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Sensory classroom

Unit of work

4 lessons


11-14 yrs

In this series of four lessons students consider how a sensory classroom can be used to meet the needs of learners who are sensitive to sensory stimulus. They evaluate sensory aids to learn how they meet the needs of their users and use this understanding to plan and devise a classroom sensory aid using the micro:bit.

Ideally, this unit should be taught after Computing fundamentals and assumes students have experience of writing algorithms using pseudocode and have used the MakeCode editor.

Computational thinking:



Computer systems:




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Lessons created in partnership with Nominet

Overall key learning

  • can understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science
  • have repeated practical experience of writing computer programs in order to solve problems 
  • can evaluate and apply information technology
  • are responsible, competent, confident and creative users of information and communication technology

Additional skills

Creative thinking, problem-solving, collaboration, evaluation.

Lesson 1: Exploring learning environments

Students consider the effects a standard classroom environment can have on learners who are sensitive to sensory stimuli, learn about sensory rooms and evaluate sensory aids.

Key learning:

  • To understand that some learners are sensitive to sensory stimulus
  • To know some benefits of sensory environments
  • To evaluate sensory aids
Lesson 1 details

Lesson 2: Light patterns

Students create a light pattern for a sensory aid, writing and following an algorithm using pseudocode and iteration to program their micro:bit.

Key learning:

  • To use pseudocode to write an algorithm for a light pattern
  • To use iteration in algorithms and programs to create a repeating light pattern
  • To evaluate an algorithm and program to ensure they meet criteria
Lesson 2 details

Lesson 3: Developing pattern algorithms

Students plan how to create a sensory aid to provide a visual sensory pattern using the BBC micro:bit. They write an algorithm using inputs, outputs, iteration and selection.

Key learning:

  • To create a sensory aid for a classroom that meets given criteria.
  • To use pseudocode to write an algorithm using inputs, outputs, iteration and selection 
Lesson 3 details

Lesson 4: Building sensory aids

Students follow their algorithms to program their BBC micro:bit to act as a classroom sensory aid.

Key learning:

  • To follow a design plan to create a classroom sensory aid that meets given criteria
  • To follow an algorithm to create a program using inputs, outputs, iteration and selection
  • To test and debug code and develop solutions to problems that may arise
  • To evaluate the classroom sensory aid effectively
Lesson 4 details