Physical and Sensory Impairments

What we do for children with a physical disability and/or sensory impairment

For the child with a physical disability or sensory impairment, special consideration will need to be given as to how the child will most easily access the learning space and the curriculum.

Motor skills intervention

We use physical activities to support both gross (whole body) motor skills and fine (hand) motor skills through a wide range of different and stimulating exercises such as balancing, picking up small objects with forceps, practising fastening buttons, etc.  This is proven to help with posture, focus and attention, writing and self-help skills.


Children who experience pain when writing may find regular hand exercises (e.g. with ‘theraputty’), as well as using a pencil grip when writing and having regular rest breaks, helpful.  Sometimes it may be easier to type than handwrite, and where appropriate we teach touch-typing using online programs such as (please note that the children who practise regularly at home are found to be the ones who achieve the best results; the child may also benefit from learning shortcut keys). Children may also be given summary notes or the support of a peer in scribing, when appropriate.

Position in class

We consider the position of the pupil in the classroom in relation to the teacher and the interactive whiteboard – the pupil will benefit from a clear view of both (without the head of another pupil obstructing the way). Adequate space will need to be made available for any specialist chairs and other equipment such as writing slopes, iPads, etc.

Children with a visual impairment

The following may be considered if a child has a visual impairment:

  • The size of text on a sheet.
  • The background colours - for example, a child may see a text better when it is presented on a yellow background.
  • Boundaries clearly defined in school, for example steps down to the playground with a yellow edge and the sides of cupboards painted in a different colour to stand out.

Children with a hearing impairment

The following may be considered if a child has a hearing impairment:

  • The child will benefit from sitting close to the front of the class with a clear view of the teacher’s face.
  • The child should have spare batteries for any hearing aids (kept for safety with the class teacher) and both the child and adults should know how to test the hearing aid to make sure that it is working.

Liaison with external agencies

We often liaise with NHS services who will offer recommendations as to how we might accommodate a child’s physical needs within the school environment.  Parents are always informed prior to any assessment, and will receive any written reports.


Please also also see our Speech, Language & Social Commnunication page if this is relevant for your child.