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How fidget spinners can help create an inclusive classroom

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Awareness of different types of educational needs has increased greatly in recent years and with that comes a requirement to meet these needs. We all have the right to an education regardless of background, gender or ability. An inclusive classroom gives everyone the space they need to learn in an environment that works for them.

This week we want to help you understand how toys like fidget spinners can be used to create an inclusive environment in the classroom. 


Let’s explore:

  1. What is an inclusive classroom?
  2. How can toys be used to aid concentration and allow everyone space to learn?
  3. The benefits of inclusivity in the learning environment

What is an inclusive classroom? 


An inclusive classroom is exactly how it sounds, a classroom that allows everyone, of all backgrounds and learning abilities, to learn together. One that gives the students the tools they need to get as much from their lessons as possible and to be able to reach their goals. All students are different and they need to be seen as individuals. Some even have special needs when it comes to learning and it is our duty as educators to do our best to meet these needs, this is what inclusivity is all about! 


How can toys such as fidget spinners be used to aid concentration and allow everyone space to learn?


As mentioned previously, all of our learners are unique. Some may have received a diagnosis such as ADHD or Autism which can make it difficult for them to focus on tasks or tune out distractions. Whether they have been diagnosed with this type of disorder or not some students may find it difficult to remain still and concentrate for long periods. In this case toys such as fidget spinners, stress balls or even small building blocks can be ideal tools for the classroom. 


One study performed by Kathleen Aspiranti and David Hulac in 2021 showed that the use of fidget devices in students with ADHD actually increased their concentration and ability to retain information. Why not keep a box of fidget toys at the front of your classroom for the students to take if they need? These might include:

  1. Fidget spinners or cubes
  2. Building blocks
  3. Clay or playdough 
  4. Stress balls
  5. Rubber bands


What are the benefits of an inclusive learning environment?  


Inclusive classrooms give all students an opportunity to develop friends and increase their social skills. Students from inclusive learning environments learn a greater respect for their peers through shared learning opportunities. In short, students who experience an inclusive learning space are able to appreciate the world through a different perspective than those who are not given this opportunity. Who wouldn’t want to learn in an inclusive environment?!


You’ll find some great resources for teaching students with ADHD or Autism in the links here.  


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Written by Rebecca Sparling

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