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ERIC Number: EJ916379
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Oct
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0046-9157
Creating a Garden for the Senses
Potter, Cindy
Exceptional Parent, v40 n10 p39-42 Oct 2010
Almost everyone enjoys a walk through a garden, bending to sniff a flower, enjoying a fresh air breeze, listening to water bubbling from a fountain, and watching sunlight dapple through trees and plants. At Allegheny Valley School (AVS), the emphasis on multisensory environments (MSE) for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), has spilled outdoors in two unique sensory gardens. Attending to the sensory qualities of the individuals' daily environments has become routine at AVS. While any garden provides a place to enjoy nature, these sensory gardens have been carefully planned to include something to stimulate every sense and heighten interaction with the outdoors for those who have difficulty accessing and experiencing nature. The purpose of these gardens is to provide an outdoor MSE that provides enriching leisure and recreational activities, promotes learning, enhances awareness of place and nature, and encourages relationships with others. AVS operates residential and therapeutic programs throughout Pennsylvania for children and adults with I/DD. Most of these individuals have multiple physical disabilities, medical complications and some have behavioral management needs. Services are provided to more than 900 individuals ranging in age from 14 to 90 through 125+ facilities and programs in Western, Central and Eastern Pennsylvania. The mission of AVS is to provide quality programs and facilities to help the individuals with I/DD entrusted to its care to live with purpose and dignity, and to provide opportunities and choices for its clients to grow and function at their full potential as independently as possible. This article describes the development of sensory gardens at the Pittsburgh Campus of AVS, a residential center and Adult Day Program Facility, and at the Slippery Rock Program Center, an Adult Training Facility. It also provides some tips for planning a sensory garden.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Pennsylvania