Ickburgh School uses Experia’s M.I.L.E to create their own Winter Wonderland

Over the years we’ve come across schools and establishments utilising their Sensory Rooms in innovative and creative ways to transport users to another world, time or place at any time throughout the year.

A winter wonder land created by Ickburgh School in London

A winter wonder land created by Ickburgh School in London

We were therefore seriously impressed by the work by Ickburgh School in Hackney with their winter themed Sensory Room. It was created using Experia’s M.I.L.E® (Multisensory Interactive Learning Environment) technology which allows them to create scenarios and use Sensory Equipment to

create new worlds, tell stories and teach lessons regardless of age or ability. Not only can these be used time and time again, they can also be shared with establishments that have M.I.L.E installed.

M.I.L.E makes learning more engaging as it combines light, sound, video, vibration, moving air, different aromas and even atmospheric conditions and integrates easily with new or existing components from the Experia IRiS (Interactive Reward System) range.

The sensory room is decorated beautifully throughout

The sensory room is decorated beautifully throughout

As we entered the Sensory Room at Ickburgh School, Christmas music filled the room whilst a large video projection of a snow scene unfolded right in front of our eyes. Bubble Tubes, Fibre Optics and Light Spreaders were all set to a vibrant snowy white – all of which playing a part in making the occupants of the room feel like they were in an icy landscape. The decorations in the room further enhanced the feeling of a winter wonderland and we are thrilled that so much effort has been made to create a truly magical space for the students and staff.

To find out more about M.I.L.E and how it can benefit your establishment call 0845 644 0977 or email info@experia-innovations.co.uk

 

Dec
03

Another sensory room, another delighted customer

Over the years we have received some wonderful comments and testimonials about our team and our sensory products, something that makes doing what we do that little bit more rewarding. Our most recent success story comes from Bristol and the Davis family.

A corner of Oliver's new sensory room

A corner of Oliver’s new sensory room

Lisa Davis contacted Experia looking for multi-sensory solutions for her son Oliver, who suffers from Cerebral Palsy. Our team met with Lisa to discuss the requirements and needs of Oliver to offer the best possible equipment that can cater to his needs, the outcome, a state of the art bespoke IRiS sensory room and Hydro Pool.

After an initial site visit and consultation, full 3D drawings of each room were presented and approved by the family. The next step then was to manufacture the products in our state of the art facilities based in South Yorkshire, each product hand assembled and tested.

The eventual install took just a day and left Lisa and Oliver thrilled with the outcome, with Lisa stating, “I would like to say thank you for the amazing sensory room and lighting in our pool room that was completed today, my son is mesmerized by the fibre optic wall carpet and will get so much pleasure from it “.

We are always delighted to know that our customers are happy with the outcomes of their rooms, and we are thrilled Lisa and Oliver both love their new sensory environments. We hope it brings happiness to them both and that the whole family can benefit from this new space.

Date posted: December 3, 2013


Oct
29

Experia Sensory Room engages a range of disabled users in a fun and enjoyable way.

Sensory room provides lasting legacy at Chase Leisure Centre in Wigan

Experia have manufactured and installed countless sensory rooms throughout the UK in the past 8 years, each one a true labour of love, that’s why we are always delighted to receive great feedback on the work we do from clients that are enjoying our sensory rooms and equipment.

The most recent of these was from the fantastic team at Chase Leisure Centre in Wigan, Experia installed a state of the art sensory room and soft play room here in August as they wanted to provide a universal service that paid particular emphasis on engaging families and individuals with disabilities.

Paul Smith, Sports Developmental Manager had this to say about the installation.

WLCT Chief Executive Stuart Murray, Carolyn Knight Commissioning Officer for Staffordshire County Council, Sue Wilson, Olivia Wilson Paralympic Flame Ambassador and Councillor Christine Mitchell, Cannock Chase council Leader for Culture and Sport on the opening day of the sensory room and soft play room.

WLCT Chief Executive Stuart Murray, Carolyn Knight Commissioning Officer for Staffordshire County Council, Sue Wilson, Olivia Wilson Paralympic Flame Ambassador and Councillor Christine Mitchell, Cannock Chase council Leader for Culture and Sport on the opening day of the sensory room and soft play room.

“I just wanted to say a massive thank you to all the staff at Experia for your help and support in the installation of our Sensory Room and Soft Play Area at the Chase Leisure Centre. We recently had our Official opening and the feedback we received from families, partners and members has been fantastic. In particular I would like to thank Gareth Simons (Experia) for all his hard work and support. Gareth has gone out of his way to ensure the success of the project. This included supporting our initial bid for external funding to Staffordshire County Council, project planning, installation of equipment, staff training and helping out at the Official Opening.

