We are always trying new ways to create safe environments for our students. These safe environments create a space where they feel comfortable to do homework, sleep, play, talk to a staff, hang out with friends, or just be. There are a few guidelines and restrictions that we have because of the shared space at both buildings, but for the most part we are blessed to be surrounded by people who understand the value of our program. We are able to take over a space for at both buildings to provide a save place for students. There are alway challenges to this process, but it is of the utmost importance to provide an place that stimulate emotional security, physical safety, and creative thinking. With this in mind we have really started to transform the spaces that we utilize.
The primary building has presented some unique challenges since we moved over there a year ago. One of those challenges is to create a fun space without everything that we have become accustomed to at the intermediate building. In the mass amount of hours that I spend regularly on Pinterest, I came across a few ideas to create play tents. I LOVED these ideas and I thought they were adorable. However, we needed to adapt the wonderful ideas that were already out there to suit our program needs. These tents were originally found here, but I didn’t know how to make these 30 times over. So with a little time, some borrowed tools from my dad, a very nice man at Home Depot, and some weird looks buying 15 sheet sets at Target we came up with this!
We have enough tents for each student at the primary building to have a quiet space during homework time. Additionally, we have a few students that have utilized them as a “cool down” space. Sometimes, they need to be in their own space, protected from the outside world. Once they spend a few minutes in that quiet place they have calmed down significantly. One of my favorite parts of this project was that the Intermediate kids built them for the Primary students. They knew that they were not for themselves, but were so excited to build something for the younger kids. They were fully on board with taking the time out of their day to build something that would benefit others, it was great to see! We love them, the students love them, and we hope that you do as well!