It’s not just the teachers making an impact at Challenger Intermediate School. Student Council President, sixth grader Elaina Baldwin, was excited to create Sensory Stations for her peers to get a “brain break”. Elaina said, “There has been equipment in the classrooms, but I thought it would be nice for students to have things in the hallways to use during passing periods to help them focus, relax and get a break. Sometimes, I need a break and I start messing with my hands or I start twitching my legs … it can just get annoying.”
The sensory station is a four-tiered cart with wheels. Each tier has a different set of activities such as fidget spinners, floam, Rubik’s Cubes and water beads, just to name a few. During passing periods, Elaina oversees pulling out the station and getting it put away. Joel Condray, sixth grade teacher at Challenger Intermediate, helps man the hallway to make sure students respect the station and to see that none of the gear “walks off”. The idea is to allow students to relax and get a break from studies to stay more focused in the next period.
Joel was excited to help Elaina write the grant proposal and it was easy to see his faith in her ability to put her idea into motion. He also mentioned how he has witnessed the station build community in the halls in the short time it has been in use. Students that may not be in class together meet up, students that may not talk to each other now have something in common.