Please do pass on my thanks to all the staff at Experia.”

To find out more about Experia sensory rooms please visit www.experia-innovations.co.uk

Date posted: October 29, 2013


Oct
29

Multi sensory equipment by Experia makes Dreams Come True

Multi sensory by Experia making lives better

Experia have provided state of the art multi sensory equipment to a large number of charities throughout the UK over the past seven years, each of the charities unique but having the same goal, making lives better.

We were thrilled to hear from “Dreams Come True” when they contacted us regarding our multi sensory products, the charity have done some amazing work over the past 25 years and its great to now be working with them to bring joy to the terminally ill and seriously ill children.

Wendy Gray, Dreams Co-ordinator at Dreams Come True had this to say about the new partnership:

Experia multi sensory and Dreams Come True

“We’ve recently started working with Experia to provide equipment, (multi sensory and other), for some of our dream children and are very pleased with the service we’ve received.  Not only are the staff very knowledgeable, they’re also very helpful.  Nothing is too much trouble and we wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them to anyone else who is looking for a good equipment supplier. Our dream families are also very pleased with the help and support they’ve received from Experia.”

We have supplied different pieces of multi sensory equipment to the families working with Dreams Come True and hope to do so for the foreseeable future, its great to add them to our growing list of charities we work and we hope to make more dreams come true in the upcoming months with our state of the art multi sensory equipment.

For more information on Experia multi sensory equipment please visit www.experia-innovations.co.uk or alternatively contact us on 0845 644 0977.

For more information on Dreams Come True and the fantastic work and support they do please visit www.dreamscometrue.uk.com

Date posted:


Sep
12

Experia with Sarah Beeny and Channel 4 make a dream come true with a state of the art wireless multi-sensory room

Experia have donated a state of the art wireless sensory room to a family based in West Sussex which is set to appear on the Channel 4 show hosted by Sarah Beeny “Double Your House For Half The Money”. The channel 4 show which airs September 17th at 8pm follows a family as they are undergoing major home renovations to accommodate the growing needs of their 7 year old disabled daughter Iona-May who suffers quadriplegic cerebral palsy.

Iona-May enjoying her new sensory room

Iona-May enjoying her new sensory room

Experia were approached by Channel 4 to donate specialist equipment for the show, but after seeing the fund raising efforts the family had put in to create a better environment for their daughter, they couldn’t stop there, “I was bowled away when I saw the amount of effort put in by the whole family with the fund raising” says Richard Nelson, Marketing Manager at Experia, “This family really had gone the extra mile for Iona-May, and we couldn’t let them settle for second best with the crowning glory of the house, the sensory room.”

Experia donated a fully loaded state of the art wireless sensory room which included a Bubble Tube, Infinity Panel, Fibre Optics, Projector, UV Lights, and a Sensory Resource Box to Iona-May, all of which help create a calming and relaxing environment.

The day of the reveal was a magical moment as Iona-May entered her brand new wireless sensory room for the first time. Instantly mesmerised by the fibre optic strands, Iona-May soon had a favourite piece of sensory equipment in the shape of an Experia Fibre Optic Cascade.

image1

Iona-May with her favourite piece of equipment, the Fibre Optic Cascade

The Experia installation team installed the room the day before the big reveal with the family over the moon with the radical transformation of their old kitchen, Vicki Thorne, the mother of Iona-May stating “I have to admit to being totally blown away with the sensory room – simply awesome. It is still hard to believe that this amazing room is actually in our home and that we can go in there anytime we like and play as a family or for peace and quiet or therapy sessions with Iona-may.”

“There are so many times when Iona-may is unwell or the weather is bad and we can’t get out and the sensory room is going to be the central part of the home where we can spend quality time together as a family. Nana has story times and music sessions planned with Iona-may and Henry cuddled up on the bean bags which will give me some free time too.”

WATCH THE SHOW

Date posted: September 12, 2013


Jul
16

We’ve Moved!

We’ve completed our move to our new offices

After weeks of planning we have now moved to our new offices on High Street, Grimethorpe. Our new offices and manufacturing centre is around 3 times larger than our previous giving us a fantastic working environment and also room for our rapid growth.Experia

If you have any questions about our location change, please let us know!  We will be happy to address any questions or concerns.

Email: info@experia-innovations.co.uk

Phone: 0845 644 0977

 

Our new office/manufacturing address is :

Experia, Upstairs Office, Acorn Phase 3, High Street, Barnsley, South Yorkshire, S72 7BD, United Kingdom.

