Notre Dame's Sensory Path aims to get kids moving

By Angela Brown
January 20, 2019 - 12:00pm

Students at Notre Dame Elementary School in North Battleford now have a new activity to burn off some of their extra energy during the day. A Sensory Path.

The Sensory Path is made up of a large colourful vinyl decal that's been applied to the floor in the school's main hallway. Kids can have fun as they hop and jump to complete the various courses that make up the path. There is an educational component too, as the path incorporates numbers, letters from the alphabet, as well as directives to help kids navigate the courses.

Teachers Britana Bidart and Andrea Penner came up with the idea for the project after seeing it online.

Bidart said students in all grades have been trying out the path. 

“Since it’s been there we have had the Pre-Ks all the way up to Grade 7s I've seen out there using it," she said. 

"This was a great way to get them moving in different ways, and help them focus," she added.

Bidart said she and Penner worked with Ultra Print in North Battleford to design and create the Sensory Path.

She said the path is also advantageous during the winter time so kids can get some exercise indoors during recess when it's too cold to go outside.

The Sensory Path is also helpful for students who may need a break for a few minutes from the classroom environment. After spending some time using the Sensory Path they are better able to return to their studies, more relaxed and ready to refocus.

“It can help them build enough energy, that they can go back to class and work well in the classroom – for their teacher and for themselves,” said Bidart.

As another positive, Bidart said Notre Dame was able to use some of the funds from its share of an anonymous donation the school received this year, that was to be used to better kids' physical or mental wellbeing, which helped cover the cost of the project. She added by working directly with Ultra Print on the design, the school was able to have the project completed at a more reasonable cost.  

Bidart added the path has been getting lots of good feedback from everyone since it arrived.

“I’ve had two other schools that are interested,” she said, adding that in February, St. Mary School also plans to get the path for its students to use as well.

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