Click on the pictures to run Sensory Stories. To download right-click and select 'Save target as'.
In 2007-2008 we began working on a project to create multi-sensory story sessions for students with Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties (PMLD) at Greenside. The idea behind the project was to create resources, build staff skills and encourage participation amongst our least able students. What was unique about this project was the focus on the needs of students with PMLD and on the ways in which they might engage with stories through sensory activities and simple narratives. Often in drama sessions it is the more able students who play the most active roles with less able students taking a back seat. We wanted students with PMLD to be at the centre of these stories.
All the stories I wrote are available here to download as multi-media switching programs. They can be used as teaching resources to follow the story and they include sound effects and music to accompany the various sensory activities. Lists of sensory materials and where to use them in the stories are also downloadable.
The sessions are made up of a series of sensory elements which cover visual, auditory, tactile, movement, and smell stimuli. They all use repetitious and simple language in order that the sessions have a strong sense of sequence built from repetition. At Greenside these packages have been used in exclusively PMLD groups as well as mixed ability groups and have proved successful in both cases.
Whilst many of our students may not have the cognitive ability to understand complex stories, these sessions offer the grounds to begin developing an understanding and engagement with sequential elements, to actively participate in them, and to be seen as active members of the school community.