 

Date posted: July 16, 2013


Jun
25

University of Bath opens autism summer school

A summer school is due to open at the University of Bath to attract autistic students into higher education.

Issues which may put off prospective students will be covered such as stress and anxiety and how to build social skills while living away from home.

Autistic students will be given a taste of student life over the two days at the University of Bath

Autistic students will be given a taste of student life over the two days at the University of Bath

Dr Mark Brosnan said: “It can be very anxiety-inducing this transition of being at home in a structured environment to going to university.”

Thirty places will be available at the summer school which opens in September.

“We are particularly targeting those who are thinking of going to university so we are talking about the higher-functioning end of the spectrum,” said Dr Brosnan, who is running the course.

“There are some very specific needs there – they can be extremely academically gifted and would do extraordinarily well on the academic side but may need additional support on the social side,” he added.

The two-day course will be free to those who have been diagnosed with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

Dr Brosnan hopes to expand the summer school and hold it every year, if funding can be secured.

BBC News. (2013). University of Bath opens autism summer school. Available: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-somerset-23030755. Last accessed 25th August 2013.

Date posted: June 25, 2013


Jun
10

Theatre Shows Autistic Children Can Enjoy

 

For most five-year-old boys, a trip to the cinema is a treat. But for Charlie Webb, who has Asperger’s syndrome, it’s a sensory overload – and not in a good way. He has finely tuned hearing and hates sudden loud noises: hand-driers and helicopters upset him, so you can imagine how he feels with Dolby Surround Sound. “I don’t want to go again,” he told his mother, Tracey, after his second and final trip.

Five-year-old Charlie Webb, right, who has Asperger's, meets the cast of Spot’s Birthday Party at the Oxford Playhouse with his sister, Amber, two, and his mother, Tracey. Photograph: Damian Halliwell for the Guardian

Five-year-old Charlie Webb, right, who has Asperger’s, meets the cast of Spot’s Birthday Party at the Oxford Playhouse with his sister, Amber, two, and his mother, Tracey. Photograph: Damian Halliwell for the Guardian

Other family outings, along with his father, Dustin, and sister, Amber, two, can be anxiety-inducing. The slightest change to the usual setup – a slide moved, say, or the menu changed – upsets him. Trips to the local park in Oxford are full of everyday social rules that he finds hard to understand, such as queueing and waiting. “When he gets angry, it’s like a classic two-year-old’s tantrum but on a five-year-old,” says Tracey.

So when she heard about a theatre show at the Oxford Playhouse in February of Spot’s Birthday Party, aimed at children on the autistic spectrum, she jumped at it. It was a chance to take Charlie along to something stimulating, but not frightening. “I’d never been brave enough to take him before,” she says.

The play was a “relaxed performance”, which means the theatre turns a blind eye to – indeed actively encourages – potentially disruptive behaviour. It allows children to move around and provides a less frightening environment. Actors, front of house, back-stage crew and box-office staff are prepared for what to expect during the performance, and “visual stories” – simplified information about the play and the theatre – are emailed to parents beforehand.

“The aim is to cater for the full spectrum of autistic behaviour, from profound disability to anxiety,” says Kirsty Hoyle, project manager of the relaxed performances project run by the Society of London Theatre and The Prince’s Foundation for Children & the Arts. This means anything from children groaning and rocking in their wheelchairs to reacting to the action on stage in an endearingly pantomimic way – “Watch out!” During one show, a child repeatedly shouted “Mango!”

To read the full article please click here

 

Booth, H. (2013). Theatre Shows Autistic Children Can Enjoy. Available: http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2013/may/25/theatre-shows-autistic-children. Last accessed 10th June 2013.

 

Date posted: June 10, 2013


May
29

Children “may grow out of autism”

Some young children accurately diagnosed as autistic lose their symptoms and their diagnosis as they get older, say US researchers.

The findings of the National Institutes of Health study of 112 children appears to challenge the widely held belief that autism is a lifelong condition.

While not conclusive, the study, in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, suggests some children might possibly outgrow autism.

But experts urge caution.

Much more work is needed to find out what might explain the findings.

Dr Deborah Fein and her team at the University of Connecticut studied 34 children who had been diagnosed with autism in early childhood but went on to function as well as 34 other children in their classes at school.

On tests – cognitive and observational, as well as reports from the children’s parents and school – they were indistinguishable from their classroom peers. They now showed no sign of problems with language, face recognition, communication or social interaction.

For comparison, the researchers also studied another 44 children of the same age, sex and non-verbal IQ level who had had a diagnosis of “high-functioning” autism – meaning they were deemed to be less severely affected by their condition.

