used by Valley stu­dents to pro­mote a pur­pose­ful sen­so­ry break. This in turn allows stu­dents to com­plete learn­ing tasks with­in the class­room while hav­ing that sense of self-awareness or self-recognition,” states Joan Toller, school principal.

Funding was sup­plied by the Just for the Kids Education Foundation (JFTK), a non-profit orga­ni­za­tion which rais­es mon­ey to fund spe­cial, inno­v­a­tive projects in the nine pub­lic schools in the Bensalem Township School District.

Young boy moving through the sensory paths on the wall. He is placing his hands on the handprints on the wall.
Young girl in a blue and gray shirt and black pants jumps through the sensory path