It became clear that the children in the optimal outcome group – the ones who no longer had recognisable signs of autism – had had milder social deficits than the high-functioning autism group in early childhood, although they did have other autism symptoms, like repetitive behaviours and communication problems, that were as severe.

The researchers went back and checked the accuracy of the children’s original diagnosis, but found no reason to suspect that they had been inaccurate.

Read the full article here

Roberts, M. (2013). Children “may grow out of autism”. Available: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-21029593. Last accessed 29th May 2013.

Date posted: May 29, 2013


May
24

How do you fill the holiday void with an Autistic son?

Spring Bank Holiday……

Im sure alot of you will be wondering how to keep your children happy and busy this Spring Bank, this article has some great ideas on how to keep your young ones busy in what can be quite a stressful time.

John Williams is a single father and full-time carer for his 10-year-old son, who has autism and cerebral palsy. Both of them dread school holidays but have learned how to manage them, he says, through a process of trial and error.

School. Holidays. Two words that on their own are fine, but together strike fear and horror in to parents throughout the land. For my 10-year-old autistic son, who craves the familiarity and consistency of routine, the lack of sameness, and change of pace that holidays inevitably bring, can make them an even more testing time.

“Please complete the holiday diary to tell us what you did over the Easter period,” said a letter he arrived home with on Friday. It turned out to be an exercise book. An exercise book! Forty-two pages.

He’s only off for two weeks. What do you want us to have done?

“On Monday we trekked across the Himalayas to discover a new breed of toad before popping over to South America on Tuesday to save the rainforest.”

What’s wrong with: “We spent the entire fortnight in our pyjamas watching CBeebies, eating all our meals off the lounge floor with our hands”?

But unless you want to be made to feel like you’re top of the Bad Parent Class, trips out are the order of the day. We’ve tried different outings over the years, some with more success than others.

London’s Natural History Museum is a place of wonderment and beauty… unless you’re an eight-year-old who can’t differentiate between reality and make-believe.

For The Boy, as I’m calling him for the purpose of this article, to save his blushes, it’s just a big mortuary filled with dead animals, apart from one very much alive, animatronic Tyrannosaurus Rex, that nobody sees fit to warn you about. We’ve only been once.

Libraries are good. They’re quiet, often tragically empty places nowadays. The Boy likes their calmness.

The one nearest to us has really high ceilings. So if you stand in the middle of it and scream really loudly when you can’t have the same Doctor Who book you’ve borrowed for the last 18 months, you get a brilliant echo that goes on and on and on – long after the security guard has asked you to step outside.

There’s one trip we’ve become good at though – 10-pin bowling.

The frustration of no gutter guards

Bowling alleys have a consistency that The Boy finds reassuring. The lights aren’t too bright, there’s an airiness to the place and there are no surprises. You bowl the ball. It knocks things down. They get up again. Time after time.

But even then, our visit is not like most people’s. So, if ever anyone fancies taking The Boy bowling for the school holidays, here’s a crash course on how to make the trip a success:

  • Get there early. The earlier the better. Preferably before the rest of civilisation has woken up. The concept of queuing and waiting is lost on The Boy who has no time for such trivial events.
  • Select your lane carefully. You want one that’s as far away from other human beings as possible. Other human beings cause anxiety and create noise, which only serves to divert attention from The Boy’s own attempts to make noise. If Lanes 1-4 are occupied, Lane 37 is ideal.
  • Beware rented shoes. Never underestimate just how odd a concept it is to swap your own perfectly reasonable shoes for a pair that have been worn by multiple strangers. For the duration of the game, prepare to be asked at least 17 times a minute if his own shoes are safe.
  • Always use the gutter guard. The Boy may try to convince you that he doesn’t want the guards up any more, to block the gutter, as he is now good enough at bowling. He isn’t. The barbaric yelp accompanying each ball that trundles slowly down the gutter, will make the noise he made in the library appear like a whimper.
  • Never, ever win. Introducing the concept of losing to The Boy is important. But this is the child whose frustration with the world has led to him being excluded from nurseries, childminders, after-school clubs, holiday play-schemes, mainstream schools and even a special school. So while he’s holding a 15lb bowling ball, it’s not the ideal time to take him on.
  • Smile please! The stress of this trip will probably prevent you from leaving the house again for the rest of the holidays. Take lots of pictures where you’re pretending to enjoy yourself. The aim is to fill up 41 pages of the school holiday diary. The other page can be used to write The Boy’s name.

Williams, J. (2013). How do you fill the holiday void with an autistic son?. Available: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-21969439. Last accessed 24th March 2013.

 

Date posted: May 24, 2013